There is a current fracas between the Speaker of Parliament and the fourth arm of government – the media (both electronic and print media) because of a comment the former made in the August House.
The Speaker made this comment;
“You are here as guests because of the importance this House attaches to the profession. Any such deviation would make you an unwelcome guest”. The above comment was a reaction to some media houses who followed and interviewed the minority when they boycotted the recent past State of the Nation’s Address.
The comment has ignited the anger of journalists who have accused him of supposedly exceeding his powers.
Reacting to this brouhaha, a social media user with the account name – Ben Toffah had this to say:
“That’s absolute lie. The media is never a guest to parliament. I think we need to be informed about ingredients of practical Western democracy which we practice here in Ghana. I know the Prof might have said this out of anger. But the truth is that the media is the fourth estate of the realm. In practical and active democracy which could be monocephalous or bicephalous the media plays a key role therefore it refers to as the fourth estate of the realm. Unless we want to say our democracy is different. Media comes after the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary in active and modern democracy. This is a fact. How do u get information about executive, legislature and Judiciary? Do we have presidential press corps in Ghana? The media is the fourth one and it has mandate under the Constitution to inform, educate and even to entertain the citizenry. So we look at the media as an institution, technology or as personality. Read Chapter 12 of 1992 Constitution. see how the constitution gives importance and recognition the media. U can’t just play down on media in democracy. It is not possible. The media must be in parliament to tell the people what goes on there. Parliament is representatives of people of Ghana”.
What is your take on this?
BY: C. A. Asante
C. A. Asante is a teacher (Village Teacher) by profession who has reported on a number of elections in Ghana for Central Press Newspaper. He is known among his peers as a researcher and regular contributor in Education, Politics, etc. Follow : Instagram- @ chris_asante1...Facebook: CA Asante