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The Dean of the Judicial Press Corps, Wilberforce Asare, has said full recognition of the corps will help prevent harassment of reporters covering court proceedings.
Speaking after reporters were heckled and prevented from entering a courtroom in Accra where the Head Pastor of the Glorious Word Power Ministries International, Rev. Isaac Owusu Bempah, was arraigned, Mr. Asare said they have better options in mind than boycotting court proceedings.
“If we go on a boycott, it means the people of Ghana will be starved of information coming from our courts, so that is not a direction that I will prefer we take,” he said on Eyewitness News.
“The best thing we need to do now is to beef up the relationship and make sure we are recognised as a press corps,” Mr. Asare added.
After the Monday incident with Rev. Bempah’s supporters, Mr. Asare said the current situation presents reporters assigned to the judiciary with an opportunity to push for legitimacy.
“With these happenings, it gives us another window of opportunity to go back to the communications directorate of the Judicial Service and to see how best we can complete these processes so that the Judicial Press Corps will be recognised by the judicial service itself so that some of these things will not come up in the future.”
The Ghana Police Service has since apologised to journalists who were harassed by supporters of Rev. Bempah.
The Ghana Journalists Association also responded to the incident and called for swift action against supporters of Rev. Bempah who heckled the reporters at the Circuit Court in Accra.
It welcomed the apology from the Ghana Police Service, but insisted that its officers found culpable should be made to face the law.