09.05.2022 Feature Article

Freedom Of Speech Not Freedom To Lie!

Freedom Of Speech Not Freedom To Lie!
09.05.2022 LISTEN

Another Press Freedom Ranking has been released and the anti-Nana Dee government journalists are beside themselves with joy because the government did not do well in the rankings. They are making most of the situation as they shout their voices hoarse proclaiming to the world that media freedom in Asomdwekrom is under attack. But we know better, don’t we?

Kokomlemle CNN, for instance, empanelled as many as seven anti-Nana Dee government journalists to discuss the latest rankings. How they tongue-lashed the government! But all will be in vain because not even 0.2% of the electorate will make a voting decision based on a fictitional attack on freedom of speech.

It is an open secret that the likes of Manasseh Azure-Awuni and Braimah Sulemana were among those who provided data to the ranking body. Knowing their hatred for the Nana Dee government, one shouldn’t be surprised that Asomdwekrom has received such low ranking.

Yes, the low ranking is not good for the image of the current government, but it is equally not good for the media practitioners themselves. For it is no secret that competence is not the main criteria for employing workers in the media space.

Did I see you shake your head? Well, did we not see slay queens with little ability to analyse issues become hosts of political talk shows on television? Have we not seen half-baked journalists given morning shows on television because of their shouting capabilities and the ability to incite their audience to anger?

One such slay-queen-turned-journalist from the stables of GHOne was heard screaming that she had spoken to someone in government who had confessed to government having attack dogs it unleashes on social media to attack journalists. How does she expect government communicators to allow such a frivolous claim to go without a rebuttal?

I find it reprehensible for her to think she has the right to speak her mind but party communicators don’t have same right. She and her kind seem to think that journalists are a special breed whose opinions are sacrosanct and must not be challenged. If the critical rebuttal to their frivolous and malicious claims is what makes them think freedom of speech is under attack, then their cry will be in vain.

Did I hear you ask why? The answer is simple: Just as they have the right to express their views on happenings in government, so do others too have the right to express a counter opinion. Indeed, party communicators cannot sit aloof and watch as their party is being torn apart.

If exposing their lies and punching holes in their Kwaku Ananse stories would make them lie to their international partners for them to give Asomdwekrom such low ratings, then Asomdwekrom will always be ranked low because party and government communicators are not ready to sit on the fence.

Take Manasseh, for instance, his ‘wahala’ with this government started after his mischievous ‘Militia in the heart of the city’ documentary. He was peeved because the Nana Dee government had questioned his professional integrity by dragging him to the National Media Commission (NMC). The NMC affirmed government’s position and asked Manasseh to apologise for the deception.

Soon after, he cooked a Kwaku Ananse story about his life being in danger and was flown to South Africa. He returned few days later and has since not seen anything good from this government. How can such a bloke’s claim of attack on press freedom be taken seriously?

Isn’t it ironic that he has not had even a scratch on his body although he continues to be vociferous in his campaign against the so-called intolerant government? I wish he, Captain Smart, Mugabe Maase and their kind were in Burkina Faso to try their tomfooleric journalism and see how ‘tolerant’ the military junta would be!

By the way, I heard Afia Pokua speak last Saturday and was surprised she didn’t mention it was her colleagues who recently threatened and made her go through mental stress and public humiliation, and not politicians. If only our journalists would frantically look in their clothes for the animal lurking to give them a bite!

See you next week for another interesting konkonsa, Deo volente!

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