OFAB Ghana Honours Journalists at the 2023 Media Award

The Ghana Chapter of the Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology (OFAB) has recognised Ghanaian science journalists who have distinguished themselves in reporting and promoting agricultural biotechnology knowledge and acceptance in the country.

Prof. Paul Bosu, Director General of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research, explained at the 6th Edition of the OFAB Media Award 2023 on Saturday in Accra that the OFAB Media Award was established to honour science journalists who have played critical roles in educating and strengthening public awareness on the importance of agricultural biotechnology in achieving food security.

Prof Bosu said: “The OFAB Media Award is a testament to the importance of responsible journalism and media communication in this critical field.“It recognises those who have excelled in their efforts to convey the benefits of biotechnology, at the same time taking into cognisance ethical considerations associated with the technology.

“Your work contributes to fostering dialogue, promoting innovation, and advancing policies that support sustainable agriculture and food security.“As we stand at the precipice of a future with new challenges and opportunities, we must continue to support and encourage the media in their vital role.

“The decisions we make today regarding biotechnology will have profound consequences for the future of agriculture, the environment, and our society as a whole.”He noted that the media serves as the bridge that connects the advancements and breakthroughs in agricultural biotechnology to the wider public.

While congratulating the winners of the OFAB Media Award 2023 for their dedication to responsible and informative reporting on agricultural biotechnology, he urged them to keep up the good work.

In his welcome remarks, the National Coordinator at the OFAB Ghana, Dr. Richard Ampadu-Ameyaw, also stated that their mission is to believe in knowledge sharing through advocacy.“We have only one mission, and that is to enhance knowledge sharing and awareness of Agricultural Biotechnology as a way of raising understanding and appreciation of Biotechnology and contributing to the global and enabling environment for informed and timely decision-making of the technology.“Our Media Award was a celebration of the remarkable efforts made by journalists and media professionals in informing, educating, and raising awareness about agricultural biotechnology.

He said, “This field holds immense promise for addressing some of the most pressing global challenges, such as food security, climate change, and sustainable agriculture. “It is through media storytelling that we can bridge the gap between the science of biotechnology and the broader public, helping them make informed decisions and understand the potential benefits it holds for our society” he added.

The Vice President of the Ghana Journalists Association, (GJA), Mrs. Linda Asante-Agyei, delivering her statement on the theme “Credible Science Reporting, a Tool for Science-Led Economic Development in Ghana” said it was important to promote and achieve food security.“To achieve food security, seeds play a critical role whether farmers’ harvest will be a bumper one or not depending slightly on the type of seeds they use in planting.“Journalists play a critical role in nation-building through information and education. In science, there is the need to provide evidence, and embraces transparency, she said.

The awards ceremony saw Reuben Quainoo of Ghana Agricultural & Rural Development Association (GARDJA) walk home winner in the radio category. He was presented with a plaque, products and a cheque worth 3000 cedis.

The winner in the online category award also went to Lydia Ezit of Graphic Communications Ltd. She also took home a plague, products and a cheque of 3000 cedis and the Runner-Up in the online category award went to Williams Sarpong of the Environmental Guide platform.

The OFAB Champion 2023 award went to Dr. Ibrahim Atokple, the first Principal Investigator who started the PBR Cowpea project.

He took home a plague.OFAB Ghana ChapterThe Open Forum on Agricultural Biotechnology in Africa (OFAB) is a platform that brings together stakeholders in biotechnology and enables interactions between scientists, journalists, civil society, industrialists, lawmakers and policy makers.

The Organization provides an opportunity for key stakeholders to know one another, share knowledge and experiences, make new contacts and explore new avenues for bringing the benefits of biotechnology to the African agricultural sector.Story by:

Reuben Nana Yaw, Reporter

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