Ghanaian photo journalist’s ordeal at Afcon 2015

Sports News of Wednesday, 28 January 2015

Source: Graphic Online

Video Journalists

Seasoned Ghanaian photo journalist, Senyuiedzorm Adadevoh has gone through a scary 24-hour after her photography equipment, worth $300,000 was taken by a taxi driver.

Ms Adadevoh who works for international agency, Sports Unlimited, had the bag, taken away by the driver after a colleague inadvertently left it in taxi, and despite dropping them off at the Hotel Mongomo, the Black Stars base, the driver failed to return it after realising what happened.

It took the surveillance of the CCTV camera at the hotel lobby, which captured the action, the car number of the taxi to retrieve the bag.

The security detail at the hotel first arrested the owner of the taxi who said he did not work with the taxi that day, but his brother did, and threatened with arrest and seizure of his taxi, he finally led the police to his brother’s house.

On arrival at the house, the young man had not only gone through the bag, but had also re-arranged the items, dismantled the gadgets, ready to sell them off, not giving the indication that he was going to return the bag to the owner.

When confronted, he had very little to say, but admitted he was getting ready to take it to Bata to sell as he was not sure who had left the bag in his car. He felt it was ‘God sent,’ he told the police.

However, his plea for pardon was not taken as he was handcuffed and whisked away to the police station, and Ms Adadevoh, who until then was understandably in a distraught mood as she had been rendered jobless, was reunited with her equipment.

Her ordeal is the worse Ghanaian journalists have had to go through since arriving in Equatorial Guinea.

Right on arrival at the Malabo Airport, most of them were told they could not enter because they did not have visas stamped in their passports, even though the Confederation of African Football (CAF) in confirming their accreditation, had also stated that it passed for entry visas for the tournament, but that information, unfortunately had not been passed on to the immigration officers with just a day to the tournament.

With the ensuing misunderstanding, the Ghanaian journalists were detained for hours at the airport.

Some were threatened with police arrest for daring to challenge ‘a big man’ who had told them they were foolish to have travelled without a visa and were threatening to put them on the available plane back to Ghana.

The situation was compounded by the language barrier as there were no official translators at the airport.

After almost four hours and several telephone calls made, the issue was resolved and the journalists were given the clearance and released.

Graphic reporter, Rosalind Amoh also on the opening day, was subject to intense search by security at stadium while caught up in the mad rush for free tickets to the Ghana, Senegal match.

Security failed to acknowledge her accreditation, and was asked to join building agitated queue and the security process.

When she was finally bailed out by a senior security officer, she had lost her working tool, an IPad and was lucky to have it returned to her moments later, but with the entire screen damaged. She was lucky to have it working well though.