Ghana ALERT: Parliament summons radio host, editor

Ahmed at the Committee hearing. Credit:
Ahmed at the Committee hearing. Credit:

On June 25, 2015, Abubakar Ahmed, popularly known Blakk Rasta, a musician and radio host on privately-owned Hitz FM in Accra and Ken Kuranchie, editor of the Daily Searchlight newspaper appeared before the Privileges Committee of Ghana’s Parliament.

The MFWA’s correspondent in Ghana reported on June 22, the Speaker of Parliament summoned Ahmed for comments he made on his radio show on June 16. He was reported to have said over 80% of members of Ghana’s parliament smoke marijuana .While Kuranchie was summoned to explain why his newspaper published the said comments in its June 17, 2015, edition.

At the hearing, Ahmed apologised to the Committee for his comments.

 “The utterances were unfortunate. If you check the interview, it was on something else, but this one came on the spur of the moment.” Ahmed told the Committee. “So I will like to apologise for those unfortunate remarks.”

Kuranchie also apologised for publishing the story and indicated that he culled the story from the website, however, removed the story after posting it.

Ebo Barton Odro, Deputy Speaker of Parliament and Chairperson of the Privileges Committee, said the Committee will sit and review the issue and announce its decision later.

Concerns have been recently expressed about increasing unprofessionalism, including the use of abusive language, in the Ghanaian media. The MFWA has indicated that the falling standards and growth in abusive language have catalysed a marked decrease in public support of the media.

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