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Give Attention To Inequality Issues In Ghana - MFWA
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The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has charged the media to develop a keen interest in the reportage of issues regarding inequality in Ghana.

Executive Director of MFWA, Sulemana Braimah noted that disparities which continue to swell between urban and rural communities, socially and politically, threatens the country’s progress.

At a public forum organized by the MFWA in Accra under the theme; ‘Reducing Inequality in Ghana: The Role of Stakeholders’, Mr. Braimah indicated that the concentration of resources in the hands of a few persons leads to extreme inequality with high tendencies of violent crimes being fueled.

The call follows a study conducted by the MFWA on a ‘Baseline Report on Media Coverage of Inequality Issues in Ghana’ which revealed how uninformed the media is as far as issues of inequalities are concerned.

A presentation showed that most media houses reported less on inequality issues in Ghana with only a section going a step further to bring the situation to light.

Over the past 20 years, Ghana has successfully transitioned from authoritarian rule to democracy; achieving middle-income status in 2010, its poverty rate has fallen significantly and it ranks among the highest-performing countries in terms of human development in sub-Saharan Africa.

Inequality reduction however has not seen much improvement. The effect of Ghana’s growth, coupled with rising inequality against the backdrop of declining poverty therefore calls for a rethink of Ghana’s growth strategy.

In an interview with www.ghanaweb.com on the way forward as far as breaching the gap is concerned, Programme Manager, Abigail Larbi said the organization sought to inform the public on the role the media play to keep the conversation around inequality going and how effectively and accurately to cover issues in that regard.

The findings according to her indicates that the media needs to do more to ensure that the right steps are taken to resolve the problem.

“Over the years the focus has been on poverty reduction but we think that we should go a step further and look at the situation. So while poverty is reducing, the question is that, is it bringing people at par. Is it that equality is deepening? If it is what can we do about it?” she asked rhetorically.

On the other hand, a representative of the Minister of Gender, Children, and Social Protection Otiko Djaba, Afua Addotey stated that although inequality remains relatively high and has been rising, Ghana’s “inequality story is changing.”

She explained that the highest levels of inequality are now found within specific regions with the highest level in Upper West region as at 2013.

In a speech on behalf of the Gender Minister, she added “Given that poverty has reduced, it is not surprising that we find all groups have benefitted to some extent from growth since the 1990s. Since the 2006 alone, the poorest group have seen consumption levels rise to around 40% less than the average rich group average.”

She maintained that the Gender Ministry’s Social Protection policy has the potential to have “significant impacts on incomes, equitable development, and increased access to social services for the extreme poor and vulnerable.”
Source: Ghanaweb.com

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