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General News of Monday, 19 October 2020


Journalists who have been harassed, arrested under Akufo-Addo administration

There has been a surge in attacks on journalists in recent times in the country.

Reporters have either been attacked, arrested and even killed in a bid to get and report the news.

Perpetrators are security personnel and some members of society.

The Ghana Journalist Association and other stakeholders have consistently condemned all forms of attack on journalists in the country. However, there are still more cases of harassment on media personnel.

GhanaWeb has listed some journalists who have at one point endured brutality by some members of the society since Akufo-Addo assumed office.

Graphic Communications Group Limited (GCGL) reporter

On August 2019, a multimedia reporter known as Della Russell Ocloo escaped the physical attack at the Glorious Way Church owned by Prophet Badu Kobi at Sakumono.

The reporter visited the church to cover a protest against Prophet Badu Kobi over his comment about Asante, Fante, and Ewe women and how they behave in marriages.

However, some members of the church accosted the journalist and called the police who later arrested her.

The members of the church described her action as being 'intrusive'.

ModernGhana journalist

Officials of the National Security Council Secretariat in 2019 arrested two journalists at Modern Ghana. Emmanuel Ajarfor, an editor, and Emmanuel Britwum were arrested for allegedly engaging in Cybercrime.

Emmanuel Ajarfor's account of the incident revealed that the officers tied his hands, slapped him, and shocked him with a taser during his interrogation.

However, it turned out that the main reason for their arrest was not for engaging in cybercrime but rather based on a report on National Security Minister Albert Kan Dapaah.

The lawyer for the victims, Samson Lardy Anyenini, explained that picking the journalists up from their office cannot in any way be described as an arrest as defined by law but rather it is either an unlawful arrest or an abduction.

Managing Editor of Whatsup News arrested

The Managing Editor of Whatsup News, a virtual newspaper was picked up by police on October 7, 2020.

David Tamakloe was picked up by the Police after an arrest warrant was obtained from New Edubiase Circuit Court to arrest him after he failed to honour a police invitation.

Mr Tamakloe’s platform published a story that suggested that minority groups in New Edubiase including Ewes and Northerners were been targeted by the government during the voters’ registration exercise.

Multimedia journalist

Latif Iddrisu Latif Iddrisu, a journalist with the Multimedia Group, was left with a fractured skull after the police were brutally assaulted him in front of the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) Headquarters in Accra.

He was reporting on a protest by some members of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) against the detention of the then Deputy General Secretary of the party, Mr Koku Anyidoho in July 2018.

GhanaWeb journalist

A journalist from GhanaWeb was assaulted by some security personnel of the NPP at the party's Head Office in 2017.

The reporter who got a hint of a protest by some members of the ruling New Patriotic Party from the Ellembele constituency to demand a clean register ahead of their elections in January 2018 went to the party office to cover the incident.

But whilst filming, they were attacked by security men who had blocked the entrance to the party office to prevent the protesters from gaining entry.

The well-built men slapped and hit GhanaWeb’s cameraman, Ebenezer Ackah, causing him to fall on the floor where he was still harassed.

Not even onlookers could refrain the security men from manhandling the innocent journalist.

Despite all these reported cases, no individual or security officers have been prosecuted for attacking these journalists.

For most cases, some associations like the Ghana Journalist Association and the Media Foundation for West Africa only condemned these actions but no proper prosecutions were made.

The most common action taken is an apology rendered to the victims.

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