IFJ Calls on Ghanaian Government to Stop Assaults on Journalists

The International Federation of Journalists (IFJ) today called on the government of Ghana to protect journalists as attacks on reporters have been increasing at an alarming rate in the last three months.

Since July, at least seven journalists have been assaulted by supporters of suspected drug traffickers, members of the ruling party or police officers.

“We call on the government of Ghana to take strong measures by conducting inquiries on these attacks to put an end to this wave of violence against the journalists,” said Gabriel Baglo IFJ Africa Office Director. “The Ghanaian government has until now shown it is press-freedom friendly and it doesn’t have to tarnish its image by keeping quiet whilst this is happening.”

According to the Ghana-based organisation Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Lawrence Addo Kyeremeh, a reporter with the private radio station Happy FM, was violently attacked and detained on 26 September by five police officers at a police station in Accra. The journalist wanted information about an alleged robber who was arrested.

Less than two weeks earlier, on 15 September, David Tamakloe, a reporter for the private newspaper The Enquirer, was violently attacked by Mercy Anane, wife of Ghana’s Minster of Road Transport and four others after he allegedly took pictures of Anane.

Three other journalists, Andrew Edwin Arthur of The Independent, Fidelia Achama of the Daily Guide and Ebo Hanson of The Daily Graphic, were in different situations manhandled by the bodyguards or the sympathizers of suspected drug barons when they were covering their trials between 17 August and 12 September.

At least two other journalists were recently attacked by members of the ruling party or police officers.

“We support the recent resolution by the Ghana Journalists’ Association to go to court if any journalist is assaulted and we urge citizens who feel they have been mistreated by journalists to seek legal remedies,” Baglo said.

For further information contact the IFJ: +221 842 01 43

The IFJ represents over 500,000 journalists in more than 110 countries