The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has advised the Ada Traditional Council not to take the law into their own hands by imposing restrictions on Radio Ada and its reporters from covering important events.
It has also cautioned Radio Ada and its staff to refrain from using insulting or unacceptable language in the discharge of their duties.
The GJA gave caution following the ban on the station and its reporters from covering the Asafotufiami, the festival of the Chiefs and People of the Ada Traditional Area by the Ada Traditional Council.
Since its establishment 24 years ago, Radio Ada has covered Asafotufiami every year, but this year, for the first time in its history, it was denied its status at the celebration of Asafotufiami.
Prior to this year’s Asafotufiami, the Ada Traditional Council in a letter stated that Radio Ada will not be allowed to mount a stage at Ada Asafotufiami Park.
Also, Neneme will not grant interviews to journalists from Radio Ada.
It also stated that Noah Dameh, Serwah Warri, and Amanor Dzeagu who happen to be hosts of programmes with unrefined language towards Neneme were not to be seen at the park in Radio Ada paraphernalia.
According to Ada Traditional Council, the aforementioned used “insulting” and “disrespectful” language while addressing the leasing of the Songhor Lagoon to an investor for the mining of salt.
They also cited the regular practice of the reporters mentioning the names of Neneme without according them their titles and also inciting the people to hoot at Neneme and call them names during a demonstration.
Addressing the issue at a press conference in Accra yesterday, August 11, 2022, the GJA President, Mr Albert Kwabena Dwumfour encouraged both the Ada Traditional Council and the management of Radio Ada to find amicable ways of resolving their differences.
“The GJA calls on the Ada Traditional Council not to take the law into their own hands and that it should endeavor to use the due process of law to address its concerns. The Council must also refrain from actions that have the tendency to endanger the lives of the radio station and its staff. We also advise Radio Ada and its staff to refrain from using insulting or unacceptable language in the discharge of their duties. They should endeavor to exhibit high professional standards at all times. We, however, encourage them to continue to discharge their constitutional mandate as provided in Article 162(5) of the 1992 Constitution to hold the responsibility and accountability of the government to the people of Ghana. They must continue to play the watchdog role of the media in the interest of the people,” he said.
Mr. Dwumfour continued, “We wish to encourage both the Ada Traditional Council and the management of Radio Ada to find amicable ways of resolving their differences. We urge them to consider each other as partners in development and work together to promote development in the area. The GJA is interested in seeing peace restored between the Ada Traditional Council and Radio Ada.”
Meanwhile, he said the matter has been discussed with the leadership of the Ghana Police Service and they have assured to provide full protection to the staff of Radio Ada.
“We have discussed the case of Ada Radio with the leadership of the Ghana Police Service who have assured us of full protection for the staff of Radio Ada to enable them to go about their normal duties. We believe calm will soon return to Ada so that development will also find space in the land through the vent provided by the media,” he added.