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Opinions of Thursday, 19 July 2018

Columnist: Nana Yaw Osei

MFWA’s Sulemana’s attack on Anas: A smack of journalistic camarilla, turpitude

I virtually blew the gasket over Mr. Sulemana Braimah of Media Foundation for West Africa’s [MFWA] relentless and suspicious attacks on the credibility of Ghana’s icon in undercover investigative journalism, Anas Aremeyaw Anas about the latter’s recent expose’ dubbed number 12.

Mr. Sulemana’s counterintuitive and pretentious complain to BBC over the journalistic ethics and, methodology adopted on Number 12, struck in me a cord of discomfiture. Having remorselessly presented to us; a burst of latent bigotry and braggadocios induce harangue if not fulmination: “Why Ana’s Number 12, is not a journalistic piece” (Source: MYJOYONLINE.COM, July 5, 2018), Sulemana appeared to be on Anas and Kweku Baako’s image damage rampage when he roguishly and impishly tried to ascertain whether BBC collaborated with Anas or not, albeit, the Ace undercover journalist’s public clarification that Ghana’s colonial masters Broadcasting giant had no hand in the expose’ on Ghana football Association [GFA].

Who made Sulemana a repository of media knowledge? MFWA’s boss has every write to disagree with Anas’ methodology, but again bereft of a sole idea to construct the niches of journalism method as he arrogantly posited, haunted by sycophancy and booth-licking of his own imagination!

Fellow dissatisfied compatriots, in our hands, not Akufo-addo’s hand lie this portentous subject of corruption-mongering society of ours! Like any other leader, Akufo-Addo has got only two eyes. This partly elucidate why all conscionable and well-meaning Ghanaians must break out in cold sweat [To sweat excessively due to anxiety] when some anrcho-syndicalist and some media and political Jacobinists attempt to make us oblivious of this decisive issue of corruption-ridden society of ours by deviously attempting to discredit people like Anas and Kweku Baako willy-nilly! No citizen has a registered oath in heaven to be more Ghanaian than the other or to destroy Ghana.

Why did BBC broadcast Anas’ revelations on African Football in the first place? We can have our reservations about Anas’ methodology but Sulemana’s actions in the wake Hot FM journalist, Justice Annan’s admission that some heavy weight scums of society are plotting to damage Anas’ credibility, demonstrate the degree of crass moral turpitude and media camarilla among some journalists in Ghana! Where was Sulemana and his ethical journalism when Anas introduced to us “the Messiah of Mentukwa” in 2013.

Where was his so-called entrapment when Anas, professionally unmasked weird teachings and tutelage of teenagers who were ushered into premature matrimony on unholy altars of imminent Armageddon in April 2013? How much did Anas and his supposedly or allegedly extortionist Tiger Eye PI take from these innocent kids who were offered in untimely marriage in the Ashanti region town of Metukwa?

Mr, Braimah where were you when Anas and his partner Rosemary exposed fake Doctors in Nigeria? “The Nigerian Medical and Dental Association (NMDA) and Ministry of Health (MoH) have confirmed that neither Chuckwudi nor the Ogboru?s are licensed and registered as medical doctors and that their shops are not registered clinics. Nigerian police arrested Mr and Mrs Ogboru on camera on the basis of evidence that Rosemary and Anas filmed Nigerian police also arrested Charles Igudala, who operates a clinic at Dictat Royal Home in Warri, Delta State, after he was covertly filmed offering medical services and injections to Anas in extremely unsanitary conditions.

The NMDA and MoH confirmed that Igudala is not a licensed and registered doctor, while Dr Alfred Ebiakofa of the Nigerian Ministry of Health said that Igudala had been a target of the Nigerian health authorities for some time, but that they ?had not been able to catch him before” (News Ghana, November 27, 2014 ).

Dear Sulemana, Subterfuge and sting journalism are adopted all over world when the journalistic prima facie ground is established under certain conditions. In 2007, US associate press interlocked horns with FBI, when the agent of the latter impersonated an associate press journalist in that same year, with the aim of entrapping suspects who made bomb threats. The director of FBI defended this act that it was proper under Justice department law and FBI guidelines. In London, there was an issue of the “Fake Sheikh” when a reporter, Mahmoud was asked to go undercover as a member of Arab’s royal family with the purpose of entrapping people to commit criminal act, and the journalist reported the aftermath as a news. This received a severe backlash. Obviously, the adoption of subterfuge by some journalists admittedly appears very controversial, but at times, absence of alternative option motivates some enterprising journalists to use such a method.

Sulemana’s conclusion that number 12, is not a journalistic piece is mischievous and professionally dishonest. I don’t think a responsible Suleman Briamah could be entrapped to engage in Pedophilia [God forbid] while he is not a pedophile. He must rather come up with an alternative approach to subterfuge journalism in abstract cases like a perceived rot at Ghana’s FA.

I personally disagree with Anas’ approach of petitioning for the removal of GFA officials without those officials found guilty of wrongdoing by a competent court of law. I think going to the extent of writing to BBC makes Sulemana appears like working for some pay master!

Anas and Baako are not infallible, even so, they did diddly wrong to warrant the sort of backlash they are receiving! Ghana is indeed worth dying for! “If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought, not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate” (Oliver Wendell Holmes, Jr.). One freedom of the thought I hate is Sulemana Braimah arrogantly writing to BBC to question someone’s method while he is not an authority in investigative journalism. Leave Kweku Baako and Anas alone!

By Nana Yaw Osei, Minnesota, USA. N_yawoseia@hotmail.com