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Challenges for GRTS

May 29, 2009, 5:42 AM

President Jammeh's allocation of $9.5 million to the Gambia Radio and Television Services (GRTS) has brought immense happiness and praise from the public. Around town one could hear the most positive and jubilant comments about the new project. It is everyone's happiness that the image and activities of The Gambia could be projected around the world especially to Gambians in the Diaspora. Sport fans especially are also expecting the GRTS to fully capture major sporting events such as the World Cup, African Cup of Nations, European Championship, the Olympics, World Boxing Championships and so on.

The allocation though enthralling, does also raise some challenges with it. In the words of President Jammeh this multi-million dollar satellite project is designed among other things to enhance the quality of broadcasting at GRTS.

He called for well-trained staff for carrying out the operations of the new system.

In meeting some of the challenges, it is firstly important for TV personalities, especially presenters, to conform to a certain dress code. These must appear very presentable at all times inorder to project the type of image Gambians would like to see: an image of a great people and a great country, though even small in size, moving forward with peace, unity, and a new dynamism.

Of course the way we present ourselves to the world is the way the world will regard us. And as you know, first impressions go a long way. Therefore we must get it right from the beginning. The Government or the GRTS as an institution, should apply a high standard dress code, especially for presenters, and provide adequate outfit allowance to the relevant staff to help facilitate the code.

TV personalities, especially presenters, should receive appropriate training for the proficient and effective execution of their tasks. The thrust of this training is for presenters to be clearly understood by viewers around the world. It is believed that impeccable Pronunciation, Stress, and Intonation, could break all barriers to understanding. It is also hoped that there would be individual styles and not everyone adopting the same sing-song, humdrum style of speech. Monotony should be avoided and variety encouraged. In achieving the best possible standards, it is advisable, surely, to use Guest Presenters and Programmers with recognised abilities and potentialities. Again let us believe in bringing all hands on deck in all our major undertakings and endeavours. Let us make no discrimination whatsoever in these matters if we truly want The Gambia to go forward. We should always put our best foot forward. Some institutions in this country have failed mercilessly by making themselves a closed shop or refusing to be outward looking. For the good of the country we must try to search for talents that we can utilize to the best advantage. The GRT'S should do the same.

It would be recalled that the president did urge all Gambians everywhere to join hands in building a stronger image of the country. Apart from the presentations, the programmes also need to be considered. We shall need good quality programmes that would be appreciated at home as well as world-wide. Good quality programmes are those that carry high entertainment value or are educative, or both. Greater quality can be achieved when these are topical and also have relevance to The Gambia.

On the whole, programme disruptions should be avoided as this doesn't look good for our image and professionalism.

We should avoid playing the incorrect clips and then say 'sorry'; and NAWEC should be consistent with their power supply. Good Luck to GRTS