The Minister for Information, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has charged media houses, particularly radio stations in conflict-prone areas to use their medium as a valuable tool for conflict prevention and peacebuilding.
Speaking at the 2023 World Radio Day celebration in Accra on Monday, under the theme, “Radio and Peace”, Mr Oppong Nkrumah noted that radio plays an important role in promoting understanding and reconciliation by providing a platform for diverse voices and breaking down barriers to create a more peaceful world.
“It has the unique ability to reach people in every corner of the world. It has proven to be a valuable tool in conflict prevention and peacebuilding whether through education or information dissemination or providing a platform for marginalized communities to share their stories. Radio has the potential to bring people together and foster a culture of peace if used.
“Here in Ghana, we celebrate what radio has done for our democracy and elections over the years. For those of you who recall in 1993, you go to Independence Square, a big board then they write returns from the polling stations there. Today, with the growth of media and in particular radio, you can sit in your home and hear minute by minute accounts of how the elections are proceeding, how results are trickling in, how democracy has been entrenched,” he noted.
Mr Oppong Nkrumah further stated that radio has been a major tool for accountability, public education, and disputing misinformation.
“At times when we’ve had major challenges radio has been a very quick tool for reaching out to our population and for countering this information,” he stressed.
Therefore, the Minister advised media outlets that operate particularly in conflict-prone areas to stop escalating conflicts using radio.
“In Bawku and other places, I’m sure you are familiar with the stories of how media houses or radio sometimes have contributed to the conflict instead of helping to bring about peace in those times. And so, on a day like this as we celebrate World Radio Day with the theme Radio and Peace, we would like to in particular remind our colleagues who operate in places where sometimes tensions may rise, that we have a particular responsibility to help in the exercise to bring peace and unity and not necessarily fuel it,” he added.
World Radio Day is an international day celebrated on 13 February each year.
Patience Anaadem, ISD