Ghana likely to turn Iraq and Syria if assault on journalists persist – Ken Ashigbey

The Managing Director of Graphic Communications Group Ltd Mr. Kenneth Ashigbey has stated that the country is likely to experience what is happening in Iraq and in Syria if immediate steps are not taken to cease assaults on journalists.

Speaking Monday on Adom Fm/ Asempa Fm’s Burning Issues program, he described the month of September as “black September for journalists” in the country.

Adom FM’s journalists -Afia Pokua, Kofi Assan and Sefa Samuel – were Thursday afternoon brutalized by the Manager of the National Health Insurance Scheme at Ablekuma in Accra.

This is the second time in less than a week that journalists from the Multimedia Group Limited have survived attacks in the hands of public officers.

On Saturday September 7, Felix Akunor, a driver with MultiTV and two journalists, Solomon Joojo Cobbinah and Festus Jackson Davies were arrested on the orders of the Mayor of Accra, Alfred Vanderpuije while covering the plight of some displaced people at Mensah Guinea in Accra.

Mr. Ashigbey said the police should be quick to intervene when they see journalists being attacked in their line of duty, noting that one of the places that journalists are being assaulted most is the court.

He said it is time the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), National Media Commission (NMC), Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association (GIBA) and the state-owned media meet with the chief justice, the IGP and the Attorney General to discuss problems journalists are facing in the country.

He urged media houses to also assure journalists of their safety as well as their readiness to secure them legal assistance in case of assault.

“We know the way our country become very volatile during elections and very soon 2016 will be here, so if we don’t stop assault on journalists in September it will be very difficult for journalists in the country [to play a role in the 2016 elections].”

He bemoaned the lack of seriousness attached to assault cases by media owners and appealed to them to as a matter of urgency stand for the right of their workers.

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