Let’s Build Capacity Of Public Service Media — Prof Karikari

The Board Chairman of the Graphic Communications Group Limited, Professor Kwame Karikari, has called for the building of institutional capacity of public service media for better delivery.
He said in recent times the private media had been performing well with regard to national events and, therefore, the focus must be on building the public service media.

“Our commercial media are doing very well with public journalism; we need to focus on and build the institutional capacity of public service media,” the chairman added.

Professor Karikari, made the call at the Graphic Business/Stanbic Bank breakfast meeting in Accra yesterday on the theme: “Media and marketing communication post-COVID-19: A catalyst for socio-economic resurgence”.

The chairman further said in the midst of commercial and private media, it was necessary to support the public service media more through capacity building.

“We need to build, support and give them a better direction because they are the ones which are obliged to perform certain roles that we may not expect commercial media to perform,” he added.

Private media

A digital marketing and communications expert, Mr Stephen N. Boadi, also called for support for private media organisations to enable them to contribute to public service journalism.

He said for Ghana to quickly recover from the economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, public service journalism would be significant to rally people to support government policies and interventions.

Mr Boadi, however, said public service media organisations could not do it alone, hence the need for the support.

“The Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) alone cannot do everything you expect the public service media to do, so we need to enable the private media, as partners, to also come on board,” he added.

Mr Boadi said the support could be in the form of capacity building, adding: “The private media don’t exist as a charity and so let’s give them enough reason to do public service media journalism.”

Mr Boadi said it was also necessary to provide the media with the needed infrastructure to be able to go about their work diligently.

He further suggested that the National Communications Authority could facilitate the provision of reliable internet services for the media to enable them to broadcast efficiently from all parts of the country.

He dismissed the assertion that the traditional media were phasing out, saying those who integrated their activities with digital media would continue to remain relevant.

“It is also about the value you are giving to people. If we refuse to grow and don’t adapt to new trends, we will die. So it depends on how the traditional media embrace technology to give more value to customers,” he added.

Resetting the media 

The Chief Executive Officer of ABN Holdings Limited, Mr George Twumasi, said the COVID-19 pandemic presented a good opportunity for a resetting of the media industry.

He said the pandemic had made everyone aware of the reality of a new digital eco-system, which the media in Africa could leverage.

“Our digital eco-system in Africa, according to Google, maybe around $180 billion by 2025 and $712 billion by 2050. This presents a huge opportunity to reset and make the digital economy a very powerful income generator for the country and drive the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) agreement.

“If we get our act right, this country can be the digital leader of Africa,” Mr Twumasi added.