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Mahama LIED about Ghana’s Press Freedom ranking: Ghana only topped Africa in 2018 – MFWA

Mahama LIED about Ghana’s Press Freedom ranking: Ghana only topped Africa in 2018 – MFWA

A release by Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has confirmed that the claim by Ghana’s former President John Mahama that Ghana ranked number one in Africa in terms of Press Freedom during his tenure is TOTALLY false.

In commemoration of the World Press Freedom Day Celebrations on May 3, 2020, former President John Dramani Maham delivered a speech through his social media pages.

In the speech, Mr. Mahama made a claim about Ghana’s ranking in the annual press freedom index by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) during his tenure as President of Ghana.

The claim has been verified and below is the verdict and explanation.

His Claim: “According to Reporters Without Borders, during my tenure as President of Ghana, we became the country with the highest levels of Press Freedom in Africa. At the time, we were ranked number one out of 54 countries in Africa. We were also placed 23rd in the global ranking among 180 countries.”

Verified Verdict: Completely False

Explanation: The Press Freedom Index is a ranking of countries compiled and published annually by Reporters Without Borders (RSF) based on the assessment of the countries’ press freedom records. Mr. John Mahama served as President of Ghana in the years 2013 to 2016. Below are the rankings of Ghana in those years according to the RSF.

Here is the list of Ghana’s Press Freedom ranking in Africa since 2013

Year Ranking in Africa Ranking in the World
2013 3rd 30th
2014 3rd 27th
2015 2nd 22nd
2016 2nd 26th
2017 2nd 26th
2018 1st 23rd
2019 3rd 27th

Source: rsf.org

From the record above, Ghana did not rank number one in Africa in any of the years that Mr. Mahama was President. Ghana did not also place 23rd globally in any of those years as he claimed even though the country placed 22nd in 2015.

Indeed, Ghana’s global ranking for 2020 (30th) is the same as that of 2013, which was Mr. Mahama’s first year in office. The ranking for 2019 (27th) is also the same as that of 2014 (President Mahama’s second year in office).

The only year Ghana topped Africa since 2013, was 2018 when the country was ranked 23rd in the world.

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