Centre for Journalism and Media Institute (CJMI) has vehemently condemned the invasion of United Television (UTV) studios by some thugs from the New Patriotic Party (NPP) on Saturday, October,7,2023. According to the CJMI, any action that threatens the independence and safety of journalists undermines the principles upon which a just and open society is built.
In a press statement, Center for Journalism and Media Institute noted that the purported letter written to Despite Media Group by the New Patriotic Party (NPP), which formed the bases of the misunderstanding, should be regarded as an attack on the media, infringing on the rights of the media as gatekeeper.
“No individual, groups or institutions has the right to reform or dictate to any media organization on the trend of media contents provided it conforms to the laws of the state.” the statement noted.
The statement further noted that the invasion of United television’s studio to interrupt and physically attack panelists of United Showbiz by these thugs, does not only jeopardize the safety and well-being of dedicated journalists but also undermine the public’s right to access information and hold those in power accountable.
“A free and independent media plays a vital role in any democratic society by providing a platform for diverse voices, fostering transparency, and facilitating public discourse. Journalists in Ghana have a long history of upholding these principles and providing the public with essential information, often at great personal risk.” The statement added
Centre for Journalism and Media Institute (CJMI) further called on all relevant authorities, including the Ghanaian government and law enforcement agencies, to thoroughly investigate these attacks and ensure that those responsible are held accountable for their actions.
“It is imperative that Ghana takes immediate steps to protect journalists and create an environment where the media can operate freely and without fear.”
CJMI also urged civil society organizations, human rights advocates, and the international community to stand in solidarity with Ghana’s media professionals and support their efforts to report the truth and uphold the principles of democracy and that the Centre remains committed to promoting and defending press freedom in Africa.