She reminded media practitioners to allow the core principles of journalism to guide their work and eschew reports borne out of speculation and rumour which could provoke unnecessary tension and chaos as the polls draw near.
Mrs Osei, who was the Guest Speaker at the 21st Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) Awards on Saturday, echoed the power of the media in influencing public decisions.
The awards ceremony was held on the theme: “Media for Undisputed and Peaceful 2016 Elections: The Support of Civil Society.”
While expressing confidence in the Commission’s preparedness to organise another successful and peaceful elections, she called for collaborative efforts from all stakeholders to support the course.
She said journalists should always be guided by the tenets of accuracy, balance and truth as well as stick to the facts of their reports, reiterating that; “do not base your reportage on mere speculations, check everything you report on the electoral exercise for accuracy,” Mrs Osei said.
She noted that failure of the media to “report accurately may create the condition for disputed electoral outcome without basis.”
“As a nation we don’t need that, so I’m pleading for a return to first principles; the principles and ethical values that make journalism a profession worthy of our respect and the protections which our Constitution provides journalists,” Mrs Osei said.
An investigative journalist, Mr Anas Aremeyaw Anas, won the GJA Journalist of the Year 2015 Award. He took home a Hyundai SUV plus a certificate and a plaque.
Anas’ award was based on his exposé on corruption in the country’s judiciary where some 34 judges were shown to have taken bribes to sway justice. About 26 of the judges have been sacked following the Judicial Service probe into the expose that found them guilty.
More than 20 other awards were given to journalists in various categories.
The Ghana News Agency’s A.B. Kafui Kanyi won two awards: the Best Health Reporter with his story; Poison in a Calabash, and the Rural Reporting Award with the story: My baby my farm.
The Best Journalist in Sports (Radio) went to Benedict Owusu of Joy News for his story: Juju in Football.
The Best Journalist in Sports (Print) went to John Vigah of the Graphic Communication Group for his story; Accra Sports Stadium: A Death Trap
The Best Photo Journalist went to Samuel Tei Adenoh of Ghanaian Times for his story; Crossing the Deadly Madina-Adentan road
The Human Rights Award went to Gabriel Obodai Togbor Ashong of Metro TV for the story: Neglected Souls
Emmanuel Baah of the Graphic Communication Group won the Best Education reporter (Print) with his; Acquiring knowledge the perilous way while the Crime and Court award went to Beatrice Adu of Joy FM.
Samuel Ablodepay of Graphic won the Telecommunication award while Grace Sogbey of the Revelation Newspaper won for News Reporting (Print).
Joseph Opoku Gakpo of Multimedia won the Sustainable Development Goals award
Other award winners include Seth Kwame Boateng of Multimedia for Environment, John Vegah of Ghanaian Times; Best Investigative Reporter, Famous Kwasi Attitsogbe of Multimedia for Small and Medium Enterprises and Dotse Konbla Aklobotu of Graphic Business won the Oil and Gas award.
The rest are Agriculture: Gabriel Ahiabor of Daily Graphic,
Financial Reporter: Elvis Darko (The Finder) Arts, Entertainment and Tourism; Famous Kwasi Attitsogbe of Multimedia, Best Reporter in Science: Rebecca Quaye of Daily Graphic and Sanitation and Hygiene: Rebecca Awuah of GBC 24.
The GJA Komla Dumor Most Promising Journalist went Maxwell Akalaare Adombila.
Honorary awards were also presented to Mr Bright Blewu, General Secretary of the GJA, Metro TV for the Good Morning Ghana programme,Viasat1, Ghana Armed forces, Ideal Finance, EIB Network, and Global Media Alliance.
Source: GNA/News Ghana