President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said his unflinching support and that of his administration to free media remains unquestionable.
That commitment, he said, was evidenced by the atmosphere of free speech prevailing in the country.
However, he said in the midst of the freedoms, it was incumbent on all to be measured in whatever they put out because ‘words could be as incendiary as guns”.
President Akufo-Addo said this when he joined Muslims at the newly inaugurated National Mosque Complex at Kanda in Accra on Tuesday, July 20, for the Eid- ul-Adha prayers.
Eid-ul-Adha commemorates the story of the Prophet Ibrahim’s test of faith when he was commanded by God to sacrifice his son, Ismail.
The festival also marks the end of the annual Hajj pilgrimage.
Power of tongue
Making reference to the Holy Bible, which mentions that death and life are in the power of the tongue, the President reminded his country men and women that the tongue, if not properly used, could be destructive.
He said it took the muttering of words by irresponsible journalists, amplified by the power of radio, to ignite the tragic genocide in Rwanda.
“It is important for all of us to recognise that there’s only one country we call home and that is Ghana. We must protect our way of life with, in the words of the national pledge, all our strength and with all our hearts,” he stated.
President Akufo-Addo cautioned against allowing the actions and utterances of a few misguided persons to jeopardise and destroy the united country which had been the envy of many on the continent and the world at large.
Taking a look at COVID-19, the President urged Ghanaians to continue to be responsible and observe the safety and hygiene protocols to avoid a full-blown third wave.
He said the recent hikes in the number of infections was a source of worry for him and all Ghanaians.
“From the rising numbers, it is safe to conclude that we have let our guard down. We’re beginning to live our lives and conduct our businesses as though we are in normal times.
“As we continue to count on the grace of God to protect our country from the ravages of the pandemic like we have done since its outbreak, we can only minimise its health effects and avoid a full-blown third wave, if we continue to be responsible and observe the safety and hygiene protocols,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo reminded Ghanaians that the virus was still causing ravages and that until Ghanaians received a double dose of the vaccine, the protocol must continue to be a part and parcel of all daily activities.
He gave an assurance that the Ministry of Health was working hard to ensure that even in the midst of a global shortage of vaccines, the target to vaccinate 20 million Ghanaians was undertaken.
“Until that goal is achieved, I will continue to count on the support and cooperation of the Ghanaian people to ensure our collective security,” he added.