MEDIA PROJECTIONS IN ELECTIONS
When the media was referred to as “The fourth estate of the realm”, recent times must have been foreseen. The role of the media cannot be underestimated in any elections by any country. But the media has proven that in any elections their role goes beyond just reporting on people queuing to vote or issues arising at polling stations. In recent past the media has gone to the extent of calling or projecting winners in both the Presidential and Parliamentary elections to the joy of projected winners and annoyance of losers.
In the 2012 elections, President John Dramani Mahama, was projected by the media to lead the Presidential results. True to this prediction he won.
Starrfmonline reported after collating results coming in that the flagbearer of the New Patriotic party was winning by a 54.13% and the sitting President was behind with 44.8%.
According to The Multimedia Group of which Joy News channel, Adom TV, Joy FM and Adom FM are part, the NPP Presidential aspirant had pulled 4,213,710 representing 52.17 percent and “The President who campaigned vigorously on infrastructural projects has pulled 3,710,702 representing 45.95%”
To those whom this projection went against, nothing about this was true as it was contrary to the figures they had. But if the media in time past had called it and it came true, what was new this time around?
At the declaration of the Presidential results the Electoral Commission said the NPP’s Presidential aspirant won by 53.85% while the incumbent President John Dramani Mahama pulled 44.40%. These percentages do not put any huge difference between what the media projected and what the Electoral Commission announced. The media was vindicated at the end of the day. Once again they called it right.
At a press conference by the Electoral Commission turnout for this year’s election was as low as 49% but Joy news channel disputed that with a calculation that put turnout at 68.42 %. The Electoral Commission later came out with the same figure. Another confirmation of the fact that the media is indeed “The fourth estate of the realm”.
The media gave a by-minute reports and accounts of everything going on before, during and after the elections. The media did indeed prove their worth in the nation’s history making process.