General News of Wednesday, 31 October 2018
The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has condemned a reported assault of a Joy News reporter by a security officer of ex-president John Mahama.
The incident occurred on Monday, October 29 at the Pentecost University College, Sowutuom near Accra, where the ex-president had taken his recent campaign tour.
A statement signed by Mr Affail Monney, the President of GJA said, Mr Wilson Parker, who had been covering the political campaign of the ex-president for some time now, was in the line of duty when the security officer allegedly assaulted him.
The statement said the Association found the incident most unfortunate because the ex-president is a man of high respect and great honour.
It said, apart from being a member of the GJA, the ex-president has cordial relations with the media and therefore it was expected that officers who worked for him, and on his behalf, would emulate his character in their dealings with the media.
It said the Association appreciates the purported apology rendered by the said security officer to Wilson Parker, and a promise by the office of the ex-president to investigate the matter.
These are proactive steps that demonstrate a will to deal with the matter, it said, adding that, “We, however, hope the investigation will be swift and not shield the perpetrator of the assault from punishment.
The statement called on the Ghana Police Service to investigate the matter and take appropriate steps to bring the perpetrator to book.
It urged journalists to be extremely cautious when covering events in hostile environments, and try, as much as possible, to put safety ahead of story.
On the way forward, the statement said the GJA plans to engage with all stakeholders, including political parties and media owners, on how best we can work in harmony and minimise cases of assault against journalists.