The Coca-Cola Bottling Company Ghana Limited and JN Products, manufacturers of household detergents and cosmetics, on Thursday donated some products to the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) to enhance its coverage ahead of the December 7 General Election.
Coca-Cola Company donated soft drinks worth GH¢20,000.00, whilst JN Products gave two thousand pieces of hand sanitizers.
Mr Ernest Yeboah Obeng, Corporate Social Initiative and Communications Lead, Coca-Cola Company, said Coca-Cola duly recognised the role the media played in the country.
"Undeniably, it's a key arm of government and its role is critical to development," he said.
"As we go to cast our ballot, we will all rely on the media to inform us about happenings, especially in relation to the elections.
"One way we can support the media in carrying out this mandate is to provide refreshment as they go out to perform their duty. We encourage them to keep doing a good job. We appreciate them."
The Company, he said, as part of its social responsibility to the people it served, had made an initial contribution of more than GH¢100,000 to the Ghana COVID-19 Private Sector Fund to support the fight against the pandemic.
That, Mr Obeng explained, was made possible by Ghanaians patronising the 1.5L Coca-Cola, Fanta and Sprite products from which 10p was contributed to the fund from the sale of a product.
"We will encourage Ghanaians to keep supporting this cause, which seeks to win the COVID-19 battle," he said.
Coca-Cola had also made donations to hospitals, provided beverages to frontline workers, and supported communities in times of need during the peak of Covid-19.
Mr Joseph Nii Sempe Nyarko, Chief Executive Officer of JN Products, said the donation was to appreciate the media for the professionalism with which they had executed their duties over the years.
He said since Ghana still had active Covid-19 cases, it was necessary for journalists to protect themselves as they went about their election coverage duties on December 7.
JN Products was, therefore, giving the sanitizers to provide that protection, he said.
Mr Affail Monney, the GJA President, who received the items, said the toil and services of journalists had not gone unnoticed and called on other corporate institutions to go to their aid with similar supports.
“Elections serve as the centrepiece of democracy so the least citizens can do is to incentivize journalists so they would be motivated to work well. We hope these donations will spur them on to be at their utmost best on Election Day,” he said.
Mr Monney said as part of activities by the GJA to ensure effective coverage of the 2020 General Election, the Ghana International Press Centre would be turned into a hub where there would be various interviews with political actors.
There would also be live band session alongside and drinking.
The GJA President said asked all political actors to patronise the Centre on Election Day to aid Ghana showcase the best in terms of Electoral Journalism and democracy to the rest of the world.
He urged journalists to inject the highest degree of professionalism and safety as they went about their duties and adhere to all Covid-19 safety protocols.
“The intensity of political campaigns do not obscure the fact that we are still at risk and the danger is real. It is not wise to overlook the dangers. We need to be cautious at all times and the use of hand sanitizers is one of the ways we can stay safe,” he said.
Mr Monney urged politicians to focus their energies on winning elections and not to attack the media, adding; “We have no power over the outcome of elections. We are only there to provide coverage.”