Gender Diversity will Strengthen Media Demand for Accountability

Media organisations may need to pay more attention to their female employees following new revelations of slow progress in achieving gender balance.

Findings from The Status of Women in the Ghanaian Media Report indicate that only one per cent of women in the media occupy a top management position in Ghanaian media organisations. The Report was launched in August and was produced through a partnership between the Alliance for Women in Media Africa (AWMA) and the School of Information and Communication Studies (SICS) with support from the US Embassy. Three faculty members from the Department of Communication, Prof Audrey Gadzekpo, Dr Abena A. Yeboah-Banin and Ms Ivy M. Fofie authored the Report.

Status of Women in Ghanaian Media Report

At a stakeholders’ forum to discuss the gender gaps in Ghanaian media and identify pathways for addressing them, Counsellor for Public Affairs at the United States Embassy in Ghana, Virginia Elliott, remarked that the accountability in governance is essential and can best be achieved by a diverse media.

Snippets of the Report presented by Dr Abena A. Yeboah-Banin, Head of the Department of Communication Studies and Lead author of the Report, show that women are woefully under-represented at in the boardrooms of media organisations. This is in spite of the many strides that women continue to make in the industry.

Dr Abena A. Yeboah-Banin, Head of Communication Studies Department, University of Ghana, presenting findings of the Report

In their introductory remarks, both Prof Audrey Gadzekpo, Dean of the SICS and Ms Shamima Muslim, Convenor for AWMA, alluded the multi-faced gender gaps in the industry including pay disparities, harassment, unfriendly work-place cultures that make it difficult for women to stay long in media. Prof Gadzekpo indicated that the time is now for media owners and managers to recognize the rich contributions of women to the growth of media organisations and give them the necessary support to grow into positions where their impact will even be more meaningful.

The forum was attended by representatives of the Private Newspaper Publishers Association of Ghana (PRINPAG), the Ghana Independent Broadcasting Association, the Media Foundation for West Africa, Media managers and personnel, academics and members of the general public.

Nana Aba Anamoah, General Manager of EIB Network speaking at the forum

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