We have our priorities really skewed in this country, don’t we?
Not only do we not recognise the value of a free society, with equal rights for all regardless of age, gender, religion, or s*xuality- we also fail to recognise even the value of what a free press gives us.
Either that, or we seriously have to doubt the sampling skills of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE) team that carried out the research.
The study, titled “Accessing the Effectiveness of the Media in Ghana’s Democracy”, was launched at the NCCE’s 5th Dialogue Series in Accra. It also found, among other things that in this age of digitalisation, just over one out of twenty Ghanaians say they get their news from online sources. Less than 2% of Ghanaians get their news from newspapers, with the overwhelming majority saying they get their news from radio.
The survey results showed that 55.5% of Ghanaians believes press freedom should be curbed, 35.02% believes press freedom should not be curbed, whilst 9.4% did not know whether it should be curbed or not curbed.
It’s a very interesting find, this one. This is a country with the leaders run amok, doing whatever they please whilst doing very little of their real jobs. We the people have very little to fight back with, except our mouths and through demonstrations. To carry out both, you need the exposure the media can give you, and an unfettered platform to put forward your dissent. It seems funny to me that one of the only constitutionally guaranteed means to keep the government in check is something Ghanaians are in favour of curbing.
Press freedom is a basic requirement for a truly free society, that is why Jefferson’s quote at the top of this article illustrates clearly why he is one of the greatest men who ever lived. It’s either we are masochists who enjoy pain or we’re the dumbest country ever.
In terms of news sources, 62.9% of Ghanaians relied on radio as primary news source, 25% television, 6.4% internet, and a paltry 1.5% newspaper.
Respondents in the survey comprised of 2,910 Ghanaians, aged 18 and above, selected from all of the ten regions of Ghana.