The occasion was the second Ghana Journalists Association-Volta Awards in Ho over the weekend on the theme, “Media-Key Partner in Local Governance.”
A total of 11 journalists, three radio stations and 14 individuals including public relations officers including Sophia Kudjordji Lissah, Group Head of Communications at JOSPONG Group of Companies and Dr Charity Binka formerly of GBC were celebrated.
Mr. Pius Enam Hadzide, Deputy Minister for Information, who was at the ceremony hinted of measures by government to ensure the safety of journalists, stressing that attacks on journalists in the country are unfortunate.
Dr. Esther Ofei-Aboagye, Deputy Chairperson, National Development Planning Commission (NDPC), who was the guest speaker called for the cultivation of relationships between the media and the local authorities as well as citizens and other local governance actors including public and civil service office holders for a functioning local governance system.
Dr. Ofei-Aboagye also called for local level newspapers, community radios and other forms of community reporting to create an environment in which local people could participate in local governance on their own terms.
Mr. Kudjoh Attah, Dean of the Municipal and District Chief Executives in the Volta Region, urged media practitioners to continue to hold in high esteem the principles that underpinned the profession.
He therefore urged the media in the Region to be fair, unbiased and objective in their reportage and put away “political lenses that tend to cloud our judgement and influence our reportage”.
Ms Naomi Mattos, Press Attaché, US Embassy said the job of media practitioners was essential and play key roles in strengthening and shaping society and challenged journalists to be at the forefront of giving voice to society with focus on women, children and people living with disabilities.
Mr. Anthony Bells Kafui Kanyi, Chairman, GJA-Volta, said the awards event was dedicated to excellence in journalism and presented unique opportunity for journalists and media practitioners in the Region to be celebrated.
The event was attended by Members of Parliament, MDCEs, Traditional leaders, Heads of Departments and Agencies among others.
Mr Dela Gadzanku and Mama Attratoh II, Queenmother of Ho Dome were made honorary members of GJA-Volta for their continued support to the Association.
The citation presented to Sophia Kudjordji Lissah read in part:
“You have everything about communication as a profession, running through you. Indeed you have had stints with perhaps all allied wings of the profession. At the Ghana News Agency (GNA) you were astute, reflecting an inclination for developmental stories and a noticeable interest for international affairs. Perhaps it was the latter interest that took you to the British High Commission, where again you made a mark. At UT Holdings, you managed flurry of activities between that organization and its sophisticated publics, including government and the media with distinction. You now work for a local conglomerate, which deals with perhaps Ghana’s nightmare, garbage. The company is Jospong Group Of Companies….
“You strike the Ghana Journalist Association (GJA) Volta Region Chapter as intellectually curious, dedicated to your pursuits, with integrity and modest. Sophia Kudjordji Lissah, GJA Volta celebrates you on this special occasion.”