The Ghana Integrity Initiative has hit back at host of Metro TV’s Good Evening Ghana programme, Mr Paul Adom Otchere describing his Tuesday’s editorial outburst as a form of “media capture”.
According to the GII, Mr Adom Otchere’s programme on Tuesday was an “embarrassing spectacle” and wants the National Media Commission (NMC) to take an action against it.
In a radio interview with Accra based Starr FM, the Executive Director of GII, Mrs Linda Ofori-Kwafo argued that what Mr Adom Otchere did on Tuesday by using his airtime on Metro TV to “insult us [anti-corruption civil society organisations], in the manner in which he did, is a disappointment, we are hoping the National Media Commission will do something about.”
“What did we say in the statement that he is now disagreeing with us, that we don’t have the audacity to disagree with the GJA’s statement? We depend on their [media] work to be able to push forward our anti-corruption campaign. So if Paul finds anything wrong with our statement, the manner in which he presented it because he has access, that is what we refer to as media capture and that is where we are heading towards as a country, if we don’t take care.”
“Allowing business people to procure the media houses that we will all have access to in order to help us move forward our democracy. They’ve captured the media, they have already captured the state.
“…If you look at the names of people who signed the statement, we are not people who joke in this country. We are not small boys or girls. We know what we are doing. So for Paul to put us on this programme, insult all of us in the manner he did, is a big disappointment” she said.
In a statement solely signed and issued by GJA President, Mr. Roland Affail Monney, the GJA urged journalists to verify facts when conducting any investigative piece, adding that such reportage must be “strictly guided by ethical values and, especially, the GJA Code of Ethics”.
The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) disagreed with the GJA’s statement and said the caution was needless especially as the GJA did not support its statement with any instances of breaches of the code of ethics.
Five anti-corruption civil society organizations Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), the Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition, Ghana Centre for Democratic Development, Citizens Movement against Corruption and the Africa Centre for International Law and Accountability also disagreed with the GJA’s posture.
However, Mr. Adom Otchere in what he described as an “Editorial in defence of the GJA Press Statement on corruption”, disagreed with the posture of civil society groups on corruption that the timing of the GJA statement was “curious.