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Opinions of Wednesday, 5 December 2007

Columnist: Anlo Concerned Citizens in the Diaspora

Anlo Riot, The Inside Story:

Trial By The Media
A Rejoinder To Bennett Akuaku's Article

It is with sadness that WE THE CONCERNED CITIZENS OF ANLO IN THE DIASPORAS PEN THIS REJOINER TO Mr. Bennett Akuaku’s article in the "Daily Guide of 24 November. 2007" Concerned citizens had hoped that "OUT OF THE TERRIBLE TRAGEDY OF “BLOODY THURSDAY” OF NOVEMBER 1, 2007 would emerge some good. We therefore find it outrageous that, after all the Blood shed, some journalist and media have learnt no critical lesson from the ANLO TRAGEDY.

Simply put "BAD JOURNALISM IS ALIVE AND BAD JOURNALIST ARE STILL PEDDLING THEIR WARES TO THE HIGHEST BIDDER."
The writer, Mr. Bennett Akuaku has a background as one of Francis Nyonyo's journalist. A disclosure to that effect would have been the ethical thing to do. Concerned citizens are dismayed he missed the opportunity to do the right thing. The media is equally culpable. After all the media is the milieu in which the GOOD AND BAD JOURNALISTS FUNCTION.
In this article in question, Mr. Akuaku claimed to be giving a ringside account of the events of Bloody Thursday. On close scrutiny, however, Akuaku obviously was simply A SELF APPOINTED BIASE INQUISITOR ON A MISSION. Never mind that:
1. Autopsy Reports
2. DNA and
3. Ballistic Reports are yet to be released.
Regardless, Mr. Akuaku has started his "INQUISITION."
WITH THE STROKE OF HIS PEN, HE SOUGHT TO INNOCULATE THE REAL CULPRITS OF THS HORRENDOUS CRIME AGAINST FUTURE REPERCUSSION, WHILE THOROUGHLY DEMONISING THE REAL VICTIMS OF THE TRAGEDY
By Innuendo and Insinuation the Citizens gathered on private property were portrayed as Blood Thirsty fiends waiting in ambush. Glib statements like "GRUESOME ORDEAL, INCLUDING SUSPECTED RITUAL" in Akuaku’s article were meant to invoke in the readers mind, a ritual murder. Without giving critical background information such as,
1. On going court cases and injunctions forbidding any rites leading to confinement.
2. Nyonyo not remotely related to the Royal House was conveniently omitted, less the critical reader reaches a conclusion other than the one being peddled.
3. On going harassment of the people by the police never happened.
4. The police never functioned as Nyonyo's private army.
CONCERNED CITIZENS WISH TO KNOW THE FOLLOWING.
1. Why in spite of numerous injunctions served and law suits before the courts asking Nyonyo to cease and desist from carrying and calling himself "Regent Sri III" and President of the ANLO TRADITIONAL COUNCIL, Akuaku is hell bent on promoting this imposter?
2. Why Akuaku goes into details about POLICE CASUALTIES and their fates, while only barely mentioning the names of citizens killed and maimed?
3. Why the Police dispatched to Anloga purportedly to keep the peace during the performance of some rites for Nyonyo needed so much FIRE POWER? AK47S?
4. Did the heavily armed Police fire any bullets at all? Akuaku’s ridiculous account stated the Police had 8 AK 47 but had two snatched from them by the Citizens of Anloga.
Do we understand that the police, with six remaining AK47S, held their fire "WHILE THE CITIZENS OF ANLOGA" shot their own BROTHERS AND A SISTER WITH THEIR NEWLY ACQUIRED WEAPONS"?
Napoleon Agboada's letter to Government officials asking for POLICE help in performing final rites for confirming Nyonyo as Awoamefia and Government’s acquiescence is a huge scandal.
Why did Akuaku avoid it in his article?
Government complicity in Law BREAKING should be BIG NEWS in most countries. WHAT ARTICLE IN THE JURISPRUDENCE OF THE ANLO STATE GIVES LEGAL RECOGNITION TO THE ENTITY YOU CALL "AWOMEFIA STOOL SECRETARIAT?” WHO GAVE THEM THE POWER TO CALL FOR POLICE PRESENCE?
WHO CONSTITUTED THE ROYAL ADZOVIA CLAN THAT, AS AKUAKU'S ARTICLE CLAIMED, "DECIDED TO CONSUMATE THE INSTALLATION PROCESS OF TOGBUI SRI III?" This question is pertinent in light of a joint communiqué issued by the ELDERS AND PRINCIPAL MEMBERS OF THE ROYAL ADZOVIA CLAN stating that Nyonyo is not a member of the Agboada family and should cease and desist from calling himself "Togbui Sri III"
Concerned citizens assert that "the true measure of a journalist is his or her capacity to accurately report the news without fear, bias, or a personal gain motive. Brother Bennett Akuaku’s article in question woefully failed this ACID TEST.
Having claimed an inside scoop to this horrific crime, you have unwittingly placed yourself in the unenviable position of answering the pointed questions at a future court trial of this horrendous crime against humanity. Your loose comments in this article should make a good criminal defense lawyer salivate just at the thought of grilling you on the witness stand till you break out in "cold sweat":, your legs begin to wobble, you feel dizzy and pass out on the stand!
By this article, you have launched a vicious trial by media of residents of Anloga. You stated emphatically, and I quote, "ALL FOUR VICTIMS IN THE VIOLENCE WERE KILLED BY RESIDENTS OF ANLOGA" end quote.
CONCERNED CITIZENS FIND SUCH STATEMENTS IN YOUR ARTICLE FOOLISH AND A DISSERVICE TO THE READERSHIP UNLESS YOU HAVE THE BALISTIC EVIDENCE TO BACK YOUR WILD ALLEGATIONS.
Allow the experts to investigate this SENSELESS CRIME. Enough of your "RELIABLE SOURCES! GIVE US CONCRETE EVIDENCE AND SOME BALANCED JOURNALISM FOR A CHANGE. The statement attributed to Albert Sadika, if true, is ridiculous. It is not only J.J. Rawlings who is questioning the role this government has played in the Anloga tragedy. Your haste to frame the events in an NDC/NPP political terms deliberately avoids the issue of law breakers in high places, forget about their POLITICAL SCARVES.
Your reference to Albert Kwasi Sadika as "Acting Stool father" is the height of folly. Who made Albert Sadika acting Stool Father? Now a VIGNETTE of Anlo History for you.
In October 1990 the late J.K. Sadika circulated a letter to the Secretary of Chieftaincy Affairs, President of the National and Volta Regional House of Chiefs stating, "We wish to submit the attached to you for your records concerning the Anlo Paramount Stool which is the bona fide property of the Adzovia Clan" Sadika Senior abrogated to himself the title of "STOOL FATHER". In that October 1990 letter. He was promptly rebuffed by the Elders who fired back. It is sad that J.K. Sadika’s son ALBER KWASI SADIKA learnt no critical lessons from his father’s misadventure of 1990. Likewise Mr. Bennett Akuaku has yet to show us he has learnt anything from the costly Journalistic mistakes of the recent past.

BY DR. YAO L. KALEDZI AND MR EDDIE DITCHFIELD-AGBOH FOR ANLO CONCERNED CITIZENS IN THE DIASPORAS.

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