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World Press Freedom Day 2018 Launched

The 2018 World Press Freedom Day celebration was launched in Accra on Monday 26th March 2018.

The launch which was done by the Minister for Information, Dr. Mustapha Abdul- Hamid, marks the takeoff of the annual global event, which, this year, will to be hosted in Ghana on May 2 and 3.

Every year on May 3, the event is celebrated globally to mark the Anniversary of the Windhoek Declaration of 1991, which led to the proclamation of the day by the UN General Assembly in 1993.

The theme for this is year’s celebration which is themed “Keeping Power in Check: Media, Justice and the Rule of Law”. It is expected that this theme will provoke debates and discussions on the new challenges to press freedom and media independence;, the role of the judicial system, right to information; accountability of state institutions to the public; the safety of journalists and the literacy of the judicial system on media independence etc.

During the celebrations, Ghana would become   the Centre of the world attention, as close to 700 participants from all over the world would be expected to converge in Accra for the big event.

While launching   the event, the Information Minister, Dr. Mustapha Abdul-Hamid, said that the call on Ghana to host the event was a tribute to mark the country’s democratic credentials.

“The call on Ghana to host the event speaks volumes about our own credentials as a country with regards to where we have come from, as in terms of the freedom of the press,” he said emphasized.

The Information minister noted that Ghana’s 26th position in the 2017 World Press Freedom Index by the “Reporters Without Borders” was in recognition of the contribution made by dint from all of Ghana’s stakeholders.

For his part, the Country Representative of UNESCO, Tirso Dos Santos, hailed Ghana as a good example of press freedom, He added, adding that, that this achievement by Ghana formed the basis of the decision to invite have the country to  host the event.

“Ghana”, he observed, “is a good example of press freedom and freedom of expression, to not only to African countries but also, many countries globally.  This informed the decision to have the country host the 2018 global edition,” he explained.

According to Mr. Dos Santos, hosting the event in Ghana would serve as an opportunity for UNESCO to project the nation’s exemplary records and highlight her success stories with regard to press freedom and freedom of expression.

Mr. Dos Santos used the opportunity to charge the media to speak truth to power in order to consolidate the country’s democratic credentials.

He gave an overview of the event and entreated all media practitioners to patronize the event and make it a resounding victory.

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Source: MOI (PR Unit)

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