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The media’s silence on illegal mining is dire- Sam Jonah

Source The Ghana Report

The Chancellor of the University of Cape Coast, Sir Dr Sam Jonah has expressed concern over the media’s silence on illegal mining activities, popularly known as galamsey in Ghana.

The statesman and business executive, delivering his keynote address at the launch of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) 75th-anniversary celebrations underscored that failure on the part of journalists to report objectively on illegal mining is paving the way for the nation to experience more horrific devastation situations in areas where the operation takes place.

” I wish Mr. Chairman I could be more confident that the coverage could be more professional but I’m afraid, I can’t, even the rather unserious way in which another important national issue, the most egregious abuse of the rights of millions whose livelihoods, have been disseminated completely by galamsey operators have been cheated by your profession.

“I don’t know whether you are exhausted and indeed frustrated by the shameful lack of decisive action by authorities to your interventions.

“All I know is that your association’s pen in which your work depends has gone silent on this important matter.'” he noted at the event.

As part of his focus on the media and illegal mining activities, he said the media has failed to project the subject headline stories to create more awareness of the overwhelming national issue.

“I would have loved to see more concerted and sustained actions from you, sadly that has not been the case. Galamsey doesn’t make the headlines anymore and yet, the country is experiencing ravages of this terrible phenomenon every day”.

He added, “The alarming increase in liver diseases, the increase in children born with deformities, and the alarming rate of infant mortality in areas affected by galamsey activities appear not to merit your sustained concern. What a shame, what a pity”.

Sam Jonah further charged journalists to be responsible in their reportage, not forgetting the power and purpose of their role in the country’s democratic dispensation, as the Fourth Organ of Government or the Fourth Estate.

“As journalists, the time we live in, beckons you to remember your purpose, power, and your responsibility” added.

He also commended the executives of the GJA, headed by Albert Kwabena Dwumfour, for settling on the theme; ‘Honouring the Past, Embracing the Present, Shaping the Future’ for the GJA’s 75th anniversary celebrations.

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