Editor-In-Chief of the New Crusading Guide newspaper, Abdul Malik Kweku Baako, has condemned a decision by the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) to investigate a tape recording on which President John Mahama is alleged to have accused people of Kumasi of ingratitude when he visited the Ashanti regional capital over the week.
According to government, the tape was doctored.
But Abdul Malik Kwaku Baako Jnr. insists the CID’s action will push the issue into the realm of criminality which, in his view, is not in line with the letter and spirit of the 1992 Constitution with respect to media practice.
“One would have expected that the Ministry of Information, which I suspect made the complaint to the CID, would direct the matter to the National Media Commission (NMC) as a case of possible ethical breach for redress, but deciding on their own to refer the case to the CID is unwarranted and a throw-back to the days of Seditious and Criminal Libel, where free speech and Journalism were criminalized”, Kweku Baako stressed.
For Mr. Baako, the referral of the case by the Ministry to the CID was misdirected and unnecessary since the media house or houses they suspected may have engaged in the doctoring were undertaking their professional duties.
The Editor In-Chief’s comments come on the back of a release signed by ASP Joseph Benefo Darkwa, Director of Public Relations of the CID, warning the “media and the general public to be circumspect in their reportage and comments on the matter”.
The release said in part that “the CID Administration has initiated investigation into the matter with the view to getting the authentic tape as well as the origin of the doctored one and anyone found culpable would be dealt with according to the Laws of the Republic of Ghana”.