Saturday, 21 July 2018
GJA to boycott forum on Media-Police relations

GJA to boycott forum on Media-Police relations

The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) is to boycott a forum scheduled for Wednesday to foster media-police relations in Accra.

It cited the inability of the police to find officers who in March this year, allegedly assaulted a Multimedia journalist, Mr Latiff Iddrisu.

It has also given the Police Service a week’s ultimatum to act or face actions, including petitioning the Vice-President as well as a blackout on police activities in the country.

Media Foundation for West Africa is organising the event to discuss and promote good relations between the police and the media.

Rationale

At a press conference in Accra last Friday to press home its demand for immediate action on the alleged police brutality on the broadcast journalist, the association’s President, Mr Affail Monney, said given the manner the police had handled the case, it did not find any compelling reason to participate in such a dialogue.

“It will amount to sweeping the dust under the carpet or playing the ostrich when the real issue underpinning the cordiality of our relationship has not been dealt with. Consequently, we will not attend the proposed forum with the police on Wednesday and we urge our members to boycott same,” he said.

Mr Monney described the action of the police as a tardy approach to investigating the incident that left Iddrisu traumatised with a fractured skull.

Background

Mr Iddrisu was among journalists who rushed to the headquarters of the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service on March 27, 2018 to cover a story of supporters of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) who besieged the CID headquarters over the arrest and detention of the Deputy General Secretary of the NDC, Mr Koku Anyidoho, for predicting the overthrow of  the Akufo-Addo government.

While there, Mr Iddrisu asked about the name of a police vehicle at the scene from a police officer, instead of providing the answer, some officers allegedly turned on him and attacked him.

After four X-Ray examinations and a CT scan, doctors at the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital concluded that the Joy News’ reporter suffered a fractured skull. He has since been home in the last four months recovering.

After the incident, the GJA issued a statement condemning the act and called for immediate action to bring the perpetrators to book. The association followed it up with a meeting with the police hierarchy who gave an assurance of appropriate actions.“Given the national and international interests this case has generated, and more importantly, the precarious health condition of Latif, we find the approach of police investigations in this matter tardy,” he added