The Minister of National Security, Albert Kan-Dapaah, has concluded that the conduct of four of its operatives against Citi News journalist Caleb Kudah, breached the ministry’s operating procedures.
The four have therefore been withdrawn from National Security and been sent to the institutions they were seconded from for further investigation and action.
The four comprise of the Director of Operations at the Ministry, Lt. Col. Frank Agyeman of the Ghana Armed Forces and three officers of the Ghana Police Service.
While Lt. Col. Agyeman is to report to the Chief of Defence Staff for further probe and appropriate sanctions, the three officers are to be investigated by the Ghana Police Service and possibly face disciplinary action.
This in contained in a statement issued Friday, May 21, 2021 and signed by the Minister, Albert Kan-Dapaah.
The Minister had commissioned an investigation into the assault on Caleb Kudah and the raid on Citi FM and Citi TV by National Security officers following Caleb’s arrest for allegedly filming some abandoned MASLOC vehicles on the premises of the Ministry.
The four apparently assaulted Caleb for hours during interrogation, including many slaps and a kick in the groin. They also stormed the premises of Citi FM with guns in search of another journalist, Zoe Abu Baidoo, who Caleb had alleged sent the videos to on WhatsApp.
The statement noted that while Caleb Kudah’s entry into the National Security premises was found to be “unlawful”, the conduct of the officers was also found to be “inappropriate” and a contravention of the Ministry’s standard operating procedures.
Mr. Caleb Kudah was arrested at the National Security Ministry on May 11, 2021, for filming abandoned MASLOC vehicles parked at the premises of the Ministry.
He was at the Ministry to verify a claim by an official of MASLOC that all the cars procured by the agency had been given out.
This was after Caleb Kudah had complained about the wastage of public funds on social media.
Caleb filmed the vehicles and sent the videos to his colleague, Zoe Abu-Baidoo Addo.
But Caleb was arrest and a team of seven heavily-armed National Security operatives subsequently stormed the premises of Citi FM to go arrest Zoe Abu-Baidoo Addo.
Zoe was soon let go, but the kept Caleb for hours for a supposed interrogation after the videos had been found and deleted.
Upon his release, Caleb Kudah alleged in an interview on Citi TV that he was slapped several times by the security officers, and Lt. Col. Agyeman kicked him in the groin.
Citi FM/Citi TV CEO, Samuel Atta Mensah described Lt. Col. Agyeman as a disgrace to National Security and called for his immediate removal from office.
Several organizations including civil society organizations and political parties condemned the action of the National Security operatives and called for investigations and for reforms in the national security setup.
It was on the basis of the calls that the Ministry of National Security conducted the investigations and has now initiated the process to sanction the officers in question.
Meanwhile, the Management of Citi FM/Citi TV have also petitioned the National Media Commission to probe the incident and get justice for the journalist and the media house.
Citi FM/Citi TV also petitioned a number of agencies including the Christian Council and the Ghana Bar Association.
Renowned Human Right lawyer and MP for Madina, Francis Xavier Sosu has said that by law, the journalists deserve to be compensated by the state for the way they were handled.