Source: Graphic.com.gh

The President, Mr John Dramani Mahama, has called on managers of radio stations to address the extreme partisanship that has taken over radio talk shows.

For instance, he wants to see people with knowledge on specific issues take over discussions instead of political party representatives who usually view issues with political lenses.

President Mahama made the call when leaders of the Institute of Public Relations (IPR) called on him at the Flagstaff House yesterday to discuss developments in the association of which he is an affiliate member.

He said the over-politicisation of issues was a disincentive to national cohesion and democratic development.

The President nonetheless described radio as one of the major contributors to the country’s democratic development and promised that the government would continue to support its operators to play that role with efficiency.

He, however, added that owners of the stations needed to create the means to improve professionalism.

President Mahama noted that the growing competition in the radio industry had resulted in some radio presenters indulging in sensationalism just to outdo their competitors and said that was not good for responsible media.

He underlined that understanding the issues in order to properly inform the public to take decisions was key to democratic development.

President Mahama said the establishment of the Media Development Fund by the government was informed by the quest to see responsible journalism and professionalism take firm roots in the country.

He noted that most often some of the radio presenters were not armed with the information needed to make their programmes productive.

He said the Ministry of Communications would continue to collaborate with the media to improve the system.

Turning to the IPR, the President challenged the leadership to be abreast of the changing public relations landscape, to enable members to meet the challenges of the time.

He said the advancement of technology had led to people generating information from all manner of sources.

That had made the work of the media and public relations practitioners more challenging, he stressed.

President Mahama said he had followed the activities of the IPR with keen interest and expressed the hope that members would continue to work hard.

The President of IPR, Mrs Elaine Sam Kwami, spoke on the “needless promotions” in the electronic media, saying the development was due to the fact that a number of people did not understand communications.

Consequently, she said, the institute wanted to collaborate with the Ministry of Communications on how to address the problem.

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