Saturday, January 27, 2007

From CBC to LUV FM

January 25

Graeme sleeps in his make shift togo (and is still sweating!) while I type a report for JHR on how my first day of work was. The report will be brief. The news boss didn’t come in, there were two of nine reporters, and the station was in a bit of a lull after reporting on a by-election two days previously in a region just north of Kumasi. Although there were few reporters at LUV FM (looove, how that sounds) there was no shortage of discussion on the days events or those stories making the news (Koffi Annan’s return, a peaceful by-election, the first time in eight years that an opposition party member has stepped inside the president’s castle, and whether or not Ghanaian men want or should be entitled to paternity benefits.) There are obviously many differences between CBC Yukon’s newsroom and LUV FM, the similarities are in the passion of the people (those who showed up) for radio journalism. Have played the “I work for LUV FM” card with taxi drivers and folks we’ve met on the street, to much critical acclaim. Journalism is considered to be in a bit of a “golden age” here. For the first time ever reporters are free to say, write and think what they like and this, I’m learning is both beneficial and rife with controversy. Somehow it’s not acceptable to ask the president a direct, hard hitting question, but yet printing a photo of a dead traffic accident victim or a man whose testicles have enlarged down to his knees because of a hernia is.

Am loving having a place to call home. It’s a modest room, but full of all that we need. We fall asleep to the beat of frogs croaking and the reggae music from the radio downstairs and wake to the sounds of construction (the place where we’re staying is in a constant state of “sprucing up” in preparation for the 2008 African Nations Cup.)

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