Two matters brought before the Independent Media Commission (IMC) by Adonis Abboud and the Ministry of Defence against Mohamed D. Koroma of the African Champion and Paul Kamara of For di People newspaper have been concluded by the commission.
On March 21 and 22, the Managing Editor of the African Champion together with Adonis Abboud were invited to the commission’s office to clear the air on articles published in the African Champion.
The first article was headlined “Adonis Abboud bribes IMC for Radio License” while the second was “Adonis Abboud not qualified to run a radio station in Salone” had been proven by the commission as false, defamatory and malicious.
Mr Abboud was invited by the chairman of the commission to explain whether he had at any time given any satellite dishes to the IMC and its commissioners.
He said he [Abboud] applied for his license and got it through the procedures laid down by the commission and gave no favour to anyone.
This was contrary to what was written in the African Champion that Mr Abboud bribed the IMC with a satellite dish to operate a radio station when he is an alien.
Adonis Abboud stressed that he was not an alien, but a naturalized citizen of the country since 1986.
When the editor was asked to substantiate his allegations, he failed to prove and could name the officials of the commission who were given satellite dishes.
At the end, Mr Koroma apologized for what he himself termed as false, inappropriate and defamatory and promised to publish an apology.
In the complaint against For di People newspaper for its March 15 edition which was headlined: “playing pranks with words,” the newspaper did not publish the Ministry’s press release issued on the death of Captain Kelfala Kamara but rather came out with an article outrightly dismissing it, describing it as confusing, misleading and blatant attempt to hide the truth.
After listening to the argument, with regards to the publications, the commission agreed that For di People should have published the press release along side the commentary on it and the newspaper did nothing wrong in investigating the story and commenting on the press release but should have crossed-check with the military.
At the end of the deliberation Paul Kamara, Managing Editor of For di People, agreed to publish future press releases of the ministry especially those on the fallen captain which issue the Ministry of Defence has indicated was still being investigating.