The media is a powerful institution. Per the 1992 constitution of Ghana, it is the fourth estate of the realm.
No doubt those who put together the constitution knew the powerful role the media must, should and will play as the years go by.

But what do we see these days, the supposed powerful institution of the media has now forgotten its duties, role, and powers because it is now being tossed around by governments of the day.

In this century some people still don’t have access to potable drinking water, basic education, good roads, quality health care.

On the side, women still die while giving birth yet these issues seem not to be regularly prioritised by the media in Ghana today.

Developmental issues like mental health and educational challenges still linger on without sustainable policies and programs to solve them.

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These situations almost stay the same way until people lose lives, embark on demonstrations or threaten to not cast their votes forcing the government of the day to feebly attempt to resolve such problems.

I will simply put, where is the fourth arm of government that is supposed to push for the betterment of society and the marginalised?

The media is to inform, educate and entertain right? OK, but what do we see and hear now?

Curse words and cussing have become the norm of the day on the Ghanaian airwaves, even supposedly responsible politicians and religious leaders freely throw around bad language on TV and radio, like as though kids are not listening or sensibilities are not offended.

Our local Ghanaian music videos, movies, music, and broadcasters have all joined the bandwagon, without batting an eyelid and we look on thinking it is funny…

What, in the name of our ancestors, at all are we teaching the next innocent generation?

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Look I know the world has changed and become more liberal but come on, must we force immorality down the throats of our young future generation, must we copy blindly just to fit in, must we ignore the values and morals we in our 40s and above were raised with by our parents and grandparents —

all in the name of getting at par with modernity?

I quite remember that in the late ’90s, a jury at the Ghana music awards rejected Batman Samini’s song ‘Linda’ because he used what was felt to be a derogatory word although the song was a huge hit.

My point is, what is different now looking back at those days?

Did the rules governing the work of the media change? What had happened to censorship. Where did the authority of the National Media Commission go, that censorship on the media space is now nothing to the media?

Nudity, profanity and suicidal comments range on without a blink of an eye or second thought for the future generation.

We fill day time TV with foreign culture and programs, many of which do not represent what we are as Ghanaians or even Africans…

 

Please click on this link below for the full video by the author of this piece.

Written by Philip Ofori-Yentumi