Project a positive image of the continent, Akufo Addo charges media

By Kwabena Owusu-Ampratwum

The African media has been challenged to project a positive image of the continent and espouse the limitless possibilities inherent in Africa.

President Nana Akufo-Addo says journalists on the continent have a duty to establish a positive narrative that would project Africa's status as the new frontier of growth and boundless economic opportunities.

Speaking at the Bloomberg Africa Business Media Innovators Summit in Accra, he observed that African media practitioners faced many challenges that have led to it shirking its responsibility to espouse the Continent's story.

As a result, the narrative on Africa had been shaped and told by foreign journalists, who project the continent as one torn by war, disease, poverty and famine.

The President noted that as long as there was widespread poverty and inequality, the narrative on the Continent would remain negative.

“This means that you, our writers, our journalists from the continent, the writers of the African story, carry a great responsibility."When you write, what you write must be about the limitless possibilities on the continent. What is written about Africa by African writers must have the ultimate reference status,” he said.

He charged business and financial journalist to set the tone for the economic development and prosperity of Africa, stressing  "when our young people do not see a future in their countries, and cross the Sahara desert on foot and drown in the Mediterranean Sea, in a desperate bid to reach the mirage of a better life in Europe, no amount of beautiful lyrics will change our image,” he noted.

President Akufo-Addo expressed confidence that technological advancement and innovations will help change the face of Africa’s media, and present the continent with even more greater control to tell its own story and challenged financial and business journalists on the continent to bring to the attention of governments and decision-makers why the promotion of business-friendly environments was important.