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African Media Must Shape the Narrative & Tell Africa’s Story Responsibly – Ghana President

Photo: Twitter/Mark Bohlund

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana addressing the 2017 Bloomberg Africa Trade Media Innovators Event

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Remarks through President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana at the 2017 Bloomberg Africa Business Media Innovators Adventure

I Am grateful for the invitation to take part on this yr’s Africa Industry Media Innovators Event, which is being held in our capital metropolis of Accra for the first time, on the theme “The Changing Face of Media and New Hybrid Models”. These of you who come from beyond our shores are welcome amongst a individuals who pleasure themselves on their experience of hospitality. I Do Know you’ve been here already for a few days, and I Am Hoping you might be playing your stay amongst us. Akwaaba, as you know with the aid of now, is our word of welcome.

We Are honoured with the aid of the choice of Bloomberg to entrust Ghana with the opportunity of making certain that Africa and past converge on the shores of Ghana to a discourse on how best possible to handle a flourishing media landscape, and the way Industry and financial journalism can very best contribute to sustainable development on the African continent.

Ladies and gents, it has taken us sometime for a consensus to emerge in our united states of america, and, certainly, increasingly in the remainder of the continent, that democracy is our most popular form of governance. It has the very best potentialities of ensuring the fast and sustainable building of our countries, and striking African international locations on the trail of development and prosperity.

In Fact, there was once a time in Africa, when most international locations had been one-celebration states, and everyone had to belong to that birthday party. Not so long in the past, all radio and tv stations and newspapers were solely owned by using the federal government. If You Happen To needed to hear any voice in opposition, any voice other than the legitimate voice, you can almost definitely have to tune in to a foreign radio station like the BBC. Sadly, most of our youth are unaware that, unless lately, a culture of silence used to reign in most elements of the continent.

We Aren’t quite there yet, But There’s far more self-self belief amongst Africans As Of Late than there was for the reason that very early days of self-executive. As Of Late, a new Africa is emerging that is strengthening the resolution of Africans to build a new African civilisation, ruled by means of the rule of thumb of legislation, admire for individual liberties and human rights, and the rules of democratic accountability.

But, my pals, it isn’t sufficient to hold successful elections each 4 years or so that you can criticize the government and to have a collection of A Hundred radio stations. The Biggest problem that we proceed to face is well-liked poverty and, unless we eradicate common poverty, Africa cannot actually sign up for the international comity of nations on an equal foundation.

We, in Africa, have a perfect combat to struggle and win, and that is the combat to supply our individuals with a excellent, dignified high quality of existence. The structure of economies bequeathed to us through colonialism was aimed at servicing its goals, primarily uncooked material producing and exporting economies. The time is long late for us to take a deep take a look at these structures, and change into our economies to serve higher our personal needs.

The technology of Africa’s industrialisation has dawned, in order that We Are Able To also Change on the earth economy, Now Not on the basis of uncooked supplies, However on the foundation of issues we make. Alternate between us in Africa is minimal, and our share of world Exchange is negligible. We’ve Got to beef up both drastically.

The Good Lord has blessed our lands, and we must make the most our tools to profit our peoples. Chiefly, We Now Have so to feed ourselves. The 2015 data in Ghana, which saw us spending $2.2 billion on food imports, the identical amount of money we earned from our cocoa exports, are nothing wanting scandalous. We can’t manage to pay for to repeat such information.

That Is the place the media, and, certainly, Trade and monetary journalism, can assist play essential elements.

The media has all the time been a vital feature of the political, monetary and Trade structure of Africa, and is still so. The time has come for us to harness the entire doable of the media, keep it up to p.c. with technological changes, so it helps outline, and, on the comparable time, make a contribution to the sustainable building of the African continent.

Over The Years, African media practitioners have confronted many challenges, starting from a highly polarised media setting, lack of technological give a boost to, limited investment within the sector, poorly paid journalists, threats to their lives, corruption, and absence of requisite training.

These challenges have led to the African media, largely, shirking its duty in telling the African story. Because Of This, the narrative has been formed and instructed by means of international journalists through their very own lenses and phrases. The projection of the continent, In Consequence, has frequently been about battle, illness, poverty and famine.

African journalists, subsequently, have an obligation to lend a hand trade the picture about Africa, and establish a narrative, which is more sure. The externally generated story of Africa could be exhausting to take, But, so long as There Is well-liked poverty and inequality, on the way to be the picture that’s going to be portrayed.

This Means That you, our writers, our journalists from the continent, the writers of the African story, raise a super responsibility. Whilst You write, what you write, have to be concerning the limitless prospects on the continent. What’s written about Africa through African writers should have the final word reference standing.

African writers played exceptional roles within the liberation of our continent from imperialism. They set the tone for the discourse about our id. It Is now for you, our Trade and monetary journalists, to set the tone for the economic construction and prosperity of Africa.

When our younger folks don’t see a future in their countries, and go the Sahara desolate tract on foot and drown in the Mediterranean Sea, in a desperate bid to achieve the mirage of a greater lifestyles in Europe, no quantity of beautiful lyrics will change our image.

When our economies grow and support, our young folks get educated and are self-confident and full of hope, the arena finds its technique to our doorways, and the language and history of our international locations turn into attractive to our personal and foreign universities.

When African economies give a boost to and There May Be growing prosperity, we can to find that more and more people will transform interested to invest in our continent, leading to thriving economies, and the introduction of revolutionary and affluent countries.

Certainly, technological advancement and innovations will help change the face of Africa’s media. These developments, with a strong center of attention on digital media and using social media, will make sure that the news and information about our continent, especially about its doable, will change into more obtainable and effectively on hand. This May Increasingly present us with much more greater regulate, as we are actually in a position to tell our personal story.

For This Reason the Bloomberg Media Initiative in Africa (BMI) is a good initiative to assist build the capability of Africa’s media. This programme, I Am assured, will deepen the capability of our media, and equip them with the related skillset to inform the African story – the story of attainable triumph over adversity, economic successes over screw ups, and initiatives as a way to lead to the sustainable building of the continent.

For Instance, via your work, monetary and Industry journalists on the continent need to convey to the eye of governments and choice-makers why the promotion of Industry-friendly environments, that reward creativity and endeavor and people who play through the rules, is the effective manner of sustaining development in Africa.

They want to remember that learn how to constructing that atmosphere is when government and regulatory insurance policies beef up, relatively than inhibit or frustrate, Change, commerce and investments. Selling the guideline of regulation by using our governments assures and offers self assurance to the investor community that their investments can be protected. After We grasp the narrative, We Can, then, effectively Tell the story in regards to the looting of Africa, and the huge amounts of illicit money that flow from our continent, money which, if We’re ready to regulate, can be available to finance the development of the continent.

The Ghanaian media has been very energetic in tackling the social ills of our united states, and advocating for the funding on the way to contribute to the sustainable construction of the united states of america. This generation of African media practitioners has to be the era that refuses to be either victim or pawn, and accepts to go back and forth down the trail of authentic popular empowerment, which represents the strongest assure of our independence and sovereignty. Freedom of expression, encompassing media freedom, is a important component of that trip, which we Must shield jealously at all times.

There Is a lot of speak that this would be the Asian century, the Chinese century. But take it from me; the 21st century holds very good potentialities for Africa. This will also be Africa’s century. We Will claim it, if we consider in ourselves.

Once once more, I thank Bloomberg Media Initiative for this opportunity, and wish you successful deliberations all over the course of this Experience.

Thanks, and may just God bless us all, Ghana and Mom Africa.

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