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Stop Projecting Africa Negatively-IAMMIA to African Media

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The Africa Media Monitoring Intelligence and Advocacy (IAMMIA-Africa), a media research organization has condemned Africa media for consistently projecting the continent negatively in the eyes of the world.

IAMMIA-Africa headquarters in Ghana's capital-Accra also conduct research for banks in Nigeria, Kenya and South Africa calls for media owners and practitioners in Africa to focus on positives on the continent rather than the negatives.

IAMMIA-Africa which conducted research on the operations of media in Africa revealed that only 42 per cent of the news items reported on the African continent by African media houses projected the continent positively.

The research revealed that, 58 percent of news stories reported by African media in the past two years (2015 to 2016) projected the continent negatively with only 42% positive.
The research revealed that Africa media houses relied 64% heavily on international news agencies for African news with only 36% from Africa media’s own international correspondents.

Issues of terrorism, war, conflict, hunger, drought, diseases still dominate in African media reporting on the continent despite the continent's remarkable achievements since neocolonialism in education, health, democracy, technology, transportation, water, sanitation, among others.

This was contained in a statement signed by the Executive Director of IAMMIA-AFRICA Dr Messan Mawugbe to mark the 2017 African Unity (AU) Day Celebration in GHANA.

It asked the African media to concentrate less on the negativity of the continent. Asking these questions and making efforts to get these questions answered, have left us with no option but to say that, The African Media Is Africa’s Enemy.

Below is the statement from IAMMIA-Africa

PRESS STATEMENT BY IAMMIA-AFRICA ON THE OCCASION OF THE 2017 AFRICAN UNITY (AU) DAY CELEBRATION IN GHANA

On Thursday May 25, 2017, Ghana will join her colleague African nations to mark the African Unity day celebration. The day is necessary as it is used to mark the formation of the then Organization of African Union (O.A.U), which was later changed to the African Union (AU) and now African Unity (AU).

The day is used by African leaders to assess and ponder on the achievement of the continent since it gained freedom from colonialism. It is therefore necessary for (IAMMIA-Africa) as a media research organization to assess and find out how African image is being presented in the media.

For many decades, it is alleged that, the foreign media, in a quest to satisfy its audience continues to report on only negative news stories about the continent despite the positive aspects.

They often describe Africa as the ‘dark continent’ where hunger, drought, diseases, conflict, war, among other negative issues are pervasive which derails the development of the continent.

However, with the emergence of the new media narrating, one would have thought that, Africans would have used this media to portray the positive image of their own continent to the entire world.

IAMMIA-Africa, as part of activities to mark this year’s African Unity day celebration which is under the theme “Harnessing The Demographic Dividend Through Investment In Youth” conducted a research on how the African media reports about the continent using newspapers from Ghana, Kenya, Nigeria, South Africa and Uganda which revealed that, media in Africa has joined forces with their foreign counterparts in projecting the negative image about the continent.

The research revealed that, 58 percent of news stories reported by African media in the past two years (2015 to 2016) projected the continent negatively with only 42% positive.

Furthermore, the research revealed that Africa media houses relied 64% heavily on international news agencies for African news with only 36% from Africa media’s own international correspondents.

Issues of Terrorism, War, Conflict, Hunger, Drought, Diseases still leads in African media reportage though the continent since neocolonialism have achieved a lot in Education, Health, Democracy, Technology, Transportation, Water, Sanitation, among others.

Why then do the African media concentrate more on the negativity of the continent? Asking these questions and making efforts to get these questions answered, have left us with no option but to say that, The African Media Is Africa’s Enemy.

If this is so, then why then do Africans blame the western media when we are equally contributing to the negative image of the continent and crafting a future of hopelessness for the African youth?

We therefore believe that, if the African media would collectively and objectively portray the good image of the continent, the harnessing of the demographic dividend as stated by this year’s theme will surely be realized and would enhance Africa`s youth empowerment project.

IAMMIA-Africa, as a lead media research and intelligence organization, therefore calls on the African Media to use their various medium in presenting Africa positively to the entire world.

We wish to see issues of successes in education, health, governance, democracy, economy and many more in news stories about the continent in the coming years.

We (IAMMIA-Africa) advocate that, media houses should invest in in-house international correspondents to cover news on Africa instead of over reliance on the international news agencies such as (BBC, CNN, Reuters, AFP, Xinhua) among a few for news on Africa.

Thank you.

…………signed …………………

MESSAN MAWUGBE (PhD)

(EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR, IAMMIA-AFRICA

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