Mr Emmanuel Ajarfor Abugri, the Deputy Editor of online news portal ModernGhana, who was arrested together with Mr Emmanuel Yeboah Britwum, a reporter, has said that he was tortured and beaten by National Security operatives while in detention following a raid of their office and their subsequent arrest.Mr Abugri, who was released on Saturday, 29 June 2019, said he was not spared by his captors who, he claimed took turns to hit and taser him.
Even though the National Security said they arrested the two in relation to cybercrime and hacking allegations, Mr Abugri said the questions posed to him while in detention had no links to those claims.
Mr Abugri noted that he was rather questioned on a critical article his outfit published about the National Security Minister, Mr Albert Kan-Dapaah, and the governing New Patriotic Party’s MP for Effutu Constituency, Alexander Afenyo-Markin in relation to happenings at the University of Education, Winneba (UEW).
Gun-wielding officials stormed the office of ModernGhana last week and whisked the two journalists away. Their heads were covered with a black bag on Thursday.
Narrating the incident, Mr Abugri said he was slapped, punched and assaulted endlessly for hours till the point where he struggled to breathe.
“They questioned me for about an hour and then the beating started because they said I have to confess. I was tortured; every question came with a slap. When they ask anything and before I could say anything then the slaps,” he told Accra-based Joy FM on Monday, I July 2019.
He said the operatives got infuriated and intensified the assault on him any time the national security officials were unconvinced about his responses to their questions.
“When I give an answer and they are not satisfied then they give me a slap. They used the electrical shocker to shock my body”, he narrated, adding: “From there, they made me go through the military style where I have to lean against the wall with legs up and head down as if I'm doing a press up then they gave me a huge slap at my back then I fell and one guy used his elbow on my backbone”.
He continued: “I could not breathe for a while, so, I had to open my mouth and gasp in the air so I could survive and I cried like a newborn baby telling them I was innocent.”
Mr Abugri said one of the articles in question was received through a third party and published because it satisfied the editorial policy of ModernGhana.
He said the other story was written out of a press release.