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Journalists urged to expose financial irregularities

Financial journalists in the country been urged to be intrusive and bring out irregularities in the financial sector.

The First Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Maxwell Opoku-Afari who made the call in Accra yesterday at a two-day workshop on financial literacy for 30 financial journalists, said digging and bringing out the rot in the financial space by financial journalists  would help to sustain the stability of the banking and financial  industry.

The programme organised by the Journalists for Business Advocacy (JBA) under the auspices of Ecobank was on the theme “Understanding Financial Sector Reforms.”

Dr Opoku-Afari who was the guest speaker said, there was ample evidence of the role financial journalists played in sustaining the stability of the banking and financial sector by writing and highlighting of the irregularities in the sector.

He said the BoG as part of its macro prudential policy measures was working closely with banks to ensure that they do not pass on their operational inefficiencies and overhead cost to their clients as part of efforts to reduce the cost of credit in the country.

 “Going forward banks would be required to develop and publish a clear framework on the risk premium build-up that impacts on an individual borrower’s credit profiles,” Dr Opoku-Afari said.

The First Deputy Governor entreated journalists to be more intrusive in their quest for knowledge and unearth irregularities within the financial space to ensure financial stability and commended JBA for initiating the workshop and the Ecobank for sponsoring the programme.

The Head of Corporate Communications and Marketing of Ecobank Ghana, Madam Rita Tsegah said her outfit was proud to be associated with the programme which was in its fifth year.

She said the training would contribute to the enhancement of the knowledge of financial reporters and position them to report better on business and financial issues in the country, and said about 200  financial journalists across the country so far  had benefited from the training programme.

The Head of Corporate Communications and Marketing entreated the media to take the lead in promoting financial literacy and promoting financial inclusion in the country.

The President of JBA, Suleiman Mustapha in his address said the training workshop started five years ago to build the capacity of financial journalists on business and economic issues to lift the discourse on business and economic issues, and said business reporting in the country was fast improving and more journalists were specialising on business and financial reporting unlike the past.

Mr Suleiman said the message for next year’s general elections would largely focus on business and economic issues and there was the need to build the capacity of journalists in that direction.

Consequently, he said business and financial training would be held for financial journalists ahead of the elections to build their capacities to better interrogate business and economic messages of politicians and communicate same.

By Kingsley Asare

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