16
Sun, Dec
17 New Articles

DEPUTY SPORTS MINISTER, NSA BOSS SUSPENDED…Over Commonwealth Games Deportation Saga

Sports

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has suspended from office, the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, Pius Enam Hiadze, and the acting Director General of the National Sports Authority, Robert Sarfo Mensah.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has suspended from office, the Deputy Minister of Youth and Sports, Pius Enam Hiadze, and the acting Director General of the National Sports Authority, Robert Sarfo Mensah.

 

According to a release signed by the Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, the suspension of the duo followed preliminary investigations conducted into the circumstances that led to the arrest of some 60 Ghanaians, who had attempted to enter Australia allegedly by false pretence, in connection with the ongoing 21st Commonwealth Games.

The release, issued yesterday, added that the President had also recalled from the games, the President of the Ghana Olympic Committee, Ben Nunoo Mensah; Chairman of the National Sports Authority, Kwadwo Baah Agyemang; and the Chef-de-Maison for the 2018 Commonwealth Games, Mohammed Sahnoon, to assist in the ongoing investigations being undertaken by the Criminal Investigation Department.

About 60 Ghanaians were deported from Australia after authorities of the country said that they were not convinced by their reasons for traveling to the country, although those affected had claimed they were journalists assigned to cover the event.

Even though those deported had genuine visas, many didn’t carry equipment like recorders and recommended mobile phones for coverage.

The Deputy Sports Minister had explained to the media that the Australian authorities were not sure the Ghanaians would return after the games.

“The explanation is that a grant of visa or entry permit is not automatic and that at the point of entry, the Australian authorities do some further investigations and so based on those investigations some of the officials are not convinced that some of the Ghanaians who purport to go and cover the commonwealth games intend to return to Ghana after the games,” he was quoted to have said.

When the news of the deportation broke out, the Ghana Journalists Association distanced itself from the report and subsequently charged the security agencies to look into the matter.

A statement signed by Affail Monney, President of the GJA, said none of the said persons was known to the Association, neither was their mission in Australia known.

“The GJA wishes to put on record that it does not know the identity of the so-called journalists; neither is it aware of their mission in Australia. Although Ghanaian journalists travelling outside the country for official events are not obliged to inform the GJA about their assignments, it is quite strange that the GJA is not aware of the identity of the deportees, including the media institutions they claim to represent,” the statement read.

The Association added that the deportation of the alleged journalists from Australia had the tendency to soil the image of Ghanaian journalists in particular and Ghana as a whole.

“For that reason, we call on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, the police and other relevant institutions to thoroughly investigate the matter in order to establish the true identity of the deportees for the purposes of redeeming the image of Ghana and Ghanaian journalists,” the statement read.

Meanwhile, Information Minister Mustapha Hamid had also assured that the National Security would commence an investigation into the matter to find out how those ‘journalists’ ended there.