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Issues MFWA slams chief who made journalist to kneel down in the sun for 3 hours

Larry Saint, who works with River FM in Wassa Akropong, was instructed to kneel in the sun for three hours after he criticized the paramount chief of the area, Omanhene Tetre Akuamoah Sekyim, for not doing enough to secure the interest of youth in the area.

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The Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) has condemned the abuse of a journalist in Wassa Akropong in the West Region by the traditional authorities in the area.

Larry Saint, who works with River FM in Wassa Akropong, was instructed to kneel in the sun for three hours after he criticized the paramount chief of the area, Omanhene Tetre Akuamoah Sekyim, for not doing enough to secure the interest of youth in the area.

READ MORE: Journalist kneels down in the sun for 3 hours after criticising chiefs

He is said to have posted a voice note on a Whatsapp platform for journalists that the chiefs were not doing enough to ensure the safety of the youth of the area against abuse by the Chinese.

The humiliated journalist was subsequently handed over to the police apparently for prosecution. However, Larry Saint has been released pending police’s next line of action.

The weird event happened following a demonstration by the youth of Wassa Akropong demanding that a Chinese national, Jiang Gen Hai, be handed to them for instant justice after he allegedly shot and killed an indigene last Friday.

Speaking on the matter Friday, the Executive Director of the MFWA, Sulemana Braimah, condemned the action of the chief. He also took the police to task for arresting the victim at the request of the chief.

“It is a regrettable development, and to know that the police acted the way they did is unfortunate.” Mr Braimah said.

He continued: “The journalist, and indeed any citizen for that matter, has a right under Ghana’s 1992 constitution and even under our traditional governance system, to express a critical opinion about public office holders including chiefs.

READ MORE: Riot in galamsey community after Chinese man kills Ghanaian

“Moreover, it is part of the traditional ethics of our elders and chiefs to turn a deaf ear to invectives aimed at them but not directly expressed in their presence. Omanhene Tetre Akuamoah Sekyim II’s action is therefore, not only at variance with this traditional code but also betrays his inability to tolerate criticism, which is a vital leadership quality.

“The MFWA views the Omanhene’s conduct as a flagrant violation of Larry Saint’s dignity as a human being and gross disrespect for journalists. We therefore condemn it unreservedly and call on all well-meaning Ghanaians to join the MFWA to ensure that this case of abuse of power is appropriately remedied.”

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