For her reward, the Agency was presented with a certificate and a plaque at an awards ceremony organised by the GNFS in Accra.

Two special awards were also presented to Mr Mark Owen Woyongo, Minister of the Interior who received a medal, certificate and a plaque; and the National Insurance Commission received a certificate for supporting the course of the Service.

Other media organisations which were also honoured include the Daily Graphic, Ghanaian Times, Spectator, The Mirror, Daily Guide, The Punch, Heritage, Peace Fm, Adom Fm, Rainbow Radio, Viasat TV, TV Africa, Z TV, GTV, and First digital TV.

Mr Woyongo commended the board and management of the GNFS for the honour done him and pledged his continuous support to the service to deliver on its mandate.

He congratulated the media for its role of channeling relevant information to the public in a timely manner.

“As a shared responsibility, the media over the years have assisted the service to educate the public on the hazards and prevention of fire, as well as enhancing its image, leading to sustainable development,” he added.

Mr Woyongo urged the media to be circumspect in their reportage and continue to play its role in educating the public on fire prevention.

He tasked the media to intensify activities on fire safety campaign especially during the harmattan season and engage in constructive criticism to enhance healthy democratic values.

Dr Albert Brown Gaisie, the Chief Fire Officer, GNFS, said the role of the mass media could not be over-emphasised because it influenced public opinion, political opinion, and government policies.

“The media over the years gave free airtime for public safety education and in the process relay timely information and insights about the nature, causes, prevention and impact of the harmful effects of fires to the public,” he added.

Dr Gaisie noted that the opportunity provided by the media contributed to the reduction in the number of fire outbreaks recorded in the second and third quarters of last year.

He urged media practitioners to adjust to modern trends requiring creativity, innovation and dynamism to better serve the changing world.

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The Ghana news Agency (GNA) was established on March 5, 1957, i.e. on the eve of Ghana's independence and charged with the "dissemination of truthful unbiased news". It was the first news agency to be established in Sub-Saharan Africa. GNA was part of a comprehensive communication policy that sought to harness the information arm of the state to build a viable, united and cohesive nation-state. GNA has therefore been operating in the unique role of mobilizing the citizens for nation building, economic and social development, national unity and integration.


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