Radio France International apologises to JJ. Rawlings

Former President Rawlings

Former President Rawlings

Radio France International’s Jean-Baptiste Placca has apologised  to former President Jerry John Rawlings (rtd),  for comments he made on the station’s weekly programme, “La semaine de Jean-Baptiste Placca” on Saturday January 21, 2017.

In the said programme, Mr Placca alleged that former President Rawlings, had called on the African Union to replicate the ECOWAS mission in the Gambia by removing Cameroon’s Paul Biya, from office.

A press statement from the office of President Rawlings signed by the Communications Director, Kobina Andoh Amoakwa and copied to The Ghanaian Times in Accra, yesterday said that a letter dated January 24, 2017, to the former President by Jean Baptiste Placca read:

“I humbly and respectfully address my apologies to you for wrongly putting your name in the weekly analysis chronicle on Radio France International.  I did the big mistake to involve your name about what African Union should do in Cameroon for President Paul Biya, related to what was happening in Gambia.”

The statement said Placca acknowledged President Rawlings’ role in the resolution of peaceful conflicts in Africa and pleaded with the former Ghanaian leader to accept his apology, adding that the RFI host also offered his apology, live on radio during his programme on Saturday, January 28, 2017.

It said Placca indicated that in all humility President Rawlings did not make those remarks and he confessed that he received the information late into the night and made the professional mistake of not verifying its authenticity.

“The journalist does not always have the last word, and when he is mistaken, he has to recognise it, in all humility, and that’s what we’re doing here, that’s what I’m doing here,” he said.

It will be recalled that the office of former President Rawlings strongly denied the report in a statement issued on January 22, 2017.

In the statement, the former President said it had granted no interview to the media on the Gambian crisis and warned that legal action will be taken against any media which fabricated stories about a man who is best known for his conflict resolution roles in the sub-region and beyond.

By Times Reporter

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