Media Practitioners in the Upper East Region have attended a one- day training on crime reporting to ensure accurate and responsive reportage at crime scenes and during the 2020 elections.
The programme, which was organized by the Ghana Police Service was aimed at preparing Journalists for effective crime scene reportage.
Superintendent Sampson Agbeko, Regional Crime Officer, who took participants through the dos and don’ts of crime scene management identified mistakes reporters committed at crime scenes, which he noted affected police investigations and added that the media and the Police needed collaborative efforts to promote a peaceful environment and at the elections in the country.
Mr Agbeko said the Police had mapped out likely hot spots in the elections and expected that the skills the media received would help in providing reportage in unlikely eventualities in those areas.
He said tampering with evidence at crime scenes and invading into barricades of crime scenes prior to police investigations were common with journalists on crime scenes and reiterated that journalists should ensure professionalism in their trade.
“Gathering of evidence at crime scenes is not the responsibility of journalists”. On the forthcoming elections, Mr Agbeko stated that Journalists were catalysts to democratization and therefore their works and actions were critical to enhance peace and security and urged the media to be responsible before ,during and after the elections in their reportage .
He said lots of crimes took place at polling stations and communities during elections and called on the media to be vigilant.
He however urged them not to take the lead in announcing election results, but rely on provisional results of the Electoral Commission (E.C) since it was its duty to do so.
Superintendent William Kpmegbe, Regional MTTU commander took participants through the dos and don’ts of crime scene and road crash management.
ASP David Fianco- Okyere explained to the media various ranks in the service as journalists sometimes misquoted titles of personnel and indicated that the essence was to help the media address some of the anomalies that occurred during their reportage.
On Police Special Operations, DSP Eric Angmorteh Van Kofi, Regional Operations Commander took participants through what journalists should know about special operations of the Counter Terrorism Unit (CTU) and SWAT operations.
DCOP Osei Kwaku Ampofo-Duku, Upper East Regional Police Commander, in an earlier interview with the media on plans for a peaceful and crime free elections, reiterated that every polling station would be effectively manned by the police and assured all for a peaceful voting exercise.
On flash points ,he indicated that there would be police presence to avoid actions that would mar the elections and warned the public to conduct themselves well.
“Anyone who plans to destabilize the peace of the country will be dealt with “. He warned and added that “if we are waiting for the count of the results of elections, there should be no fighting about it”. He said.
He said the region had been peaceful and thanked the Police Service and National security for coming out with plans to ensure crime free country and stated that the region did not record any crime case in the last two weeks.
He said Journalists were also front liners and together needed to team up with the police for the protection of the public.