A former Deputy Minister for Communication Edward Ato Sarpong has heavily chastised the National Communications Authority (NCA) for taking Abusua FM off air Wednesday morning ahead of an interview with the NDC flagbearer.
Mr Mahama who is on a tour in the Ashanti Region was booked for an interview on the Kumasi-based radio station only to get there and be told the signals of the station had been lost.
Management of the station had to halt the breakfast show on a sister station, Ultimate 106.9, and make way for the Akan radio host Kojo Marfo to take over the English morning show to interview the former president.
Reacting to the unfortunate event, Mr Ato Sarpong, who was speaking to Mugabe Maase on Adehyie FM said he was convinced the NCA was behind the transmission challenges Abusua FM faced this morning.
“What happened was the work of jammers and that is very unfortunate,” he said and indicated taking the radio station off at that crucial time was an affront to free speech.
“It was very wrong. They can’t say they didn’t jam the station…The same thing happened some weeks ago when our Running Mate was about to be interviewed,” Mr Ato Sarpong said.
According to the former minister, the NCA under the leadership of Nana Akufo-Addo has used its authority to muzzle dissenting views or radio station that criticise the government.
He said the mandate of the NCA was not to intimidate radio stations that do not share in the government’s idea, saying when Mr John Mahama was the Minister for Communications in the Rawlings era, the NCA was decoupled from the Ministry of Communications from the by an ACT of Parliament – ACT 769.
“The ACT made the NCA an authority and not a machinery to intimidate the opposition…So if you send people to NCA and they go there to work in the interest of the party in power and not the, it is very wrong.,” he said and asked the NCA to come out on the matter if they did not sanction the jamming of Abusua FM’s transmission.