Upper East Regional Chairman of the Ghana Journalist Association, Eric Amoh has condemned the arrest of journalists with the modernghana.com, saying, arrest in any style does not feature on the list of avenues for seeking redress in the event that someone is offended by the work of a journalist.
“If anyone is offended by a report done by a journalist, that person can write to the said journalist or media house to retraction and appologize. The person can also drag the journalist to the National Media Commission and the offended person can even use the legal channel to get the matter addressed if calls for retraction and apology fails. There is no where in Ghana’s constitution that directs that, a person who is offended by a report should arrest the journalist and torture him or her. Not even the President has that right.”
According to Mr. Amoh if what is reported to have happened to the journalists is anything to go by, then in his view, it is to some extend an attempt to silence the media, put fear journalists and also deter them from doing their work as society expects.
“What society expects is that they get information from journalists, we are to information them and that is why the constitutions gives us the right and freedom to work. In as much as we (journalists) want to enjoy press freedom, let’s not also forget that, freedom goes with responsibility. The two go hand-in-hand.”
He was speaking on A1 Radio’s Day Break Upper East programme on Tuesday in reaction to the arrest and alleged torture of Emmanuel Ajarfor a News Editor with the modernghana.com portal and another staff by operatives of the National Security.
Asked what he thought about earlier reports that the journalists were arrested for their involvement in cyber crime, Mr. Amoh said the journalists in question like any other Ghanaian have the right to defend themselves.
Earlier reports said the two modernghana.com staff were picked up at Adenta in the Greater Accra Region on Thursday, June 27, upon a tip-off about how they have allegedly been hacking into the portals of corporate entities including media organizations.