Editor of the Finder Elvis Darko has urged the Ghana Journalist Association and the government to go beyond the release of statements when a journalist is threatened and bring out solutions that will help in the arrest and prosecution of persons who threaten journalists.
The President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), Roland Affail Monney in a statement released on Sunday, December 27 asked the Police to immediately investigate the death threats on some journalists following the elections 2020.
The Minister of Information Kojo Oppong Nkrumah also has asked the Police to immediately investigate the death threats.
Mr. Oppong Nkrumah noted that a number of journalists have reported threats and at least one robbery in the aftermath of the 2020 polls.
This follows a report from freelance Journalist Mannaseh Azure that he is being threatened for an opinion piece he wrote on the recently-held elections.
“A number of journalists have reported threats and at least one (1) robbery in the aftermath of the 2020 elections. It has been suggested that these threats are associated with their work as journalists.
“It is of critical importance that our security agencies get to the bottom of these complaints and use all the legitimate means at their disposal to unmask the identities of the culprits – whatever their motives – and arrest and prosecute them with speed.
“Ghana’s enviable reputation as a protector of journalists’ rights and freedoms must be preserved. Manasseh Awuni, Captain Smart, Afia Pokua, et al, my thoughts are with you.”
Reacting to these statements in an interview with Johnnie Hughes on TV3’s New Day, Elvis Darko said: “The statement does not solve any problem and that is one problem I have with the GJA. We always issue statements but we do not take the steps that we have a solution.
“The statement does not stop the person from carrying out the threats, the only thing that can stop the person is when it is investigated and the person is arrested and faces prosecution. These statements they are releasing are good but we have to go beyond these statements because at the end of the day nobody knows who is to carry out the threats.
“I think we need to raise concerns, we need to let the public know what is happening. The Information Minister telling the police to arrest the people is not important, we want to see people been traced and arrested and taken to court for us to know that, if somebody threatens me I will also have justice.”
He further explained that it is hideous how the police do not give importance to the threats journalists receive.
“In terms of how CID has treated journalists in the country in terms of people reporting they are under threats, if it is a politician, they will trace the person and go and arrest the person. I remember when someone impersonated the then COP Yohunu they traced this guy to some corner in Ho and arrested him for impersonating COP Yohonu. But if a journalist says my life is under threat, reports the number through which this thing was done, they will not trace anything.
“I am very much appalled by the way the CID and the investigative body in the country have treated reports of threats from journalists to them about their lives. It is not the way to go at least go and arrest the person, if you go to court and you lose the case, fine, but if you do nothing, it is bad.