According to Mr. Pratt, the NPP leadership could not disassociate itself from the riot when the letter was the trigger of the event.
He expressed his shock at the NPP’s attempt to distance itself from the attacks.
“First of all, I find it extremely difficult to accept that the NPP as a party is not the instigator of the rioting…This letter is the instigator of that action. There is no doubt at all about that.”Kwesi Pratt
Kwesi Prat also indicated that the letter which emanated from the party’s headquarters sought to control the television station. He argued that the letter associated the party with the attacks so far as the letter was indeed from the party.
“Here is the letter in my hands. It is a letter on the NPP’s headquarters’ letterhead. The letter is even referenced, making it very official. This letter is signed by William Yamoah, Director of Finance and Administration. The second paragraph of the letter is most instructive. Or this letter is forged. So, we cannot be arguing that the party is not involved in the rioting.”Kwesi Pratt
Adding on, he expressed his worry at the party’s attempt to unconstitutionally control the said program.
“Now, one, I am surprised that the leadership of a political party like NPP can convince itself that it can dictate to any television station who joins the panel and who doesn’t join the panel. They should know that they have no right whatever to do that.”Kwesi Pratt
According to Mr. Pratt, the 1992 constitution is clear that no one has such rights, including political parties. Hence the NPP’s letter amounted to a clear interference in the running of the television station.
“This is clear, you have no such rights. And how they came to arrogate to themselves such rights which they do not have is shocking.”Kwesi Pratt
Pratt Cautions Against Media Interference
He thus cautioned political and social actors to refrain from similar conduct.
“And I think what we need to do is to send a signal, not to the NPP but to all political social actors in our country that we will not allow them to return us to the days of the culture of silence. We will not allow that to happen. We will not allow them to undermine the 1992 constitution. We will not allow them to continue to hold us hostage. The media is not there to serve their purpose!”Kwesi Pratt
He further described the letter as unfortunate.
“This letter is most unfortunate, to never have been issued, and it is unbelievable that in 2023, the leadership of a political party will cause such a letter to be issued to a television station.”Kwesi Pratt
Moreover, Mr. Pratt from his analysis, believes that the attack was an organized mob.
“We all saw the video. This video has between 16 and 24 people in it. Now all these 16, 20 and 21 people and so on, they do not live in one house. It takes an effort to get them together at the same place. This is an organized mob. Who organized them? These people did not just come together. Somebody had to get them together. And if they were put together, why, where were they put together? Who moved them to UTV?”Kwesi Pratt
He condemned the attack and called it bad, indefensible, and without excuses.
Mr. Pratt added that media balance could not be attained by any one individual media house. However, through the diverse perspectives of the various media houses, the media collectively achieves balance. Thus the call for a balanced panel on the UTV show lacked credible grounds.
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