President John Mahama will join players in the media industry to mark the 20th anniversary since the introduction of Ghana’s first private radio station, Radio EYE.
The President, a PR expert and former Minister of Communications will open a three-day conference from Wednesday 19th November 2014. The conference to be held at the Accra International Conference Center will assess the strides and strains within the media industry noted as the fourth estate of the democratic realm.
The conference will also predict and prepare the media on what to expect in the next 20 years. It is organised by the Ghana Institute of Public Policy Options and the Independent Media Corporation of Ghana.
Ghana’s independent and private media has come a long way and is set to explode with a proliferation of free access to private TV stations when Ghana joins the world to go digital broadcasting in 2015.
Stating the history of the private media, GIPPO’s Chief Executive, Dr. Chalres Wereko-Brobby recalled that “On the morning of Saturday 19thNovember 1994, Radio EYE broke the state’s monopoly of the air waves and became the first independent broadcasting outlet in Ghana. Twenty years on, more than 300 FM radio stations and about 30 TV stations have been licensed to operate in the country.”
Despite marshalling media power to help police four elections, the media today has been criticized for becoming tools for partisan interest and a platform for verbal abuse.
But according to Dr. Charles Wereko Brobby the most “incredulous” constraint is the lack of a Broadcasting law, 20 years on.
These and other issues will be the subject matter to be discussed by a star-studded list of speakers, invited guests and panelists.
Media moguls, Chief Executive of Multimedia Group Limited, Kwasi Twum, Managing Director & Editor in Chief, Graphic Communications Group Mr. Kenneth Ashigbey, General Manager, CITI FM Mr. Samuel Attah Mensah, Pioneer News & Current Affairs Head, JOY FM Mr. Mawuko Zormelo will be speaking at the conference.
Industry regulators such as Director-General, National Communications Authority Paa Rock Van Percy, Executive Secretary, National Media Commission (NMC) Mr. George Sarpong have been invited.
Academics such as Founder & President, African University College for Communications (AUCC) Mr. Kojo Yankah, and Chairman of Media Foundation for West Africa, Prof. Kwame Karikari are all expected to attend.
It will feature current Information minister Dr Omane Boamah and his predecessor Mr. Totobi Quarkyi , Ex-Chairman; National Communications Authority & Minister of Information (1994)
A host of media personalities, talkshow hosts, editors and producers will provide perspectives on the state of Ghana’s media since 1994.