The Media Foundation for West Africa, has in a statement condemned in the strongest terms the brutal attack on Latif Iddris, a reporter from Joy News, one of the platforms of the Multimedia Group based in Accra.
Latif Iddris had gone to cover protests at the Criminal Investigations Department of the Ghana Police Service on March 27, 2018, where a Deputy General Secretary of Ghana’s main opposition party, NDC, Koku Anyidoho, was being held on treason charges.
The journalist approached one policeman and asked him the name of one of the anti-riot vehicles that had been deployed to control the crowd.
To his shock, the innocent question angered the policeman who ordered him to get away. The police officer subsequently grabbed the retreating journalist from behind and slapped him for “asking a stupid question.”
“He then pushed me into a crowd of other police officers who had no clue what had transpired between the two of us but also started beating me up,” Iddris later narrated.
The police officers, now numbering about eight, took turns to assault the journalist.
One of them hit him in the rib with a stick; another officer used the butt of his gun to hit his head about three times. Some of the officers also kicked him.
After about seven minutes of manhandling, the reporter was rescued by another senior officer. Iddris was rushed to the Light House Hospital at North Kaneshie, a suburb of Accra, where he received treatment for the swellings on his face and bruises on his body.
The MFWA is thus calling on the leadership of the Ghana police Service to immediately investigate the incident and bring to book the officers who perpetrated the violent crime against the journalist.
“We also call on the Ghanaian media and journalists to stand up against acts of violence against colleagues” the MFWA said.
MFWA petitions NPP Chairman over attack on journalists
The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) in January 2018, asked the National Chairman of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Freddie Blay, to help bring to book party activists who attacked some four journalists at the party headquarters in the latter part of 2017.
In a petition to Mr. Freddie Blay and copied to the IGP, MFWA urged the party to formally condemn the incident, apologize to the victims and punish the perpetrators.
Three journalists, including Citi FM’s Marie-Franz Fordjoe, and two others from TV3 and Ghanaweb, were assaulted by security guards at the NPP’s headquarters when they were covering a demonstration by some angry party members on December 21, 2017.