Yussif Abdul Ganiyu is General Manager of Zuria FM

Global news network, Deutsche Welle (DW), has written a terse letter to Information Minister, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, seeking justice for one its journalist who was allegedly assaulted by an army officer.

The journalist, Yussif Abdul Ganiyu, who is General Manager of DW’s partner station Zuria FM and a correspondent for DW’s Hausa programme, was allegedly verbally and physically assaulted by female soldier.

The letter, written by Head of DW’s Corporate Communications, Christoph Jumpelt, further alleged that the soldier even tried to arrest Mr Ganiyu.

“When Mr Ganiyu asked on what basis she wanted to arrest him, the soldier gave Zuria FM’s previous reporting on alleged misbehaviour of members of the military as the reason,” Mr Jumpelt said.

The female soldier who is alleged to have assaulted the reporter has been identified as 2nd Lt. Betrot Ampoma, who is attached to the Operation Covid Safety team enforcing the lockdown in Greater Kumasi.

The incident happened on April 5, at Akrem in the Asokore Mampong Municipality of the Ashanti Region, the German broadcaster stated.

“With this, Honorable Minister, I am kindly seeking your valued assistance in having this matter investigated and making the responsible persons accountable,” Christoph Jumpelt appealed to the Information Minister.

“We demand that all journalists in Ghana can freely exercise their professional duties. Freedom of expression and the freedom of the press must be ensured,” he stressed.

Mr Jumpelt’s letter has been reproduced in full below.

The Hon. Kojo Oppong Nkrumah

Minister of Information

of the Republic of Ghana

Accra

Ghana

Honorable Minister,

We would like to call your attention to an incident which occurred yesterday, April 5th, in the Akrem in the Asokore Mampong Municipality, involving Deutsche Welle’s reporter Mr. Yussif Abdul Ganiyu. Mr. Ganiyu is General Manager of our partner station Zuria FM and a correspondent for DW’s Hausa program.

Mr. Ganiyu confirmed to us what has already been reported by several Ghanaian media outlets. While recording an interview outside the St. Patrick Hotel in Kumasi, he was verbally attacked and then beaten by a female soldier. In the process, the soldier even tried to arrest Mr Ganiyu. When Mr. Ganiyu asked on what basis she wanted to arrest him, the soldier gave Zuria FM’s previous reporting on alleged misbehavior of members of the military as the reason. The soldier in question is 2nd Lt. Betrot Ampoma. She belongs to a unit of the military patrol team working on the enforcement of the anti-corona lockdown.

With this, Honorable Minister, I am kindly seeking your valued assistance in having this this matter investigated and making the responsible persons accountable. We demand that all journalists in Ghana can freely exercise their professional duties. Freedom of expression and the freedom of the press must be ensured.

I am looking forward to your response.

Yours sincerely,

Head of DW’s Corporate Communications, Christoph Jumpelt.

Head of Corporate Communications and Spokesperson

PR and Communications