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Opinions of Friday, 8 September 2017

Columnist: Kwaku Badu

Manasseh is my kind of an investigative journalist and a true patriot

I watched with a gleam of suspicion and illimitable incredulity, a video clip which was full of high sounding morphemes and purported to be a bona fide image of a Ghanaian version of a seasoned journalist.

I was indeed taken aback listening to the ostensive coruscation of exaggerating dignity and gratuitous condescension by the said seasoned journalist.

Of course, throughout his dreary and lengthy pompous critique of a Facebook post purported to be coming from his adversary and intended to censure the Ghana Journalist Association’s (GJA’s) earlier controversial statement, the seasoned journalist did not directly mention his target. But he ignobly kept referring to his antagonist as ‘opana’.

Even though the seasoned journalist refused to name his addressee openly, the topic under discussion and his pleonastic attributions revealed the target of his ballistic missiles.

For the avoidance of garrulous prolixity, let me venture to state that it was the officials of the GJA who ignited the public discourse on what supposed to be the ethics of investigative journalism.

Apparently, the seasoned journalist’s pompous critique came on the backdrop of a press release by the President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), which sought to undermine the work of zestful and fearless investigative journalists like Manasseh Azuri Awuni, who have put their precious lives on the line to track and probe into corrupt practices.

Given all the circumstances, it is befuddling that a fellow journalist would choose to attack an ebullient investigative journalist who has vowed to venture deeply into corruption issues.

How could anyone who call himself a true patriot attack someone who has dug deep and brought to the attention of Ghanaians the corruption scandals like SADA, GYEEDA, Ford Expedition vehicle, amongst others?

In fact, I cannot get my head around the seasoned journalist’s somewhat specious and an isolated thinker’s view that the supposedly home grown entrepreneurs are above the law. And therefore if any of them are found to be indulging in criminalities, we should keep mute. How pathetic?

More so I was extremely intrigued listening to the seasoned journalist’s morphological interpretation of investigative journalism. Apparently, he cast aspersions and sought to conclude that his target is not a true investigative journalist.

He bizarrely drew on a growing body of extant literature, experiential learning, theoretical and knowledge-based resources to buttress his sophistic view point that the said gentleman in question is not an authentic investigative journalist.

If all the diligent investigations the said gentleman has been conducting over the years do not qualify him to be a true investigative journalist, then what at all is investigative journalism?

“Investigative journalism is a form of journalism in which reporters deeply investigate a single topic of interest, such as serious crimes, political corruption, or corporate wrongdoing. “An investigative journalist may spend months or years researching and preparing a report.”

Based on the preceding signification of investigative journalism, it would only take a disputatious character to suggest that someone like Manasseh is not a true investigative journalist.

Let us therefore remind the seasoned journalist that patriotic journalists like Manasseh are zestfully acknowledging the role of citizens of Ghana as encapsulated in Article 41 (f) of the 1992 Constitution under the Directive Principles of State Policy.

It stresses: “it shall be the duty of every citizen to protect and preserve public property and expose and combat misuse and waste of public funds and property.”

And more so any journalist who chooses to combat the corrosive effects of corruption is rather reaffirming the Constitution of the Ghana Journalists Association in which the association has pledged to: “strive for public accountability and serve as the watchdog of the people’s rights and liberties against all forms of infringements or abuse of rights.”

How could a true journalist stand aside and watch while the conspiratorial cabals are gleefully embezzling our scarce resources?

Let me however stress that some of us are behind the courageous journalists like Manasseh, who have vowed to trail, probe, speak and write against all forms of corruption cases regardless of which political party in power.

If anything at all, it should be a grave concern to all patriotic Ghanaians on how individuals can form an alliance, with a view to creating, looting and sharing gargantuan sums of money they are not entitled.