Joy News’ Iddrisu Latif Bamba is one of the most daring broadcast journalists in Ghana today. He covers the story most journalists will never attempt to cover, sometimes, at the peril of his life. In March 2018, whilst covering a very heated political protest by the youth of the opposition National Democratic Congress at the Headquarters of the Criminal Investigative Department in Accra, Iddrisu was accosted by a group of Police officers and beaten to a pulp.
“They hit me with sticks and they hit my head with the butt of the gun multiple times,” Iddrisu recounted in a report.
Iddrisu is at it again though, but this time in an “adventure” that has attracted the repulsion of his colleagues at the Joy Newsroom. He has been exposed to a suspected coronavirus patient!
In an interview with Catherine Frimpomaa on AbenaKwabena TV over the weekend, Latif Iddrissu Bamba recounted how his colleagues at Multimedia stigmatized against him for daring to interview a suspected covid-19 patient.
According to him, during the interview with the covid-19 self-isolated person, he started getting calls from his colleagues who kept informing him to disinfect himself and the microphone he was using before returning to the office. And things reached worrying heights when he got to the Multimedia offices at Kokomlemle.
“When I got back to the office. I was asked not to get to the Newsroom… not even the building”, Iddrisu noted.
Iddrisu Latif Bamba said he persisted and had to virtually sneak into the Newsroom around 10pm when most of his colleagues had left for their homes. The next day, issues at the Joy Newsroom did not improve either.
“The next day, people were not expecting me to come back to the office because I have exposed myself to someone who could test positive for covid-19”, he recalled.
“My senior colleagues were telling me to go back home because I have exposed myself and I could also come out positive”, Iddrisu said.
Stigmatization is one of the major headaches world leaders are grappling with in the wake of the coronavirus outbreak. People infected with the virus are shunned by the public even after their recoveries.
According to the World Health Organization, covid-19 is attracting stigmatization because the disease is new so not much is known about it and people are easily afraid of the unknown.
“It is understandable that there is confusion, anxiety, and fear among the public. Unfortunately, these factors are also fueling harmful stereotypes”, the WHO noted.
Joy News’ Iddrissu Latif Bamba is the first Ghanaian journalist to have directly interviewed a suspected covid-19 patient who was in quarantine and also to has visited a quarantine center and a morgue for coronavirus victims.
He is a product of the African University College in Accra where he studied Communication Studies. In 2017, Iddrisu Latif Bamba was adjudged the Best Reporter on Environment and also on Anti-Narcotics at the Ghana Journalists Associations Awards. He has also won the Mining Reporter of the Year for both 2018 and 2019.
Please watch the full interview on AbenaKwabena TV below: