Electoral Commissioner Mrs. Jean Mensa says the Electoral Commission (EC) is open to public scrutiny and criticism, particularly in the upcoming 2024 election.
She was however quick to ask those who criticised them to do so with objectivity and candour.
This she argued would ensure national peace, security and sustenance of the country’s democracy.
“We at the EC are not above scrutiny. Scrutinise and critique our work as your role requires but do so with objectivity. Criticisms laced with insults and falsehood should be beneath you,” she told members of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) on Sunday.
She was delivering the keynote address at the 27th GJAAwards held at the Accra International Conference Centre.
The ceremony was on the theme: “Leveraging Media Freedom to Sustain the Democratic and Security Architecture: The Litmus Test of Election 2024”.
She said: “We are partners in this quest to build our nation. We should put our nation first and work to ensure that irrespective of our political divide, our actions and activities inure to the benefit of our dear country.”
“The 2024 Election will be more than democratic exercise, it is the test of our nation’s resilience.”
To journalists she said “As journalists, you’ll play a crucial role in building up that resilience. You’re the ears, eyes and hearts of the citizens,” she said.
“Ensure that your work goes beyond mere rhetoric to practising responsible journalism”, she admonished and acknowledged the pioneering role the media had played in shaping and shepherding the nation’s democracy over the years.
“Your work as journalists will impact positively or negatively on our dear nation. As the Fourth Estate, you’re not only facets of our democracy, you’re its bedrock, beacon of truth.”
“You’re the guardians of transparency. You’re the vanguard for freedom, catalyst for informing and shaping public debate.”
“The power of the pen is unmatched and, therefore, must always engage in fact-checking of every information received thoroughly to avoid misinforming the public.”