A private legal practitioner, Mrs. Eudora Koranteng, has urged journalists and media practitioners, to take a course on legal writing skills, to enable them report accurately on legal stories.
She said this at a panel discussion on ‘Media Ethics and Effective Legal Communication for Journalists’ organised by the African Centre for International Criminal Justice (ACICJ), at the Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA), in Accra.
Mrs. Koranteng noted that mostly when lawyers read some journalists’ reportage on court and other legal stories, they get lost in what is being said.
She advised that to be able to reach out to their audience, journalists must build their vocabulary on legal issues, stressing that they should take a course on legal writing skills, to help them report accurately. She added that they must educate themselves adequately if they are going to report on crime related issues.
A law lecturer at the GIMPA, Professor Edmund Foley also urged the journalists to set an informative agenda by capturing all the angles of the legal story under consideration.
A prosecutor from the International Criminal Court (ICC), Mr. Jean Jacques Badibanga, also reminded the journalists to help people understand procedures in cases by following legal stories from beginning to the end.
An international co-operation adviser from the ICC, Mr. Dahirou Sant-Anna, also advised the journalists to avoid fueling conflict when reporting on sensitive criminal cases, adding that they must always embrace peace in their reportage.
The interim acting director at the ACICJ, Professor Paolo Galizzi, also remarked that people rely heavily on the media to be informed and understand what is happening around the world, hence urged them to let quality and trust be their hallmark.
The two-day training programme, themed, International Criminal Law & Justice: An Overview; aimed at building legal capacity across the continent through innovative international criminal law education programmes and workshops for African journalists. Certificates were presented to the participants.