For many years, Civil Society Organizations (CSO) have been at the front of initiating advocacy campaigns in various developmental areas, to ensure that, government’s policies are monitored and made to really benefit the people from whom the Political class derive their powers.
There is also the media, positioned as the fourth estate of the realm and is expected to play some roles in informing the public about government policies and educating the public to understand these policies, so as to be in the position to demand for the implementation of these policies.
Unfortunately, the media alone does not have the capacity to probe and hold government accountable to their words all the time, while the Civil Society Organizations alone are not able to initiate and sustain advocacy campaigns all by themselves all the time.
It is against the backdrop that, there has been a call for the Media and CSO to collaborate and work together on some selected issues meant to involve local people in local governance.
This discussion came up at a meeting by selected media personnel and some CSOs held in Tamale in the Northern Region.
The CSOs and Media personnel are from the Northern, Upper East and Upper West Regions and are expected to work together on some issues that are important to the development of their people and communities.
The discussion came up at a Ghana Journalist Association Workshop under a Star Ghana sponsored project under the theme, “Enhance Media-CSOs Partnerships for Inclusive Local Governance.”
A lead Facilitator and Researcher, Kojo Impraim said over the years, the media alone has not been able to wage a social campaign alone and succeeded all alone, likewise the Civil Society Organizations for which reason the two groups will have to accept and ignore their operational difference and focus issue the cut across their operational areas.
“Let’s take for example, the advocacy against Illegal Mining and the Right to Information Bill. The Media and the CSOs have worked effectively together on these two areas and we can all see the impact. The advocacy has been consistent and it is achieving the desired result. This is what we expect after this partnership has been created.”
Media practitioners have agreed to work with the Civil Society Organizations that were present as a starting point, which is expected to spread across the country.
Like all Media and CSO practitioners, Mr. Impraim thinks it is time the two groups worked together and depart from the norm where, CSOs bring in the Media just to cover of portions of their activities and the Media also call on personnel from CSOs as Resource persons on particular issues that may not impact directly on their projects.
Participating CSOs included NORSAAC in Tamale, Ghana Developing Communities Association in Tamale and Action for Sustainable Development in Upper West.
Source: a1radioonline.com/ 101.1MHz / Ghana