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GHANA INSTITUTE OF JOURNALISM

IMPACT OF AKAN RADIO NEWS PRESENTATION ON THE

AUDIENCE OF ADOM FM

GEORGE MAWUENASUSU KORKU NYAVOR

BACS 10236331

THIS PROJECT WORK IS SUBMITTED TO THE GHANA INSTITUTE

OF

JOURNALISM

(GIJ)

IN

PARTIAL

FULFILMENT

OF

THE

REQUIREMENT

FOR

THE

AWARD

OF

A

BACHELOR

OF

ARTS

DEGREE IN COMMUNICATION STUDIES.

JULY, 2010 1
JULY, 2010
1

DECLARATION

Candidate’s Declaration

I hereby declare that this Project Work is the result of my own original research and that no part

of it has been presented for another degree in this Institution or elsewhere.

George M.K Nyavor

………………………

Date

………………………

Supervisor’s Declaration

I hereby declare that the preparation and presentation of this Project Work was supervised by me

in accordance with the guidelines on supervision of Project Work as laid down by the Ghana

Institute of Journalism.

Kobina Bedu-Addo

…………………………….

Date

………………………

2
2

Table of Contents

Introduction…………………………………………………… …………………………………9

Background……………………………………………………………………………….9

Problem Statement……

22

………………………………………………………………

Research Objectives…….………… …….………………………………………………23

Justification for the Study……………………………………

…………………………24

Scope of Study…………………………………………………………………

Organisation of the study……………….………………………………………………

………24

25

Literature Review………………………………

………………………………………………26

Theoretical Framework

……………………………………………

………………….26

Review of Related Studies………….……………………………………………………34

Operational Definition of Terms…….………………………….………………………

………………………42

40

Methodology……………………………………………………………

Research Design………………………………………… ……

Population…………………………………………

Sample Size……………………………

…………….…………42

……………………………………43

…………………………………………….….44

Sample Technique……………………………………………………

…………….

45

Data Collection…………………………………………………………………………

45

Data Collection Instruments…………………………………

…………………………46

Results…………………………….……………………………………………………………

48

Discussion……………………………………………………………………………………

80

Summary……………

Conclusion………………………………………….………

………………………………………………………………….83

………

84

……………………………………………………………… 84

…………………………………

………85

………………………………………………

88

Suggestions for Further Study

Bibliography…… ………………………… …………………………………………

Appendices……………………………………

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DEDICATION

This study is dedicated to the academia, the domain that produces the minds and hearts to take

part in that severe contest between intelligence, which presses forward, and an unworthy and

timid ignorance obstructing any progress.

I dedicate this work to anyone who is in ardent pursuit of knowledge, and motivated by nothing

else but by the desire to overcome life‘s challenges, big or small, by resort to knowledge for it is

this same motivation that produced this work.

I dedicate this study to my mother, Francisca Dogbatse, and my two brothers Joseph Nyavor and

Emmanuel Nyavor.

I dedicate this study especially to Mr. Hayford Amanku, but also to anyone who has added to my

knowledge in one way or another.

But above all I dedicate this study to God Almighty, for all these I did, all these I endured for His

greater Glory.

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ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS

I am sincerely grateful to Mr. Kobina Bedu-Addo, my supervisor for his guidance. This work

wouldn‘t have come out this way if not for his invaluable assistance.

I am also grateful for the immense support given me by the news team of Adom FM, the Akan

Section of the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), and the Ayawaso Central office of the

Electoral Commission.

I would also like to show my gratitude to the staff of the Ghana Institute of Journalism library,

especially Ernest. This is because even when we were being typically students, they tolerated us

enough.

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ABSTRACT

It is indubitable that the rise of Akan-language oriented radio stations, partly as a result of the

liberalization of the airwaves, and partly as a response to the need to keep the vast illiterate

Ghanaian population informed on key local and global social, economic and political issues, is a

step in the right direction.

This work studied the effectiveness of the use of proverbs, humour, innuendos and similar

devices in Akan radio news presentation, using Adom Kaseibo on Adom FM as the focus.

It studied two populations, audience of Adom FM on 1 st Yarboi Link, in Kotobabi, Accra, and

news staff of Adom.

Interviews were conducted for the audience of Adom FM and questionnaires were distributed to

a sample from the Adom FM news staff.

The study also investigated whether newsroom practices of news gathering, processing and

presentation conformed to the NMC Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting.

The general findings were that the use of proverbs, humour, innuendos and similar devices used

in Akan radio news presentation was effective among illiterates and semi-literates, but was

normally not appealing and ineffective among literates.

The study also found that newsroom practices of news gathering, processing and presentation

was not conforming to the Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting of the National Media

Commission.

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List of Tables Table 4.1.1: Representation of respondents according to their education level--page 49

Table 4.1.2: Age range of respondentspage 50

Table 4.1.3: Occupation of Respondentspage 51

Table 4.1.4: Occupation distribution versus education levelpage 52

Table 4.1.5: Respondent‘s perception of Akan radio news presentation—page 54

Table 4.1.6: Education level of respondents and their perception of Akan news presentation

page 55

Table 4.1.7: Respondents response to whether they understand the content of Akan news

presentationpage 57

Table 4.1.8: Respondents‘ description of Akan radio news presentation—page 59

Table

4.1.9:

Education

level

―Exaggerated‖—page 60

of

respondents

who

thought

Akan

news

presentation

was

Table 4.1.10: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was ―made

less important‖—page 61

Table 4.1.11: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was

―Humourous‖—page 62

Table 4.1.12: Education level of respondents

―Humourous but factual‖—page 63

who thought Akan news presentation was

Table 4.1.13: Literate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibopage 64

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Table 4.1.14: Semi-literate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of

a story on Adom Kaseibopage 65

Table 4.1.15: Illiterate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibopage 66

Table 4.1.16:Respondents‘ understanding of the content Akan news presentationpage 68

Table 4.1.17: Educational level of respondents and how they understand the content of news

page 69

Table 4.1.18: Respondents‘ understanding of the humour, proverbs, innuendos used in Akan

news presentationpage 70

Table 4.1.20: Appeal/Non-appeal of the use of proverbs, humour and similar devices in Akan

news among respondentspage 72

Table 4.1.21: Respondents‘ views on what should change or remain about Akan radio news

presentationpage 75

Table 4.1.22: Respondent‘s views versus their education levelpage 76

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1.0 Introduction

CHAPTER ONE

To enhance media pluralism and diversity, there must be a platform for Ghanaian audiences to

participate in national dialogue, but also to enable them make sense of events around them

through indigenized programmes like Akan news so they can make informed decisions and

choices. This is more the case considering that Ghana has a high illiteracy rate meaning an

even higher rate of the use of local language in social transactions.

Of the six main Ghanaian languages: Akan, Ewe, Ga, Nzema, Dagbani and Hausa, first used on

radio, Akan language seems to be the most predominantly used in local radio across the country

today.

1.1 Background Statement

It is indubitable that the rise of Akan-language oriented radio stations, partly as a result of the

liberalization of the airwaves, and partly as a response to the need to keep the vast illiterate

Ghanaian population informed on key local and global social, economic and political issues is a

step in the right direction. However, the presentation of Akan news on some local-language

oriented FM stations is too typical of the interactive characteristics of Akan societies. These

characteristics, essentially, exaggerate some issues whiles downplaying the seriousness of other

issues. Also, some of the words are too difficult for comprehension. This is exacerbated by

absence of binding norms or guidelines for local language broadcasting which may create

―deficiencies and excesses…that undermine the ethos of broadcasting as a public good‖ (NMC

National Media Policy 2000, p.8).

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i.

History of Radio and Local Language Broadcasting in Ghana.

According to P.A.V Ansah (1985), radio has evolved tremendously since its inception in Europe

in the 1920s.

Sir Arnold Hodson is credited with the initiative to introduce radio to the West Coast of Africa

after an experiment with the new wired radio distribution system in the Falkland Islands in 1929.

In 1934, Hodson was transferred to the then Gold Coast as governor. His love for radio led him

to request for F.A.W Byron, an electrical engineer, with whom he‘d worked in the establishment

of radio service in the Falkland Islands and in Sierra Leone.

Upon the arrival of Byron, Hodson began work immediately to establish a wired radio

distribution system in Accra. The silver jubilee of the coronation of King George V provided an

avenue for experimenting with rediffusion broadcast when the voice of the King was heard on

the Empire Service (Gold Coast Legislative Council Debates, February 20, 1936; cited in Ansah

P.A.V, 1985).

This marked the birth of the station ZOY. This wired relayed service rapidly expanded

tremendously that by the end of 1935 there were 400 subscribers and in February 1936, 750

homes in Accra were wired to receive broadcasts from the transmitters of the service.

Great Britain in 1932 established a relay or rediffusion system, in its tropical Africa colonies,

called Empire Service.

The aim of the Empire Service in these areas in tropical Africa was to cater for the ―information,

cultural and entertainment needs of the political elites who consisted of European settlers,

colonial administrators and the small group of educated Africans‖ (Ansah, 1985; p.2).

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The principal audience of radio in most British colonists was the European settlers. However in

Gold Coast it was slightly different. In Gold Coast, the purpose of using broadcasting for general

and political education was clearly articulated early on. From the beginning, Governor Hodson

intended that radio should be a tool for in and out-of-school education. He planned that a

transmitter should be installed in Accra to broadcast half an hour each day to schools, under the

Department of Education.

But the purpose of radio in the early days of its establishment in Ghana was not only educative.

It was also for what can be termed ―white propaganda‖. Radio was also to be a means of

‗conveying information or urgent propaganda to an intelligent and level-headed section of the

community which is capable of exercising a strong influence for good on public opinion‘ when it

becomes an established feature. But it was also to inculcate in the citizens of the Gold Coast

certain aspects of British culture and ideas, and thereby ―immunize‖ them against undesirable

ideas which might come from outside. This included countering anti-colonial propaganda of the

nationalist press in the Gold Coast (Asante, 1996; Ansah, 1985).

During the Second World War, the need for propaganda became intensified as the need to whip

up public support for ―Allies‖ fighting against Nazi Germany became necessary.

Again, according to Asante (1996), the war situation helped in the expansion of radio. At that

time, it became necessary to reach a wider African audience in order to secure their loyalty and

support on the side of the ―allies‖ in the prosecution of the War, especially since the colonies

were providing soldiers and supplying food to help in the war effort. It was during this period

that increasing use was made of the local languages in broadcasting. Furthermore, by that time

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re-diffusion or wired-radio centres were also opened in Kumasi, Sekondi, Koforidua and Cape

Coast thereby extending the radio broadcast facilities in the country.

In June 1961, the External Service broadcasting was inaugurated. The GBC External Service was

broadcasting in English, French, Hausa, Swahili, Arabic and Portuguese. The service was

instrumental in articulating the foreign policy of the Nkrumah-led government.

Essentially, programmes in local languages were introduced on radio within two years of its

inception. But these languages were not accorded sufficient importance in terms of time

allocation. In 1953, local languages were given a total of 18 hours a week while English

programmes including relays from the BBC, took about 58 hours a week. But this was not the

only challenge to local language broadcasting. Local language programmes were broadcast at

such inconvenient times that it defeated the purpose of its broadcast (Ansah, 1985).

Between 1935 and 1945, Radio-ZOY was administered by the colonial secretary‘s office, and

from 1946 to 1953, it was managed by the Information Services Department. In 1954, upon the

recommendation of a commission established to advise the colonial government on how to

improve radio broadcasting in the country, the Gold Coast Broadcasting System (GCBS) was

set-up.

Then in September 1962, the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation System became a full-

fledged corporation and was renamed the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC) (Asante,

1996).

The Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), in the early part of 1994 was providing two

domestic radio services: Radio 1 (or GBC-1) and Radio 2 (GBC-2). At a point in time, for a brief

period, there was a Radio 3 (GBC-3) which was heard on wireless only. But it has been

discontinued because of shortage of material resources (Asante, 1996).

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GBC-1 was broadcasting programmes in six Ghanaian languages: Akan, Dagbani, Ewe, Ga,

Nzema and Hausa. Each language has its programme spot on the daily schedules on the network

and they produce pragrammes to fill these spots. News for the local languages are compiled in

English by the newsroom and distributed to the local language sections for translation and

broadcast. Akan section of GBC says its house-style includes use of ―simple language‖, ―very

minimal use of figurative expression‖ and ―comprehensive but simple translation of English to

Akan that is not line-by-line‖ (Interview with Kofi Sarkwa, News Editor at the Akan Section of

GBC; February 3 rd , 2010).

At the time this information was being collected, GBC-1 was on ―standby‖ because GBC was

negotiating with government to purchase a new digital transmitter to replace the current faulty

one. Furthermore, FM stations like Obonu FM and Unique FM which are operating under the

GBC umbrella are making do with the personnel and resources of GBC-1 in the meantime. GBC-

2 is also not operating anymore.

According to the National Communication Authority (NCA), two hundred and seventeen (217)

radio stations have been licensed and operational, and thirty-two (32) are operational in Greater-

Accra as at 3 rd March, 2010. Of this number, more than five are broadcasting all programmes in

Akan language only (http://www.nca.org.gh).

ii. Rise of Private Local Language Radio

Liberalization of the airwaves by the 1992 constitution (Article 162(3)) after years of repressive

laws on media freedom by subsequent military regimes facilitated the widespread establishment

of private media houses in Ghana.

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Ghana was ruled by the military under Generals Joseph Ankrah and Akwasi Afrifa from 1966 to

1969; General Kutu Acheampong from 1972 to 1978; General Fred Akuffo from 1978 to 1979

and Flight Lieutenant Jerry Rawlings, June 1979 to September 1979. The country was once more

ruled under Jerry Rawlings‘ military regime from 1981 to 1993. Thus, between the premier

military coup in February 1966 and the transition to civil rule in 1993, Ghana was ruled by

military regimes for about twenty-one years (Ogbondah, 2004). With these military regimes

came covert and overt measures to suppress freedom of expression in any type of media. Some

of these measures included the passing of the Criminal Libel Law, the Law on Sedition, and the

Rumours Decree.

Even before these myriad of military takeovers, the press under Dr. Nkrumah after independence

was seen as an instrument of state control for facilitating the nation building efforts. Hence

Nkrumah arrested and imprisoned journalists who were too critical of, and opposed to, some of

his policies. This was highly similar to the relationship between the colonial government and

privately owned media outlets that were vociferous towards some to the colonial administration‘s

policies and actions.

In July 2001, Ghana‘s Parliament repealed the Criminal Libel and Seditious Laws, which had

been used to imprison and otherwise persecute many journalists in the past (Morgan, 2006).

The coming into office by the Kuffuor-led government in 2000 drastically eased the tension and

repression on press freedom in Ghana. Hence with the repeal of the criminal libel law, the stage

was set for a total emancipation from media oppression by statutory interventions.

The need to reach the vast illiterate Ghanaian populations was realised very early in the inception

of radio (in 1937). However, private ownership of radio was very far away from the minds of

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entrepreneurs due to the novelty of the technology and the huge financial commitments involved

at the time (Asante, 1996). However, with improvements in the technology of radio, and

improvements in related areas like sound recording, it became relatively easy to set up a radio

station.

The discouraging factor, now that technological improvements made it possible to easily set up a

radio station, was the political terrain. The country had been ruled for too long by military

dictatorships which were mostly unfriendly to private media ownership. For instance, Jerry

Rawlings‘ heavy hand on media freedom made it dangerous and even suicidal to set up any

media house, especially radio. But a politically enlightened public was fast becoming the

phenomenon in Ghana in the days leading to the promulgation of the 1992 Constitution of

Ghana. Along with a host of condemnations of human rights abuses by reformists, the laws

against media freedom was perhaps the most condemned.

There was an overwhelming support for media privatisation with only a few people, mostly in

the monopolistic state-controlled media houses, opposed to the idea for fear of losing its grip on

the monopoly (http//www.ghanaweb.com/articles/genesisofbroadcastinginghana). Despite the

support for the privatisation of broadcasting, the Provisional National Defense Council (PNDC)

government was unwilling to loosen its grip on private radio but in May 1994, residents of Accra

‗woke

up

to

the

sound

of

a

private

FM

station

called

Radio

Eye

(http//www.ghanaweb.com/articles/genesisofbroadcastinginghana).

After 24 hours of operating, the security agencies shut down the station and arrested Dr. Charles

Wereko

Brobbey

and

his

team

of

technicians.

The confiscation sparked intense riots in Accra, ending the first attempt at breaking state

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monopoly over broadcasting. It was not until July 1995 that Joy FM, a member of the Multi

Media Group, and the first to start operation, was licensed to operate in Accra. Many other

private radio stations followed suit in earnest. By the end of 1996, exactly a year after Joy FM‘s

operation, more than sixteen radio stations were operational across the country confirming

there have been a long suppression of a desire to operate privately in the radio broadcasting

sector by the state.

Apart from the few programme spots for news in the six Ghanaian languages on the various

GBC radio stations, more hours were dedicated to English content programmes. The emerging

private radio stations, at the time, were also broadcasting entirely in English.

Subsequently, the need for a local-language-oriented radio station to cater for the vast illiterate

majority, but more importantly to facilitate what Ali Mazrui calls ―cultural engineering‖, was

realised.

Cultural

engineering

involves

‗indigenising

what

is

foreign,

idealizing

what

is

indigenous and nationalising what is sectional and emphasising what is African‘ (Mazrui, 1972;

cited in Ansah P.A.V, 1985;p. 29).

Peace FM, 104.3, began the first private Akan-language radio station in 1999, becoming the first

private radio to broadcast all programmes entirely in a local language, specifically Akan in

Greater-Accra. This was followed by other media houses of which Adom FM, beginning its

operation in 2000, is one.

Some of the prominent programmes on Peace FM when it started operations were the morning

programme called Kokrookoo, the prime time news at twelve noon and 6.00 pm, Wo Haw Ne

Sen, and the Drive Time. But essentially, these programmes mirrored the prominent programmes

which were airing on Joy FM which is the first private English radio in Ghana.

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Understandably, these kinds of programmes became industry benchmarks that elicited fierce

competition when other local language, or Akan language, radio stations started. For news

programmes for instance, exclusivity, early broadcast of breaking news and ―interesting‖

presentation of such newsy events was the competition among local radio stations and to a

large extent these are still the requirements to attract audience to a news programme now.

Promoters of the liberalisation of the airwaves were of the view that the liberalisation process

would have social, economic and political benefits for Ghana because it will impact positively on

the people. However for some time now, there have been debates surrounding the way some

private media houses operate (TV3 Evening News; August 10, 2009). Prominent among these

debates is the style of news presentation on some Akan-language radio stations. Despite

directives by the National Media Commission and condemnations from relevant stakeholders to

avoid use of proverbs, humour, innuendos, pre-sequences and the like in news broadcasts, most

local radio stations say this style of news presentation appeals to their target audiences.

The National Media Commission (NMC) has issued guidelines to standardise the ―preparation,

presentation and transmission‖ of programmes on all broadcasting media (NMC Guidelines for

Broadcasting; p.1). However, this standardisation seems a long way off. In addition to this the

commission has issued ―Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting‖ which it believes would

―guide broadcasters to harness the benefit of linguistic pluralism and diversity…the guidelines is

premised on the knowledge that local language broadcasting fulfils the citizen‘s sovereign

entitlement to freedom of expression and the right to information‖ (NMC Guidelines For Local

Language Broadcasting, 2009; p.1). In the absence of a standardised preparation, presentation

and transmission of news programmes on Akan-language oriented media houses, the impact it is

having on audience must be studied.

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iii.

The Nature of News

News programming is one of the very technical aspects of journalism, or media work. According

to Itule & Anderson (2007), it is important for news to have certain unique characteristics that

will first, differentiate it from other types of media programme and secondly, to enable any

media house achieve utmost results in their news broadcast which is audience knowledge of

the world around him/her and appreciation of relevant issues and concerns in an interdependent

an networked globalizing world.

According to Boyd (1993) radio news broadcasting must be straight-forward, concise, made up

of familiar words and unambiguous in the content being carried across. These characteristics

according to him are necessary because of the transient and fleeting nature of radio. Radio

audiences are especially susceptible to the barriers that obstruct proper appreciation and

understanding of the content(s) of any news report. These barriers may include use of proverbs,

rhetorics, humour and circumlocutions.

According to Shrivastava, (2003:p.1), ―news is one of the biggest known media outputs in

today‘s media programming‖. He states further that the concept of news has existed long before

the phenomenon of mass media. This is supported by Schramm (1963).

Furthermore, to illustrate the universality of news, it is possible in Africa today to find accounts

of a primitive system in remote tribal areas where people exchange local news during weekly

markets just by talking to one another (Shrivastava, 2003).

Also to illustrate the power of news, before the era of newspapers and electronic media, news

was communicated by mouth. Public announcements by those in power were communicated to

their subordinates by various kinds of drummers. Such announcements even now dominate

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the news coverage in the newspapers, radio and television in almost all countries irrespective of

their ideology (Shrivastava, 2003:p.2)).

The importance and power of these rudimentary mediums of news to society such as drums,

trumpets and gongs, as well as the modern media of news, of which radio is an example, cannot

be missed. It is even more important for people who are in power and those who want power.

Radio and TV become first targets in coups, and those who snatch power from an old regime use

these electronic mediums for their first announcements.

Radio news, at once, can be used to serve both societal interests as well as the interests of an

individual or a select few of individuals. Hence it is a requirement in professional journalism to

present or broadcast news as it is as the event happened.

Mckane (2006:p.vii) purports that the final stage of journalistic process, the only one the

audience encounters directly, is the words. She states: ―they may be printed, spoken or placed on

a computer screen, but first they have to be prepared…if they are boring, they will bore, if they

are incomprehensible, they will not be understood, if they are clumsy or inappropriate, they will

annoy‖. All of these challenges must be considered also in Akan Radio News preparation.

iv. The Context of Akan Socio-cultural Interaction

According to Obeng (2003), in most African societies ―much as plain or direct language is

cherished and highly appreciated because of the pragmatic clarity it offers, implicitness,

indirectness, vagueness, prolixity, ambiguity and even avoidance are even more cherished and

preferred especially when the subject matter of what is being communicated is difficult or face-

threatening‖.

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He proceeds to say that ―Verbal indirection”, the communicational strategy in which interactants

abstain from directness in order to avoid crises or in order to communicate ―difficulty‖, and thus

make their utterances consistent with face and politeness, is pervasive in Akan social interaction.

Furthermore, he purports that pronoun mismatching, nouns (especially proverbial names and

other names with indirect meanings), evasions, hedges and various forms of pre-sequences

(which help to eliminate perceived obstacles to making such speech acts as announcements,

requests, or invitations), acknowledgement of imposition, proverbs, metaphors, innuendoes,

euphemisms,

circumlocution,

riddles,

tales,

hyperbolas,

and

communication

through

intermediaries or proxies, are among the linguistic discursive strategies in Akan language.

v. The Importance of Local Radio

The increase in the number of private FM stations, as a consequence of the liberalization of the

airwaves, has made it possible for some media outlets to tailor programs to suit the vast illiterate

population of most urban dwellers in Ghana. Statistics in 2000 indicates 43.8% urban dwellers in

the year 2000, as against 9% in 1931 (Otoo et al, 2006). At the current growth rate of 2.6% per

annum, the urban population is expected to double in 17 years (GSS, 2000). Accra Metropolitan

Area (AMA) alone, for instance, according to 2000 census represents 25% of all urban dwellers

in Ghana, increasing at 4.5% per annum.

Because Ghana has a low literacy rate, approximately 58% according to the UNESCO Institute

of Statistics, (2007), and with the urban population growth rate in Accra at 4.5% annually, urban

dwellers in Accra, among whom will be a vast illiterate majority, will be incapacitated in various

regards by virtue of their inability to comprehend news reports when they are presented in

English on all media outlets.

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Furthermore, majority of Ghanaians, speak and transact their daily lives in their own languages.

That is, it is in the local language that they are able to express themselves easily, articulate their

interests, make communion with their ancestors among other things (Prah, 2001; cited in NMC

Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting, 2008).

That is, in an ever intensifying global world, the illiterate‘s understanding of key political,

economic and social issues that affect them directly and indirectly is appreciably limited if news

is presented in English-only across board. This may translate into economic hardships leading to

poverty, ignorance of key health concerns, ignorance of social and political rights and freedoms,

and to a significant extent, ignorance of social and political responsibilities as a citizen. It may

also befuddle efforts to disabuse Ghanaian society of cultural misconception on gender and

children roles as well as the subsequent violations of women‘s and children‘s right.

It is against these backgrounds that the increase in FM stations which broadcast news and other

programs, which nonetheless mirror western style of programming, in Akan language is a step in

the right direction.

Adom FM (106.3), Peace FM (104.3), Asempa FM (94.7), Oman FM (107.1), Happy FM (98.9)

among others, are some stations broadcasting news and other programs in Akan language.

However, it is important to ensure that news, as presented in Akan language by these media

outlets, retain the qualities and purpose of news in the professional conception of the word.

Choice of Adom FM audience as a case study is due to the researcher‘s avoidance of any conflict

of interest between him and a colleague who is doing a similar study with Peace FM. Peace FM

would have been an appropriate choice because they started what this study is calling ―Akan

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Radio News Presentation‖, and secondly they seem to have the biggest audience base so far as

Akan-language oriented radio is concerned.

Besides the above reason, it is this researcher‘s strong belief that Adom FM (106.3) has an

audience that matches Peace FM‘s audience base. And since a couple of research work in the

area of Akan-language oriented radio has concentrated on Peace FM, Adom FM makes a better

alternative.

This study looks at the impact on audience in the use of such devices as proverbs, hedges, pre-

sequences among others, in news presentation on an Akan-language radio.

vi. Adom FM and the Multimedia Group

Adom FM (106.3) is a commercial radio station situated in the Tema Municipality (Community

Two). It began operation in May, 2000. It is operating on a frequency that was then called

Groove FM. But Joy FM, a member of the Multi Media Group bought it and subsequently, the

offices in Accra (Osu) was re-located to Tema (Community 2). They broadcast all relevant radio

programmes in Akan language. Currently, Adom FM claims to be the number one most listened

to station in Ghana (www.adomonline.com).

1.2 Problem Statement

The popularity of Akan-language-oriented media houses is a welcome phenomenon in Ghana.

But it may not be serving its purpose as far as news presentation is concerned (TV3 Evening

News, 2009).

Choice of words in news presentation, speed of reading, the general language and tone of voice

all influence audience appreciation of issues carried in the news (Boyd, 1993).

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Against

this

background

and

with

the

knowledge

of

the

circumlocution,

pronoun

mismatching, nouns, especially proverbial names and other names with indirect meanings,

evasions, hedges and various forms of pre-sequences as used in Adom FM news broadcast the

problem this research will study is: what has been the impact, negative or positive, of Adom

FM‘s style of news presentation, which makes use of proverbs, humour, innuendos, pre-

sequences among others, on audience appreciation of issues of social and national importance?

1.3 Research Objective

General Objective

The General Objective of this study is to:

Examine how effective Akan radio news has been in making use of proverbs, humour, evasions,

hedges and various forms of pre-sequences in news presentation.

Specific Objectives

Specifically, the objectives of this study will be to:

1. Investigate the perception of Adom FM audience towards style of Akan radio

news presentation on Adom in few words.

2. Investigate how audience perception of Akan radio news presentation has affected

their understanding of issues contained in the news.

3. To find out whether use of proverbs, humour, hedges, evasions and pre-sequences

and style of news presentation is understood by the audience as intended.

4. To find out whether news room practices of news gathering, preparation and

presentation follow NMC ‗Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting‘.

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23

1.4

Justification of the Study

One of the controversies surrounding Akan radio news presentation is that it is a deviation from

the traditional style of news presentation which is straight-forward, concise and unblemished

with

proverbs,

humour

or

innuendos.

Akan

radio

news

presentation

contains

all

these

characteristics and more (TV3 Evening News; 10 August, 2009). However, Akan radio, along

with its peculiar programming characteristics has enjoyed a favourable audience size mainly due

to the size of the illiterate population in the country and the commonality of Akan language

among different cultures in the urban areas in Ghana. The popularity of Akan radio is also due to

the ease of understanding the Akan language among people of different ethnic groups in Ghana.

The justification for this study is to offer an insight into the usefulness or otherwise of Akan

radio news presentation in fulfilling one of the tasks of journalism creating awareness of issues

of social or national importance for societal improvement. Subsequently, this study will help us

understand whether presenting news in Akan with proverbs, humour, and evasions better sends

the intended message appropriately.

1.5 Scope of the Study

The focus of the study is exaggerations, hedges, ―verbal indirection‖ and humourous statements

as used in Adom FM major news called Adom Kaseibo. There are three (3) of such major news

bulletin every day from Monday to Sunday this bulletin is done from 6am to 6:30am, 12:00pm

to 12:45pm and 6:00pm to 6:30pm (adomonline.com). Even though other programmes like Kasa

wo tiri ho, Apomudin, Ofie Kwanso, Amamre Nsem and Odo Ahoma are informative in nature

and use humour, evasions, hedges and circumlocution, these will not be a part of the scope of the

study. Essentially, the focus of this study is on all the activities, that is bulletin of the main news

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24

items,

interviews

with

relevant

authorities/personality

or

experts

and

related

activities,

undertaken on Adom Kaseibo and the style this is done with peculiar characteristics like hedges,

circumlocution, evasions and humour.

1.6 Organisation of the Study

This study is grouped into five (5) chapters as follows:

Chapter One deals with the Introduction of the study. This chapter is composed of an

elaboration of the Background Statement, Problem Statement, Research Objectives (broad and

specific objectives), Justification of the Study, and the Scope of the Study.

Chapter Two concerns the Literature Review. Here, the Theoretical Framework of the study,

concise but detailed account of related studies reviewed (Review of Related Studies), and

Operational Definitions are articulated.

Chapter Three focuses on the Methodology. The Sample, Sampling Technique and Population

will be explained. Additionally, Instruments of Data Collection, Design of the research and

Procedure, detailing statements of the steps taken in the collection of data is made accurately.

Chapter Four is about the Results. Because this is a qualitative study, Data Analysis and

Discussion will be undertaken with sufficient and convincing evidence.

The final chapter, Chapter Five will provide a Summary, Conclusion and Suggestion for

further study, and where there were any limitations it shall be mentioned.

A Reference list of all sources used in the study shall also be included (Bibliography) along

with an Appendices of Questionnaires and Question Guides used.

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25

2.0 Literature Review

CHAPTER TWO

Most of the books that have tutored students of communication, some of who end up in the

Akan-language oriented radio stations, are written in English, and authored by either a British or

American. The British or American societies have social interactive characteristics entirely

different from Ghana‘s. Use of proverbs, humour, evasions, hedges and various forms of pre-

sequences

are

not

part

of

hard

news

presentation

style

per

text-book

explanations

and

propositions. But the issue still remains that audience appeal, expectations and needs which has a

psychological or social basis must be taken into consideration in presentation of any media

output or product.

2.1 Theoretical Framework

This study is situated within three communication theories namely: The Uses and Gratification

Theory, Encoding/Decoding Model and Social Responsibility Theory.

The Uses and Gratification Theory studies the uses to which people put media and the

satisfactions they seek from that use. According to McQuail (2005:p.423), ―the idea that media

use depends on the perceived satisfaction, needs, wishes or motives of prospective audience

member is almost as old as media research itself‖.

He proceeds to state that formation of an audience toward a particular media product is ―on the

basis of similarities of individual need, interest and taste‖. And many of these individual

preferences in need, interest and taste originate from a social or psychological base. These needs

include information, relaxation, companionship, diversion or escape.

The Uses and Gratifications Approach or Theory came about as a result of the search for

explanations of the great appeal of certain staple media contents (McQuail, 2005). The central

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26

question that the Uses and Gratifications Approach asks is: why do people use media, and what

do they use them for? Hence the basic theme of Uses and Gratification Theory is the idea that

people use the media to get specific gratifications (Baran and Davis, 2003).

Media serves various needs of the society. For example the media is used for cohesion, cultural

continuity, social control and a large circulation of public information of all kinds. This means

that individuals also use media for related purposes such as personal guidance, relaxation,

adjustment, information and identity formation.

One of the first studies to be grounded in the Uses and Gratifications Theory was in 1947 and it

focused on the reasons for the popular appeal of different radio programmes, especially ―soap

operas‖ and quizzes, and also looked at daily newspaper reading (Lazarfeld and Stanton, 1944;

cited in McQuail, 2005:p.422). These studies for instance found that day-time soap operas,

although often dismissed as superficial were found significant by their women listeners. They

perceived it as a source of advice and support a role model of house wife and mother or an

occasion for emotional release through laughter or tears (Herzog, 1944; Warner and Harry, 1948;

cited in McQuail, 2005:p.424).

Contemporary conception of the Uses and Gratifications Theory is as follows: ‖(1) The social

and psychological origins of (2) needs which generate (3) expectations of (4) the mass media or

other sources which lead to (5) differential exposure (or engaging in other activities) resulting in

(6) need gratification and (7) other consequences‖ (McQuail, 2005:p.425).

The first specific objective of this research: to investigate the perception of Adom FM audience

towards Akan radio news presentation is grounded in the Uses and Gratification Theory.

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27

By identifying which expectations audience have in listening to Adom Kaseibo, this study can

analyse Adom Kaseibo’s ability or inability to fulfill audience needs and expectations which then

helps this study to assess its impact on the audience.

That is, premised on the assumption that audiences are drawn to programmes which gratify their

particular needs, this study, will find out what expectations audience have in listening to Adom

Kaseibo and whether these expectations are met. An idea about the expectations of audience and

whether they are being met will inform this study as to whether Adom Kaseibo is meeting its

task mainly information, but also correlation, surveillance, mobilization and continuity or

meeting some other, unintended and/or inappropriate task.

That is, this study will apply the Uses and Gratifications principle of need-expectation-

satisfaction trio for audience formation towards a programme to find out if proverbs, humour,

evasions, pre-sequences, circumlocution and exaggeration form part of the audience‘s (1) needs

which translate into (2) expectation of these needs on Adom FM‘s news bulletin and whether this

expectation is (3) satisfied or gratified. An idea of what these needs are, and whether they are

met or satisfied can help the study meet its broad objective.

Furthermore,

since

the

theory

postulates

that

―need

gratification‖

results

in

―other

consequences‖, this study, within the Uses and Gratifications Theory, will identify these

―consequences‖ which may manifest in the form of a particular opinions towards certain social,

economic and political issues.

The Encoding/Decoding Model of Communication proposed by Stuart Hall asserts that

encoding, which is the processes and tools of forming a message, and the process of deriving

meaning from the message, or decoding, are fundamental in the communicative process (Hall,

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28

1974; cited in McQuail, 2005:p.117). However if meaning is not derived from the message, the

audience will not be able to translate/consume the message which further prevents it from being

reproduced. Hence, the circuit remains incomplete. Hall notes that it is in this way that each

element in the communication process is linked (McQuail, 2005).

The message in its natural form must be encoded by the source and decoded by the receiver so

that a symbolic exchange is produced. The use of language predominates in each process despite

the fact that each process occurs at fixed moments (Baran and Davis, 2003). Because the

broadcaster makes certain assumptions about the audience in sending a message, Hall supports

the view that the audience is paradoxically both the source and receiver of the message.

However the message must be correctly decoded by the receiver in order for meaningful

exchange to take place. In other words, the message cannot be said to have been understood

unless it produces the intended reaction or consequences within the audience.

In Halls view, media messages are always open and ‗polysemic‘, that is they have multiple

meanings, and their interpretation or so-called ‗decoding‘ is influenced by the ―…context and the

culture of the receivers‖ (McQuail, 2000: p.56).

David Morley (1978), a colleague of Hall‘s, set out to test the encoding/decoding model by

examining the potential for ‗differential decoding‘ by groups from different socio-cultural

backgrounds (Baran and Davis, 2003. p270). He found that people‘s meaning of media messages

was influenced, among other things, by their social positions and particular discourse positions

(Baran and Davis, 2003). That is, if we group audience into ‗dominant‘, ‗negotiated‘ or

‗oppositional‘, where the ‗dominant‘ groups are those whose values are closest to the values of

the programme, or ‗oppositional‘ who actually reject the values of the programme and the

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29

‗negotiated‘ who stand in between these two, depends, not only the closeness of the values of the

programme to the values of the audience, or their rejection of the values of a programme, but

rather the closeness of the programme to their social positions, which can be several, example

farmer, banker, pastor and ethnicity, and what they like to talk aboutwhat matters to them. The

‗values‘ of a programme are reflected by the style of presentation, kinds of topics discussed

among other things.

Essentially, the principles of encoding/decoding model of communication are: the multiplicity of

meanings of media content; the existence of varied ‗interpretive‘ communities; and the primacy

of the receiver in determining meaning (McQuail, 2005).

Accra, Tema and surrounding areas where Adom Kaseibo reach is composed of multicultural

audience groups who, by virtue of their different social and psychological compositions may

interpret Adom Kaseibo differently when proverbs, humour, evasions, hedges and various forms

of pre-sequences, which define the ‗values‘ of Adom Kaseibo, are used.

Audience who understand the Akan language, along with the myriad of the Akan social

interaction characteristic have a better chance of decoding the messages encoded by the media

houses. But the possibility of blocking the intended message of Adom FM‘s news of creating

awareness of the issues in the news (also called ‗dominant reading‘) is a possibility when

proverbs, pre-sequences and innuendos are used in the news presentation because not all

Ghanaians, even Akan themselves, may understand the Akan language thoroughly.

Furthermore, Morley‘s study revealed that social positions affected the decoding process of

audiences and since the audience of Adom FM is multicultural and made up of people with

different occupations, ethnicity and different preferences of topics, the investigation into whether

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30

audience of Adom FM identify important issues when news is presented with proverbs, humour,

evasions, hedges and pre-sequences can be achieved by grounding it in this encoding/decoding

model of communication.

Social Responsibility theory of the press came as a result of lapses and weaknesses in the

Libertarian Theory.

Libertarian Theory of the Press takes the philosophical path that audiences are rational and can

identify between falsehoods and truths hence there should be no government interventions to

regulate or control the media the media should inform, entertain, sell and check on

government. However, the tenets of the Social Responsibility Theory are as follows: freedom

and responsibility must go hand-in-hand; whiles preserving the freedom of the press, the media

must be constantly reminded of their responsibility to provide accurate and balanced information

to members of the society so that an informed citizenry can make wise and informed decisions;

and whiles the media inform, educate, entertain and sell they must also help to put important

issues on the public agenda for discussion (Baran and Davis, 2003).

Under the Libertarian atmosphere in the United States, there were many instances of abuse of

press freedom. As a result a commission was set up to ―examine areas and circumstances under

which the press…is succeeding or failing‖ (McQuail, 2005:p.170). The report coined the notion

of social responsibility and named key journalistic standards that the press should seek to

maintain.

Under this theory of social responsibility, the press should provide a full, truthful, comprehensive

and intelligent account of the day‘s events in a context which gives them meaning (McQuail,

2005). The report further stated that the press should serve as a forum for the exchange of

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31

comment and criticism and be a common carrier of the public expression. Thirdly, the press

should be a representative of the constituents groups in society and also present and clarify the

goals and values of society (McQuail, 2005).

In general the commission supported the concept of a diverse, objective, informative and

independent press institution which would avoid causing offense or encouraging crime, disorder

or violence. Social responsibility should be reached by self-control, not government intervention.

However, government‘s intervention was not totally ruled out.

The ―theory of social responsibility‖ involved a view of media ownership as a form of public

trust or stewardship, rather than as an unlimited private franchise.

One of the members of the commission, according to McQuail (2005) wrote:‖ Inseparable from

the right of the press to be free has been the right of the people to have a free press. But the

public interest has advanced beyond that point. It is now the right of the people to have an

adequate press‖ (Hocking W., 1947; cited in MaQuail, 2005:p.171).

The main functions of communication in society according to Lasswell (1948) were surveillance

of environment, correlation of parts of the society in responding to its environment, and the

transmission of the cultural heritage‖ (McQuail, 2005).

But Wright (1960) used the functions above to describe the effect of media and added

entertainment as a fourth key media task. Even though this is in line with the ‗transmission

paradigm‘ of media effects, it has a particular twist to it: ―that of providing individual reward,

relaxation and reduction of tension, which makes it easier for people to cope with real life

problems and for societies to avoid breakdown‖ (McQuail, 2005).

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32

With the addition of a fifth item, mobilisation designed to reflect the widespread appreciation of

mass communication to political and commercial propaganda we can name the following set of

basic ideas about media functions in society:

Information

Providing information about events and conditions in society and the world.

Indicating relations of power

Facilitating innovation, adaption and propaganda

Correlation

Explaining, interpretation and commenting in the meaning of the events and information.

Providing support for established norms

Socialization

Coordinating separate activities

Consensus building

Setting orders of priority

Continuity

Expressing

the

developments

dominant

culture

and

recognising

sub-cultures

Forging and maintaining commonality of value

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33

and

new

cultural

Entertaining

Providing amusement, diversion and the means of relaxation

Reducing social tension

Mobilisation

Campaigning

for

societal

objectives

in

the

sphere

of

politics,

war,

economic

development, work and sometimes religion (McQuail, 2005).

Adom Kaseibo is a news programme and hence its main function, the provision of information,

providing information about events and conditions in society comprehensibly, is paramount.

My reason for relating this theory to the study is to examine Adom FM‘s social responsibility in

using proverbs, humour, evasions, hedges and various forms of pre-sequences in meeting the

information needs of audience through Adom Kaseibo. Is Akan radio news presentation being

socially responsible? This is the connection of this theory of social responsibility and the

discussion of the impact of Adom FM radio news presentation on audience. By understanding

the social responsibility status of Akan news on Adom using the above functions as benchmark,

an insight can be gained about its impact on audience.

2.2 Review of Related Studies

This study reviewed a total of five works. Three of the works reviewed dealt specifically with

Akan

language

broadcasting

on

radio,

one

dealt

generally

with

language

use

in

radio

broadcasting, and the last one was on reasons for poor performance of news reporting on a

certain radio station.

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34

The reviews of related work looked at the topic, objectives, sample and sampling techniques,

findings and how the works relates to this study. However, for some of the works, this study

critiqued certain procedural aspects and findings.

Owusu E. (2009) studied ―The Use of Local Language in Radio Broadcasting And Freedom of

Speech: A Case Study of Peace FM‖ and her General Objective was to examine the extent to

which local languagespecifically Akan languagehas enhanced freedom of speech in Ghana.

The Scope of her research was on all programs including the major news bulletins. She wanted

to know, among other things, how effective local language in radio broadcasting affects the level

of awareness of the listeners; whether listeners prefer programme broadcasts in local language

than in foreign language or both and; how freedom of expression has been affected by local

language broadcasting.

Using the simple random

technique, she sampled

60

respondents

in

Accra and

Suhum

comprising of both illiterates and literates. For the literates, she administered questionnaires, but

the illiterates, she interviewed them.

Of the 60 respondents, she found that 55% were females and 45% were males meaning,

according to her, that more females listened to radio as compared to males.

She also found that 90% of respondents said they prefer Akan for radio broadcasting, as against

10% for ‗no‘. And 55% of respondents said they listened to Peace FM‘s news bulletins—

meaning ―more people listen to Peace FM‘s news bulletin‖.

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35

Also 58% of respondents said they agree that Peace FM‘s news bulletins exaggerated facts, but

68% said it helped them understand national issues better because they delve deeper into the

issues.

However, it is my view that the sample size was very small and not representative of the

populationresidents of Accra and Suhum. Also her investigation of freedom of speech, an

important part of her research was not thorough. It was a ‗yes‘ (97%) or ‗no‘ (3%) answer from

respondents. Since majority of them had at least basic level education, did they know what it

was? What is the manifestation of this freedom of expression? What are they able to do now that

they could not do before local radio began? What constituted freedom of speech or expression

for respondents? All these salient issues were ignored.

The relation between my study and Owusu‘s study is that both studies are about Akan radio and

how effective it was in creating audience awareness about national issues. That is both studies

are interested in how Akan language radio is fulfilling its journalistic task. However, a

fundamental difference is that she treated news presentation partially, but this study treats it

holistically.

Dornoo J. (2008) studied ―Use of Twi on Peace FM and its Impact in terms of Patronage: A Case

Study of Listeners at Lapaz New Market Community‖ and found that 93% of her randomly

sampled 200 respondents spoke Twi.

She also found that 56% of respondents were illiterates, and of all the reasons given for why

audience chose Akan radio, the overriding one was the use of Akan language in the broadcast

which represented 33% as against 25% for programme content and 23% for presenter. 37

respondents representing 18.5% did not answer.

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36

It was a quantitative study that shed light on the appeal of Akan radio to listeners and the kinds

of people who listen to it.

Her broad objective was to access Peace FM‘s impact on the people of Lapaz New Market

Community with its dominant use of Twi for broadcasting. But specifically she wanted to

investigate the reasons for audience‘s decision to listen to Peace FM; examine whether among

the other local languages like Ewe, Ga, Hausa and Nzema, Akan language predominantly

constituted people‘s choice of language for broadcasting and; assess the effectiveness of Peace

FM‘s broadcast in Akan language.

This study is undertaking a similar task only with a different Akan radio as the focus. But

additionally, this study will analyse the conformity of news room practice of news gathering,

processing

and

presentation.

presentation

with

NMC

guideline

for

news

gathering,

processing

and

Nukpeza R. (2007) looked at ―Poor Performance of News Reporting on our Radio Stations: A

Case Study of Rite FM‖. One of his objectives was to understand what has been the impact of

news on Rite FM audience. But he also wanted to understand why FM stations produce poor

news.

At first glance, the title looked very interesting but this study can hardly be described as a

scientific study.

Firstly, the study used ―both probability and non-probability sampling‖ without explaining which

samples constituted the probability and non-probability sampling.

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37

Secondly, the study, per the topic, was case studying a certain Rite FM. So what comes to mind

immediately is either Rite FM was presenting poor news so it was investigating it to identify the

problem, or Rite FM was doing good news reporting so it was going to use it as a benchmark to

assess other news reports. But it was none. Rather he used workers of Rite FM and another

station in Ada as respondents. They numbered only 38, according him, and nothing was said

about which work they did at the station. This is important because they could include

receptionists and cleaners, who may not know anything about what makes good news reports, as

well as journalists and editors who could offer laudable insights. An idea of which categories of

workers interviewed was very important.

Furthermore, his only well-articulated finding: journalism institutions should train students

properly, and also they should include practicals in their teaching was not presented in

percentage of respondents who said or suggested thisit was stated like a summary of findings

or conclusion, using age categories of respondents in place of what should have been percentage

distributions or number of respondents. For instance he said respondents between the ages of 18

and 26 said journalism institutions should train students better.

The study, if it had been done properly, would have provided insights into reasons for poor news

reporting, what constituted poor news reports and how it affected audience since this study has

mentioned elsewhere that the controversies surrounding Akan Radio news presentation is that it

was unprofessional in its use of certain devices like proverbs, humour and hedges.

Vandyk A.J.(2001), in her study titled ―An Assessment of the Performance of Adom FM: A Case

Study of Residents of Tema Community 2‖ stated that 62.1% of respondents were of the view

that the presentation style of broadcasting on Adom FM is exceptionally good and 65.5% of

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38

respondents preferred the use of the Akan language in programme presentation. This was

because ―most people understand the Akan language more than any other language‖. The

purpose of the study was to assess the general performance of Adom FM. She used the

quantitative method of data collection, where she administered questionnaires to the sample

population.

Another study conducted by Arthur C. (2000) on ―Language Use in FM Radio Broadcasting‖

revealed that although students understand the Akan language, most of them listen to radio

stations that broadcast in the English language. The prominent reason for this was that English-

language-oriented radio stations were straightforward, concise and unambiguous in their news

presentation, and in the presentation of other programmes. The purpose of his study was to

assess students‘ perception of, and attitude towards their own local language used in radio

broadcasting. He used the multi-stage cluster sampling.

The immediate two reviews have demonstrated that on the one hand, Akan radio news

presentation appealed to a section of the audience, and on another hand, it was unpopular to

another section of the audience. The implication of this observation can be explained by

considering the sample population of the two studies: students (who understand the English

language and were exposed to news on either foreign or

local

English language news

presentation) and audience who ―understand Akan language more than any other language‖, and

hence were not interested in English-language oriented radio .The students judged the Akan-

language news on Adom FM against what they have been exposed to over the years, and

perceived less of it. The second group was only interested in the fact that they too can get to

know what is going on around them first hand through the Akan Radio News presentation.

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39

Many other studies on local radio (for example Egyima A.(2008), Osew A.S (2001) and Owusu

E. (2009)) have indicated that, generally, audience prefer local language use by radio stations.

The reason for this, apart from the obvious that most people easily understand Akan, it is also a

way to ―portray our Ghanaian culture‖ (Owusu, 2009).

The above reviews of related research indicate that study or research emphasis has been on the

perception, appeal and use of local language in broadcasting. But none has focused on the impact

which local radio, which in Ghana now has been predominantly Akan, has had on audience. My

idea is that news presentation is particularly influential in attitude formation about important

social and national issues for any audience and hence it is a good starting point.

Even though there have been significant changes and improvements in the media terrain, with

respect to technology, and programme contents, the basics of news which is: Report events as

they happened or are happening without use of proverbs, humour and pre-sequences, have not

changed (Shrivastava, 2003). But what is observed in Ghana, with respect to Akan Radio news

broadcast is worth studying to assess what its impact has been.

2.3 Operational Definition of Terms

Akan Radio News Presentation (Adom FM News Presentation): Radio news presented in

Akan-language which is full of exaggerations, hedges, ―verbal indirection‖ and humourous

statements. This type of radio news presentation mirrors Akan social interactive characteristics,

and it is highly informal.

Journalism Standard: With respect to radio news, factual, concise, straight-forward and formal

reportage of recent events or happenings. Also, such reportage of recent events or happenings is

not done with proverbs, innuendos, pre-sequences or humour.

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40

Informal: Down-to-earth and highly interactive style of news presentation.

Literates: Respondents with educational levels SHS and above.

Semi-Literates: Respondents with educational levels not exceeding SHS

Illiterates: Respondents with educational levels only up to JHS

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41

3.0 Methodology

CHAPTER THREE

According to Wiersma (1995:p.409) ―the methods or procedures section is really the heart of the

research…‖ This section of my study will indicate methodological steps that were taken to meet

the objectives of this research.

Areas that will be covered here include the research design, population, sample size, sampling

method and data collection.

3.1 Research Design

The purpose and objectives of any research determines how the research will be designed. The

function of a research design is to ensure that the evidence obtained enables us to answer the

initial questions and/or to meet the research objectives as unambiguously as possible (Kerlinger,

1979). This section deals with the type of data or evidence that will be collected, composition of

the sample, methods of data collection, and tools of data collection. It will also state which side

this research is essentially skewed to under the description, explanatory and exploratory

categories of research.

This study is essentially exploratoryit examines the effectiveness of proverbs, humour, hedges,

pre-sequences and so forth in Akan radio. Also the forth specific objective of this research will

explain how news gathering, preparation and presentation are undertaken on an Akan radio. This

will provide an insight into why Akan radio news has the characteristic features associated with

it. Furthermore this study will also explore how Akan radio news is perceived among audience of

different social positions.

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42

Exploratory research provides insights into and comprehension of an issue or situation. It

normally does not draw definitive conclusions and when it does, it does so with extreme caution

(Babbie, 1989). Thus this study will try to gain insight into the whole phenomenon of Akan news

presentation through Adom FM and understand how effective or otherwise it has been.

According to Earl Babbie (2001) exploratory research is used when the problem is in a

preliminary stage. Exploratory research is used when the topic or issue is new and when data is

difficult to collect. In the end, exploratory research will help define problems and suggest

hypotheses (Kotler et al, 2006, p. 122).

Furthermore, the flexibility of exploratory research enables it to answer research questions of all

types—that is ‗what‘, ‗why‘ and ‗how‘ questions. This is why exploratory research is often used

to generate formal hypothesis (Babbie, 1989).

3.2 Population

This study deals with two main populations: residents of Kotobabi (1 st Yarboi Link) and

members of Adom FM news team (reporters, newscasters and editors). Sampling was by

purposive sampling of both populations. Also interviews and self-administered questionnaires

were the data collection instrumentsinterviews for residents of Kotobabi and questionnaires

for members of the news team of Adom FM.

The study targeted audience of Adom FM on 1 st Yarboi Linka street in Kotobabi, in Accra.

According to the Electoral Commission of Ghana‘s Voter‘s Register, there are a total of 1,927

registered voters at the St. Michael‘s College Polling Station which is the only polling station on

1 st Yarboi Link (Electoral Commission Voter‘s Register, 2008). Essentially this means that most

residents on the 1 st Yarboi Link form part of the voter‘s register of the St. Michael‘s College

Polling Station.

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43

Even though a breakdown in the number of females and males, educational levels, income levels

and others could not be obtained from Electoral Commission‘s Voter‘s Register, the sampling

technique, purposive sampling, will make up for any major methodological inconsistency of the

study. That is by intentionally selecting respondents, this researcher made sure that the

respondents represented the relevant population as much as possible. This researcher has lived on

1 st Yarboi Link for over 15 years thus has an idea about the people, so how to select literates

and/or illiterates comes relatively easy.

Also part of the population is the reporters, newscasters and editors of Adom FM. According to

secondary data obtained from Adom FM, as at May 20, 2010, there was about 19 staff in the

Adom FM news department (in an interview with an Adom FM news editor). They include 6

regular newscasters (two for each of morning, afternoon and evening news bulletins), 3 editors

(one editor and two sub-editors) and 10 reporters.

3.3 Sample Size

50 respondents were purposively sampled from the houses on 1 st Yarboi Link for this study.

They comprised of literates, semi-literates and illiterates (operational definition of literates, semi-

literates and illiterates is provided above).

10 respondents comprising 3 newscasters, 5 reporters and 2 news editor were sampled to answer

questions relating to section ―D‖ of the questionnaire concerning news room practice of news

gathering, preparation and presentation.

sampled.

Hence in a nutshell, a total of 60 respondents were

Also, this study sampled residents of 1 st Yarboi Link who had listened to Adom FM at least once

a week for the past year.

44
44

3.4

Sampling technique

According to Huston & Merrigan (2004), nonrandom selection methods involves selecting

people and respondents in ways that do not ensure that the resulting data simply represents some

theoretic population.

Interpretive or exploratory research is likely to prefer nonrandom selection methods because

interpretive research claims are more likely to be based on representing communication

phenomena with a specific context (Merrigan & Huston, 2001). Hence this research adopted the

purposive sampling technique.

Purposive samples intentionally focus on the target group with the exclusion of other groups

(Smith, 1988:p.85; cited in Merrigan & Huston, 2001). Purposive sampling methods lack

representativeness, just as do other nonrandom selection methods. However, randominsation

may not be a practical desirable way to collect audience about some research question.

This situation applies to this research as well. The research concerns audience of Adom FM who,

have different social positions or occupation and may come from different ethnicities.

3.5 Data Collection

Collection of primary data was by interviews of the purposively sampled residents of 1 st Yarboi

Link in Kotobabi and selected staff of Adom FM. This was to ensure uniformity of the data

collection process since the disparities in the educational level of respondents in this category

could result in inconsistency in comprehension of question and even in some cases the ability to

read the questions if a questionnaire was administered. The interview questions were informed

by an interview guide to ensure consistency of questions asked of respondents.

45
45

However for members of the news team of Adom FM, a questionnaire was administered to them.

Other data was also obtained from documents such as the NMC‘s guidelines for local language

broadcasting.

Secondary data came from books, and institutions like the Electoral Commission (EC) and

Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC). This research used both qualitative and quantitative

research methods.

3.6 Data Collection Instruments

This study used semi-structured interviews. According to Frankfort-Nachmias & Nachmias,

1996; cited in Huston and Merrigan, 2004), semi-structured interviews or ―non-schedule-

structured‖ interviews has the following characteristics:

1. It asks respondents to reflect on an experience or concept that they all have in common

2. It refers to situations or constructs that have been analysed and then defined prior to the

interview

3. It requires the interviewer to use an interview guide that specifies topics of interest to the

study

4. It focuses on the participants understanding or meaning of a particular concept or

experience.

These features of the semi-structured interview informed the interview guide used for this study.

Essentially the interview questions were specific questions that sought to answer the research

questions of this study.

The study collected data by interviewing purposively sampled literates, semi-literates and

illiterates of residents of 1 st Yarboi Link in Kotobabi. An interview guide made use of semi-

46
46

structured questions, consisting of 16 questions divided into five sections, ‗A‘, ‗B‘, ‘C‘, ‗D‘ and

‗E‘.

Section A consisted of questions seeking information about the demography of respondents.

Section B also consisted of relevant questions concerning the perception of respondents towards

Akan radio news presentation on Adom FM, while questions in section C investigated

respondents

understanding

of

humour,

proverbs

and

so

on

used

on

Adom

FM

news

presentation. Section D consists of questions concerned with respondent‘s understanding of the

proverbs, humour and others used in Adom FM news bulletins

Staffs of the Adom FM news team were made to answer questions only in section E about the

conformity of news room practice of news gathering, preparation and presentation with NMC

guidelines for local language news presentation.

47
47

4.0

Results

CHAPTER FOUR

This research sought to study effectiveness of Akan radio news presentation with its

characteristic use of proverbs, exaggeration, circumlocution, pre-sequences as done on Adom

Kaseibo. 50 respondents was the number of respondents targeted, but 48 respondents were

obtained.

Specifically this study aimed at the following:

1. Investigate the perception of Adom FM audience towards style of Akan radio

news presentation on Adom in few words.

2. Investigate how audience perception of Akan radio news presentation has

affected their understanding of issues contained in the news.

3. To find out whether use of proverbs, humour, hedges, evasions and pre-

sequences and style of news presentation is understood by the audience as

intended.

4. To find out whether news room practices of news gathering, preparation and

presentation follow NMC ‗Guidelines for Local Language Broadcasting‘.

With diagrams, tables, figures and charts, this part presents the findings of the study. Also

description and interpretation is done here to present results as convincing as possible.

Furthermore, quotes from respondents, relevant examples and data from other credible and

authoritative sources are provided to firm up the evidence and make this study conform to the

tenets of academic study.

Each of the specific objectives will now be discussed and analysed as objectively and thoroughly

as possible.

48
48

i.

Data Analysis and Discussion

SECTION A

PERSONAL DATA OF RESPONDENTS

a. Educational Level of Respondents

Of the 48 respondents interviewed, 12 (representing 25 percent) were literates, 21 were semi-

literates (43.75 percent) and 15 were illiterates (representing 31.25 percent).

Table 4.1.1: Representation of respondents according to their education level

Educational Level

Frequency

Percentage(%)

Semi-literates

21

43.75

Literates

12

25

Illiterates

15

31.25

Total

48

100

Fig 4.1.1: Representation of respondents according to their education level

Education Level of respondents

Literates Illiterates 25% 31% Semi-literates 44%
Literates
Illiterates
25%
31%
Semi-literates
44%
49
49

Age range of Respondents

38 respondents were between 18-25, 7 fell between 26-33 range and 3 was between the 34-41

age range. None of the respondents was more than 41 years of age.

Table 4.1.2: Age range of respondents

Age Range

Frequency

Percentage (%)

18-25

38

71.17

26-33

7

14.6

34-41

3

6.25

Total

48

100

Fig 4.1.2: Age range of respondents

Age Range of respondents

Age Range of respondents 18-25 26-33 34-41 6% 15% 79%

18-25

Age Range of respondents 18-25 26-33 34-41 6% 15% 79%

26-33

34-41Age Range of respondents 18-25 26-33 6% 15% 79%

6% 15% 79%
6%
15%
79%
50
50

b. Occupation of Respondents

Broadly, I grouped my respondents into three categories, ―Students‖, ―Office workers‖ and

―Labourers‖.

―Students‖ comprise those respondents attending school (either at the basic, high school or

tertiary level). In some instances, some respondents answered as being ―student-workers‖

implying they were attending school as well as earning income from some sort of preoccupation,

but they were asked to choose which one they would want to be identified with, and they

answered as students only.

―Office workers‖ comprise of people working in white-collar jobs. They include stock brokers,

public relations officials among others.

―Labourers‖ include market women, plumbers, electricians, and mechanics. They are those

people whose work is manual and informal.

Of the 48 respondents, 30 were Students (62.5%), 8 were Office workers (16.67%) and 10 were

Labourers (20.83%).

Table 4.1.3: Occupation of Respondents

Occupation

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Students

30

62.5

Office workers

8

16.67

Labourers

10

20.83

Total

48

100

51
51

Fig 4.1.3: Occupation distribution of respondents

Occupation of respondents

Occupation of respondents Occupation of respondents 62.50% 20.83% 16.67% Labourers Office Workers Students

Occupation of respondents

62.50% 20.83% 16.67%
62.50%
20.83%
16.67%

Labourers

Office Workers

Students

Table 4.1.4: Occupation distribution versus education level

 

Semi-literates

Literates

Illiterates

Total

Students

12

11

7

30

Office workers

6

1

1

8

Labourers

3

0

7

10

Total

21

12

15

48

52
52

Figure 4.1.4: Occupation distribution versus education level

12 10 8 6 Students 4 Office workers 2 Labourers 0
12
10
8
6
Students
4
Office workers
2
Labourers
0

SECTION B

RESPONDENTS’

PERCEPTION

OF

THE

STYLE

PRESENTATION ON ADOM IN FEW WORDS.

OF

AKAN

RADIO

NEWS

Relevant questions asked respondents in the interview was whether the words “informative”,

“entertaining”, “informative and entertaining”, and “uninformative but entertaining” fits

their description of Adom Kaseibo.

Of the 48 respondents interviewed, 33 respondents representing (82.5%) perceived of Akan radio

news presentation as ―Informative and Entertaining‖, 8 respondents, representing (16.67%)

thought of it as ―uninformative but entertaining‖ 4 perceived of it as ―entertaining‖ only and 3

―informative only‖ (representing 8.33 and 6.25 % respectively).

53
53

Table 4.1.5: Respondent‘s perception of Akan radio news presentation

 

Perception

Frequency

   

Percentage (%)

 

Informative

and

33

 

82.5

entertaining

 
 

Uninformative

but

8

 

16.67

entertaining

 
 

Informative

3

 

6.25

 

Entertaining

4

 

8.33

 

Total

48

 

100

Fig

4.1.5:Respondent’s

perception

of

Akan

radio

news

presentation

90 80 70 60 50 40 30 20 10 0 Informative Uninformative Entertaining Informative and
90
80
70
60
50
40
30
20
10
0
Informative
Uninformative
Entertaining
Informative
and
but
only
only
Entertaining
Entertaining

Series1

54
54

Of the 33 (82.5 %) who perceived of the Akan news as ―informative and entertaining‖, 15 were

semi-literates, 9 respondents were literates and another 9 were illiterates.

Of the 8 (16.67%) respondents who thought of it as ―uninformative but entertaining‖ 3 were

literates and 5 were semi-literates, no illiterate perceived as ―uninformative but entertaining‖.

3 (6.25%) illiterate respondents said the news was ―entertaining‖ only.

One semi-literate respondent and 3 illiterate respondents, that is 4 respondents (representing

8.33%) perceived of it as ―informative‖ only.

When respondents were asked to give their own description of Akan news presentation, some of

the descriptions were ―comic relief‖, ―joke‖, ―very informative‖, ―very entertaining‖ among

others.

Table 4.1.6: Education level of respondents and their perception of Akan news presentation.

Perception

Education level

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Informative and

Semi-literates

15

Entertaining

Literates

9

33

Illiterates

9

Uninformative but Entertaining

Semi-literates

3

Literates

5

16.17

 

Illiterates

0

Informative

Semi-literates

1

Literates

0

8.33

Illiterates

3

Entertaining

Semi-literates

0

Literates

0

6.25

Illiterates

3

Total

 

48

100

Fig 4.1.6: Education level of respondents and their perception of Akan news presentation.

16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 Series1 0 Informative and Uniformative but Informative
16
14
12
10
8
6
4
2
Series1
0
Informative and
Uniformative but
Informative Only
Entertaining Only
Entertaining
Entertaining
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates

Another significant question posed through the interview was aimed at knowing if Akan radio

news

presented

with

humour,

exaggeration

understand the content of the news.

and

indirect

expressions

helps

respondents

27 respondents said “yes” they understood the content of the news when proverbs, humour,

exaggeration and indirect expressions were used in the news. However, some were quick to

mention that not all the proverbs were familiar to them.

About 10 of the 27 respondents who answered yes said sometimes the humour, proverbs and

indirect expression distracted them from understanding the rest of the news when these devices

were used for one particular story. That is the laughter evoked by some of these humour

prevented them from listening to the rest of the stories. Of this same group of people who

answered yes, some spoke passionately about the use of Akan numbers. They complained

bitterly about their inability to understand figures when they were mentioned in Akan only.

56
56

12 respondents answered that even though they understood the content of the news, this was

“not always” the case. They used words like ―not really‖, ―somehow‖, ―I am not sure‖ and ―yes,

but not every story‖.

9 respondents answered “no”—they did not understand the content at all when humour,

exaggeration, presequence and circumlocution were used in a news story.

However, this researcher is of the view that, there was a bit of exaggeration in this answer

because these same respondents had answered elsewhere that they understood Akan language

and that they have listened to Adom Kaseibo at least once a week for the past 6 months.

Table 4.1.7: Respondents response to whether they understand the content of Akan news

presentation

Response

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Yes

27

56.25

No

9

18.75

Not always

12

25

Total

48

100

57
57

Fig 4.1.7: Respondents response to whether they understand the content of Akan news

presentation

Respondents' Understanding of the content of news

Respondents' Understanding of the content of news YES NO NOT ALWAYS 19% 56% 25%

YES

Respondents' Understanding of the content of news YES NO NOT ALWAYS 19% 56% 25%

NO

Respondents' Understanding of the content of news YES NO NOT ALWAYS 19% 56% 25%

NOT ALWAYS

19% 56% 25%
19%
56%
25%

All the respondents interviewed could speak the Akan language and had listened to Adom

Kaseibo at least once a week in the last 6 months.

SETCTION C

HOW RESPONDENTS UNDERSTAND THE NEWS ON ADOM FM

The words ―exaggerated‖, ―factual‖, ―made less important‖, ―humourous‖, ―humourous but

factual‖ were presented to respondents to choose which one conformed to their description of

how news was presented on Adom FM.

36 respondents (75%) said ―exaggerated‖ conformed to their description of how news was

presented on Adom FM. 6 respondents believed that issues presented on Adom Kaseibo were

―made less important‖, this represented (12.5%) of the respondents. 2 respondents (or 4.17%)

thought the news and issues presented were just ―humourous‖. And 4 respondents, representing

8.3% said the ―humourous but factual‖ conformed to their description of how news was

presented on Adom FM.

58
58

Table 4.1.8: Respondents‘ description of Akan radio news presentation

Response

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Exaggerated

36

75

Factual

0

0

Made less important

6

12.5

Humourous

2

4.17

Humourous but factual

4

8.3

Total

48

100

No respondent said it was only ―factual‖.

Fig 4.1.8: Respondents’ description of Akan radio news presentation

Humourous but

factual

8%

Chart Title

Humourous but factual 8% Chart Title Humourous 4% Made less important 13% Factual 0% Exaggerated 75%

Humourous

4% Made less important 13% Factual 0% Exaggerated 75%
4%
Made less
important
13%
Factual
0%
Exaggerated
75%

However, some respondents who described the news as exaggerated thought that it was

―exaggerated but still factual‖ since some of the devices used in the exaggeration were familiar

to them and hence they knew it when a particular news story was being made to look grave or

serious than it really was. Others in this category also used the word ―sensationalized‖. They

were of the view that ―sensationalism‖ was a better description than ―exaggerated‖.

59
59

Also, of the 36 who said the news was ―exaggerated‖, 12 were literates, this represented 33.3%

of those of thought it was exaggerated. 15 were semi-literates (41.67%) and 9 were illiterates

(25%).

Table

4.1.9:

Education

level

of

respondents

who

thought

Akan

news

presentation

was

―Exaggerated‖

 

Semi-literates

Literates

Illiterates

Total

Exaggerated

15

12

9

36

Percentage (%)

41.67

33.3

25

100

Fig 4.1.9: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was

“Exaggerated”

Illiterates 25% Semi-Literates 42% Literates 33%
Illiterates
25%
Semi-Literates
42%
Literates
33%

Of the 6 respondents who described the issues presented in the news as ―made less important‖, 4

were semi-literates, 2 were illiterates representing 60% and 40% respectively. That is, of the

60
60

group of people who thought the issues were made less important, most of them were semi-

literates. The illiterates were in the minority. No literate chose this description.

Table 4.1.10: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was ―made

less important‖

 

Semi-literates

Literates

Illiterates

Total

Made

less

4

2

0

6

important

Percentage(%)

60

40

0

100

Fig 4.1.10: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was “made

less important”

Illiterates 0% Literates 33% Semi-literates 67%
Illiterates
0%
Literates
33%
Semi-literates
67%

Of the 2 respondents who described the news as humourous, there was one respondent each of

the semi-literate and illiterate level.

61
61

Table 4.1.11: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was

―Humourous‖

 

Semi-literates

Literates

Illiterates

Total

Humourous

1

0

1

2

Percentage(%)

50

0

50

100

Fig 4.1.11: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was

“Humourous”

Illiterate Semi-literates 50% 50%
Illiterate
Semi-literates
50%
50%

Literates

0%

Of the 4 respondents who said the news was ―humourous but factual‖, one was a semi-literate

and 3 were illiterates, representing 25% and 75% respectively. Meaning most of the illiterates

thought of the news as humourous but factual.

62
62

Table 4.1.12: Education level of respondents who

―Humourous but factual‖

thought Akan news presentation was

 

Semi-literates

Literates

Illiterates

Total

Humourous but factual

1

0

3

4

Pecentage (%)

25

0

75

100

Fig 4.1.12: Education level of respondents who thought Akan news presentation was

“Humourous but factual”

Semi-literates 25% 0% Illiterates 75%
Semi-literates
25%
0%
Illiterates
75%

Literates

Also when respondents in this ―humourous but factual‖ category were asked to give their

description other than the one provided them, one respondent, the semi-literate, said it was

―annoying and confusing‖ and two illiterates provided description that may translate into

―engaging‖ or ―intriguing‖.

63
63

Respondents were asked to cast their minds back to a typical news story they heard on Adom

Kaseibo and describe in few sentences how they thought the story was presented. The answers

they gave were put into three broad categoriesSensationalised, Humourous and Factual.

All 12 literates used descriptions that suggest sensationalisation of the story. They used words

such ―panic inducing‖, ―blown out of proportion‖, ―exaggerated‖ and ―sensationalized‖. That is

all respondents said the news they can remember were all sensationalized.

Table 4.1.13: Literate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibo

 

Sensationalised

Humourous

Factual

Total

Literates

12

0

0

12

Percentage (%)

100

0

0

100

Fig 4.1.13: Literate respondents’ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibo

Sensationalised Humourous Factual
Sensationalised Humourous Factual

Sensationalised

Sensationalised Humourous Factual

Humourous

Sensationalised Humourous Factual

Factual

Sensationalised Humourous Factual
64
64

Of the 21 semi-literates who answered to this question3 said they could not remember any

story vividly enough to describe how it was presented. 9 semi-literate respondents described the

story they remember as humourous. They used words like ―embellished with wise sayings‖,

―added up to make it funny‖ and ―full of drama‖. 6 described it as sensationalized, and 3

described the story they could remember as factual.

Table 4.1.14: Semi-literate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of

a story on Adom Kaseibo

 

Sensationalised

Humourous

Factual

Can’t remember

Total

Semi-literates

6

9

3

3

21

Percentage

28.57

42.86

14.29

14.29

100

Fig 4.1.14: Semi-literate respondents’ own description of how they remember the reportage

of a story on Adom Kaseibo

Can't

remember

14%

Sensationalised Factual 29% 14% Humourous 43%
Sensationalised
Factual
29%
14%
Humourous
43%
65
65

Of the 15 illiterate respondents, 12 respondents said it was factual. But they added other positive

words such ―interesting‖, ―easily understood‖, by virtue of the fact that the presenters delved

deeper into the issues during the details part of the news (after the headlines have been read).

Only 3 illiterate respondents said that the stories they could remember were all sensationalised.

Table 4.1.15: Illiterate respondents‘ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibo

 

Sensationalised

Humourous

Factual

Total

Illiterates

3

0

12

15

Percentage

20

0

80

100

Fig 4.1.15: Illiterate respondents’ own description of how they remember the reportage of a

story on Adom Kaseibo

Sensationalised 20% 0% Factual 80%
Sensationalised
20%
0%
Factual
80%

Humourous

66
66

All the respondents agreed that their descriptions of the stories they could remember as

Sensationalised, Factual or Humourous was informed by the use of the proverbs, humour, and

other devices as used on Adom Kaseibo.

SECTION D

RESPONDENTS’ UNDERSTANDING OF THE PROVERBS, HUMOUR AND OTHER

DEVICES USED IN ADOM FM NEWS BULLETINS.

Respondents were asked questions concerning their ability to understand the content of the news

on Adom FM; their understanding of the particular proverbs, humour and innuendos as used on

Adom Kaseibo; as well as their views on the appeal or otherwise of the use of proverbs, humour,

innuendos and dramatizations in news presentation. They were finally asked to give their views

on what should change or remain in Adom FM news presentation.

The answer to the question ―do you understand the content of the news on Adom FM‖ were

grouped broadly into ―yes‖ and ―no‖ and ―somehow‖.

Generally, 35 respondents answered ―yes‖, representing (72.92%) and only 2 respondents

answered ―no‖ representing (4.17%). 11 respondents said they understood the news ―somehow‖

representing 22.92% of the respondents.

67
67

Table 4.1.16:Respondents‘ understanding of the content Akan news presentation.

Response

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Yes

35

72.92

No

2

4.17

Somehow

11

22.29

Total

48

100

Fig 4.1.16: Respondents’ understanding of the content Akan news presentation.

Respondents' understanding of Content of Akan news

Somehow

23% No 4% Yes 73%
23%
No
4%
Yes
73%

Of the 35 respondents who answered ―yes‖, there are 9 literates, 16 semi-literates and 10

illiterates.

Also, of the 2 respondents‘ who answered ―no‖, there was one literate and one semi-literate.

68
68

Those who said they understood it ―somehow‖ were 11. They gave reasons for this answer

because of the ―not-too-necessary‖ use of dramatization and innuendos. Of this 11 respondents,

there were 5 literates, 4 semi-literates, and 2 illiterates.

Those who said ―yes‖ said the elaborate explanation given by the newsreader was the reason for

their answer.

The two respondents who answered ―no‖ said they found the ―quick-pace‖ of the newsreader

when presenting the news difficult to appreciate.

Table 4.1.17: Educational level of respondents and how they understood the content of news.

Response

Education Level

Frequency

Yes

Semi-literates

16

Literates

9

Illiterates

10

No

Semi-literates

1

Literates

1

Illiterates

0

Somehow

Semi-literates

4

Literates

5

Illiterates

2

69
69

Fig 4.1.17: Educational level of respondents and how they understand the content of news.

16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 Series1 Yes No Somehow Semi-literates Literates
16
14
12
10
8
6
4
2
0
Series1
Yes
No
Somehow
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates
Semi-literates
Literates
Illiterates

Respondents were asked whether they understood the humour, proverbs and innuendos used in

news presentation.

30 respondents answered ―not always‖, 10 said ―yes‖ and 8 answered ―no‖.

Table 4.1.18: Respondents‘ understanding of the humour, proverbs, innuendos used in Akan

news presentation

Response

Frequency

Percentage (%)

Yes

10

20.83

No

8

16.67

Not Always

30

62.50

Total

48

100

70
70

Fig 4.1.18: Respondents’ understanding of the humour, proverbs, innuendos used in Akan

news presentation