Stephen Atubiga (in suit) and to his left is Ken Kuranchie
The Volta Regional Executives of opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) have visited incarcerated editor of the Daily Searchlight newspaper, Kenneth Agyei Kuranchie at the Ho Central Prisons, where he is being held.
The senior journalist as well as was a National Democratic Congress’ communicator, Stephen Atubiga were sentenced to ten days and three days in prison respectively, over what the Supreme Court panel of judges hearing the election petition described as criminal contempt.
Initial reports suggested the two gentlemen were to serve their respective jail terms at the Nsawam Prisons but it emerged that only Stephen Atubiga was sent to Nsawam in the Eastern Region while Ken Kuranchie was sent to the Volta Regional capital, Ho.
The NPP executives who visited Ken Kuranchie at his detention centre told Joy News, the journalist is in good spirit. They provided him with breakfast.
Meanwhile, the then Editor for Accra Daily Mail; Alhaji Haruna Atta, who, in 1998 was jailed alongside the Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide; Abdul Malik Kweku Baako said, he “feels very sympathetic” for the sentencing of Ken Kuranchie.
Haruna Atta and Kweku Baako, were sentenced to one month's imprisonment while their publishers, Kinesic Publications and Western Publications respectively for "The Weekend Statesman" and "The Guide", were fined 10 million Cedis each (about US$ 3,000).
At the time of their sentencing, Kweku Baako had left the “The Guide” for the Crusading Guide as Editor.
It followed a suit filed against them by the then First Lady Nana Konadu Agyeman Rawlings for allegedly defaming her.
Recounting his experience on the Joy Midday News with Jefferson Sackey, Haruna Attah stated: “The prison is not a pleasant place even if it is one day”. He said he felt “frightened and bemused” as soon as the judgment was delivered.
“Your freedom is lost as soon as judgment is read to you”.
Meanwhile head of the Media Foundation for West Africa Prof Kwame Karikari says the Supreme Court’s ruling yesterday did not come as a surprise, given the level of recklessness exhibited by some journalists.
He told Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, host of the Super Morning Show on Wednesday that; there was “too much waywardness by people who comment on public issues”.
Prof Kwame Karikari said the ruling by the Supreme Court would truncate the tendency of people to comment on matters in court, such as the ongoing election petition.