The Secretary to Sindiwura Abbot Mahama (Chief of Dollar Power area) to the west of Bole, Mr Tahiru Mahama has expressed disappointment over a Joy News documentary tittled; “Rebel Land: Joy News digs deep into rebel activities at Ghana-Ivory Coast border” compiled by investigative journalist Kwetey Nartey, under multimedia.
The Secretary who spoke on Bole-based on Nkilgi FM on Tuesday morning said, “Dollar power is encompassed by customary law and regulations that prescribes the conduct of its people and could not have been referred to as lawless community as embodied in the documentary”.
The Secretary to Sindiwura also said the documentary as shown by Joy News carried misleading contents, which was “lazily” prepared without better consultation and research, hence must be treated with the greatest contempt it deserves.
He buttressed his point by stating that the men carrying guns often referred to as gunmen in the documentary were indeed the traditional warriors of the area and not rebels as portrayed in that investigative piece.
Mr. Tahiru charged the media to place much premium on working to ensure that a peaceful coexistence among people is enhanced and not to strive to achieve “cheap” popularity and fame as was done by the gentleman behind the documentary.
Mr Tahiru denied reports that Adams Shaibu, a gentleman who accompanied the investigative journalist to the Dollar Power area is being threatened with death or expulsion from Bole where he is based.
The Secretary to Sindiwura after debunking the investigative story from joy FM, called on Multimedia to render an unqualified apology to the people of the area for the gross disrespect to the traditional authority.
The joy fm investigative Journalist Kwetey Nartey who spoke on the same morning show of Nkilgi FM confirmed that he did the documentry on Dollar Power and gave it the “rebel land” caption because a good story must have a caption that attracts attention.
When he was told that some people have said his documentry does not depict the actual situation at Dollar Power, he asked; “which part of the documentry is not true?” He added that he only reported what he discovered at Dollar Power.
The documentary has sparked outrage after it was shown on television residents of Bole and its surrounding communities especially where the small scale mining (galamsey) take place condemning the documentary which was premiered yesterday, 6th February 2017.
Many have expressed concerns about factual inaccuracies such as; “rebels from Ivory Coast killed a soldier who visited the area with a former District Chief Executive for Bole”; “residents living in fear to the extent that, one must possess a machete or a gun to protect him or herself”; “the Dollar Power community is surrounded by gunmen believed to have come from Ivory Coast extorting money from travelers as said at the beginning of the documentary.
They also disagree that the Dollar Power community is a “Republic” on its own with no rules governing them.
The Bole Traditional Council is yet to issue an official statement to this effect even though there are reports that a crisis meeting would be held by the Council as soon as possible.
The people of Bole and the Dollar Power area are worried the documentary could lead to raids to flush them (small scale miners) out of the area by the military and that means thousands of people will be cut off from their source of livelihood.