Radio has played a very significant role in our lives. Indeed, until Radio came into existence, print media made everything possible to fill in the void. Even though television and social media has brought about various other dimensions to compliment the earlier media, Radio has maintained its relevance.
It gave people the opportunity to tune in to live commentary and to enjoy real time entertainment including music, sports, politics and religion. Till today, those stations that have evolved with interesting programming, have maintained their listenership one way or the other. Today, even Radio Stations have found themselves operating on social media providing real time access to information and meeting listeners at their point of convergence.
Radio has, upon its evolution, provided listeners opportunity to make their opinions on live programs. We simply cannot downplay on the significance of Radio on this important day.
What we must be worried about as Ghanaians is the new form of intimidation and the use of the law to shut down voices of dissent. A phenomenon which presents a case of people in government only wanting their voices heard. This must not be countenanced.
As we speak, the largest opposition media in Ghana, Radio Gold, has been shut down for the past 9 months. Apart from starving those the station serves, it has rendered otherwise employed citizens, jobless without any end in sight.
As we celebrate Word Radio Day, it’s important to remind power wielders to be mindful of abuses. Inasmuch as they wish to remain in power, they must be told that there is and will always be an opposition who equally require their voices of dissent heard.
We cannot sit unconcerned while government displays complete lack of interest in resolving any impasse on these issues. As we speak, efforts have been deployed into the hinterlands and it’s evident that opposition media houses serving local communities are falling at the sword of power.
Unfortunately, those radio stations actively operating, have not spared 10% of their space to address the high-handedness with which their colleagues are being handled. They assume their operations are secured. Remember when one is down, it’s a matter of time that the second would go, and just in a matter of time, all would go. The fear of extinct, is what should make the surviving stations speak of the ills their colleagues are being subjected to. Eschew partisan interests and pursue a common interest. You are relevant to the politician who is singing your praises today because you have something that can come after him. Once you are tamed, you’ve lost your relevance.
To government, I don’t know how they would feel observing this day knowing too well that they have established a culture that silences media houses sympathetic to the opposition. I wish all actors within the radio space, a Happy World Radio Day.
Source: Stephen Kwabena Attuh (ASK)