Agency And Processes in a Pandemic: Confronting Covid 19 Through Presidential Addresses
Journal of Communications, Media & Society
Grounded in the transitivity strand of Halliday’s Systemic Functional Grammar, this study investigates the transitivity patterns of the first two addresses delivered by the president of Ghana, Nana Addo Dankwa Akuffo-Addo, to Ghanaians after Ghana recorded its first six cases of the coronavirus to ascertain how the Covid 19 pandemic is construed in Ghana and how its initial reality is interpreted. Among many things, the addresses sought to give directives, call on various sectors and create awareness concerning the pandemic’s causes, effects, and precautions. The study discovered the projection of the president of Ghana as the active agent who is placed in the driver’s seat of Ghana’s fight against the pandemic together with some ministries and parliament as well as the entire Ghanaian populace. The processes associated with these participants are of movement depicting that they are active in their quest to confront the pandemic. Unfortunately, the health officials who are ideally expected to be active under such circumstances are not given agent roles in the data. There is a great awareness of the interpretation of the reality of the pandemic that is being portrayed in these addresses. Even though it is beyond the scope of this study to examine the reception and impact of these addresses and draw conclusions, the study reveals that examining these addresses clarifies the government’s position on the pandemic situation as well as strategies for creating awareness and promoting preventive behaviours and attitudes.