I’ve been victim of scurrilous reportage but I don’t regret repeal of libel law – Akufo-Addo

General News of Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Source: Myjoyonline.com

2017-07-18

MYJOY5President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has praised the media for holding his government accountable and publishing its policies.

He said even though he has been “one of the greatest victims of irresponsible sections of the media, and I refer to those who have created an industry from spewing calumnies, falsehoods and outright fabrications against my person, I do not regret…my role in the repeal of the old discredited law.”

Nana Akufo-Addo as Attorney-General under the John Kufuor government spearheaded the repeal of the criminal libel law under which some journalists were arrested and detained by government.

Addressing journalists to mark his six months in office, the president said, “the repeal has inspired the Ghanaian media to be one of the freest and most vibrant on the entire continent of African if not the world.”

The president said he prefers the “noisy, boisterous, sometimes scurrilous media of today, to the monotonous, praise-singing, sycophantic one of yesteryear.”

He believes the media has enriched Ghana’s democratic credentials through their investigations and curiosity.

Since his inauguration on January 7, the president said he hadn’t had any encounter with the media and thought it proper to meet with them today as part his determination to hold himself accountable to the Ghanaian people.

Without mentioning names, the president said, “I cannot complain about the lack of exposure of my thoughts, statements, or policies since I became president.”

His predecessor, President John Mahama complained bitterly about the media not highlighting his government’s achievements.

Mr. Mahama believed that large sections of the media repeatedly harped on corruption to the detriment of his infrastructure projects and policy achievements.

But president Nana Akufo-Addo said he has no complaints at all.

He commended the presidential press corps highly “whose duty it is to cover the presidency; they should know that their work is appreciated.”

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