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19.08.2004 General News

"The Analyst " Distances Itself From Content Of Advert

By The Analyst (Monrovia)
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The Management of The Analyst newspaper has clarified that its editorial staff has no input in the advertisement carried in the Friday, August 13, 2004 edition of the paper titled, "Ghana's Stability Threatens as Opposition Leaders Recruit in the West African Region."
The Analyst's Managing Editor, Stanley Seakor, said upon receiving the advertisement, and realizing its security implication, the paper's news desk contacted the Ghanaian Embassy in Monrovia for comment or advice or both.
When the news desk did not succeed, Mr. Seakor contacted Ambassador Kwami Amoah-Awua who, having expressed interest in the issue, requested a hardcopy of the supplement.
"Shortly after that we gave the hardcopy to the Ambassador's emissary who took it and returned it half an hour later, to our astonishment, without comment or advice," Mr. Seakor said.
According to him, the return of the hardcopy of the advertisement without comment or advice suggested to the paper's advertisement department that it was save to run it.
"Besides that, we felt obliged to the Ghanaian public and the ECOWAS subregion to run the advertisement because we believe that the publication would trigger investigation that will avert any such plan if it really did exist," Mr. Seakor noted.
Meanwhile Mr. Seakor has addressed the Ghanaian public on the yesterday morning edition of the Joy FM Talk Show in Accra live via telephone.
He used the opportunity to clarify misconception circulating in the Ghanaian press about the origin and nature of the publication. He is also expected to address the Ghanaian public in another radio talk show today.
In response to a studio moderator's question during yesterday's talk show, Mr. Seakor reiterated the paper's position that the advertisement did not originate with The Analyst but that it was run principally to alert the Ghanaian authority about what is purported to have been planned and not necessarily for the truism of content.
It may recalled that The Analyst run an advertisement in which it was claimed that opposition figures in Ghana were planning subversive activities against the incumbent government of President John Kuffour.
Given that the information in the advertisement would not be denied nor verified by the Ghanaian Embassy near Monrovia, the paper attached "Supplement," indicating that the article was not a news story written by the paper's reporter and an Editor's Note that read: "The content of this article does not represent the opinion of The Analyst and remains an issue for verification." Meanwhile Mr. Seakor has cautioned advertisers against fielding information that are yet to be verified and called on the Ghanaian public not to take the advertisement's content at face value since it is subject to verification by the Ghanaian authorities.
See below for the full text of the supplement titled: "GHANA'S STABILITY THREATENED AS OPPOSITION LEADERS RECRUIT IN THE WEST AFRICAN REGION" as it was published.
"SUPPLIMENT By Femi Oduah Intelligence information circulating in the West African Region indicates a potential threat against the Peace and Stability of the John Kuffuour's Administration in the Republic of Ghana.
According to information, Ghana's opposition leaders are massively recruiting mercenaries in the Ivory Coast, Togo, Senegal and Guinea to lead an attack on Ghana by August 20 or certainly before general elections. Already, two retired Ghanaian military officers including Kojo Jikata have been seen traveling in Ivory Coast, Conakry and Dakar.
The report further revealed that a leading member of the Ivorian Government has pledged support of arms to the insurgents and claim to have links with both retired and serving military officers in the Republic of Ghana.
Our sources told this paper that the insurgents are planning to launch surprise attacks, assassinations and terrorist activities on Ghana before the elections. The group has also been engaged in the spread of gossips in the corridors of power in the Ivory Coast, Guinea, Senegal, Togo and Liberia that Ghana is becoming too powerful and could resurrect the Khruma's ambition of making Ghana the most powerful nation and the nerve center of Africa's leadership.
They claim that the only way to stop President Kuffuour is to destroy the peace and sanity of Ghana by turning it to a war zone.
Reports indicate that attempts to recruit soldiers from Liberia proved futile as Liberians believe that Ghana has been a true friend of Liberia and has committed herself to peace and democracy in Liberia.
However, there are fears that Liberians in Ghana at the Budumbura Camp near Accra could be recruited.
There are already reports that some former Liberian warlords are in support. There is impeccable information that President Wade of the Republic of Senegal is actively supporting the opposition in their recruitment of mercenaries.
It can be recalled that West Africa became vulnerable to rebel activities when Charles Taylor organized arms rebellion against the NDPL Government headed by the late Samuel K. Doe through guerilla activities with the patronage of Ivory Coast, Burkina Faso, Sierra Leone, and Libya. Since Then, the Peace and stability of West Africa have become threatened and, like wild fire, some West African nations have fallen victim. According to analysts, something has to urgently be done to protect the peace and stability of African nations." Editor's note: The content of this article does not represent the opinion of The Analyst and remains an issue for verification.