The Ministry of Communications has justified the National Communications Authority’s (NCA) decision to shut down Radio Tongu in Volta Region.
The NCA explains that the shut down was “on the grounds of National Security and in the public interest.”
They alleged that the station was promoting the agenda of the Homeland Study Group Foundation, a secessionist group in the region.
Dr Charles Wereko Brobbey has accused the government of suppressing press freedom and that the NCA had no rights to shut down Radio Tongu on ethical grounds.
But the Deputy Communications Minister George Andah disagrees and says the NCA has the power to shut it down since the station was registered as a community radio station.
“There were reports that we received from the District Security Council complaining about the content of Radio Tongu and what they were communicating was about the Western Togoland movement which is a national security issue. The NCA called a meeting for all the parties involved, the District Security Council were there but the operators of the radio station did not honour the invite. So the decision that was taken at the meeting was based on the information available. So if you have authorization as a community radio and not doing community work then the NCA has every right to act”.
The National Communications Authority (NCA) has revealed the reason Tongu Community Multimedia Network (Radio Tongu) in the Volta Region was shut down following backlash from citizens.
In a statement issued on Thursday, the Authority said a group of people petitioned the NCA in 2014 and April 2019 raising concerns about how the community radio was being managed and operated by the Manager, Bestway Zottor.
It further added that the petitioners again on January 9, 2020, wrote to the Authority alleging that Mr Zottor was using the radio station for defamation, causing confusion among churches and for promoting the separatists’ agenda of the Western Togoland movement.
This led to the arrest of the Director of the community radio station, Mr Zottor and the subsequent shut down of the community radio.