Ben Dotse Malor
Is Government Communication System In Disarray?

Ben Dotse Malor

The appointment of Mr. Ben Dotse Malor as Spokesperson for the Presidency has aggravated what is already a confused communication system of government.

If the appointment seeks, therefore, to illuminate the darkness enveloping the communication structure, the objective is far from being achieved triggering rather a litany of questions about the wisdom in the President?s action.

It befuddles Ms. Audrey Gadzekpo of the School of Communications Studies, University of Ghana as it does many other Ghanaians, especially those with knowledge of managing communications in a modern democracy.

In her reaction, which resonated in sections of the media soon after she made her point, the communications teacher wondered what the implication of the appointment is on the current structure in the government. We could not agree more with her and add that, we do not know what the role of those at the Information Ministry would now be, especially the Media Relations bit attached to the portfolio of Hon. Mahama Ayariga.

The current structure as it stands, begs for reorganization unless, as a bird whispered into our ears, the appointment presages a cabinet reshuffle and the possible realignment of some departments in response to opposition outcry.

Being one department which has suffered the drawbacks of overlapping in a bureaucracy, much to the detriment of best governance practices, we should have long left this path and graduated into higher levels of management.

The disparities which characterized the dissemination of government information in the past by the varying layers of players have left a bitter taste in the palates of Ghanaians and carved an unenviable image of mendacity in the minds of many about those in charge.

The appointment, even as the other communication managers at both the Flagstaff House and the Information Ministry are intact, is only a furtherance of the murky status quo and the depletion of an already drained public kitty.

Now that the President has appointed a professional to manage his image and communications with the governed and other publics outside the country?s borders, it remains to be seen whether he too would toe the propaganda line or administer something fresh.

Such whiff of freshness would be a welcome relief from the many doses of lies which characterized the interaction between the government machinery and the rest of us.

As a communications expert, we wonder just how Ben whose pedigree we do not seek to impugn would counsel his boss to see the need for undoing the confusion that is the feature of communications management.

His herculean and seemingly impossible task is de-propagandising the communications management at the Presidency and packaging same to be appealing and convincing to the Ghanaian public.

Until then, the appointment would be viewed as any of the previous ones with little or no effect on the status quo, business as usual, as the clich? goes.

The reality notwithstanding, we welcome Ben aboard the propaganda craft.

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