The past few days have been bad for some Ghanaian journalists as the bear the brunt of peeved individuals in the course of duty. As we deal with Baffour Djan’s assault on a journalist over the weekend we now add this to the discussions. Adom FM’s Afia Pokua and two other journalists were Thursday afternoon brutalised by the Manager of the National Health Insurance Scheme at Ablekuma in Accra.
The three journalists were physically assaulted at Ablekuma, Flamingo- ZongoJunction.
Nana Sefa, a reporter with the station, had gone there to report on the frustrations and complaints of persons who had been queueing since 3am to go through biometric registration, but had his mobile phone confiscated by Mr. Israel Kwame Laryeah, the Scheme Manager of the NHIS there.
Mr Laryeah detained the reporter, insisting he would only release him if his Editor came there.
But things took a different turn when Afia Pokua also known as ‘Vim Lady’ got there in the company of another reporter, Kofi Assan.
According to Kofi Assan, the Scheme Manager released Nana Sefa after he and Afia intervened.
But the journalists walked out of the Manager’s office to a hostile crowd which accused the young reporter of going to hide in the Manager’s office, leaving them to their fate.
Attempts by the new editor, Afia, to explain things to them infuriated Mr. Laryeah who pounced on her and assaulted her badly after they were bundled by the officials, while they sustained visible injuries.
Hassan said he received severe beatings too when he tried to defend his editor.
He said his clothes were torn in the ensuing scuffle.
Afia Pokua’s bruised right thigh.
Meanwhile, Communications Manager for the NHIA, Serlorm Adornoo in an interview with Myjoyonline.com says, his outfit is yet to be briefed on the development and so could not comment on it.
This is the second time in less than a week that journalists from the Multimedia Group Limited have survived attacks in the hands of public officers.
Last Saturday, Felix Akunor, a driver with MultiTV and two journalists, Solomon Joojo Cobbinah and Festus Jackson Davies were arrested on the orders of the Mayor of Accra, Alfred Vanderpuije while covering a story on the plight of some displaced people at Mensah Guinea in Accra, following the demolition of their structures the previous day by city authorities.
They have been charged with offensive conduct.