The Ghana Centre for Democratic Development (CDD-Ghana), has called on the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), to investigate the assault on Citi News’ reporter, Caleb Kudah by some National Security operatives.
“The Centre calls on the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) to thoroughly investigate this and many other incidents of assault on journalists by members of security agencies and bring the perpetrators to justice, in accordance with article 218 of the Constitution.”
CDD-Ghana made the call in a statement issued on Friday, May 14, 2021.
It further called on the government “to implement the recommendations of the Emile Short
Commission with respect to streamlining the structure and operations of national security agencies, including but not limited to the training of officers of security agencies to internalise and respect human rights in their activities”.
On Tuesday, May 11, 2021, Citi News’ Caleb Kudah, was detained by operatives of the National Security Ministry for filming and taking pictures of MASLOC vehicles procured with state funds but abandoned for a long period of time, and parked within the premises of the National Security Ministry.
Mr. Kudah was assaulted by several officers of the Ministry of National Security after his arrest.
On the same day, armed operatives of the National Security Ministry stormed the premises of Citi FM in an attempt to arrest another reporter, Ms. Zoe Abu-Baidoo Addo, for allegedly receiving the said pictures and videos electronically from Mr. Kudah.
The dastardly act by operatives of the National Security Ministry has been widely condemned with several groups calling on the officials involved to be sanctioned.
CDD-Ghana condemns assault, raid
The civil society organisation in its statement took on the National Security Ministry for the assault and the raid of Citi FM.
“CDD-Ghana condemns the armed invasion of the station’s premises and the attempted arrest of its
reporters without regard to the arrest procedure prescribed by law which outlaws the arrest of persons in such situations without a court warrant and caution. The Center also condemns the reported assault of Mr. Kudah by operatives of the National Security Ministry while he was held in custody. This incident, which follows numerous cases of assault on journalists by members of security agencies in the recent past, demonstrates a propensity of law enforcement officers to assault journalists with impunity and complete disregard for rights and freedoms of journalists in the pursuit of their constitutional duty,” CDD-Ghana added in the statement.
CDD-Ghana also insisted that Mr. Kudah did no wrong in trying to use surreptitious means to bring to the fore the issue of the abandoned MASLOC vehicles.
“The suggestion that a journalist using surreptitious means to uncover and expose wrongdoing is unethical and therefore warrants brutal assault by National Security operatives is as absurd as it is undemocratic. The National Security Ministry, a public institution, cannot be immune to public scrutiny and transparency in its operations.”