Accra, Dec. 29, GNA - The Government has been urged to resource and reposition the Ghana News Agency to fulfill its mandate of collecting, processing and disseminating truthful and unbiased news as it marks 60 years of existence.
“Do we need a Ghana News Agency that will be the voice of the powerless and the voiceless? Do we need a GNA that will follow the vision of Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah who launched it on the Fifth of March 1957, a day before Ghana’s independence,” Dr Lawrence Tetteh, a renowned International Evangelist, asked.
“Do we see the values that was supposed to be placed on the Ghana News Agency - if yes then I believe successive governments have lost sight of it and the current government should not do same,” Dr Tetteh said when he addressed a Thanksgiving Service held on Friday to climax the 60th Anniversary celebrations of the Agency in Accra.
“We need a credible news agency and a house that people can use and pick the portals from and that is why I really want to urge leadership and government to make sure GNA is equipped,” he said.
The staff of the GNA, in their beautiful white apparels, used the Thanksgiving Service to honour God for His blessings and mercies that had sustained the Agency throughout the years, amidst prayers and dancing.
The ceremony, hosted at the Headquarters of the GNA on Friday, had the Hungarian Ambassador, Mr Andras Szabo as the Guest of Honour while Dr Tetteh, preached the sermon and led the staff to pray for the Agency and for Ghana.
The Anniversary, which was launched in March this year, was: on the theme; “GNA at 60, Advancing the Ghanaian Dream”.
Dr Tetteh said succeeding governments after Dr Nkrumah “seemed to have left GNA a little and I think this time around lets correct the wrong. It’s not late”.
“We need our journalists who, together with the clergy, make the Fourth Estate of the Realm. So that if our clergy today are doing very well and are settling then we need our journalists and our media houses to settle so that news and information will be properly disseminated to the masses,” he said.
Mr Francis Rex Annan, the Acting General Manager of GNA, said since the launch of the Anniversary, staff of the Agency had undertaken activities including a facility tour and a massive clean-up exercise of its Headquarters and parts of the ministries.
He noted that the GNA continued to make greater impact in its news gathering and information dissemination among many African news agencies despite the challenges and constraints confronting it.
Mr Annan said staff of the Agency had continued to carry out its mandate to the best of their ability with the limited resources available.
He, therefore, congratulated the staff across the country for working tirelessly over the years with minimum rewards to bring the Agency this far.
Mr Szabo, on his part, congratulated the Agency for the critical role it is playing in disseminating news to inform the world on important national issues.
He said the Embassy was ready to partner the GNA through training and other capacity building programmes to enable the Agency and its staff to function better.
The GNA was established by Ghana’s First President, Dr Nkrumah, with the responsibility of collecting, processing and dissemination of truthful and unbiased news. It is the first news agency to be established in Sub-Saharan Africa.