In every profession, there are specific guidelines and principles governing it, in which this year’s election reportage is one of the very important national activity we need to treat with caution. Below are some few principal guidelines for every discerning Journalist.
1. If there is a legal document get proper interpretation.
2. Cross check your facts before reporting especially from Whatsapp platforms. If they are press releases from party offices call and check even if signed because people will abuse Whatsapp during the elections.
3. Journalists must refrain from allowing their personal opinions or preferences to sway their reporting.
Bear in mind that you are being watched not in Ghana alone alone.(UN and other international observers are watching)
– Avoid wearing distinctive signs indicating party or candidate’s affiliation before during and after elections
(a) journalists must avoid NDC, NPP CPP etc ringtones.
(b) Don’t wear party T-shirts or other party paraphernalia and don’t allow it in the newsroom at all. Not even in your house.
Use materials provided by the EC for elections in the newsroom.
(c) Never join branded party vehicles for campaigns whatsoever. Branded free vehicles must be provided for media.
(d) Presidential reporters should distinct between reports of Prez as a party candidate n as a President.
NB\\ its at your own risk to be affiliated with a political party as a journalist because you will be tagged and attacked.
-Be balanced in your reportage.
4. Relaying the Population’s voice . The election does not only concern the participating candidates and political parties. Elections are also an important opportunity for ordinary people to express themselves.
Relate what issues are most important to their country, region, community or family and why these issues matter to them.
5. Per rules a Journalist is an observer of the elections. Don’t go monitoring. Just observe n report to your media house period.
Don’t go questioning EC officials or teach them their job. Report to your media house what you see.
People have been appointed to do the monitoring.