The Minority in Parliament has declared full support for the March for Free Expression and proclaimed its participation to help confront and defeat the “cowardly forces of oppression and tyranny.”
According to the Minority, Ghanaians must stand up to be counted in this defining moment of history and protect the fundamental human rights of free speech and freedom and independence of the media as guaranteed by the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.
Hon. Haruna Iddrisu who issued a statement indicated the Minority will join progressive forces to ensure the sinister but determined erosion of constitutional rights by the Akufo-Addo administration is defeated.
The March for Free Expression’ organized by the Free Media Vanguards (FMV) and its allies will hit the streets of Accra tomorrow Tuesday, 21st May, 2019.
The Minority leader observed the current fascist tendencies of the Akufo-Addo Government, which has created an atmosphere of fear, impunity and arbitrariness requires an unwavering and formidable resistance from all those who believe in true democracy and constitutionalism.
The Minority, he said, is astonished the President who styles himself as a human rights champion, appeared before the courts in 1996/97 and argued in sharp contrast against the very things he and his political appointees at the National Communication Authority (NCA) are currently engaged in.
He said, “We reiterate our absolute condemnation of the coordinated and simultaneous May 9, 2019 Gestapo-style raid of Radio Gold and Radio XYZ led by state security operatives armed to the teeth at a time both stations were broadcasting live a press conference by the NDC Council of Elders to protest intimidation and harassment of our National Chairman, Samuel Ofosu Ampofo.”
“The Minority, similarly, denounces the crude and selective closure of other radio stations across the country in conduct reminiscent of how brutal dictators operate.”
He argued that nowhere in the June 18, 2018 decision of the Electronic Communications Tribunal in the case of Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association versus the NCA was such an action recommended contrary to dubious claims of the NCA, which was rather the losing party.
The Minority leader decried current threats on journalists including Manasseh Azuri Awuni and Edward Adeti who are forced to run for their lives because they did stories critical of the Akufo-Addo government.
He stated, “The unresolved assassination of Ahmed Hussein-Suale after an NPP MP exposed his identity and the increasing cases of attacks on journalists, which culminated in Ghana losing its number one place as the freest country for the media in Africa and dropping on the World Press Freedom Index requires that all well meaning Ghanaians rise up to demand an end to this creeping dictatorship,” he stated.
Haruna Iddrisu commended the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA), Ghana Independent Broadcasters Association, the Media Foundation for West Africa and all those who boldly condemn orchestrated attacks on media freedom and urged Ghanaians to join the march to guarantee media freedom and free expression in Ghana.