A Professor of the Institute of West Asian and African Studies (IWAAS), Chinese Academy of Social Sciences, He Wenping, has suggested joint coverage on illegal mining in Ghana by Ghanaian and Chinese media.
She said such collaboration on an issue that affected and involved both countries would remove any biases and present comprehensive, objective, fair and balanced reports.
Speaking to some African journalists during a media engagement on the theme: “China and Africa: Cooperation of Media, Connection of People, Opportunity of Belt and Road”, Prof. He said joint reporting on issues in Africa involving both countries such as a Chinese constructed bridge that had collapsed in Kenya and the involvement of Chinese in ‘galamsey’ in Ghana would provide both sides of the story.
The media engagement was organised by the China Africa Press Centre and the China Investment Magazine last Thursday.
Prof. He explained to the Daily Graphic that such joint reporting teams could be formed with reporters working with Chinese news agency Xinhua and China Radio International (CRI) based in Ghana.
She said such joint articles would not only become the favourite of the Chinese and readers of the Ghanaian media that published them but also the international media.
The IWAAS professor stated that the lopsided reports from both countries on the ‘galamsey’ and other issues were hurting relations between the two nations.
Necessity for joint teams
Touching on the different images and perceptions both Chinese and Africans had about each other, she said the world was changing from what people knew “and so if you want to know something you have to be there”.
She said false words circulated even became more distorted as they made the rounds. “The way you look at China is the same way we look at Africa,” she added.
“It is better to have joint reporting, for example, on the Mombasa-Nairobi railway, the bridge issue in Kenya and for example in Ghana where we have these Chinese gold miners who have been arrested by the Ghana police.”
She said such approach would bring out all the unanswered questions on the ‘galamsey’ issue, adding that although she had read a lot of stories from both Chinese and Ghanaian reporters on the matter, the different approaches showed different sides of the story just like ‘the perception in the story about some blind men who touched a different part of an elephant and had different things to say’.
She said she had been engaging in research with African scholars in her department after which joint results were published, which she believed produced more objective reports.