Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, Kwesi Pratt Jnr, says the apology rendered by the editorial team of Daily Guide calling the publication of the rescue of three kidnapped Takoradi Girls an "error in judgment", raises more questions than answers.
The Accra-based daily, last Saturday, published under the screaming editorial “Ta’adi Girls Rescued” that “following our publication last Wednesday on the missing Takoradi Girls, further checks indicates our conclusion was factually wrong as our source mistook different girls, receiving treatment at the Health facility for the missing girls”.
“We sincerely apologise to the families of the girls as well as our esteemed readers for the error in judgment”, the Daily Guide report further stated.
Commenting on the editorial piece on Radio Gold’s "Alhaji and Alhaji" talk show, Kwesi Pratt opined that it is difficult to buy the apology rendered by the newspaper wondering if it was not "an error in fact".
“Now, a number of issues arise; first, are we talking about an error in judgment or we are talking about an error in fact? An error in judgment is where you wrongly interpret facts, but an error in fact is simply when the facts are wrong”.
“Here, what are the material facts we are looking for? Takoradi Girls, have they been rescued or not? They have not been rescued; Takoradi kidnapped girls, are they in a health facility or not? They are not in a health facility.
“....who are these other girls who are receiving treatment in a health facility? Are they some other kidnapped girls that we did not know about? If they are some other kidnapped girls that we did not know about, when were they kidnapped? Why have we been kept in the dark?” he quizzed.
Who Are These Girls Receiving Treatment?
He however wondered why the Police have taken interest in placing some unidentified girls in a health facility if they are not the kidnapped Takoradi girls.
“The police just don’t go about our community grabbing girls who are suffering from malaria or headache and so on and put them in a health facility for treatment. So if we are now being told that indeed there are some girls in a health facility who may have been put there by the police for treatment, we want to know who those girls are and the circumstance under which they were put there to receive medical attention”, he emphasized.
Fed False Information
To him, it is puzzling that reporters of such a well-known private media hub like the Daily Guide newspaper, could just decide to publish a contrived or concocted story.
“In my almost 40 years of practice as a journalist, I haven’t come across more than three cases of outright deliberate fabrication; in more than 40 years of practice. So when you have a case of outright fabrication by a newspaper, it is extraordinary and I do not believe that the Daily Guide deliberately fabricated this story”, he asserted.
The seasoned journalist thus believed that the Accra daily was fed with false information and to "maintain its credibility," it lies in the bosom of Daily Guide to disclose who acted in that callous manner.
“My firm belief is that somebody gave that information...I don’t know the full facts; I will not pretend to know the full facts but my strong suspicion is that Daily Guide did not fabricate this story; thus somebody gave them wrong information. It is in the interest of Daily Guide itself to show who gave the wrong information so that we can exact the appropriate answers...for Daily Guide to establish its credibility and maintain its credibility, it ought to do more than it has done now,” Kwesi Pratt stated.