Kojo Oppong Nkrumah

Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah has entreated media organisations in Ghana to consider entering into mergers and acquisitions to be able to survive the economic turbulence in the industry.

Mr Oppong Nkrumah said the saturation of media outlets in Ghana had affected the profitability of media houses, and that the best way out of the situation was for mergers and acquisitions to be adopted to make the media entities economically viable.

"I am of the view that the current expansive network of media houses is good for our democracy, but on the flip side, a lot of media owners are complaining that it is not economically viable.

Therefore, we think that there is the need to consider mergers and acquisitions to cut cost of operations and maximise revenue for sustainability," he said. 

He emphasised that mergers and acquisitions would ensure that media operators, including journalists, producers and photographers, were paid better.

“We are all in this industry, and we know how journalists are paid,” Mr Oppong Nkrumah said.

The minister made the call in Accra last Wednesday during the launch of a report by the Centre for Democratic Development-Ghana (CDD-Ghana) on accountability in media governance and the Internet.


The report showed that there had been saturation of media outlets in the country, with over 200 television outlets and more than 700 radio stations.

It indicated that although the expansive media outlets could be seen as a sign of a liberalised media environment, their ownership was such that they were concentrated in the hands of politicians, business people and religious groups.

It also found that media houses in the hands of those groups of people were largely responsible for fake news, misinformation and other excesses in the system.

The saturated media landscape had also been identified as responsible for the low profitability of media houses and the poor remuneration for media staff. 


Mr Oppong Nkrumah said the government was working with other stakeholders to support media houses to work well and also sanitise the industry. 

For instance, he said, the national action plan to tackle fake news, disinformation and misinformation was signed last year and would be implemented this year.

He said key stakeholders, including media practitioners, civil society organisations (CSOs), political parties and policymakers, were involved in the implementation of the action plan.

The minister added that as part of that plan, there would be media literacy and public education on how to use media tools and fact-checking.

In that regard, he underscored the need for media houses to invest in fact-checking infrastructure in their newsrooms.

"Once a politician says something, the media will not just report it but have to fact-check," he said.


Mr Oppong Nkrumah also said as part of the draft Broadcasting Bill, a public service broadcasting fund was being initiated to support media houses that agreed to do public service broadcasting.

"In that regard, a lot of the community stations will be able to get support from the service broadcasting fund, and if there is a commercial station that is doing some sort of work that is considered to be public service in nature, they can also benefit from it," he said.

He also said the African headquarters of the International Fund for Public Interest Media was in Ghana and would also be providing grants to Ghanaian media houses that were doing a lot of development communication work.

Touching on the regulation of social media, he added that the current draft Broadcast Bill sought to answer the question on the sort of responsibility that should be placed on people who broadcast, including online. 

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