The Government has assured Ghanaians that it has taken steps to intensify the fight against corruption and remains committed to running an open, transparent and accountable administration.
This assurance came against the backdrop of a story published by ‘myjoyonline.com’ and broadcasted on Joy FM, as well as, other online portals, to the effect that Ghana had been ranked as the third most corrupt country by a Gallup poll conducted in 2012.
The same story has also been published by several newspapers linked to the New Patriotic Party (NPP). They all had the same headlines, content and paragraph arrangements, suggesting that the story was choreographed for a certain effect, especially so when corruption has become the dirt, the Mahama government, is being slapped with.
“Government has noted an extremely misleading story published by myjoyonline.com and broadcast on Joy FM, in which they claim that a Gallup poll conducted in 129 countries with Free Press in 2012, ranked Ghana as the third most corrupt country”, said a press release signed by Mr. Felix Kwakye Ofosu, Deputy Minister of Information and Media Relations, and copied to The Herald.
According to the release, a thorough study of the Gallup poll showed that nowhere was it suggested that Ghana was the third most corrupt country, among the 129 countries in which the poll was conducted.
“In fact Ghana ranks much lower than the underlisted countries, who are all featured in the poll”, it said, adding that Ghana obtained the same score as Cameroon and Bosnia Herzegovina.
Other countries featured in the poll included Tanzania (95%), Czech Republic (94%), Nigeria (92%), Kenya (93%), Chad (92%) Greece (92%) and Kosovo – (90%)
The release indicated that the report on the poll put out by Gallup placed the 129 sampled countries in three categories namely, “Free Press Countries”, “Partly Free Press Countries” and “Not Free Press Countries”, contending therefore that it was also inaccurate for Joy FM to claim that the Gallup poll was conducted in 129 “Free Press” countries.
“Government notes with satisfaction that Ghana was classified in the “Free press” Countries category alongside established democracies like the United States of America, Portugal, Italy, United Kingdom, Netherlands, Australia and Norway – a development which Gallup acknowledges as an ‘indicator of good governance and development’”, the release stated.
It noted that Ghana was also one of only two countries in Africa to be classified as “Free Press” countries, the other country being South Africa.
“While government encourages media organizations to take advantage of the unfettered media freedom that exists in the country, it also wishes to admonish them to ensure that truth, accuracy, balance and professionalism are adhered to in their work”, the release said, adding that doing so will avert the churning out of clearly misleading reports like the one under reference.