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13.03.2007 General News

NPP Is Scared Of Me - Jerry Rawlings

By independent

Former President Jerry John Rawlings, whose prospected interview with an Accra-based private radio station, Peace FM, failed to air yesterday due to technical hitches has said, “I did not know that the NPP government is scared of me.”

Speaking to The Independent on the disappointment over the inability of the machines to function yesterday, Mr Victor Smith, Special Aide to former President Rawlings said, it is highly probable that the technical hitch was orchestrated by external forces, which he said categorically are agents of the national administration. He said, he had information from Peace FM over the weekend that there were attempts by government to have the interview with the former president postponed to a later date but Peace FM indicated that it would be difficult to do that, since it had already promoted the said programme, and the postponement might create the wrong impressions on the minds of Ghanaians.

Mr Victor Smith told The Independent that the former president was ready for the interview and that the host of Peace FM's Kokrokoo morning show, Kwame Sefa Kayi, and his team were ready at the Ridge residence of the former president, but were all knocked off by the technical hitch. The Special Aide said the interview was very important because President John Agyekum had on the same radio network made certain accusations against former president Rawlings, which were incorrect and as such he needed to react to them. He said it was also important that the same platform is used to refute those accusations and to set the records straight.

According to Mr Victor Smith, Peace FM's technical team, including the chief technical officer, had okkayed the network that it was ready to take off only to be disappointed by the hitch which disrupted the programme on the morning of yesterday. To Mr Smith, what the government did yesterday has the potential of killing press freedom in the country. He therefore called on government to desist from indulging in acts that might not augur well for press freedom in the country. He called on the National Communications Authority (NCA) to assert its authority and to intensify its supervisory role in future so as to prevent anybody from interfering with press freedom in the country.