United Pree for Development Network (UPDN), an umbrella organisation of Ghanaian journalists has described President Akufo-Addo’s statement as unwarranted attack on the press freedom.
Akufo-addo’s administration has come under serious criticism due to its attacks on journalists critical to his government.
A statement released in Accra by the association called on the government and the ruling party to desist from attacking journalists and media houses just because their discharging their constitutional mandate.
Below is the full statement:
UPDN CONDEMNS PRESIDENT AKUFO-ADDO’S OUTBREAK ON JOY FM’s SUPER MORNING SHOW DISCUSSION ON FREE SHS POLICY
We strongly condemn in no uncertain terms, the comment made by President Akufo-Addo on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show review of the implementation of the free SHS policy.
The President addressing a ceremony where an Honorary Doctorate Degree was conferred on him at the University of Cape Coast yesterday Saturday 29th May 2021 openly launched an attack on the radio programme meant to give political actors and authorities feedback and described the radio show as a spirited attack on the free SHS policy.
“A radio station is currently running a campaign against free SHS, during the last election I got the clear impression free SHS has been endorsed by all political parties and all we needed to do was to keep improving it, will a spirited defense of the free SHS policy constitute an attack on press freedom? I wonder, it cannot be that everyone has the right of reply except members of the government and officialdom…”
To us, this is a retrogressive approach to solving societal problems.
How can a review of the free SHS policy that gave opportunity to all stakeholders including the Ghana Education Service to respond to numerous complaints filed by Parents, Head Teachers, Students among others be a spirited campaign on the policy?
The attempt by politicians who vilify and denigrate credentials of media organizations and broadcasters who discuss challenges faced with government’s policies is uncalled for, and must stop immediately.
We respectfully request and encourages the Office of the President, Government appointees and New Patriotic Party (NPP) to refrain from naysaying, media attacks and pay much attention to current reaction and challenges faced by parents, teachers, headteachers and students for the successful execution of the policy.
OFFICE OF UNITED PRESS FOR DEVELOPMENT NETWORK, ACCRA GHANA
David Albert Quainoo
(International Relations Manager)
Kofi Asante Mensah