Take swift action against Owusu Bempah’s men for attacking Journalists-GJA demands

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    The Ghana Journalist Association(GJA) is demanding a swift action to be taken against Church members of Rev.Owusu Bempah for attacking journalists on Monday, September 13, 2021, at the premises of an Accra High Court.

    According to the GJA, the well-muscled men prevented Journalists with impunity from gaining access to the courtroom to carry out their duties.

    “The Ghanaian media community is once again enduring excruciating pain following the inglorious attacks perpetrated by loyalists of the Head Pastor of Glorious Word Power Ministries International, Rev Isaac Owusu Bempah at the premises of an Accra High court where he is standing trial for alleged assault and other offenses,”it said.

    “With brazen impunity, well-muscled men of the church reportedly prevented the court reporters from gaining access to the room to perform their legitimate duty and visited mayhem on those who dared them. All this happened at the citadel of justice,”it added.

    This was disclosed in a statement signed by the outgoing president of the Association, Mr.Affail Monney.

    The GJA further condemned the action, describing it as an affront to press freedom. It, therefore, demanded action to be taken against the men.

    “With all the vehemence it can muster, the GJA condemns the latest desecration of the rights of journalists and affront of press freedom and demands swift justice against the uncouth men of Owusu Bempah,”it indicated.

    Below is the full statement:

    NEWS RELEASE

    GJA DEMANDS SWIFT ACTION AGAINST OWUSU BEMPAH’S MEN FOR ATTACKING JOURNALISTS

    The Ghanaian media community is once again enduring excruciating pain following the inglorious attacks perpetrated by loyalists of the Head Pastor of Glorious Word Power Ministries International, Rev Isaac Owusu Bempah at the premises of an Accra High court where he is standing trial for alleged assault and other offenses.

    With brazen impunity, well- muscled men of the church reportedly prevented the court reporters from gaining access to the room to perform their legitimate duty and visited mayhem on those who dared them. All this happened at the citadel of justice.

    With all the vehemence it can muster, the GJA condemns the latest desecration of the rights of journalists and affront of press freedom and demands swift justice against the uncouth men of Owusu Bempah.

    While we welcome the apology of the Police Administration and assurance of future protection for journalists, the GJA principally holds the view that the timely gesture of the rebranded Ghana Police does not and should not absolve the offenders from tasting the biting edge of the law as articulated by Article 17(1) of the Constitution which simply says no one is above the law.

    On Friday, March 15, 2019, Owusu Bempah stormed the premises of Radio XYZ in the company of four gun wielding thugs in search of a radio presenter at the station. In the process, the administrator and staff of the station were molested. Nothing punitive happened to Owusu Bempah. On December 13, 2018, the same man of God had apparently been driven by red hot anger to vandalize equipment at Hot FM. He walked a free man thereafter. It is needless to note that Owusu Bempah and his followers did and said anything with careless abandon and naked impunity until the air of untouchability surrounding them was punctured with the latest arrest.

    While the landmark trial travels its full throttle, we urge the law and order community not to allow the latest attacks against journalists to be overshadowed by the dominant case or swept under the carpet. Justice must manifestly and expeditiously be done the victims to amplify the message that no one is indeed above the law.

    SIGNED
    Affail Monney.​​​​14th September, 2021

    The Ghana Police Service has meanwhile apologized to the media for the above occurrence at the court premises.

    In a statement signed by AG.Dir. General, Public Affairs, ACP Kwesi Fori, the Police Service indicated that a team is currently studying the footage and will take the necessary action against the perpetrators.

    It however apologized unreservedly for the inconvenience.