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Ghana: where murderers, rapists buy freedom with sex, yams and goats

HARARE – Econet Wireless boss, Strive Masiyiwa has saluted Anas Aremeyaw Anas, a Ghanaian ‘undercover investigative journalist’ for dilige...

HARARE – Econet Wireless boss, Strive Masiyiwa has saluted Anas Aremeyaw Anas, a Ghanaian ‘undercover investigative journalist’ for diligently exposing corruption and human rights abuse.   
Words by Derick Matsengarwodzi: media consultant, author and founder of Aloe Media Group. Let us interact through: Facebook; Email:; Twitter: @TinzweiDerick or Blog:

The pseudonym character recently unleashed an anti-corruption film entitled Ghana in the Eyes of God, Epic of Injustice – a documentary that will transform the Ghanaian judiciary.
Initially, he qualified as a lawyer before embarking on journalism.

Name, shame and jail
“The most powerful weapon against corruption is transparency and exposure.” The aim of his life’s work is to “name, shame and jail” people who hurt others and break the law. 

“The 2015 three-hour documentary resulted in the suspension of seven of Ghana’s 12 High Court judges and 22 lower court judges who were secretly filmed in an alleged judicial bribery and corruption scandal which Anas investigated for about two years.

Money, sex, yams and even a goat were among the alleged pay-offs. In exchange, many robbers, murderers, drug dealers, rapists and others allegedly received shortened sentences or went free,” revealed the anticorruption champion.

Anas work under disguise and pretend to engage with ‘bad people’ who he then tries to film committing crimes. People rarely see his face. Even when he gives public talks about his work or receives awards, he hides it. Many have queried if corruption charges against these judicial officials are true.

Waiting for justice  
“Ghanaians are now waiting for rule of law to take its course,” Masiyiwa adds, “What comes to light through Anas’ brave undercover work is raw footage of judicial corruption in action, allegedly involving some 180 judicial officials – judges, magistrates, court clerks, policemen, state attorneys and bail contractors.”

Anas disclosure has sent shivers within the judiciary system, with one judge arguing that the revelation “brings the authority and administration of the law into disrespect and disrepute…” However, each of the seven implicated high court judges has been given time to appear before a special Chief Justice Committee.

Anas will also appear for cross-examination. Other defendants have demanded that he remove his disguise in court, however he is protected by the Whistle Blower’s Act and immunity – as such, he must not be unmasked.

While not his first choice, Anas says he believes working in disguise is necessary, given the powerful and sometimes dangerous subjects of his investigations.

True journalists please stand
Journalism ethics always demands a reporter to reveal his identify when approaching a subject. So, can Anas operation be classified as journalism or citizen policing, The Aloe News asks?

Acknowledging his fear and the hazards of doing the work he does, Anas advises, “You’ve got to take intelligent decisions… If you don’t, you will end up losing your life.”

Masiyiwa notes, “Notwithstanding the risks, Anas says he and all professional journalists have the responsibility to keep the public informed about activities affecting the health of their democracies, and their own personal lives. His work is driven by the belief that corruption is holding Africa back.”The Aloe News  

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