• Mon. Oct 3rd, 2022

Manasseh Azure recounts how Omane Boamah offered to protect police after ‘Ford Expedition’ expose

ByJanice K. Merrill

May 5, 2022

Investigative Journalist, Manasseh Azure

Akufo-Addo press freedom worse than Mahama

I felt safe after Ford Expedition Saga

Ghana slips in latest world press freedom index

Investigative journalist, Manasseh Azure Awuni, recounted how the former communications minister under John Dramani offered to provide a security escort for his safety after he produced an article on the Ford Expedition Saga in 2016.

According to him, he told Omane Boamah that he was safe and did not need any protection at the time.

The ace journalist, however, believes that the same unfortunately cannot be ensured under the current Akufo-Addo regime, as freedom of the press seems to be oppressed under the same regime.

“…While I was about to broadcast the ‘Ford Expedition Saga’ video, the then Minister of Communications called me to ask if he should give me a police escort if I did not feel safe. I told him (the Minister) no because I felt safe. This is freedom of the press I am talking about.

“In those days when you write a story, all you ask is that the story be factual, accurate and true, but today when you write a story, what is asked is [am I safe]?” said Manasseh Azure.

Speaking following the latest press freedom index, Manasseh said there appears to have been a twist on media freedom after Akufo-Addo took power in 2017.

“Can I do a story like the ‘Ford Expedition saga’ in an election year under this current administration and go to bed safe and sound like I did under the John Mahama era? He questioned.

He made this known today, May 5, 2022, on the GTV Breakfast show.

There has been a lot of talk about press freedom after Ghana fell 30 places from 2021 to rank 60th on the 2022 World Press Freedom Index with a score of 67.43.

Ghana also dropped significantly in the continental ranking for the safety of journalists.

The African countries ahead of Ghana are Namibia, South Africa, Cabo Verde, Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, Gambia and Niger.

Meanwhile, the executive director of the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA), Sulemana Braimah, said he was not surprised that Ghana had fallen in the latest Global Freedom Index. of the press.

He said this is an unfortunate development and the signals are clear if we do not take appropriate action.

“It’s an unfortunate development that we shouldn’t get to where we are now. Unfortunately, over the past two years, the signal was clear that unless appropriate action was taken, we would lose this prestigious position and the credibility it gives to our democracy. So it’s unfortunate but that’s where we are now,” he noted.