General News of Saturday, 14 February 2015
Minister of Youth and Sports has revealed that he has no regrets for using words many believe are insulting on morning show hosts in the country.
To Mr Mahama Ayariga, it is not out of place to question the professionalism of these hosts of current affairs talk shows if they have the right to read out text messages that are insulting to the President.
“If a morning show host can question the president every morning and read messages that are insulting to him, then I can also question his professionalism,” he said on Accra-based Neat fm.
His comments come after he used words deemed abusive by the general public on Peace FM’s Kwami Sefa Kayi, Afia Pokua and later on Captain Smart (both of Adom FM) in separate interviews when he was asked to explain the budget allocated for the Black Stars at the just ended African Cup of Nations (AFCON) tournament in Equatorial Guinea.
“Morning show hosts ask useless questions on this budget. It is not my duty to be responding to useless questions…Journalists have not been fair to the Black Stars. I will stand and defend the team [Black Stars] anytime. Instead of them [journalists] to talk about the achievements made by the boys, they rather talk rubbish”, before banging the phone on him.
A cross section of the public have condemned his actions, including Editor-In-Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Abdul Mlaik Kweku Baako and the Member of Parliament for La Dadekotopon, Nii Amasah Namoale who believe it was unwise to wage war against media practitioners.
But 24 hours after his excessive response to stimuli, Mr Mahama Ayariga maintains his utterances were well-thought through and would therefore have no problem repeating them if the same questions were posed to him again.
“…I don’t regret anything I said. I meant all what I said. I would repeat them when he questions me that way again this afternoon. If he questions my integrity as a Minister then, I have the right to question his professionalism as a journalist”, the sports minister said.