The Chairman of the National Media Commission, Mr Yaw Boadu-Ayeboafoh says the Ghanaian media is not under siege despite some reprehensible and abominable attacks on some media practitioners in the line of their duties.
Speaking at the 2nd Anniversary Lecture of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) on Thursday in Accra, Mr Boadu-Ayeboafoh said if indeed the media was under siege, practitioners would not be able to tell stories of brutalities that have been meted out to them.
He argued that the media was not besieged because it (the media) was able to fight off violent attacks, adding that it was important for a distinction to be made between acts which the state was responsible for and the actions of deviants.
Recalling several instances of ‘besiegement’ of the media in the 1980s, he said some journalists were summoned, detained and punished by the military and the police because of stories they had written or were working on.
Mr Ayeboafoh also mentioned that there were many times when stories written by reporters were replaced by reports from official stories.
He advised victims to desist from entering into agreements with perpetrators of violence against the media. In April this year, Ghana dropped to 27th place out of 180 countries on the Reporters Without Borders annual World Press Freedom Index.
Ghana fell four places from its 2018 ranking of 23 on account of what the RSF described as “not enough protection for journalists” following the shooting of investigative journalist Ahmed Hussein-Suale and threats on the lives of members of the Tiger Eye PI investigative group.
Investigative journalist Hussein-Suale who was gunned down by two suspected gunmen on Wednesday, January 16, 2019, in Accra was a key member of the Tiger Eye PI sting operation which implicated Mr Nyantakyi in a corruption scandal.
The findings of the sting were published in a documentary titled #Number12 on June 6, 2018.