ACCRA, March 7, 2017 – The Sports Writers Association of Ghana (SWAG), has condemned attacks on journalists by fans at Ghana Premier League centers this past weekend.
A statement from the secretariat of the Association described the latest attack on photojournalist Miss Senyuidzorm Adadevor, by fans of Accra Great Olympics during the fifth week league match as barbaric and irresponsible.
Senyuiedzorm Awusi Adadevor was prevented by Great Olympics from taking pictures at Accra Sports Stadium as a result of having previously published the photo of Bechem United coach Vincenzo Anesse being hit by a missile from Olympics fans.
Also on Matchday 5, journalists James Sowah and Felix Kwabena Romark were molested, assaulted and denied access to the media center. Eventually, they sat in the fans to run their live text commentary on social media.
“What is more worrying is the attack was supervised by a management member of the club, Mr Olloboi Commodore, who supported the act of the fans calling for the sack of the journalist, from the inner perimeter of the Stadium.A similar incident happened at Ɗormaa Ahenkro as Aduana played Hearts.
“SWAG is also saddened by the fact that some of these attacks on journalists were done in the full glare of security personal, club owners and officials, who sometimes watched on whilst journalists are beaten for carrying out their basic functions.
“Such acts will not in any way help in the development and promotion of the league, especially at these trying moments, when the league is bereft of corporate sponsorship.
“We can only attract the needed sponsorship to support clubs, if supporters and officials desist from such acts.” The statement noted.
The statement said, journalists must be given the needed protection and conducive environment to discharge their duties without fear or favour.
“All stakeholders especially the security must ensure media personal are given adequate protection, before during and after match to ensure our safety and security,” the statement said.
The statement called on the Ghana Football Association (GFA) to take severe actions against supporters of clubs that attack journalist in their duty lines and warned that should these incidents occur again, SWAG will not hesitate to go at all lengths and react including but not limiting to asking journalists and media houses to boycott all activities of the league.