Pratt March On "Hotel Kufuor" Today


Wed, 27 Jul 2005 Source: --

....IGP Warns Kwesi Pratt

The Inspector General of Police (IGP), Mr. Patrick Kwateng Acheapong, has cautioned the managing editor of the The Insight newspaper, Mr. Kwesi Pratt Jnr, against his intention to march to the $3.5million property said to be owned by President Kufuor's son, John Addo ?Chief' Kufuor to take photo shots of it.
According to the IGP, the position Mr. Pratt takes on his mission would determine if the men on duty would halt him or not. He explained that if he stands close to the President's building, his men might move on him.
Meanwhile, Kwesi Pratt has hinted on PeaceFM this morning that he will start his walk at the Airport Junction around 11:30am to take the pictures of Hotel Kufuor.

Kwesi Pratt in action today - Takes pix of ?Hotel

Chronicle -- IN THE wake of the controversy surrounding the arrest and detention of a TV Africa crew who tried to take shots of the controversial ?Hotel Kufuor? located near the private residence of the President, Mr. Kwesi Pratt Jnr. one of the nation?s seasoned journalists has publicly vowed to defy all the imminent security threats, to take shots of the building at exactly 12pm today.

As of yesterday morning Mr. Pratt, maintained his commitment to demonstrate his journalistic courage and solidarity with the TV Africa crew, declaring that, ?If the people who have threatened to beat me or deal with me if I dared go ahead with my intended decision withdraw their threats then I would reconsider my decision to go there for the pictures. But if they don?t withdraw then I will go ahead to take the pictures for what would happen to happen.?

On Friday, a crew from TV Africa, a local private TV station, who went to take shots of the building, for a footage following a press conference by the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), were arrested and detained by security personnel on duty at the private residence of the president.

Debating the issue on Saturday during Radio Gold?s ?Alhaji and Alhaji? political analysis programme, Mr. Pratt and the ruling Party?s legislator for Assin North, Hon. Ken Agyepong engaged each other in hot exchanges.

Mr. Pratt had condemned the arrest of the TV crew as an action that was not justified while the lawmaker was of the view that by virtue of the fact that the hotel was someone?s private property, it was not right for people to, in the name of press freedom, just take pictures of the building without the consent of the owner.

In the ensuing debate, the seasoned journalist declared that he would be going to the premises of the hotel to take shots of the building, in solidarity with the detained TV crew and ostensibly to demonstrate his conviction that it was not a crime for a journalist to take pictures of the building.

Hon. Agyepong also declared vehemently that if Pratt thought he was the only courageous man in the country, it would be proven to him that there were other courageous people in the country and that if he dared carry out his action he was going to be met with an equally stronger force.

While some people have expressed solidarity for Pratt others have also issued threats to the effect that he would be seriously dealt with if he risked going to the premises of the controversial hotel to take pictures without the prior permission of the owner.

Pratt confirmed in an interview with The Chronicle at 11:55am yesterday that he would indeed carry out his intended action as planned and that there was nothing illegal about what he had planned to do today.

?There is nothing illegal about a journalist taking photograph of that building and indeed it is those who have planned to prevent me from doing my rightful work who would be doing something illegal,? Pratt, who is also the Managing Editor of the Insight newspaper, told The Chronicle.

He told the paper that he wrote to the Inspector General of Police (IGP) on Monday informing him about his intended action as well as the threats he had received since he made public his intension to go for the pictures of the building last Saturday.

But DSP David Eklu of the Public Relations Directorate of the Police service said on Joy FM yesterday that the police had not received a notification from Mr. Pratt and also conceded that there was no need for the police to be notified before a photograph of the building could be taken.

DSP Eklu explained that since the building was a private property, if there was any permission to be sought that permission could only be granted by the owner of the building and not by the police.

The police PR officer, could not say whether any additional security arrangements would be made to deal with any unwarranted events that may occur this afternoon resulting from Mr. Pratt?s intended action.

Meanwhile, a number of journalists are expected to congregate at the premises of the controversial uncompleted hotel building, as many of them have expressed interest in covering the event, which many believe would be a newsworthy one.

Source: --
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