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It appears that the feud between the political show host on Metro TV, Paul Adom-Otchere, and Manasseh Azure Awuni will not end soon. Paul Adom-Otchere has taken on Manasseh Azure Awuni’s investigations against the then President of Ghana John Dramani Mahama, regarding a Ford Expedition SUV the former President received as a gift from a Burkinabè contractor.
Paul Adom-Otchere during Thursday, April 22, 2021, edition of his show, described the modus operandi of Manasseh Azure Awuni as journalism of “I catch you”.
“This journalism of I catch you, I catch you, I catch you, is not journalism. Journalism is an intellectual and scholarly exercise,” Adom-Otchere said.
He explained that journalism “is when you read the sectional address of the president and you read the budget of his finance minister and you find a contradiction, then we have a story. We don’t need to record anybody.” Investigative journalism, Adom-Otchere says, “is a much deeper work. It’s not hiding cameras on your body and I catch you, I catch you, I catch you. I recorded; I was filming; you were filming for what?”
He argued that when you listen to the response of John Dramani Mahama you would realize that the reporter failed in his analysis.
Speaking for the first time on the matter on Kofi TV in December 2020, John Dramani Mahama, indicated that the reportage was part of the propaganda championed by the opposition to cause his defeat in the 2016 elections.
Mahama explained, “I bought Toyota Landcruiser to the Chief Imam because I was supposed to travel with the Chief Imam to a function elsewhere and whilst we were about leaving, his vehicle broke down so we had to transport him in my car, so, I decided to purchase a new vehicle for the Chief Imam. I used my own money almost $100,000, bought… a brand new Landcruiser for the Chief Imam, so can I be bribed with a $50,000 Ford Expedition?”
He questioned further, “how can a vehicle which was supposed to be a bribe be presented to the Ghana Embassy in Burkina Faso?”
He went on, “the car was not even a brand-new vehicle, the person [Djibril Kanazoe] was a car dealer, normally when there is a new model of such vehicles…you decide to either sell it or something, this 2010 Ford model, the guy stated that he admires President Mahama so he decided to give the vehicle to the Embassy so that they present it to President Mahama.”
“The vehicle was added to the presidential pool, so when we were moving from the Castle to the Flagstaff House, I was informed of the vehicle; the guy registering the vehicle asked what to do with the vehicle because he thought it was my personal vehicle, I asked if the vehicle was presented to the presidency and they answered in the affirmative, so I asked them to put it in the pool,” Mahama told Kofi Adomah of Kofi TV.
Thus, Paul Adom-Otchere stated that, before one accuses the former President of accepting a bribe, he needs to ascertain the value of the bribe before he can accuse the president of accepting a bribe.
“How do you do a report like that and attribute this as a bribe?” he quizzed.
Adom-Otchere advised that journalists should err on the side of research, analysis, facts and not on the side of “I catch you, I catch you, I catch you, I was holding a microphone, my pen was recording…”
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