The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) has condemned the inhumane treatment meted out to journalists who covered Ghana’s 59th Independence Day anniversary parade. The reporters were packed in a tipper truck which would enable them get close enough to take photos and video shots of President Mahama when he was inspecting the parade and later lighting the perpetual flame during the event at the Black Star Square.
Journalists in the country have since been ridiculed over the incident after the photos went viral on social media The GJA in a statement described the move as “demeaning and crude.”
“The Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) wishes to register strong reservations with the authorities who were in charge of media relations at the parade, held at the Black Star Square to commemorate Ghana’s 59 Independence anniversary.
We unequivocally condemn the way photojournalists were made to climb into the bucket of a tipper truck with a monkey ladder, in order to cover the event and consider this not only most demeaning but crude,” a statement signed by General Secretary of GJA, Dave Agbenu added. It stated that “the rough arrangement was carried out in the full glare of our foreign guests, smacking a lack of respect for local media personnel.”
“It also portrayed a continuous lack of concern for the safety and security of media personnel in the line of duty. We wonder why those in charge of media relations for the event did not simply consider erecting a riser for the local photojournalists, both male and females, just as they had done for their foreign counterparts,” the statement added. GJA further charged all media personnel “to resist any such arrangement they consider a danger to their life and inimical to their operations, security and safety.”
“We wish to suggest that in the planning of such national events, stakeholders must be consulted on issues that boarder on their operations,” the statement added.