Sam George says Manasseh Azure Awuni lied about guinea fowls flying to Burkina Faso
He said report of the journalist was used as a tool against John Dramani Mahama
But the journalist has constantly denied that part of his reportage
Sam Nartey George, MP, Ningo Prampram, has chided Manasseh Azure Awuni, for not being truthful with his investigations into the activities of Savannah Accelerated Development Authority (SADA) where it was alleged that some guinea fowls had flown to Burkina Faso.
According to him, that investigative reportage by the journalist was used as a political tool to achieve a certain agenda against former President John Dramani Mahama.
He said, at the time, Manasseh Azure Awuni could have used his position as an investigative journalist to set the records straight but he chose not to.
Sam Nartey George was reacting to a Facebook post of Manasseh Azure Awuni where he had asked a curious question as to whether or not he “supports the call for military intervention in parliament when ‘the MPs were fooling’.”
He said, “I am a beneficiary of democracy. I believe the worst form of democracy is better than the meekest dictator.”
Sam George explained in his post that, freedom of speech is a non-negotiable ingredient of a democracy and Manasseh Azure Awuni is one of the biggest beneficiaries [of freedom of speech].
“That said, freedom of speech is a non-negotiable ingredient of a democracy. You are one of the biggest beneficiaries. After ‘lying’ about guinea fowls flying to Burkina Faso to achieve whatever political agenda you had against John Mahama, you were never arrested.
“Even when you could have set the records straight, you chose not to. You were never arrested. You watched on with glee as Mahama was bastardised with that story, which you would later come to admit was a ‘joke’. Mahama actually had the love to come and buy your book. Bless his soul!” he said.
Sam Gorge continued: “we all cried foul, not guinea fowl, when the Akufo-Addo government descended on you for less. When you had to flee the country and live in constant fear. Looking over your shoulder, driving round in circles every night before you go home, we said it was wrong. What was your offence? Speaking about the ills of the State.
“A true democracy does not use intimidation to silence its critics. It does not make journalists go under or fear for their life. You have lost your spine under this government and you think all is well? I would never support usurping elected authority but I cannot tolerate despotism disguised as democracy.
“You, should be the last person to ever seek to silence critical voices in a democracy. They may be uncomfortable, they may be discordant but they sure are better than the silence characteristic of a military junta.”
“We have intolerant dictators who hate the sound of dissent camouflage themselves as apostles of democracy rule our Nation today. If you have lost your voice out of fear, continue to cower in your hole and let men and women with balls speak up to save our democracy,” he stressed.
The ‘friendly’ banter between the MP and the journalist was necessitated by the arrest of the Onua TV/FM journalist, Captain Smart, over some comments the police say has an intent to incite the public.
The Nima Divisional Police Command arrested the host of Onua Maakye, the morning show on Media General subsidiaries Onua TV and Onua FM.
At about 11:00 am on Thursday, Captain Smart received officers from the National Investigations Bureau (NIB) in his home who invited him to their office, to which he obliged. He was subsequently taken to the Nima Police Station in Accra for interrogation.
At the Nima Police Station, Captain Smart was cautioned on the “offence of offensive conduct conducive to breaches of the peace as provided under section 207 of the Criminal Act, 1960 (Act 29).”
He provided a caution statement and then was granted bail.
Meanwhile, Manasseh Azure Awuni, has constantly explained that his investigations into the activities of SADA never revealed that the guinea fowls flew to Burkina Faso.
He has explained in a Facebook post that “at no point did it emerge in my investigation that the guinea fowls had flown to Burkina Faso. And nobody said that anywhere. The guinea fowls flying to Burkina Faso was one of the jokes we [Ghanaians] make out of serious issues.”