The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) has distanced itself from the attack on a Multimedia Group journalist by one of its activists, Hajia Fati.
Consequently, the NPP condemned its vociferous supporter for bringing the name of the party into disrepute.
The party in a statement issued yesterday to the media and signed by its General Secretary, John Boadu, assured journalists that, “it respects and cherishes the role of the media as partners in development.”
It indicated that “it does not condone any action intended to suppress press freedom and distanced itself from the act and condemned it unreservedly.”
Pressure has since been on the NPP to take action on its firebrand who attacked Adom FM’s broadcast journalist, Charity Sakyiwaa Awehenepa, last Friday.
Hajia Fati had stormed the party office ostensibly to stop suspended Vice Chair, Sammy Crabbe, from filing his nomination to contest the national chairmanship slot in the party’s upcoming congress.
“I got closer to her. I wanted to interview her so I took my phone out. I wanted to take a picture and so as soon as she turned, she looked at my face and asked me why I was taking pictures of her. I didn’t utter a word. She punched my mouth, and she almost took the phone from me,” Charity Sakyiwaa Awehenepa said.
Justifying her action on the journalist on the Joy FM Super Morning Show on Monday, May 7, 2018 Hajia Fati said, she thought the journalist was a supporter of the suspended official, adding that the journalist “looked like an onion seller.”
The journalist, who was deployed to report on the happenings there, told Joy FM the party’s firebrand slapped her on the mouth when she attempted to take a picture of the scene being created by the woman.
But, in a quick turn of events, the NPP said, “no journalist should feel intimidated and must continue to discharge his/her duties without fear.”
“Though the New Patriotic Party has already begun an internal enquiry into the alleged incident, we will also cooperate with other agencies investigating same,” John Boadu in the statement said.
Meanwhile lawyer for the embattled NPP activist, who apparently is the deputy Secretary General of the party, Nana Obiri Boahen, has described the act by his client as “unfortunate and regrettable.”
Nana Obiri Boahen consequently apologised to the journalist on behalf of his client.
Speaking on some media platforms yesterday, Mr Obiri Boahen said: “In all honesty, what happened was unfortunate, and regrettable.”
He added: “Apart from being her lawyer, we have also been friends, so, I will apologise to the journalist who was attacked and to all Ghanaian journalists. It is rather unfortunate this happened and we regret it.”
Story: Atta KWAKU BOADI
Writer’s email: firstname.lastname@example.org