Ghanaian musician, Charles Nii Armah Mensah Junior popularly known as Shatta Wale has responded to Ghana Police over his widely circulated news on the alleged gunshot-attack on him.
The Police on hearing the news, launched an investigation into the matter including making contacts with some of his close friends and family members and all of them claim not to have knowledge of his whereabout or the alleged incident.
A patrol team visited the house of Shatta Wale and he cannot be found there. The Police noted that team also searched for Shatta Wale at hospitals in Accra but all to no avail.
Responding to what seems to be a hoax, Shatta Wale posted a lengthy message on his social media platforms.
“The statement made by this false prophet has gotten me in a mood of violence since no one in this country cares. So the police of this country want to tell me none of them saw those threatening statement online to take Action?.
I won’t wait for Ghana police to call my father and tell my father, his son got shot this afternoon, I won’t wait for Ghana stupid media houses to spread news to my fans about me being shot because all we wish in this country is for dead people and funerals.” Shatta posted
The dancehall artiste in the post also apologised to his father, fans and a team member for his gunshot ‘publicity stunt’.
A publicity stunt can be defined as an event purposely designed/staged to attract media attention to a cause, a brand or an individual.
Publicity Stunt is a famous marketing strategy mostly employed in the world of Showbiz, Consumable Goods, Politics and Branding.
The laws governing misinformation in Ghana
It is paramount, therefore, that every citizen knows the laws governing misinformation in Ghana in order to avoid using their freedom of expression and freedom of other media irresponsibly.
- The 1960 Criminal Offenses Act 1960 (Act 29)
This Act specifies that any false publication that has the tendency to cause public unrest is a misdemeanor. It adds that ignorance of the falsehood of the publication is not a defence unless the person proves reasonable measures that were taken to verify the content prior to its publication. The sender or forwarder of any false communication is without any excuse even if the person was not the originator of the message.
Section 208 (1) states:
“A person who publishes or reproduces a statement, rumor or report which is likely to cause fear and alarm to the public or to disturb the public peace knowing or having reason to believe that the statement, rumor or report is false commits a misdemeanor”
And Section 208 (2) states:
“It is not a defence to a charge under subsection (1) that the person charged did not know or did not have reason to believe that the statement, rumour or report was false unless it is proved that prior to publication, that person took reasonable measures to verify the accuracy of the statement, rumour or report.”
- Electronic Communications Act 2008 (Act 775)
This Act specifies that it is offensive to knowingly send false communication which has the potential to put the safety of people at risk or be detrimental to the efficiency of life saving services, via any electronic means. By engaging in the act and subjecting oneself to the legal test in section 76, that person would be liable for the offence.
Section 76 (1) states:
”A person who by means of electronic communications knowingly sends communication which is false or misleading and likely to prejudice the efficiency of life saving services or to endanger the safety of any person commits an offence”.
Section 76 (2) states:
“A person is taken to know that a communication is false or misleading if that person did not take reasonable steps to find out whether the communication was false, misleading, reckless or fraudulent.”
Consequently, the offence is a summary conviction fine of no more than 36,000 Ghana cedis or to a term of imprisonment of not more than 5 years or both.
This means that based on the charges, the penalty for the crime of spreading fake news in Ghana is either a fine of GHS 36,000 or serving a prison term of 5 years or facing both fine and prison penalties.
Shatta Wale’s Post
THIS IS WHAT I HAVE TO SAY .
Psychological, or emotional trauma, is damage or injury to the psyche after living through an extremely frightening or distressing event and may result in challenges in functioning or coping normally after the event.
The statement made by this false prophet has gotten me in a mood of violence since no one in this country cares.
So the police of this country want to tell me none of them saw those threatening statement online to take Action?.
This pastor said 18th October shatta wale will be shot and you want to tell me you didn’t see from you cyber crime department nor did u hear or came across anything like that online?
I won’t wait for Ghana police to call my father and tell my father, his son got shot this afternoon, I won’t wait for Ghana stupid media houses to spread news to my fans about me being shot because all we wish in this country is for dead people and funerals.
If my life can be threatened and there is no law to take actions on that then I guess I will do what is right in the eyes of God.
This is not the first time I have had these threats in this country am now I am going these emotional trauma alone ,
My dad has even defended me on radio on this same issue. why? Why? Ghana? Why?
Yes ,my life is in Danger and am on the run till this country shows me there are LAWS..
Deportee am sorry for taking your phone
Dope sorry for taking your phone
To my fans am sorry but I will have to fight this fight alone and get it done.
To my Dad I say sorry for putting you thru stress.
PASTORS ALWAYS SAY THINGS AND LATER PLAN EVIL TO IT, SO THAT ME AND YOU WILL BELIEVE THEY ARE POWERFUL MEN OF GOD..
ENOUGH IS ENOUGH
THE YOUTHS OF THESE COUNTRY ARE TIRED OF RELIGIOUSNESS ,WE KNOW GOD ALREADY AND THAT IS THAT.
IF THIS WILL MAKE ME STOP MUSIC LIKE HOW MANY WANT ME TO STOP, THEN SO BE IT CUZ I AM TIRED OF THE NEGATIVITY IN THIS COUNTRY.
SON OF GHANA
(SHATTA WALE )