Ken Ashigbey

The Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Chamber of Telecommunications has advised media owners and practitioners to seek help from international bodies to investigate recent attacks by state agencies.

Speaking on Newsfile Saturday, Mr Ken Ashigbey, who is former Chief Operating Officer of the Multimedia Group Ltd (Multi TV), noted that state agencies have been unable to probe cases of assault on journalists brought before them.

“One of the things we should be seeking to do is to start elevating this conversation from just the civil suit and going to the West African Court. We have seen it happen in The Gambia. We need to start elevating it,” he told host, Samson Lardy Anyenini.

“So if you have a situation where Latif is assaulted by a state institution and Pious was shot by a national security operative, we need to start saying that if it will not be dealt with nationally, let’s go internationally and then it would force our national body to start dealing with this situation,” he stated.

According to him, pursuing this direction would serve as a wake-up call to state institutions that they should consider these concerns as a priority and ensure justice is served to the victims.

 “We should be interested in the output of these things. You will find out that in 99. 9 percent of the cases, nothing comes out of that. It is a way to tell you that just keep quiet because when you follow up they will tell you that they are investigating.

His comments follow the arrest and release of Citi FM journalists, Caleb Kudah and Zoe Abu-Baidoo for filming and disseminating video footage taken at the National Security premises without permission, and the allegations leveled against the National Security Operatives regarding assault.

Touching on the subject of ethics, Mr Ashigbey is of the belief that the actions taken by Caleb Kudah to ensure state resources are fully utilised was in the interest of the general public.

He, therefore, urged the media to ensure the matter regarding the “abandoned vehicles” is fully addressed.

On the accusations leveled against the National Security, he joined the calls for an independent body of inquiry to probe the issues of assault as claimed by Caleb Kudah.

“I think it is in the interest of Ghana that this investigation is done by an independent body. I think that organizations such as Parliament should look into this, CHRAJ should also look into this. But it is important National Security elects an independent body to completely look into this,” he said.

He noted that in the past, efforts by state institutions to investigate themselves have borne no fruit. He, therefore, suggested that Parliament and CHRAJ be at the forefront of this investigation.

Meanwhile, the Ranking Member on the Parliamentary Select Committee on Defence and Interior in an interview on Joy FM has indicated that Parliament will probe the alleged assault to ensure that matters regarding transparency and accountability are adequately addressed.

“So whether the National Security Ministry itself investigates the manner of arrest of the Citi FM journalists or not, Parliament will not be derelict. We would also carry out our own investigation and establish the truth or otherwise of the allegations that we have all heard and are talking about,” James Agalga stated.