Member of Parliament for Ledzokuku, Dr. Bernard Okoe Boye has criticised the decision by National Communications Authority (NCA) to shut down two pro-opposition radio stations.
The governing party parliamentarian says such a decision has the potential to cause disaffection for the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and by extension, President Akufo-Addo.
“We don’t want a vicious cycle, let’s apply innovative ways…it is not government business to close or silence either radio stations or individuals but the way we go about can send a signal which is opposite,” the MP stated on Peace FM’s morning show ‘Kokrokoo’, Friday.
Officials from the regulatory agency on Thursday afternoon stormed the premises of Radio Gold and Radio XYZ –both pro-opposition National Democratic Congress stations- and ordered their immediate closure.
The action, according to the NCA, was an enforcement of the decision of the Electronic Communications Tribunal which includes closing down radio stations operating without valid authorisations.
But the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) says the action has the tendency to undermine media freedom in the country and has called for an immediate review of that decision.
Roland Affail Monney is President of GJA
Dr Okoe Boye who is also the Board Chair for the nation’s premier health facility, Korle Bu Teaching Hospital, is concerned about the political implication the action can attract to the NPP especially, as the next general elections are only about a year away.
“And sometimes, the signals in the public matter,” he said, calling for a more creative way to handle such cases where the regulator could use other avenues to get the defaulting stations to pay for their operational licenses.
According to him, the achievements of the current administration led by Nana Akufo-Addo, are enough to secure him a straight second term without anyone having to suggest that action is targeted at pro-opposition radio stations.
“Once they are critics of this government, when they go quiet, the signals can be that we are trying to silence them,” he asserted.