Madam Elizabeth Ohene, a veteran journalist and a former Minister of State Tuesday cut the sod for commencement of work on a state-of-the-art press centre for the Volta Regional branch of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA).
The first phase of the project comprises; a pavilion, a bar/restaurant, an office, a store and washrooms and estimated at GHC60,000.00
The project is expected to be completed and commissioned on May 03, 2019 to commemorate this year’s World Press Freedom Day and also mark GJA’s 70thAnniversary.
Madam Ohene commended Volta GJA for the foresight and said the facility would serve as a centre for intellectual stimulation.
She reminded journalists to be steadfast in reporting the truth and desist from seeking popularity with fake news.
She said “a journalist is not supposed to be in the popularity stakes. That is not our job. We are not supposed to be there wanting to be the most popular person when you are good, people giving you fans, no…when that is happening, you can be sure that you are doing something wrong. We are not supposed to be celebrities… It is a new phenomenon, it is your work that should speak for you.”
Madam Ohene asked journalists in the region to tell the story of the Volta region well and charged practitioners to focus on their core mandate of enlightening the populace and “reporting the issues as they are,” and not praise singing because “the chips will fall in place” eventually.
Dr. Archibald Yao Letsa, Volta Regional Minister, said journalists in the Region were key developmental partners and pledged the Regional Coordinating Council’s support to the completion of the edifice.
He said the facility would enhance dissemination of news in the Region and called on journalists to remain neutral on issues of national interest.
Dr Letsa said journalists were not supposed to serve any political party, but the people of Ghana and called for balanced reportage at all times.
Mr Roland Affail Monney, National President, GJA, who described the project as “historic” applauded Volta GJA for being a “reference point and a standard measure” for all GJA chapters in the country.
He said the Region had produced some of the nation’s seasoned and best journalists and appealed for such journalists to continue to tell the Region’s story.
Mr Dela Gadzanku, Volta and Eastern Regional Chairman, Association of Ghana Industries, commended the leadership of Volta GJA and pledged the Association’s support for the timely completion of the project.
Mr A.B. Kafui Kanyi, Volta Regional Chairman, GJA, said the sod cutting had brought closer the dream of a regional press centre, adding that the facility would serve as a rallying point for journalist and help generate revenue for the Association.