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General News Thu, 14 Feb 2008

Ghana 29th On World Press Freedom Records

Ghana has been ranked 29th in world press freedom records for 2007 and third in Africa for the same period. Iceland topped the world rankings and was followed by Norway, Estonia, Slovakia and Belgium, with the United Kingdom placing 24th and the United States of America ranked 48th.

In Africa, Mauritius and Namibia were jointly ranked number one and they jointly placed 25th in the world, followed by Ghana, South Africa, which placed 43rd in the world, Cape Verde was next and 45th in the world.

Togo was sixth in Africa and 49th in the world and Mauritania was seventh in Africa and 50th in the world with Eritrea placing last in the world at 169th position.

A world-wide press freedom index published by Reporters Without Borders (RWB) said the annual ranking was based upon the organisation’s assessment of the countries’ press freedom records.

It explained that the report was based on a questionnaire sent to 14 partner organisations of Reporters Without Borders in five continents and its 130 correspondents around the world as well as to journalists, researchers, jurists and human rights activists.

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It said the survey asked questions about direct attacks on journalists and the media, as well as other indirect sources of pressure against the free press.

“RWB is careful to note that the index only deals with press freedom and does not meassure the quality of journalism,” it said.

It said due to the nature of the survey’s methodology, based on individual perceptions, there were often wide contrasts in a country’s ranking from year to year.

The ranking, it explained, took into account pressure on journalists by non-governmental groups, the Basque terrorist group, ETA in Spain or the mafia in Russia being examples, which could pose serious threats to press freedom.

Source: Graphic
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