The Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has indicated that the view held by a section of the Ghanaian public that a culture of silence is gradually creeping back into the country is incorrect.
He questioned how a country with over 500 vibrant media houses operating can be said to be operating under a culture of silence.
At a media engagement to end his tour of the five regions of the north in Tamale, Mr Oppong Nkrumah said the reality was that those who were making the claims were rather uncomfortable with their opinions being disagreed with.
“This claim that there is culture of silence in this country cannot be true, this is a country with about 500 radio stations, 100 television stations, millions of social media accounts and everybody is freely expressing themselves”.
“What some persons cannot stand is that when they express their thoughts and other people disagree, then they claim you are silencing them. Respectfully, that is the beauty of our democracy, that I will have my say, and you can disagree with me” Mr. Nkrumah stated.
Mr Oppong Nkrumah noted that the type of narrative the media carries concerning the country are the ones that will be used by the international community to grade the country.
He added that the reality is that government is doing a lot to deepen the freedom of expression and freedom of the media.
He said the Kuffour government repealed the criminal libel law and the current government has moved it two notches up by passing the Right to Information Act and the setting up of the office to coordinate the safety of journalists in the country.
The Information Minister called on the media to not only hold duty bearers accountable but to also promote the great potential of the country and its regions.
According to him, there are lots of economic opportunities in the country which when fully tapped into, will enable the growth of the Northern regions and bring in a lot of investments which will ultimately create jobs and opportunities for the young people.
”Promote the opportunities that can attract investors into the region to complement the effort of the government,” he added.
Mr. Oppong Nkrumah further stated that it will take a while before the country’s economy will recover from the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.
He said the country’s economy has been badly affected forcing government to put in some measures including the introduction of some taxes to help put the economy back on track.
“We have got to a point where we cannot continuously borrow beyond where we are, so, we have to raise some revenues, that means that we have to impose some taxes,” Mr. Oppong Nkrumah noted.
Source | Joy News