-Journalist Picked Up over President’s Wife “Land Grab”.

The Akufo Addo administration’s rule of terror continues unabated as another journalist, Kwabena Bobbie Ansah of Class Media Group (CMG) is ambushed and arrested by security agents.

Ansah who is the host of ‘The Citizen Show’ on Accra FM, was picked up on Thursday, February 10, 2022, like a criminal for his posts on Facebook and for exposing a reported land grabbing activity of the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo Addo.

The tyrannical actions of the administration, whose bidding the security agencies undertakes, are gradually reintroducing the repealed criminal libel law.

Whatsup News has intercepted a letter written to CMG on January 31, 2022, by the CID of the Cantonments Police Command. In the letter signed by one Frikyi Apeatu Adabo, it stated clearly that Ansah was being hounded for claiming the First Lady had stolen the AU Village land close to the airport.

“The Cantonments Divisional Criminal Investigation Department is investigating a case of alleged fraudulent acquisition of Government lands at the AU Village by H/E Rebecca Akuffo-Addo which was discussed on “Citizen Show” hosted by Kwabena Bobie Ansah of Accra FM,” stated the Cantonment CID.

Whatsup News has gathered that the Cantonments Police Command has been turned into an elite command that strictly conducts witch-hunting for the Flagstaff House. Many of the backdoor criminal libel and sedition cases of journalists and other opinion leaders are undertaken by the SWAT unit of the police station and charges are processed from there.

Meanwhile, Bobbie Ansah’s free speech predicament has been compounded by his Facebook critic of the judiciary, Ansah wrote that the “current judiciary is corrupt and made up of crooks and criminals led by a corrupt Chief Justice who’s struggling to purge himself of a $5 million thievery allegation”.

It is unclear why that statement would constitute a crime against the judiciary, especially when it is a factual statement. The Judiciary, the police and other state agencies have consistently topped the list in the popular Afrobarometer, as the most corrupt institutions in Ghana.

Besides, a few years ago, renowned Ghanaian undercover investigative journalist, Anas Aremeyaw Anas exposed massive corruption in the judiciary, where dozens of judges were captured live on camera receiving cash bribes and other bribes such as goats and plantain bundles to manipulate cases.

If that is the reason, for Ansah’s arrest, it means he was being prosecuted for stating the obvious.

Bobbie Ansah is the third popular broadcaster who has been arrested by security agents this year. About two have been brutalised while others have been hounded by agents of the government for daring to criticise the Akufo Addo administration.

These attacks on the media come close in the heels of similar sustained attacks last year, where several journalists, including the Editor-in-Chief of the Whatsup News e-newspaper, were picked up for allegedly reporting false news.

As it turned out, these “false news” allegations were a subjective conclusion by the regime and the security agencies.

Aside from the hounding of journalists, other critical voices, such as those of think tanks have been silenced or criminalised.

The latest was when the Police in Teshie on Wednesday detained Mensah Thompson, the Executive Director of the Alliance for Social Equity and Public Accountability (ASEPA).

He was charged for “publication of false news”. Mr. Mensah Thompson had been detained after he had honored an invitation by the Police in connection to a complaint by the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) in regards to his claims that President Akufo-Addo had traveled with family and friends on a presidential jet for shopping in the UK. Mensah Thompson has since retracted and apologised for the claim though.

Meanwhile, US-Based law Professor, Kwaku Asare has reaffirmed the concerns that the Akufo Addo administration had sneaked in the repealed criminal libel and sedition laws which were vestiges of the authoritarian regimes in the past.

Professor Asare questioned, “whether the criminal libel laws have made a comeback through the backdoor.”

“Gogo calls on the police, prosecutors and judges to halt the hostile attack on the media and the right to free expression. People who feel defamed have a course of action in tort…We have come too far to be taken back to the dark days,” Professor Asare said in a recent Facebook post.

On August 2, 2001, ex-President John Agyekum Kufour gave his assent to the repeal of the criminal libel law and the laws of sedition which was a vestige of Ghana’s authoritarian past where citizens were brutally tortured or put on trial for saying things that the political leadership felt was making them “unpopular”.

Incidentally, President Akufo Addo was one of the key advocates for the repeal of the law when he was in opposition at the time. His government has ironically been the most supportive of the return of this criminal code that has resulted in countless attacks on free speech in Ghana under his regime.

Source: whatsupnewsghana.com

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