Constitutional lawyer, Justice Abdullai has laid the blame of assaults on journalists at the doorstep of political figures.
Speaking on our morning show, Campus Exclusive, Lawyer Justice Abdullai attributed the delay in the prosecution of cases of attacks on journalists to over-pronounced political influence.
According to him, the lack of commitment on the part of politicians in ensuring that people who assault journalists are brought to book in record time is to blame.
“Most of the attacks on journalists one will identify has not been by private citizens acting on their own without any political interference against journalists. You will never find any of the attacks against journalists coming from folks outside the political regalia.” – he said.
According to him, because these acts are political, investigations and possible prosecution are not further carried out effectively and are limited. He, therefore, urged journalists to expose the ills of politicians to the benefit of the general public.
“I will rather journalists in this country should focus more on exposing politicians and doing stories that will inure to the benefits of the private citizens. This is because when things go wrong the journalists are victims as other private individuals and if things go right, the journalists are the ultimate beneficiary. So if you think by doing the will of the politician you stand to benefit alone.” – he added.
He further called for sustaining campaigns against attacks on journalists and maintains that exerting pressure on the police to investigate and prosecute such crimes is the surest way to get results. He also called for the amendment of the constitution to safeguard journalists in the country.
“sustaining the campaign against political crimes and in effect sustaining the campaign against attacks on journalists. Another way of handling is to be putting so much pressure on the police because the police have some level of authority in investigating and prosecuting of crimes regardless of how it was committed. The third leg of resolving this matter will be a constitutional amendment, taking the political interference from the police administration.” – Mr. Abdullai said.
Ghana has dropped four points in the latest ranking in the 2019 World Press Freedom Index as it moved from the rank of 23 to 27 from the previous year. The inactivity on the case of Ahmed Hussein Suale who was murdered in cold blood in January 2019 and a number of recorded cases of assaults hurled on journalists over a short period has reached alarming rates and the drop in ratings.
By: Nunana Ayisah | universnewsroom