Ghanaians must be wondering and are still asking why the Police arrested David Sitsope Tamakloe Managing Editor of Whatsup News, over a report he authored, in which he brought the attention of the public the alleged harassment of minority ethnic groups in New Edubiase.
Mr Tamakloe, who is the Vice President of PRINPAG, was arrested by Tesano police and handed over to the New Edubiase police command on Wednesday for publishing a story which was mentioned at a press conference addressed by Elvis Effriyie Ankrah, Director of Elections of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
He was handcuffed and driven all the way to New Edubiase in the darkest of the night by personnel of the Police Service, most of whom were in mufti during the 3-hour journey.
What happened to Mr Tamakloe, qualifies as another attempt by the Police to test the resolve of media practitioners in Ghana.
Curiously, the Police, who have the basic responsibility to protect lives and properties, have also become part of the problem, the reason for their existence.
Efforts in the past to use brute force to intimidate journalists along the line of their official duties did not work and it will not work this time.
On 12 August, 2020, according to media reports, Sanley Nii Blewu and Joseph Amstrong, two TV3 reporters, were threatened at the Tema Station in Accra where they were on duty to file a television report on sanitation. Security personnel comprising some soldiers, police and members of the AMA taskforce forced the journalists to delete the images they took.
Before this, in March 2018 Latif Idris of Joy FM, was brutally beaten to near death at the headquarters of the Ghana Police Service.
Earlier on March 6, 2017 – Soldiers attack a freelance journalist, Soldiers attacked a freelance journalist, Kendrick Ofei during Ghana's 60th Independence Day celebration at the Independence Square in Accra.
Again on February 23, 2018 – Police brutalise Journalist, Christopher Kevin Asima, a presenter of A1 Radio in Bolgatanga, was attacked by the police while he was covering a fire outbreak incident.
As a newspaper, we strongly condemn this brazen and deliberate targeting of Journalists.
It is not unexpected that Journalists sometimes pay the supreme price in the line of duty , while trying to uncover rot in the system or bringing news to the doorstep of the public, however, this wanton harassment, intimidation and beatings cannot go on.
If anything, the arrest and subsequent arraignment of Mr Tamakloe and, indeed, other journalists, who on daily basis are out to bring the rot being perpetuated by people in power is a testament that, no amount of intimidation can stop them from doing their work.
In the opinion of this newspaper, the kind of news that people in power want silenced, is exactly the kind that the public needs to know.