The Minister for Information, Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, has affirmed the government’s resolve to ensure that the Broadcasting Bill is laid before Parliament for passage into law.
The Broadcasting Bill is seeking to regulate the broadcasting space in Ghana.
The Minister disclosed this at a stakeholder engagement and research report launch organised by the Center for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana) on the theme “Ensuring accountability in the Governance of Media and the Internet.”
He stated that the government had demonstrated enough commitment in terms of laws to deal with free speech in the country.
He noted that the Right to Information (RTI) Act and its implementation story, is an example.
According to the Minister, there were still emerging issues that have been raised for consideration following some of the correspondents received from the Attorney General in the 2024 re-drafted version of the broadcasting bill.
Citing some of the reasons for the delay in laying the bill before Parliament, the Minister said the last draft defined broadcasting to only refer to television, however, currently, there were all other forms of technology-led broadcasting, noting some other issues that were also overtook in the last draft, such as responsibilities for moderating content.
According to him, these issues have been carefully studied with a lot of stakeholders to get a common position, adding, “When you are on radio and television, broadcasting applies to you and you are responsible for moderating the content that comes out.”
“How about if you move that content onto your Facebook page and somebody wrote under those posts to make comments you will not allow on radio and television, be it defamatory or ethnic inciting, do the same rules apply? Shouldn’t they apply?
“What are the responsibilities of the international bodies’ on social media platforms when it comes to ensuring that some sort of content, which ordinarily you will not allow on television and radio in Ghana is being posted on their platforms? Should there be liability or does the liability lie with the media house operating?” he questioned.
Mr Oppong Nkrumah said it was important that everybody, including key stakeholders, were aligned to the key issues that needed to be addressed before laying the bill before Parliament.
Patience Anaadem, ISD