In response to an inciting broadcast, Onua Radio/TV and Captain Smart have received a final warning from the National Media Commission (NMC).
The NMC claimed in a news release on Tuesday, November 14, 2023, that Captain Smart had called the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS) and other Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) commanders “beasts” in a recent broadcast.
The NMC went on to say that Captain Smart had made allegations about these officials embezzling money intended for soldiers participating in peacekeeping missions, but he had provided no proof to back up his allegations.
The broadcast was deemed “dangerous” and “unprofessional” by the NMC. Additionally, it mentioned that Onua Radio/TV had been forewarned by it in December 2022 about encouraging violence against the state, but the station had done nothing to address the matter.
The NMC gave Onua Radio/TV and Captain Smart until November 19, 2023, to:
– Withdraw the insults and apologize to the CDS and his commanders
– Apologize to the Ghanaian public for the use of vulgar language
– Put in measures to stop the dangerous behaviour of the station and improve the station’s capacity for regulatory compliance
Below is the full statement
FINAL CAUTION AGAINST INCITEFUL BROADCAST
Last week, your station carried an inciteful broadcast in which Captain Smart directly insulted the Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS) and other Commanders of the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF) as “beasts.” He claimed the officers embezzle monies meant for soldiers on peacekeeping operations but offered no evidence to back his claims.
This was as dangerous as it was unprofessional.
You may recall that on December 8, 2022, we drew your attention to the use of your station to promote violence against the state and your management’s lack of capacity to address same. This was after we had written to your management on December 2, 2022.
It is of concern to us that the behaviour persists after we drew the board’s attention. We are now compelled to come to the board again as a way of giving the company a last opportunity for internal gatekeeping.
We ask that you put in measures to stop the dangerous behaviour of the station and improve the station’s capacity for regulatory compliance. We also ask the station to withdraw the insults and apologise to the CDS and his commanders. We further ask the station to apologise to the Ghanaian public for the use of vulgar language.
We expect you to undertake the above and present evidence of same to us before November 19, 2023 after which date you may hear further from the Commission.