President of the Ghana Independence Broadcasters Association (GIBA), Andrews Danso-Ahenkorah, has expressed the need for enacting broadcasting law. According to him, this is crucial for the development of the media fraternity.
Speaking in an interview, he revealed that the law once implemented will go a long way to help develop the nation.
“We need regulations if we are going to talk about development; we need regulations when we are going to talk about growth; and we need regulations to be able to convince ourselves that this is how we started from and this how far we have come and through this, we are here”.
Mr. Danso-Ahenkora’s comments follow a stakeholder meeting held on Friday to deliberate on measures to prevent the broadcasting of inappropriate media contents.
He further stressed the need for these restrictions, by stating that, they should not curtail freedoms GIBA enjoys under the constitution.
MFWA commends government for dialogue
On his part, the Executive Director of the Media Foundation for West Africa, Sulemana Braimah, commended government for the public dialogue on the Broadcasting Bill.
Mr Braimah explained that the passage of the bill is long overdue as a country that has enjoyed almost 30 years of independent broadcasting.
“It is quite surprising that the nation is yet to finalise a framework that will respond to what is provided for in Article 164. There needs to be legislation to ensure that the freedoms are qualified appropriately”.
Meanwhile, Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Attorney General, has expressed the need for the implementation of proposed Broadcasting Bill implementation. According to him, this is essential in addressing some of the challenges affecting the broadcasting industry in the country.
Mr. Dame explained that the constitution promises freedom of expression and other special rights for journalists and broadcasters. That notwithstanding, he revealed that it also allows some of those rights to be limited.
He averred that the limitations only come in when they have implications on public order. He further cited other implications as public morality and the protection of rights of others.
The Attorney General noted that “in this country we see that there is the absence of specific legislation which gives expression to the reasonable limitation that ought to be imposed for the protection of public order, public morality and the protection of the rights and reputation of others”.
Failure to pass Broadcasting Bill
Additionally, Mr. Dame bemoaned government’s failure to pass the Broadcasting Bill despite the bill being in Parliament since 2015.
Commenting further, he expressed the urgent need for the implementation of the Bill. Once implemented, he insists that it should also cater for copyright issues in the country.
The broadcasting law, he revealed, must deal with interactions between the National Media Commission and the National Communication Authority. According to him, this can be achieved within “the reasonable limits of their boundaries”.
“Clearly we see that there is an urgent need for us to regulate the media; and I will say the diversity and complexity of expression broadcast to the world makes it absolutely imperative. The broadcasting law, I believe, should also deal with matters relating to copyright, the interaction between. This Bill is crucial. I can pledge our unflinching support to ensure that this initiative comes to fruition”.
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