Yesterday, Sunday October 3, 2021 the world was gifted one other exceptional work of world journalism collaboration known as the Pandora Papers – a challenge facilitated by the International Consortium of Investigative Journalists (ICIJ), and it comprises a number of concepts and insights that Ghanaian journalists can study from.
The Executive Director of ICIJ, Gerald Ryle, describes Pandora Papers as Panama Papers on steroids, due to the sheer scale of the amount of paperwork and revelations. There are 11.9 million paperwork, practically 3 terabytes of information.
Pandora Papers is the work of greater than 600 journalists from around the globe that reveals how some highly effective individuals and billionaires use tax havens to cover their wealth. Some are shopping for costly luxurious flats and villas. What’s much more regarding is the truth that, a lot of the leaders of the world engaged within the shadow economies of tax havens uncovered within the Papers are operating international locations which might be depending on worldwide help and their residents stay in poverty and squalor. A 2020 examine by UNCTAD reveals that Africa loses more cash to illicit monetary flows than it receives in worldwide help.
It additionally exposes con artists, and murderers who’re utilizing tax havens to cover their cash and to maneuver cash round.
The challenge additionally accentuates the necessity to intensify the battle towards illicit monetary flows from Africa, and for that matter Ghana. Like Panama Papers, Paradise Papers, West Africa Leaks and FinCEN Files, Pandora Papers is displaying the size of illicit monetary flows and corruption engaged in by authorities who themselves are anticipated to battle the menace.
A 2018 examine by the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA) reveals that inside 15 years, Africa misplaced as a lot as $73 billion to illicit monetary flows.
The challenge is a mirrored image of the very best in investigative journalism that may be a nice instance to study from.
There are quite a few issues Ghanaian journalists can study and these embody:
- When you get a doc, don’t simply run with it, examine additional.
- Use public paperwork to crosscheck secret paperwork.
- Don’t focus solely on what public officers say.
- Stop specializing in the general public relations characteristic of journalism and do extra accountable journalism.
- Learn to observe the cash.
- Show curiosity in people and what they’re doing, particularly if they’re near or related to energy or the highly effective.
- Ghanaian journalists should study to look into individuals past what they are saying.
- Stop trusting and believing all the things politicians and enterprise individuals say.
There is all the time a veneer over the persona of public figures, what they are saying and do, and journalists should study to mistrust them, till they’ll independently verify their claims.
That manner Ghanaian journalists would make a variety of distinction.
By Emmanuel Okay. Dogbevi