The Institute of Financial and Economic Journalists (IFEJ) has launched this year’s edition of the Business and Financial Journalism awards with a specific focus on natural resource management.
Ghana’s natural resource sector, is rather critical to the economic development and revenue management.
Activities based on land, water, forest and fisheries contribute more than 20 percent of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and 60 percent of jobs, including 53 percent of women’s jobs.
President of IFEJ, Mr. Rayborn Bulley who made the announcement yesterday in Accra said the awards, in its fifth edition, will be guided by areas of excellent communication entailing accuracy, originality and quality of reporting.
The theme for this year’s award is; “Towards Better Management of Natural Resources for Inclusive Growth and Development.”
The main awards, which will take place later in December will cover nine categories comprising of Best Financial Feature, Best Business/Manufacturing, Best Information and Communication Technology reporting.
The other categories are; Best Natural Resources, Best Agribusiness, Best Tourism, Best Development Feature, Best in Local Economy and Best Business of Health.
However, only member journalists of IFEJ are qualified to submit their scripts to the awards committee chaired by former President of IFEJ, Mr. Lloyd Evans, who will superintend over the receipts of all the scripts and reports that are to be submitted.
Professor John Gatsi, Head of Finance at the University of Cape Coast, who is Chairman of the Jury for the awards said journalists in their submission must prioritize the natural resources sector especially with issues pertaining to the livelihood and regulations within the natural resource framework.
‘’Journalists are to engage the people who matter in policy formulation and we are also aware of the dangers of a non-inclusive growth in our economic management and that doesn’t auger well for value addition,’’ he added.
Mr. Emmanuel Kuyole, Executive Director for the Centre for Extractives and Development Africa (CEDA) advised journalists to look beyond reporting an event, but rather independently analyse issues.
“To help the citizens benefit, the role of financial and economic journalists must be to subject the so-called experts and political leaders to the issues they raise by moving beyond just reporting an event but rather partake in stakeholder engagements,” he added.
Mr. Henry Kerali, Country Director for the World Bank Group (WBG) in Ghana said a “Ghana Beyond Aid” agenda only calls for an independent media which is empowered and energized to inform and educate the public in making informed choices to propel growth.
He said the WBG will continue to support Ghana under its Country Partnership Framework to help achieve the long-term development of the environment and sustainable management of natural resources.
By Mawuli Y. Ahorlumegah