Emmanuel Ajafor Abugri, editor of Modern Ghana news portal has refuted suggestions that his detention by national security personnel was over hacking suspicions.
There were some reports their arrest was connected to cybercrime being perpetrated by Mr. Ajafor and one other Modern Ghana reporter against some other media organisations.
[contextly_sidebar id=”jnoRn41YPefJ4yKqR5iv7Ut78uB2kwRi”]But on the Citi Breakfast Show, the editor said he had no ties to cybercrime.
“I am not a hacker. I don’t have an IT background. I am a journalist doing my work professionally… It is not now that I started working in Modern Ghana that I will start being a hacker and all that.”
He explained that his detention was tied to two posts on his website, published on June 12, that were critical of the National Security Minister.
One of the posts was an article critical of the National Security Minister from a contributor, one Constance Kwabeng, and the other a news story from a press release by the same person.
“We received a call from National Security saying we should pull those two publications down,” Mr. Ajafor recounted.
The publications were taken down after the initial call but that did not stop five security personnel; two police officers and three other men in plain clothes, from detaining him and his colleague, Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum.
It was during the detention and about an hour-long interrogation that the alleged torture occurred.
“Every question they ask follows with a slap. It is either [you are slapped] before you speak or after you have spoken, the slap follows.”
Mr. Ajafor said he was questioned on the whereabouts of one Constance Kwabeng.
“Since you cannot produce Constance Kwabeng, then it means you are the Constance Kwabeng who has been paid to use that pseudonym to concoct those stories against the minister.”
After being “slapped not less than 20 times” he added that “they tortured me by hands to the extent that they used the taser… on my arm, even my ears.”
But Mr. Ajorfor served notice that he will be resolute despite the scrutiny from state security.
“I will remain truthful and I will keep on being truthful. I will not lie. Whatever you do to me I will say it and keep in saying it. They did not question me in relation to any hacking thing. It was in relation to those publications.”
The National Security Council Secretariat earlier came out to rejected claims that National Security operatives tortured him
The secretariat in a statement said Mr. Ajarfor, “was never manhandled, neither was he subjected to any form of forced physical contact.