PPC New Executives Take Office

SEVEN-member Executive Committee of the Parliamentary Press Corps (PPC), an umbrella body of journalists reporting from Ghana’s Parliament, has been sworn into office.

The committee has a two-year mandate to steer the affairs of the corps.

The seven were sworn in by the Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Prof. Aaron Mike Ocquaye, at his conference room last week Friday.

They are Dean of the Corps, Nana Agyeman Birikorang, Vice Dean, Simon Agianab, Secretary, Stephen Odio -Larbi, Vice Secretary, Christian Kpesese, Treasure, Gilbert Ankrah, Organising Secretary, Samuel Osei- Agyei and Ms Yesmeen Tetteh – an Executive member.

The Speaker, who administered the Oath of Office and Oath of Allegiance to the new executives, challenged them to be professional and objective in their reportage.

He noted that the media was very important in the nation building and urged them to be mindful of the truth and stand by it at all times.

“Truth is related to knowledge. If you don’t know ask and I think you will never stop learning so long as you continue to probe into issues. I will be glad if your reportage will be so professional that whatever you put out there will be the truth and nothing but the truth,” Rt. Hon. Ocquaye reiterated.

“We are not saying when you see something and it is the truth don’t report on it because it is coming from Parliament. Stand firm if it is the truth don’t fear anybody. Nevertheless, a journalist out of self-respect for himself or herself should always be mindful of the truth and I will be very glad if you make this your watchdog,” the Speaker urged.

Majority Leader and Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, Hon. Osei-Kyei Mensah-Bonsu, in a brief remark, admonished journalists to be fair, objective and balanced in their reportage. He also tasked members to upgrade themselves in their profession.

According to him, one area that leadership of Parliament can do to serve as a motivation is to sponsor some members of the PPC to further their education.

Deputy Minority Leader, Hon. James Klutse Avedzi, who sat in for the minority, also encouraged journalists to engage in accurate reporting for their own integrity and the “people you are reporting for.”

“Work diligently to ensure that whatever Parliament is doing in terms of its mandate as the people’s representatives are brought to the notice of the general public,” he admonished.

Meanwhile, the outgoing Dean of the Corps, Mr. Andrew Edwin Arthur, has appealed to the leadership of Parliament to help the Press Corp surmount some of its challenges including internet facilities, scholarship schemes and an enabling environment to help them work effectively.

He also called for the total independence of the press corps to ensure that it doesn’t operate directly under the Public Affairs Department of Parliament as it is currently.

“We need an independent press corps that can serve as watchdog on the activities of the House and partner the leadership and the institution to deepen parliamentary democracy and good governance in this country,” he insisted.

He also requested for a scholarship scheme to support members of the press corps interested in improving themselves academically, after which they could be bonded to serve Parliament.

The new Dean, Nana Binkorang, in his inaugural speech appealed to leadership of Parliament to help furnish the newly allocated office of the Press Corp with computers, fans, chairs among others.

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