File photo: A gathering in front of Zoe Embassy

The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has described as illegal a decision by Zoe Outreach Embassy in Accra to bar journalists from taking photographs or recording activities within its premises.

President of the Association, Mr Roland Affail Monney believes a church is a public place and therefore it is illegal for the church to bar people, especially journalists from visiting the place.

He said journalists are entitled to gather and investigate news stories regardless of the institutions and the church is not excluded.

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“Church is a public place and people need to go there for salvation and so barring people is illegal. Even our code of ethics says if the story is in the public interest, then it is allowed,” he said on Accra based Neat FM, monitored by

“Our job is not to disgrace people, our job is to fish out corrupt officials and ensure that they are prosecuted and so I think journalists have the right to go anywhere to get the stories done for public consumption,” he said.

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The Zoe Outreach Embassy in Accra has barred journalists from taking photographs or recording activities within its premises, a public notice posted on the church building has indicated.

The church has also barred media personnel from trespassing beyond the frontage of the church which is located at Ogbodjo, near American House, in Accra.

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The notice warned that persons who defied the directive did so at their own risk.

It read: “No media house or personnel. No photography. No media coverage. No trespass beyond this point is allowed. You do so at your own risk.”

Source: | Dorcas Abedu-Kennedy