The Commercial Court in Accra has declared the appointment of Nii Amanor Dodoo as receiver of Unibank Ghana limited as a breach of the specialized deposit-taking institutions act (act 930).
The court also ruled Mr. Amanor Dodoo’s acceptance of the job is in breach of the Act. The court subsequently struck out all matters on the docket regarding the case.
The court made the declaration Thursday, June 24,20201 when it granted an application by Dr Kwabena Duffuor to strike out a writ of summons issued by the receiver for illegality and a consequent lack of capacity in the takeover of Unibank.
The court presided over by Justice Afi Agbanu-Kudemor held that Nii Amanor Dodoo ought not to have accepted the appointment as receiver when he acted as a member of the team of accountants from KPMG who were appointed by BOG as the official administrator of Unibank as his acceptance of the appointment was a clear case of conflict of interest and therefore illegal.
Lawyers for Dr. Duffuor declined to comment on the ruling after the hearing.
uniBank went into official administration on March 20, 2018, and was eventually collapsed by the Bank of Ghana on August 1, 2018.
The local bank was one of five banks merged by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) into the Consolidated Bank Ghana Limited.
Official Administrator, KPMG, in the course of its audit discovered that about GHS5.7 billion was owed by shareholders of uniBank as of March 20, 2018.
The GHS5.7 billion was the focus of a previous suit by Nii Amanor Dodoo who was acting as the Receiver.
Among other things, the bank’s interest income and other sources of income were said to be insufficient to cover the associated cost of funds of underlying borrowings and liabilities, as well as overheads of about GHS0.31 billion per annum.
These claims have, however, been challenged by the bank’s directors and Dr. Duffuor also sued to get the court to declare the license for the Consolidated Bank null and void
He wondered how long Ghana will continue “to bleed from self-inflicted wounds?”
“So, Judgement debt has reared its ugly Medusa-like head in Ghana again? I sat in Cabinet & saw the extent to which Prez Atta-Mills Laboured to pay Judgement debts he inherited. For how long will the Motherland continue to bleed from self-inflicted wounds? I weep for Ghana,”
His comments come after a London-based United Nations Commission on International Trade Law tribunal has ordered the government of Ghana to pay a contractually defined “early termination payment” of more than US$134.3 million plus interest and costs.
This follows the termination of the contract between the government of Ghana and an independent power producer, Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC) in 2018.
Former Minister of Power, Dr Kwabena Doinkor, under whose watch the deal was signed said the emergency power agreement signed with Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC), went to cabinet and parliament for approval,
He told Dzifa Bampoh on the First Take on 3FM Wednesday June 23 that the agreement met all the constitutional requirements hence the $170million judgement awarded against the government of Ghana for the termination.
Mr Donkor was reacting to a comment by Attorney General Godfred Dame that the decision by the signatories to sign such an agreement was uninformed.
Gofred Dame had said in relation to the judgement debt that “The fundamental question that we asked is why the agreement was entered into in the first place? Why did John Jinapor and his former boss execute the signatory of this agreement and afterwards set up a committee to review those agreements?
“It is because you yourself had realised that this was going to result in excess capacity,” he said.
“Indeed, the cost was very, very monumental. As per the report of the PPA Committee, if all the agreements signed by John Jinapor and his former boss had been allowed to run, each year, the nation was going to be exposed to payment to the sum of $586 million.
“Cumulatively, between 2013 and 2018 the nation was going to pay as much as $1.76 billion,” he told Joy News.
Reacting to his comments, Dr Kwabena Donkor told Dzifa that “The awards was given for wrongful termination, not for wrongful signing. I am therefore surprised that the Attorney General does not deem it fit to confirm that whoever terminated will also be referred to the CID.
“The Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC) was sent to cabinet, it had cabinet approval. Indeed, the Secretary to Cabinet wrote to Parliament on the 3rd of July 2015, and parliament approved the agreement.
“It went through the constitutional process set out for these agreements.
“This agreement had the lowest tariffs of all the emergency power purchasing agreements. It had the shortest duration, four years and that agreement did not require any financial security from the state of Ghana and therefore it was one of the agreements negotiated
A former Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko, has justified the government’s decision to terminate the power agreement with independent contractor, Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC).
The power contractor has won a 170 million dollar judgment debt against the Government of Ghana at the London Commercial Court of international arbitration.
The news has sparked serious conversations, with many calling for the prosecution of the officials involved in the termination.
Others have also suggested that Mr. Boakye Agyarko, who was the then Energy Minister, failed to engage extensively on exploring other options instead of a cancellation of the agreement
But the former Energy Minister in a Citi News interview has defended the government’s decision to terminate the said contract.
According to him, the country would have lost more from excess power generation if the agreement had remained.
For that reason, he insists that Ghana is “better off” with this judgement debt.
“We have paid almost over $1 billion for excess capacity. The review committee estimated that the contract as they were if they were allowed to stand, the country will be paying at the end of the 13th year $7.2 billion in excess capacity charges. Now if the country is going to be saddled with $7.2 billion for excess capacity, we needed to rethink. In the PPA review, what it said was that if we could get the termination and the management of all the excess capacity, the liability that we will be faced with is about $600 million out of pocket.”
“Now $600 million in year one compared to $7.2 billion, now even if you do the next present value calculation and bring the $7.2 billion into a one-year payment, we are still better off. I don’t understand why the people whose time these excess capacity contracts were signed now have the guts and the audacity to accuse people who are trying to manage the mess they created
• Godfred Yeboah Dame said he was involved in the arbitration proceedings of the casenull
• He also debunked the assertion that the state did not handle which has led to the judgement debt
• Dame indicated the trial which was conducted virtually lasted for one week
Godfred Yeboah Dame, the Attorney General and Minister for Justice has said with the recent case of a London Court awarding a judgement debt against the Republic of Ghana, he was involved only in the arbitration proceedings.
He explained that, during the proceedings, he conducted the trial with some state hired external lawyers as well as lawyers from the office of the Attorney General.
“I was involved only from the point of the arbitration proceedings…I was entrusted with the conduct of the trial; I conducted the trail together with external lawyers of the state, thus Amofa and Partners; we also had lawyers from the office of the Attorney General that was in August 2020, I was involved,” Dame told Citi TV in an interview monitored by GhanaWeb.null
He debunked the assertion that the state did not handle which has led to the US$170 million judgement debt.
“People are now alleging that the state did not handle the matter. Clearly, it was wrong, the matter was actually handled prior to me becoming Attorney General. The matter was handled when I was Deputy Attorney General and I am saying the arbitration which was instituted in 2018 was vigorously contested by the state; where it filed the relevant challenges to the arbitration processes that were comminuted in the trial,” Godfred Dame said.
He further indicated that the trial which was conducted virtually lasted for one week.
“It was not like other matters that we had to travel to London, in this case, we sat in Accra and did the trail virtually and each day, the proceedings lasted the whole; it started from 9 am and ended at 5 pm.
It was a full trial and it was witnessed by various members of the government; the Minister for Energy, John Peter Amewu even came to witness proceedings and saw me on my feet arguing the matter, office of the President sent representatives and all…The trial was in August and the proceedings were adjourned for the delivery of award [judgement] and the judgement was given in January 2021. Ordinarily, that ought to have ended the matter because arbitration proceedings are not appealable. Arbitral awards are final; there is a finality to arbitral awards.null
The state was outraged with the imposition of this amount. The judgement debt was $134 million, cost about $3 million and now people are saying $170 million, well, I don’t know where the mathematics came from; I’m not a mathematician, my competence is in law,” Godfred Dame stated further.
The Government of Ghana was ordered by a London-based United Nations Commission on International Trade Law tribunal to pay a contractually defined “early termination payment” of more than US$134.3 million plus interest and costs.
The agreement between the government and GPGC, an independent power producer, was terminated in 2018.
Anti-virus software entrepreneur John McAfee has been found dead in a Barcelona prison cell hours after a Spanish court agreed to extradite him to the US to face tax evasion charges.
The Catalan Justice Department said prison medics tried to resuscitate him, but were not successful.
It said in a statement that “everything indicates” McAfee took his own life.
A controversial figure in the tech world, his company released the first commercial anti-virus software.
McAfee VirusScan helped to spark a multi-billion dollar industry in the computer world, and was eventually sold to technology giant Intel for more than $7.6bn (£4.7bn).
In October 2020, John McAfee was arrested in Spain when he was about to board a plane to Turkey, and accused of failing to file tax returns for four years, despite earning millions from consulting work, speaking engagements, crypto-currencies and selling the rights to his life story.
He was also accused of concealing assets, including a yacht and real estate property, also in other people’s names.
Spain’s National Court authorised his extradition to the US to faces the charges on Wednesday morning.
In recent years, McAfee repeatedly claimed that there was a plot to get him – however the court said there was “no revealing evidence” that he was being prosecuted for political or ideological reasons, El Pais reported.John McAfee, shown here in Miami Beach, Florida, was a controversial figure in the technology sector
The entrepreneur, who was born in Gloucestershire, England first came to prominence in the 1980s when he founded his tech company and released McAfee VirusScan.
Although a pioneer of computer security, he once admitted to the BBC that he never actually used the software on his own computers – or any anti-virus software for that matter.
He also launched unsuccessful bids to become the Libertarian Party’s candidate for the presidential elections in 2016 and 2020.
In 2019 McAfee expressed his disdain for taxes, tweeting that he had not filed tax returns for eight years because “taxation is illegal.
In the same year he was briefly detained in the Dominican Republic for allegedly bringing weapons into the country.
McAfee never fitted into the mould of what a tech entrepreneur might look like. He was brash, reckless and never far away from the next scandal.
Mcafee himself is best known for the company he founded and named
It was wildly successful and made him a rich man. He also helped to create a multi-billon dollar computer security software industry in the process.
McAfee was a visionary, but also hot headed. It was his temperament that got him into trouble throughout his life.
In 2012 he was arrested in Guatamala, having been on the run in Belize where police were investigating the death of his neighbour.
He always denied any involvement in the murder.
A prominent libertarian, engaging speaker and crypto enthusiast, McAfee still had the ability to make money. His latest brush with law enforcement was due to alleged tax evasion on his recent earnings.
He will be remembered, rightly, as an important figure in the development of the technology scene of the 80s and 90s. But he will also be remembered as a deeply controversial figure, who at times seemed intent in taking a path in life that might lead to trouble.
• The new Land Act was passed by parliament and assented to by President Akufo-Addo in December 2020null
• According to Dr Bawumia, the law will combat widely known chaos at the Lands Commission
• He urged stakeholders to remain committed to the implementation of the new Land Act
Many people have over the years complained about how tedious the land administration process is at the Lands Commission anytime they visit the premises.
Due to this, the government has resorted to the digitization of the process to ensure sustainable land administration and management.
Addressing participants at a national symposium, Vice President of the Republic, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia said vigorous implementation of the new Land Act 2020 (Act 1063) will fight the ‘demons and principalities’ Ghanaians meet at the Lands Commission.
He said, “To address these critical challenges in the land sector, and to optimize the contribution of land in the socio-economic development of Ghana, the government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is committed to change through the application of technology.null
“The digitization of the Land Commission has now become very imperative and I have every confidence that the team that we have at the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources is a formidable team working with the Lands Commission and I believe we are going to slain this dragon and make sure we fight the demons and principalities that we meet in the process of land administration,” he stated.
Dr Bawumia furthered that he has established a liaison unit in his office to assist both the Lands Commission and the relevant ministry to expedite the digitization processes.
The new Land Act introduces new provisions relating to customary land management, compulsory acquisition and vesting of lands, electronic conveyancing and spousal land rights.
It also provides for stringent jail terms for various offences related to land, all with the view to assist in sanitizing the land sector.
President Akufo-Addo and WO II Esther Saan, aka Mama Gee
A witness in the case of the alleged coup plotters, Major General Nicholas Andoh, has insisted that the 10 persons who are standing trial for allegedly plotting to overthrow the NPP government actually planned to capture and kill President Nana Akufo-Addo.
Major General Andoh, who is the prosecution’s second witness, while under cross- examination debunked claims by Victor Adawudu, counsel for Dr. Frederick MacPalm and four others that, the accused persons on no occasion discussed any plans to over to overthrow the government.
He told the court that the accused persons, as part of their plans to overthrow the NPP government, sought to procure weapons – an AK47 riffle through Gershon Akpa, a civilian employee with the Ghana Armed Forces and their discussion on plans to overthrow the government and eventually kill the President were seen in videos recorded by operatives of the Ghana Armed Forces and the Bureau of National Investigations.
“I am putting it to you that there was no occasion that the accused persons planned to overthrow the government as you want this court to understand,” counsel for the accused, Victor Adawudu challenged the witness.
“This assertion is false. There were discussions, there was a plan, it was drawn on paper, areas were selected to be captured, attacked and blocked. It was discussed and seen in the video. The plan was seen in the video at Laskala. The same plan and sketch was seen in a drawer of Dr. MacPalm at the Citadel Hospital 14 months after the discussion,” the witness told the court.
Major General Andoh continued that “the IEDs (Improvised Explosive Device) and the pistols were seen in the video and were physically located at the Citadel Hospital and then the sedative chemical that was put in the IEDs, two samples were found during a search at the Citadel Hospital. All the meetings centered on the overthrow of the government and to cause havoc in the country.”
The 10 accused persons include Dr. Frederick Yao MacPalm, proprietor of the Citadel Hospital at Alajo in Accra who is suspected to be the mastermind of the plot; Donya Kafui aka Ezor, a local weapon manufacturer; Bright Alan Debrah Ofosu aka Bright Alan Yeboah or BB, Lance Corporal Ali Solomon, Lance Corporal Sylvester Akanpewon, Lance Corporal Seidu Abubakar and WO II Esther Saan Dekuwine aka Mama Gee.
The rest are Johannes Zikpi, a civilian employee with the Ghana Armed Forces, ACP Dr. Benjamin Agordzo of the Ghana Police Service and Col. Samuel Kojo Gameli.
Major General Andoh, who is the Chief of Staff of the Ghana Armed Forces, led in his witness-in-chief by the Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, told the court that Dr. MacPalm masterminded the plot to overthrow the government.
He said analysis of a joint surveillance revealed that the medical doctor was the brain behind the coup and that “he took practical steps to recruit military and police officers through BB (Bright Alan Debrah) to advance his cause.”
He also outlined some of the important meetings held by the accused persons at various venues where they discussed among other things how to carry out the coup, and how to capture or block some key installations in the country in order for their plans to succeed.
Mr. Adawudu, who is the counsel for Dr. MacPalm and four other accused persons, asked the witness whether he was at any of the meetings that he spoke about, and the durations of the meetings as well as the video and audio recordings.
Major General Andoh told the court that he was not at any of the meetings and could not specify the duration of the meetings as well as the durations of the video and audio recordings, but added that as the Director of Defence Intelligence at the time, he did not need to be at the meeting “but by my structures I could monitor through the recordings and reporting that I received. So my account is based on the review of the videos and reports I received from my operatives.”
The lawyer of Dr. MacPalm then suggested to the witness that since he was not at the alleged meetings he could not tell what was discussed at these meetings.
The witness in his reply said, “I can, on the basis that all the videos, audios and the verbal briefings I received turned out to authenticate the activities that were physically uncovered.”
The lawyer also suggested to the witness that “it is not a crime to procure a rifle in Ghana,” but the witness said, “My Lord, it is a crime to procure an assault rifle without permission. It is a crime.”
Dr. MacPalm’s Lawyer: And I’m also putting it to you that when you procure a rifle, you have to register it. Is that not so?
Witness: My lord AK47 rifle is the preserve of security agencies and their procurement must be authorised.
Dr. MacPalm’s Lawyer: I am putting it to you that it is not a crime to procure a rifle and register it in Ghana.
Witness: My lord, the procurement of assault rifle – AK47 is an assault rifle and it is not permitted for any individual not even in the military to acquire. It is meant for the police, the army and the security agencies
Mr John Mahama managed the economy better as president than the Akufo-Addo-Bawumia government has done so far, opposition MP Isaac Adongohas claimed.
Speaking at a public lecture organised by the Coalition for Restoration on Wednesday, 23 June 2021, the Bolgatanga Central lawmaker said argued: “For a country to grow, GDP is irrelevant if you cannot collect a greater proportion of it to fund government activities”.
So, he noted, “it is always important to find out if the government’s revenue collection systems are efficient, then it is taking more from the GDP or the national income, in order to fund further growth”.
The ranking member of the finance committee of parliament added: “So, when a government is not taking more from the GDP, what it simply means is that it must now go and borrow because people are earning money and he doesn’t even know how to collect the money to fund development”.
Adducing comparative evidence to buttress his claim, Mr Adongo said Mr Mahama, from 2013 to 2016, “did an average total revenue and grants of 17.9 per cent, almost 18 per cent of GDP”.
However, “the first four years, with one of the best economies in the world, as the head of the economic management team, he [Vic-President Mahamudu Bawumia] did 15.2 per cent”, Mr Adongo compared.
“I don’t see how 15.2 per cent is a better manager of raising revenue to 17 to 18 per cent”, he contrasted.
On domestic revenue which includes grants, Mr Adongo said Mr Mahama “did 17 per cent as against 14.8 per cent” of the current government.
“Now, we are looking at tax revenue, alone; we did 13.3 per cent, they did 12 per cent”, he noted
The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources has announced an end to the Covid-19 free water supply intervention.
Last year, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo announced that the government would absorb water bills for all Ghanaians, as part ofitsfight against the spread of the Covid-19 pandemic.
TheMinistry,ina statement, saidtheintervention, which was supposed to last for three months (between 1 July to 30September 2020), was extended again from 1 October to 31December 2020.
The statement further notedthat inJanuary 2021, the policy was maintained for lifeline consumers; thatis, households that consume less than 1.100 gallons of water per month from 1January to 31March 2021 and was further extended from 1April to 30June 2021.
“Effective 1 July 2021, all consumers/customers of the Ghana Water Company Limited, the Community Water and Sanitation Agency, NGOs and partners in the water sector, will pay for the water they consume,” thestatement added
A claim that South African woman Gosiame Sithole gave birth to 10 babies earlier this month is not true, an official inquiry has found.
No hospitals in Gauteng province have a record of decuplets being born, the provincial government says.
Medical tests show that Ms Sithole had not even been pregnant recently, it said.
The 37-year-old is now being held under the mental health act for observation and will be provided with support.
The statement did not elaborate on the reasons behind the fabrication of the story.
Independent Online (IOL), the media group which owns the Pretoria News that first reported the story, had stood by its reporting.
It went on to allege that Ms Sithole delivered the children on 7 June at Steve Biko Academic Hospital (SBAH) in the capital, Pretoria, saying staff were ill prepared.
It accused the hospital and the provincial health authorities of trying to cover up medical negligence.
“These allegations are false, unsubstantiated and only serve to tarnish the good reputation of Steve Biko Academic Hospital and the Gauteng Provincial Government,” the latest statement said.
Legal action would be taken against the editor-in-chief of Pretoria News, Piet Rampedi, and IOL, it said.
Where did the story come from? Ms Sithole, who has six-year-old twins, and her partner Teboho Tsotetsi lived in Thembisa, a township with many working-class residents in Gauteng province near Johannesburg.
According to IOL, they attended the same church as Rampedi where he was introduced to them in December. In May it is alleged he interviewed the couple who said they were expecting eight babies – a photoshoot shows Ms Sithole looking heavily pregnant.
The birth of a surprise 10 babies was announced by Pretoria News on 8 June quoting Mr Tsotetsi as the source. He later said he had received text messages from his partner telling him about it, adding he was not allowed at the hospital because of coronavirus restrictions.
Rampedi also relied on WhatsApp messages – and did not get independent confirmation from the hospital of the story.
Their local mayor then confirmed the births – which is when other outlets, including the BBC, published the story – but a government spokesman later said the politician only had the family’s word and no-one had yet seen the babies.
Donations began flooding in for the couple and their reported babies, dubbed the “Thembisa 10”, including 1m rand ($70,000; £50,000) from IOL chairman Iqbal Survé.
But the story drew suspicion after Pretoria News initially failed to disclose the hospital where the babies were born and a series of hospitals in Gauteng came out to deny their involvement.
Ten days after the alleged births, IOL made the accusations against SBAH.
The couple seemed to fall out in the aftermath with Mr Tsotetsi reporting her missing and asking people to stop donations a week later, while Ms Sithole accused him of wanting to benefit financially from the babies, the Pretoria News reported.
Meanwhile social workers managed to track down Ms Sithole and she was admitted to hospital for tests last Friday, the Gauteng provincial authorities say.
A leaked memo seen by News24 alleges that Rampedi has recently apologised to IOL for “the reputational damage” the story has caused the group, saying he should have treated it more like an investigative piece rather than a “feel-good story”.
Members of Parliament (MPs) belonging to the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) on Wednesday walked out of parliament in protest against the approval of four deputy ministers.
The minority MPs said their boycott of the approval of the last batch of deputy ministers, which was tabled in the House by Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, was borne out of insincerity and disrespect for them by their majority counterparts.
The Deputy Minority Leader, James Klutse Avedzi, indicated that the vetting the Deputy Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Diana Asonaba Dapaah; Deputy Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, Lariba Zuweira Abdul; Deputy Minister of Local Government and Dentralisation, Martin Adjei Mensah-Korsah; and the Deputy Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Amidu Issahaku Chinnia were carried out without their involvement.
Later, the MP for Tamale North, Alhassan Sayibu Suhuyini, explained his side could not take part in the vetting because the Speaker had directed MPs to take part in the Green Ghana exercise on June 11, 2021, the day the vetting took place.
According to him, Committees of Parliament work at the pleasure of the Speaker and that for Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin to have directed MPs to go to their constituencies to take part in the exercise was enough to have signaled the Chairman of the Appointments Committee to call off the vetting.
“On the said date the Speaker gave no exclusion, he directed all Members of Parliament to go back to their constituencies to support the government programme of Green Ghana,” he posited
However, the Majority side insisted its members did no wrong, intimating that Parliament’s Appointments Committee had a programme of schedule which predated the event of Green Ghana on June 11.
MP for Abuakwa South, Samuel Atta Akyea said “every serious-minded member of the Committee would be bound by the programme.”
He continued that “and what we were going to do will take precedence over any other thing, that is very, very fundamental,” and added that “we should bear in mind that a member of parliament could also delegate to the Chairman of the constituency to stand in for him or her.”
Speaker of Parliament Alban Sumana Kingsford Bagbin on Wednesday called on Members of Parliament to enhance their participation in parliamentary diplomacy.null
He urged MPs to avail themselves, join parliamentary friendship associations, and take part in mutual activities that inured to the benefit of one another.
The Speaker made the call at the Parliament House when he inaugurated an 11-member Management Committee of Parliamentary Friendship Associations of the Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic of Ghana.
The Committee is chaired by Mr Alexander Afenyo-Markin, Deputy Majority Leader and MP for Efutu Constituency.
Speaker Bagbin urged the legislators to be interested in issues that affected one another and to collaborate among legislatures for workable solutions.
“Global integration is a sine qua non of global development,” the Speaker said and called for friendship engagements to address trans-generational and trans-territorial challenges.null
The Speaker directed the Committee to co-opt three more women to join their committees, and for copies of the Code of Conduct of MPs in Ghana to be made available to all MPs.
Mr Afenyo-Markin, who chairs the Committee, pledged that the Committee would work with zeal.
Other members of the Committee are Mr James Klutse Avedzi, Deputy Minority Leader; Madam Lydia Seyram Alhasssan, Deputy Majority Whip; Mr Ahamed Ibrahim, Deputy Minority Whip, Mr Bryan Acheampong, Chairperson, Foreign Affairs Committee; Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa; Ranking Member, Foreign Affairs Committee; Mr Osei Bonsu Amoah, MP Akuapem South Constituency; and Dr Emmanuel Marfo, MP for Oforikrom Constituency-both nominated by the Majority Leader; and Mr Richard Acheampong, MP for Bia East Constituency, nominated by the Minority Leader.
Members at the Secretariat of the Committee are Mr Richard Kwame Acheampong, Head Parliamentary Relations Unit as Secretary; and Mrs Anthonia-Gloria French Okine, Assistant Parliamentary Relations Officer as Assistant Secretary.
As at the end of the Seventh Parliament of the Fourth Republic of Ghana, the Ghana’s parliament has so far registered and in friendship with the legislatures of 38 nations across the continents.null
A Parliamentary Friendship Association is a cross-party association of legislators established to promote continued dialogue with Members of other Legislatures.
Once established, the associations enter into bilateral relations with their counterparts on other Legislatures.
Five or more Members of Parliament may initiate the establishment of a Parliamentary Friendship Association provided that the country with which they intend to relate is a member of the United Nations, has Legislature and has diplomatic relations with Ghana.
The variants were confirmed from samples taken from passengers at the Kotoka International Airport between April and June.
A press release issued by the Director General of the Service, Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, on Tuesday, June 22 to respond to some media reports said: “No Delta variant has been detected from samples taken from cases in the community.”
This comes in the wake of reports that the deadly Indian strain was within the populace while the approved vaccines in Ghana cannot immune one against it.
Dr Kuma-Aboagye, in the press release, admits that there has been a surge in the virus recently but “reports that Sputnik-V and AstraZeneca vaccines are not effective against the Delta strain of SARS-Cov-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19) are untrue”.
He cites the Public Health England, which says that two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine are highly effective against hospitalisation due to the Delta variant.
He, therefore, urged Ghanaians to take advantage of vaccination when their turn is due and entreated all and sundry to adhere to the COVID-19 safety protocols.Source: 3news.com
Actor, Prince David Osei, has admitted that times are hard in Ghana. This comes after months of living in self-denial and calling on Ghanaians to fix themselves rather than urge the government to make things right.
Prince David Osei making this known in a tweet said “I know times are tough everywhere but things will get better… Keep believing”.
His acknowledgement that times are hard is a shock to many considering the fact that he urged the people of Ghana to rather fix themselves. The youth in Ghana are complaining of the times. Fuel prices keep increasing every fortnight and that has affected prices and the standard of living across the country.
The government blames the hardship on COVID-19 and its accompanying financial commitments for the suffering but however, turn around to blame the citizens for not fixing themselves as the cause of the country’s problems.
Although there are efforts to demonstrate, these efforts have been thwarted by the Ghana Police Service who has decided to take the issue to court to restrain the citizens from registering their displeasure.
Attorney General (AG), Godfred Yeboah Dame says the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service, will investigate the Power Purchasing Agreement signed between government and Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC), exposing the nation to a financial loss.
He said the agreement was unnecessary and ill-informed because the country did not need excess power at the time and that an inquiry would be instituted into the matter to protect the public purse.
The AG said the agreement contained clauses, which rendered the government liable for payment of huge sums of money, saying, “irrespective of whether it was terminated before it became effective or not, government was exposed to financial loss.”
The Commercial Court in London, reportedly refused to allow Ghana to bring a belated challenge to an UNCITRAL award worth over US$134 million in favour of a power contractor, ruling that national elections and COVID-19 pandemic, did not make the state’s delay reasonable.
The case started under Gloria Afua Akuffo, then Minister of Justice and Attorney General, with Godfred Yeboah Dame as one of her Deputies.
State attorneys, including Helen Akpene Awo Ziwu, Anna Pearl Akiwumi Siriboe and Grace Oppong Dolphy in Accra, were also mentioned in the case as having failed to beat a 28-day deadline.
The delay resulted in the State having to pay US$170 million in damages to the claimants; Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC) located at 1 Airport Square Building, 7TH Floor, Accra.
In a ruling on Wednesday, June 8, 2021, Justice Butcher, refused to grant the government a time extension to set aside the award, saying, the State’s grounds for challenging it were “intrinsically weak”.
The underlying dispute is about government’s alleged wrongful rejection in 2018 of a contract for a “fast-track power generation solution” – involving the relocation of two aero derivative gas turbine power plants to the government’s territory.
A London-seated UNCITRAL tribunal composed of former ICC Court President John Beechey as chair, J William Rowley QC and Ghanaian academic, Albert Fiadjoe, issued its final award in January, ordering the government to pay a contractually defined “early termination payment” of more than US$134.3 million plus interest and costs.
The tribunal also dismissed the government’s counterclaim, according to reports.
It is said the award is worth around US$170 million and under English law, the government had 28 days to bring a challenge to the award.
Three days before the expiry of that deadline, the government’s then solicitors, Omnia Strategy applied to the court for a 56-day extension, due national elections and COVID-19, reports indicate.
The court, reportedly, agreed to extend the deadline for any challenge to March 8, but the government only brought its set-aside application on April 1, now represented by Volterra Fietta.
Reports say, in the latest ruling, Butcher J, said the government’s delay was “significant and substantial”, as its request for a second extension had come 38 days after the statutory deadline and 27 days after the first extension expired.
That an entity may have “bureaucratic decision-making processes, ” does not justify delay, the court said, adding that, for arguments about Covid-19 , the evidence as to the way in which the pandemic had affected the government was “wholly inadequate”.
The judge reportedly said there was no unfairness in denying an extension, as the government had already been granted one extension and was solely responsible for having missed the deadlines.
Mr Dame, also the Minister of Justice, blamed the signatories to the agreement for the $170 million judgement debt and said “the fact as borne out by the PPA committee’s report was that the agreement, together with other agreements, had resulted in such excessive power supply to the state.
The state was going to lose $586m per annum and a cumulative cost of about $7.6billion dollars between 2013 and 2018.”
“So I think that when it comes to financial loss, it is so clear in my mind that the responsibility lies clearly with those who entered into the agreement.
The basic point is that the entry into this transaction was unnecessary. The entry into this transaction was what resulted in financial loss to the state.”
Executive Director, Africa Centre for Energy Policy, Benjamin Boakye, said it was “extremely reckless for us to pay this amount because people engage in power play,” and said it was important that government officials paid attention to agreements approved by Parliament to avoid judgement debts. GNA
He said it was imperative that the continent abandoned half-hearted partnerships, and develop new approaches that support self-sustaining economic growth and development to recover from the scourge of the pandemic.
He was speaking on Wednesday at the opening of the African Development Bank group’s (AfDB) virtual 2021 Annual Meetings.
President Akufo-Addo noted that Africa could not afford to ignore the significant challenge facing it as a result of the pandemic, which had claimed some 130,000, pushed its economies into contraction and exposed its structural fragility.
He said the continent ought to seek new pathways to recover from the challenges of the COVID-19, saying, “In an unprecedented global event of this magnitude, we must engineer a response that will help accelerate our structural transformation.”
“Our will in seeing it through must be total,” he emphasized.null
The three-day Annual Meetings is being held on the theme, “Building Resilient Economies in Post COVID-19 Africa.” The meetings will provide a platform for the Bank’s Board of Governors to share their countries’ experience in addressing the pandemic and the policy measures they are employing to rebuild economies and livelihoods.
Commending the AfDB for its coordinated response to address the economic fragilities arising from the pandemic, President Akufo-Addo urged that the bank be resourced “to position it as the catalyst for our economic advancement.”
He told the meeting that there was need to re-awaken bonds of solidarity between the Bank Group, African Union Organs and Institutions, and Regional Economic Communities, and demonstrate a united commitment towards rebuilding back better.
“With the right set of targeted investments from the AfDB, countries will accelerate their growth and job creation, and lay the foundations for a sustainable recovery and economic build-back. The AfDB has a distinct role that no other bilateral or multilateral development partner can match,
President Akufo-Addo was hopeful to see additional collaborations, partnerships, and the continued allocation of substantial resources “towards initiatives that accelerate our chances at building back boldly, better and greener.”
“I ask that we remain focused on promoting inclusive growth, especially in digitalisation, health, agriculture, industrial processing, and eliminating gender disparities.
Other participants in the meetings also said the Bank would be critical in the building of more resilient economies in the post-pandemic period.Source: GNA
Bernard Allotey Jacobs, a former NDC Central Regional Chairman, has urged the government to increase its purchase of Kantanka vehicles to enable the company to expand and create more employment opportunities.null
He said once that was done, the government could put a system in place through which groups such as teachers and nurses, among others, could procure the vehicles on hire purchase basis.
“I am impressed with what Apostle Kwadwo Safo Kantanka has done and I am so happy about that and I think the government needs to support him through every means possible,” Bernard Allotey Jacobs exclusively told Reynold Agyemang on ‘Pae Mu Ka’ on Accra-based Kingdom FM 107.7null
‘Kantanka Automobile’ which began commercial sale of the Kantanka cars in November 2015, have been criticised for selling at uncompetitive prices.
The Kantanka K71 is selling between ¢65,000 – ¢70,000 whiles the luxury version, Omama Luxury is sold at ¢130,000.
The caucus had hinted of boycotting debate on the approval of the four because its members were not present during their vetting by the Appointments Committee.
They were said to have been vetted on Friday, June 11, a day set aside for all Members of Parliament to help in the nationwide planting of trees dubbed Green Ghana Day.
The Minority’s strong case to have the four deputy ministers-designate re-vetted was ignored on the floor of Parliament on Wednesday, June 23, prompting the walkout.
The four deputy ministerial nominees are Techiman South MP Martin Adjei-Mensah Korsah, for Local Government and Rural Development, Lariba Zuweira Abudu, for Gender, Children and Special Protection, Amidu Issahaku Chinnia, for Sanitation and Water Resources, and Diana Asonaba Dapaah, for the Justice
Guillaume Soro has already been convicted of embezzlement and was sentenced last year to 20 years in prison
A court in Côte d’Ivoire on Wednesday sentenced former prime minister and rebel leader Guillaume Soro in absentia to life in prison on charges of plotting a coup against his former ally President Alassane Ouattara.
Soro, who is in exile in Europe, was charged with conspiracy and an attempted attack on state authority.
His lawyers have previously condemned the charges as politically motivated and said there was no evidence to show he was guilty.
The case has raised tensions in a country still recovering from a brief civil war a decade ago, during which Soro led the rebels that swept Ouattara to power after a disputed election.
Soro went on to serve as prime minister and speaker of parliament under Ouattara, but the two men later fell out as the president made clear he would oppose Soro’s own presidential ambitions.
Prosecutors issued an arrest warrant for Soro in December 2019, just before he planned to return home from Europe to launch his presidential campaign.
He was also accused of stealing public funds, for which he was convicted and sentenced last year to 20 years in prison. He denies those charges too.
The court on Wednesday also handed 20-year prison sentences to several of Soro’s close associates for participating in the coup plot. It dissolved his political party and ordered the seizure of its property and any weapons acquired by Soro and his allies.
Soro used the 2010-2011 civil war and its aftermath to stockpile hundreds of tonnes of weapons, United Nations investigators have alleged. Soro has denied this.
A video of South Africa’s President Cyril Ramaphosa that shows him asking where his missing iPad is has been shared widely online.
A seemingly distraught Ramaphosa kept saying it had been stolen, adding “this is the problem of always handing your gadgets to other people”.
“They stole it… I had my iPad I had it in my hand, it’s gone,” he said.
He had risen to address an event but did not have his speech with him.
The president was asked to sit down and wait as officials tried to locate the gadget.
He afterwards made his speech – and the presidency’s head of digital communications tweeted that the “first ipad has been found”.
The presidency later said he was making a “light-hearted point while waiting for his iPad”.
South Africans online reacted to the lost iPad moment:
Simon Grindrod tweeted: “In many countries, presidents and prime ministers travel around with the nuclear codes for their missile systems. In SA, our own president’s team can’t even safeguard his private iPad.”
“The president had the same expression of despair as many of us whose stuff gets stolen daily,” Tumi Nkosi wrote.
• According to him, it is important for entrepreneurs to learn from moments of financial distress
• He was speaking at the maiden edition of the Youth Conference with Kennedy Agyapong held on Tuesday, June 22, 2021
Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Ohene Agyapong has advised Ghanaian youth, especially those into entrepreneurship to understand the need to learn from financial difficulties and rebound from such situations.
Speaking at the maiden Youth Conference with Kennedy Agyapong, held at the University of Professional Studies – Accra, on Tuesday, June 22, 2021, the businessman emphasized that being in such situations many times becomes necessary for entrepreneurs to learn.
The business magnate recounted two instances he was completely broke, adding that the experience enlightened him to avoid similar situations.
“I was broke two times and the third time I told myself that it was not going to happen again. The first one was in 1992. After the election and Akufo-Addo lost I was in Ghana for eight months. I lost my girlfriend that I was madly in love with because I was broke. My office in New York, I stayed in Ghana for eight months and when I went back the landlord had taken everything in my office. I had only one car left and I started driving Taxi again,” noted in response to an attendee who sought to find out from him how entrepreneurs can navigate through financial difficulties.null
He further revealed how a second episode of a financial difficulty where he was compelled to sell off six out of nine houses, he had at the time to start over again.
“The second one, I lost six out of my nine houses. I had to sell six out of my nine houses to start life over again,” he revealed.
He pointed out what has since become lessons from his experience and asked youth entrepreneurs to see financial difficulties as learning moments.
“Don’t think I have not gone through hardships before, I have but I had to survive. That is where you learn your lessons then you correct them and you become a better person, a better businessman. So, it’s necessary to fall so that when you rise you will not make that mistakes again. Don’t think life is smooth, straight like that for you – you will be a fool,” he stated.
The Youth Conference with Kennedy Agyapong was held in honour of the accomplished businessman and politician as part of his 61st birthday celebrations.
Speaking in an interview with GhanaWeb, Ohene Kofi Safo a nephew of the MP who is the brain behind the conference explained what the motivation was.null
“The Honourable MP is a man whose political and business life has had an impact on many people. He has over the years accumulated a lot of political and business experience which attests to his success, and so we thought about doing something that will have a double positive effect. Our aim was to honour the Honourable Kennedy Agyapong and to also create a platform for him to share his knowledge and experience with the youth of Ghana who he exerts a lot of influence over. We believe that through this platform, more Kennedy Agyapongs will be created by virtue of the exposure,” he said.
Mr Kennedy Agyapong who was the main speaker of the conference among other things charged the youth of Ghana to take their destinies into their own hands and make sure they give in their all in the quest for success.
Other guests who graced the conference include the MP for Abetifi – Bryan Acheampong who was Chairman of the event, Ghana’s Former Ambassador to China – Edward Boateng, Deputy Information Minister Designate – Fatimatu Abubakar and the Vice-Chancellor for the University of Professional Studies, Accra – Prof Abednego F. O. Amartey.
The Youth Conference with Kennedy Agyapong is scheduled to be organised annually to provide a platform for the MP and other accomplished Ghanaians to impart knowledge to Ghanaian youth.
The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has charged the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the Lands Commission and other land management agencies as well as traditional leaders to see to the vigorous implementation of the new Land Act 2020 (Act 1063), to ensure sanity and security in the administration of land in Ghana.
Addressing participants at a national symposium organised by the Ministry in collaboration with other land use administrators in Accra on Wednesday, 23 June 2021 Dr Bawumia expressed delight that a comprehensive document guiding the use and administration of land had finally become a reality.
“Today’s National Symposium) marks a significant event in the history of land administration in Ghana. I say this because, for the first time, a Law on land administration has been passed to revise, harmonize, and consolidate laws on land to ensure sustainable land administration and management.
“The importance of an effective and efficient Land Sector in Ghana cannot be overemphasized. Every economic activity undertaken by man has a relation to land and, therefore, land remains pivotal to National Development.
“The National Lands Policy, 1999, the Coordinated Programme of Economic and Social Development Policies (2017-2024), and the Ghana Beyond Aid Strategy Document (2020) show that a functional land administration system is a catalyst for development.”
In addition to harmonizing existing laws the Act, which received Presidential Assent on 23rd December, 2020, provides for the repeal of 13 land related Acts, which in turn result in the repeal of orders/rules and regulations that emanate from these repealed laws.
Further, Act 1036 significantly introduces new provisions relating to customary land management, compulsory acquisition and vesting of lands, electronic conveyancing, and spousal land rights.
It also provides for stringent of jail terms for various offences related to land that are expected to assist in the sanitizing the land sector.
Recalling his surprise visit to the Lands Commission in 2018, during which he observed several, major challenges in the documentation and administration of land documents, Vice President Bawumia said Government re-invigorated efforts to ensure the passage of a law which embraced technology to meet the challenges of our time.
“It is worth noting that successive Governments have tried resolving the challenges in our Land Administration system, but these efforts have often come with various complications, and inefficient deployment of resources. Governments after governments, bank loans after bank loans, our fundamental problems in land administration persist, seemingly unsolvable, and citizens’ complaints get louder and louder.
“To address these critical challenges in the land sector and to optimize the contribution of land to the socio-economic development of Ghana, the Government of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo is committed to change through the application of technology. Ghana can only make the much-needed strides in development when technology becomes the driver for all sectors of the economy.”
Dr Bawumia called on all stakeholders to actively play their parts in ensuring that the provisions of the Act become reality, and not just another piece of legislation that gathers dust.
“Laws in themselves do not resolve problems. It is the application of the laws and their effective implementation that will result in desired changes in the land sector that all of us so much desire.
“To this end, I will like to emphasize the need for all stakeholders to rally together to ensure that the provisions of the Land Act are implemented effectively, and resources are channeled towards it.
“For instance, the Land Act provides that our eminent chiefs, clan and family heads, tendanas, who are the custodians of approximately 80% of the land area of Ghana, are required to establish Customary Land Secretariats to improve the management of their lands.
“However, our Traditional Authorities will require technical and professional assistance from the Lands Commission, Office of the Administrator of Stool Lands and the Land Use and Spatial Planning Authority to establish the Secretariats. I trust the honourable Minister would give the urgent support and needed directives to the agencies to this end.”
“Also, the participation of the Private Sector is essential, especially in the injection of capital and technical know-how in targeting specific key improvements in the infrastructure and operations of the Lands Commission. This participation would go a long way in improving efficiency,” he added.
The Ministry of Health (MoH) and the Ghana Health Service (GHS) have indicated that the Delta variant of Covid-19 has not been detected in communities.
According to a statement signed by the Director-General, GHS, Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, no Delta variant has been detected from samples taken from cases in the community.
“As of now, the country has detected six Delta variants of the SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19 virus) from all samples taken between April and June 2021 at the ports of entry,” the statement indicated.
The health service noted that all passengers who test positive at Kotoka International Airport (KIA) are put under mandatory isolation.
“All positive samples are sent for further testing (genomic sequencing) to identify the variants.
Variants sequenced from samples of positive cases at the Airport do not necessarily end up in the community,” it explained.
The MOH and GHS further stated that the country in April 2021, experienced a surge in cases at the airport during which period 308 positives were identified.
However, it said Ghana has not experienced the third wave partly due to the robust surveillance system in place at the ports of entry and strict isolation of all cases detected.
The health authorities reiterated their assurance that the Sputnik-V and AstraZeneca vaccines are effective against the Delta strain of SARS-Cov-2 (the virus that causes COVID-19).
“According to Public Health England (PHE), two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine are highly effective against hospitalisation due to the Delta variant and showed no deaths among those vaccinated. The data also suggest that the AstraZeneca vaccine is effective against symptomatic disease caused by the Delta variant,” the statement said.
A study conducted by Gamaleya Center suggests that Sputnik-V is more efficient against the Delta variant of coronavirus, first detected in India, compared to other COVID-19 vaccines.
Amid global supply shortages, the MOH and GHS reiterated their efforts to ensure that adequate vaccines are procured to protect the population.
“The MOH, GHS and the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) are working collaboratively to ensure that vaccines that come into the country are safe and effective.
The Service would like to urge Ghanaians to take advantage of vaccination when their turn is due while entreating the general public to adhere to the COVID-19 prevention protocols i.e., wearing of face masks, practising hand hygiene and physical distancing as part of the strategies,” it said
Just as the Chief Justice referred a former Deputy Attorney General Dominic Ayine to the General Legal Council (GLC) for the comments he made against the justices, it will be interesting to see if Mr Kwasi Anin-Yeboah will also refer Tsatsu Tsikata to the GLC for saying that ‘In this last petition, I think as we all saw virtually in all the decisions, the Chief Justice will write an opinion and everybody was on board’, private legal practitioner Professor Kwaku Asare, has said.
Mr Tsikata who was the lead counsel for John Dramani Mahama in the 2020 Presidential Election Petition, criticized the Supreme Court for dismissing the petition.
In an exclusive interview with TV3, he maintained that the apex court made errors in its decisions.
He said unlike the 2012 Election Petition judgement when all the judges gave reasons for the positions they took on the main points of the case that was not the case in the 2020 Presidential Election Petition.
“Each of the judges had a chance to articulate the reasons and to explain their point of view from a legal authority standpoint. In this last petition, I think as we all saw virtually in all the decisions, the Chief Justice will write an opinion and everybody was on board”, he said.
“I come to a clear determination that there were errors made in the decisions and I make no bones about saying so and respectfully explaining why I say so in the manner I think I have illustrated in this discussion, not out of disrespect for the judges or trying to make fun of them, no. It is out of the importance of their role and the importance of their fidelity to the Constitution and to the law”.
Commenting on this development, Professor Asare said “It will be interesting to see if the CJ will refer Tsatsu to the GLC for saying that “In this last petition, I think as we all saw virtually in all the decisions, the Chief Justice will write an opinion and everybody was on board.”
“Lawyers are footsoldiers of the Constitution and must be free to defend the Constitution as vigorously as possible subject only to the court rules, none of which bars them from expressing any opinion they want on an adjudicated case.
“In fact, law journals will be boring if all lawyers and commentators could do was to praise court opinions or to shy away from questioning the independence of the courts.
“No constitution will be adequately protected if the law regulator is allowed to create a monopolist provider of legal education and to also serve as the monopolist monitor of what those who are allowed to practice can say in and out of the courtrooms.
“The GLC is a moribund regulator that has stifled the growth of the law and justice in this country.
Dr. Akuritingayine must be freed, the CJ must focus on improving justice delivery, the GLC must be scrapped, and GOGO must be launched.”
Vice-President Mahamadu Bawumia has said the government is committed to applying the necessary technology to expedite the digitalisation of land registration and acquisition process in Ghana.
At a national symposium on the new Land Act 2020 (Act 1036), Dr Bawumia expressed confidence that technology will help put an end to the difficulties associated with land acquisition in the country.
Last year, parliament passed a new law to govern land administration in the country, which is expected to address the perennial problems of violence and fraud associated with land acquisition and registration.
This new law proposes very stringent punishment for persons claiming to possess lands that they do not own.
The Land Act was passed by parliament and given presidential assent on December 23 last year to revise, harmonise and consolidate the law.
Speaking at a national symposium on Wednesday, 23 June 2021, Dr Bawumia said: “It is worth noting that successive governments have tried resolving the challenges in our land administrative system but these efforts have often come with various complications and inefficient deployment of resources”.
“Governments after governments, bank loans after bank loans; our fundamental problems of land acquisition persist nonetheless. Seemingly unsolvable, citizen complaints get louder and louder so citizens resort to land guards”, he observed.
“To address these critical challenges in the land sector and to optimise the contribution of land to the socio-economic development of Ghana, the government of Nana Akufo-Addo is committed to changing, through the application of technology”, the land processing system so that “Ghana can make strides when technology becomes a driver for all sectors of the economy”.
“Therefore, as part of the digitisation agenda of the government, I have established, in my office, a liaison unit, which is working to assist the Lands Commission and the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to expedite the digitisation process…”, he said.
“Under the new Land Act, electronic conveyances have been captured. This can only be realised, however, by the establishment of a robust digitised land sector agency and this has been incorporated in the Land Act…
“I have every confidence that the team we have at the ministry of lands and natural resources is a firm and formidable team working with the Lands Commission and I believe we are going to slay this dragon and make sure that we fight the demons and principalities that we meet in the process of land administration.”
For his part, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Mr Samuel Abu Jinapor, said his office is committed to fully ensuring the effective roll-out of the new Land Act 2020.
He was confident that theAct will streamline registration and administration of lands in the country and bring an end to the age-old tussle in land acquisition and registration.
Mr Jinapor said the ministry will be collaborating with the judiciary and relevant stakeholders to enforce the law to ensure an effective land administration.
The minister also added that the government will not hesitate to prosecute culprits who fall foul of the new Act
Acting on a tipoff that the suspect would send a package containing pistols via a parcel delivery service in Istanbul’s Fatih suburb, police examining the delivery service’s branch found the unlicensed pistols inside a black bag left by the suspect identified as 37-year-old.
Police raided a house in the suburb of Şişli and arrested the suspect.
Istanbul authorities said the suspect was already indicted in Ghana for arms smuggling
The Overlord of Mamprugu, the Nayiri, Naa Bohogu Mahami Abdulai Sheriga, has applauded the President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for seeing to the construction and completion of several projects which had been on the wish list of the chiefs and people of Mamprugu for many years.
According to the Nayiri, the impact of the work undertaken by the President Akufo-Addo has been felt by the entire country, especially the people of the North East Region.
He indicated that several town water projects across the North East Region, which have been commissioned, the asphalting of the Nalerigu, Gambaga, and Walewale town roads, as well as the ongoing construction of Wulugu-Kpasenkpe Road, the Nasia-Kparigu road, the Nalerigu-Bunkpurugu road, the Nalerigu-Gbintiri road and Gbintiri-Chereponi Road, all in the North East Region, are examples of projects undertaken by the Akufo-Addo government.
“The above-mentioned projects that are being witnessed, have been on the request list of Mamprugu for years which eluded, and, undoubtedly, passed on from government to government. Certainly, we owe you tons of gratitude,” the Nayiri added.
Naa Bohogu Mahami Abdulai Sheriga made this known on Tuesday, 22 June 2021, when the President paid a courtesy call on him at his palace, as part of his two-day tour of North East Region.
The Nayiri also expressed gratitude to President Akufo-Addo for the Pwalugu Multi-Purpose Dam and Irrigation Project, which he described as the “Super Game Changer Project in the North”, which will result in the provision of electricity, and 25,000 hectares of irrigation facilities.
“The dam, I also understand, will serve as a receptacle to collect all water upstream which has been the source of the region’s perennial flooding,” he added.
Touching on the pro-poor policies implemented by the Government of President Akufo-Addo since 2017, such as the free Senior High School policy, Planting for Food and Jobs, One-constituency-One Ambulance, the expansion of the National School Feeding Programmme and the introduction of the Nation Builders Corps he indicated that these policies are “well-thought-out and targeted policies that are aimed at reducing poverty. Ours is a young region on which these policies perfectly fit.”
The Nayiri thanked President Akufo-Addo for the appointment of the former Hon. Hajia Alima Mahama to the high office of Ghana’s Ambassador to the United States of America.
“We are forever most grateful. Your appointment of Hon. Mustapha Ussif as Minister of Youth and Sports, Hon. Hajia Abudu Zuweira Lariba as Deputy Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection is being highly appreciated,” he added.
A member of the main opposition National Democratic Congress’ legal team, Mr Chris Ackumey, has accused Attorney General Godfred Dame of seeking to excuse the Akufo-Addo government’s “negligence” and “incompetence”, which led to the country incurring a judgment debt of $170 million, by pushing the blame on the erstwhile Mahama administration, which signed a power purchase agreement (PPA) with independent power producer Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC), that subsequently got unlawfully terminated by the current government in 2018, thus, bringing about the judgment debt.
Mr Dame had said he intended lodging a formal complaint with the Criminal Investigations Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service to probe the deal, since, according to him, a report by a committee constituted in September 2016, revealed that the agreement had issues and consequently resulted in excessive power supply.
“The fact, as borne out by the PPA committee’s report, was that the agreement, together with other agreements, had resulted in such excessive power supply to the state”, he told Accra-based Joy FM, adding: “The state was going to lose $586m per annum and a cumulative cost of about $7.6billion dollars between 2013 and 2018.”
“So, I think that when it comes to financial loss, it is so clear in my mind that the responsibility lies clearly with those who entered into the agreement”, he noted.
The basic point, he said, “is that the entry into this transaction was unnecessary”.
“The entry into this transaction was what resulted in financial loss to the state.”
He revealed: “I, on account of all of this, am going to write a formal complaint requesting an enquiry by the CID into the conduct of the public officers who acted in the manner which resulted in the signing of an agreement which resulted in financial loss to the state.”
“I think that first and foremost, the entry into the agreement itself was wrong”, he asserted.
“There was no justification because their own committee determined that the agreement was going to result in excessive power.”
“The committee set up by the NDC in 2016 – against the background of a recognition that there were so many PPAs entered into by the NDC administration, and, therefore, those agreements were going to result in excessive capacity development, as it was termed – came to a conclusion that this agreement had to be terminated. The committee singled out this particular agreement for termination”, he stressed.
Reacting to Mr Dame, however, Mr Ackumey, in an interview with Kofi Oppong Asamoah on Class91.3FM’s Class Morning Show on Wednesday, 23 June 2021 wondered: “What is unnecessary?”
“You [Dame] were not in government and then you are saying that a contract was not necessary”, Mr Ackumey retorted, explaining: “We wanted to solve the power crisis in the country, so, there were various agreements which were instituted”.
According to him, the “power fluctuations that we’ve suffered for the past six or seven months will not have been there because this would have augmented or added up”.
“We would have had a buffer, so, why are you attacking [the Mahama administration?]. I mean it’s just trying to distract attention from the gross incompetence, gross negligence and the international disgrace they are suffering from”, Mr Ackumey noted.
What Happened In London Court
Feednews.com reported recently that the Commercial Court in London refused to allow Ghana to bring a belated challenge to an UNCITRAL award worth over US$134 million in favour of a power contractor, ruling that national elections and COVID-19 pandemic did not make the state’s delay reasonable.
The case started under Gloria Afua Akuffo, when she was the Minister of Justice with Godfred Yeboah Dame as her deputy.
State attorneys, including Helen Akpene Awo Ziwu, Anna Pearl Akiwumi Siriboe and Grace Oppong Dolphy in Accra, were also mentioned in the case as having failed to beat a 28-day deadline.
However, the state attorneys, together with Mr Dame, who took over from Gloria Afua Akuffo, went sleeping on the job, leading to a delay in contesting the judgment debt.
The result of that deep sleep is that poverty-stricken Ghana will be paying a whopping US$170 million in damages to the claimants; Ghana Power Generation Company (GPGC) located at 1 Airport Square Building, 7th floor, Accra. Mr Dame and his subordinates’ attempts to hide behind the 2020 general election and the COVID-19 pandemic as excuses for the delay was rebuffed by the London court.
In a ruling on Wednesday, 8 June 2021, Mr Justice Butcher refused to grant the government a time extension to apply to set aside the award – adding that the state’s grounds for challenging it were “intrinsically weak”.
Global Arbitration Review previously reported on the award in favour of GPGC against Ghana.
GPGC was represented before the court by Charles Kimmins QC and Mark Tushingham, where Ghana was said to have been too late to challenge the decision against it. Ghana had used Khawar Qureshi QC of Serle Court and Volterra Fietta, having initially retained Omnia Strategy.
In the arbitration, GPGC, used Three Crowns and Ghanaian firm, Kimathi & Partners, along with damages experts from FTI Consulting.
Ghana also had representation from the attorney general’s office and Amofa & Partners in Accra.
The underlying dispute concerned the government’s alleged wrongful repudiation in 2018 of a contract for a “fast-track power generation solution” – involving the relocation of two aero-derivative gas turbine power plants to the government’s territory. A London-seated UNCITRAL tribunal composed of former ICC Court president John Beechey as chair, J William Rowley QC and Ghanaian academic, Albert Fiadjoe, issued its final award in January, ordering the government to pay a contractually defined “early termination payment” of more than US$134.3 million plus interest and costs.
It also dismissed the government’s counterclaim.
The award is said to be worth around US$170 million. Under English law, the government had 28 days to bring a challenge to the award.
Three days before the expiry of that deadline, the government’s then solicitors, Omnia Strategy applied to the court for a 56-day extension. Omnia said it had only just been instructed and that bureaucratic processes had been delayed because of national elections in the country and because key members of the attorney general’s office had contracted covid-19.
The court agreed to extend the deadline for any challenge to March 8, but the government only brought its set-aside application on April 1, now represented by Volterra Fietta.
The law firm explained that, the new attorney general, had only been sworn in on March 5, and the firm had been instructed 10 days later.
In the latest ruling, Butcher J, said the government’s delay was “significant and substantial”, as its request for a second extension had come 38 days after the statutory deadline and 27 days after the first extension expired. The fact that a large sum was at stake in the arbitration was not a reason for the challenge taking longer to make. The fact that the attorney general had not been sworn in until March 5, did not mean the government was unable to act in the meantime, the judge said.
The government had still managed to instruct Omnia during this June 12, 2021, 10:37 Pagina 2 di 5period and the new AG, who was previously deputy attorney general, had been among the counsel in the arbitration.
Echoing a ruling in the P&ID v Nigeria case, the judge said the fact that a party is a foreign state is a matter of “little significance” when it comes to compliance with court directions.
That an entity may have “bureaucratic decision-making processes” does not justify the delay. As for arguments about covid-19, the judge said the evidence as to the way in which the pandemic had affected the government was “wholly inadequate”.
There needed to be a detailed explanation of how it had affected “particular people or particular processes”. The judge also said that the grounds of the government’s proposed challenge to the award were “intrinsically weak”.
One argument that the tribunal failed to be “guided by the terms and conditions” of the contract was a “clear case of an attempt to present alleged errors of law as errors of procedure”.
Butcher J, was likewise sceptical of the government’s other complaint that the tribunal failed to deal with all issues put to it. The judge said that the tribunal had dealt with the issues raised and that the government was in fact arguing that the tribunal’s reasons were inadequate. He said there was no unfairness in denying an extension, as the government had already been granted one extension and was solely responsible for having missed the deadlines. This followed delays in the arbitration for which the government was also apparently solely responsible
Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources Cecilia Abena Dapaah had tasked the Water Resources Commission and the Water Research Institute to carry out a scientific probe on the extent to which the activities of illegal miners have contaminated Ghana’s waters.
She also tasked the agencies to recommend the most effective approach to regaining water quality.
Preexisting studies suggest that the country may need about two decades to regain aquatic life destroyed by the activities of illegal miners who operate on the rivers.
However, in a bid to ascertain the actual contaminations and to find immediate solutions the Water and Sanitation Minister said the Water Research Institute will in the coming days provide a full report on the level of damage which will inform the most appropriate solution to deal with the matter.
Ms Dapaah said these at a news conference in Accra on Wednesday, 23 June 2021.
The Ghana Water Company has warned that if the activities of illegal miners are not brought to an immediate stop, the country will have to import drinking water in the next 10 years.
To salvage the situation, the government has deployed a security team called Operation Halt II to stop all forms of mining on rivers in the country.
As part of their mission, the team has been tasked to burn all excavators found parked near river beds either in operation or not.
The Commercial Court in London has rejected a late appeal from Ghana against a judgement debt award of US$134 million in favour of power contractor, The Ghana Power Generation Company (GCGP).
According to the London Court, the government of Ghana failed to apply and set aside the January 26, 2021 decision of the London-based United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) Tribunal.
Mr Justice Butcher, in a ruling on Wednesday, June 8, refused to grant the government of Ghana an extension to apply to set aside the award – adding that the state’s grounds for challenging it were “intrinsically weak”.
The government through its lawyer Godfred Dame had attempted to hide behind the 2020 general election and the COVID-19 pandemic as excuses for the delay, but their excuses were dismissed by the London court.
GPGC was represented before the court by Charles Kimmins QC and Mark Tushingham, where Ghana was said to have been too late to challenge the decision against it.
Ghana, had used Khawar Qureshi QC of Serle Court and Volterra Fietta, having initially retained Omnia Strategy. In the arbitration, GPGC, used Three Crowns and Ghanaian firm, Kimathi & Partners, along with damages experts from FTI Consulting.
Ghana also had representation from the attorney general’s office and Amofa & Partners in Accra.
The three-member arbitration tribunal chaired by John Beechey, a former President of the International Criminal Court’s Court of Arbitration, and co-chaired by Prof Albert Fiadjoe, a Ghanaian academic, sided with the power producer and awarded almost US$170 million, including interest.
Out of the total, U$134.35 million represents the early termination payment claim, which itself is made up of US $69.36 million as early termination fee, US$58.49 million for mobilisation costs, US$6.46 million as demobilisation cost and US$32,448 as preservation and maintenance cost.
The tribunal also awarded US$614,353.86 against the country as the cost of the tribunal, and costs of US$3 million against Ghana, being the legal fees expended by the GPGC during the arbitration.
Major highlights of the tribunal’s decision included the fact that the Ahenkora Committee which recommended the termination of the contract did not have sufficient ground in coming to the conclusion that the GPGC was entitled to only $US18 million in early termination fees.
The tribunal, in dismissing Ghana’s case, delved into the basis for terminating the contract, stating that the evidence before it indicated that “GPGC did have a building permit for the Blue Ocean Site issued by the Kpone-Katamanso District Assembly on August 15, 2017.”
“GoG [The government] has not been able to adduce any statute or regulation, including the Energy Commission Act, which addresses the requirement for any such additional construction permit,” the Tribunal ruled.
“On the basis of the record as it now stands, it is apparent that even as Dr. Ahenkorah [Energy Commission Executive Secretary at the time] was putting up further hurdles over which he required GPGC to jump in pursuit of its provisional generation license in November 2017, the Minister of Energy was about to seek the approval of the Ghanaian Parliament of a decision to terminate the EPA along with a number of other PPAs, based upon the Report of the PPA Committee chaired by Dr. Ahenkorah,” it said.
Under British law, the government had 28 days to challenge the tribunal’s decision. However, it went to sleep only to appear in court three days to the expiry of the deadline to ask for an extension.
Omnia Strategy, a British law firm, made the case for extension and asked for 56 days—twice the allowed grace period.
However, the court set March 8, 2021, for the Government to file the processes to challenge the Tribunal’s decision in January. But again, the government took a long nap until April 1, 2021, before filing. This time, another British law firm, Volterra Fietta, had instructions from the government to begin the process.
The law firm, which tagged itself as the only dedicated public international law firm in the world, explained that the new Attorney General, Godfred Yeboah Dame, had only been sworn in on March 5, and the firm received the directive to represent Ghana 10 days later.
But ruling on the matter on June 8, 2021, the court had no sympathies. It said the excuses were unreasonable and “intrinsically weak.”
The presiding judge, Justice Butcher did not hold back.
The judge said the government’s delay was “significant and substantial” as its request for a second extension had come 38 days after the statutory deadline and 27 days after the first extension expired, the Global Arbitration Review (GAR) reported.
He noted that the large sum of money involved in the arbitration was not enough grounds for the appeal to take as long as it did.
“The fact that the Attorney General had not been sworn until March 5 did not mean the government was unable to act in the meantime, the judge said.
Background to the arbitration
The International Court of Arbitration in January 2021 awarded a cost of $134 million and an interest of $30 million against the Government of Ghana over the cancellation of an Emergency Power Agreement with GCGP limited.
The Contract was cancelled under the former Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko as part of several other energy contracts cancelled by the NPP on the basis that the country did not need those power agreements.
The ruling by the International Court of Arbitration ordered the government to Ghana to pay to “GPGC the full value of the Early Termination Payment, together with Mobilization, Demobilization and preservation and maintenance costs in the amount of US$ 134,348,661, together also with interest thereon from 12 November 2018 until the date of payment, accruing daily and compounded monthly, at the rate of LIBOR for six-month US dollar deposits plus six per cent(6%).”
The Government of Ghana was also to pay GPGC an amount of “US$ 309,877.74 in respect of the Costs of the Arbitration, together with US$ 3,000,000 in respect of GPGC’s legal representation and the fees and expenses of its expert witness, together with interest on the aggregate amount of US$ 3,309,877.74 at the rate of LIBOR for three-month US dollar deposits, compounded quarterly
• Kweku Baako has criticized the NDC for politicizing the issue involving the Chief Justice and Dr Dominic Ayinenull
• Baako says the politics has distorted the issue
• He also praised Dominic Ayine for his willingness to contest the petition
Veteran journalist Abdul Malik Kweku Baako has slammed members of the main opposition National Democratic Congress, NDC, over their comments relative to the disciplinary petition involving the Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah and Member of Parliament for Bolgatanga East Dr Dominic Ayine.
Speaking on Peace FM’s Kokrokoo news analysis program on June 23, Baako said that the infiltration of politics into the episode has culminated in the story taking a different dimension from what it should be.
He noted that it is a deliberate attempt by the ‘political animals’ to ensure that the substance of the case is relegated to the background.
“You’ve politicized things and made it so partisan that you can’t move forward. If you move forward they will accuse of you of targeting NDC lawyers. That is my concern because it does not help,” he said.
Baako further commended Dominic Ayine for showing courage in his response to the petition sent to the Ghana Legal Council by the CJ.
The New Crusading Guide publisher said he would have wished that the Chief Justice did not make the move but acknowledged Ayine’s decision to fight the case.
“My view was that they should have left him but now that he has responded formally …. Five paragraphs of the eleven-page response I have seen, I can see some courage of conviction. I can smell and sense courage of conviction.
“This is what I have been waiting for. If I were him, I would have prepared for the Disciplinary Committee and I hope he does that. He should go and articulate the conviction in his statement before the committee. That is how you build a nation or change the course of history,” he said.
Ghana’s economic activity is recovering faster than what has been observed with its peers due to the prudent fiscal measures put in place to deal with the effect of the coronavirus pandemic, Governor of the Bank of Ghana, Dr Ernest Addison has said.
He explained that the central bank responded to complement government’s Covid-relief measures with a raft of policy and regulatory measures to loosen financing conditions, ease liquidity pressures, and keep supply of credit to support critical sectors of the economy.
In particular, he said the BoG reduced the policy rate by 150 basis points to 14.5 per cent; reduced the primary reserve requirements and the capital conservation buffer for regulated financial institutions.
In collaboration with other stakeholders, the Bank also announced a reduction in the cost of mobile money transactions and purchased a 10-year Government of Ghana COVID bond with a face value of GH¢10.0 billion to augment governments’ financing requirements.
In his key note address at the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce & Industry CEO business forum, Dr Addison said “domestically, we have also seen the gains from these policies introduced to contain the effects of the pandemic— the Ghanaian economy has performed far better than its peers, and economic activity is rebounding faster than we observe with our peers with the Bank of Ghana’s Composite Index of Economic Activity showing a 26.8 percent year-on-year growth in March 2021. The HIS Markit Ghana Purchasers Managers Index, which gauges the rate of inventory accumulation by managers of private sector firms and measures dynamics in economic activity, also improved to 52 in April 2021, from 51.7 in March.
“Amidst the pandemic, inflation rose sharply from single digits and peaked at 11.4 percent in July 2020. Inflation has now declined from the double digits to 7.5 percent in May 2021, back to pre-COVID levels and within the medium-term target band of 8±2 percent.
“Average bank lending rates have trended down from a high of 26.2 percent in December 2017 to 20.9 percent in May 2021. At the May MPC meetings, the Policy Rate was lowered by 100 basis points to 13.5 percent on account of muted risks to the inflation outlook. The lower policy rate is expected to trigger further downward adjustments in interest rates more broadly.
At the Moment data coming in from the UK indicate that if you are fully immunized, two doses of the vaccines Astrazaneka, you are good to go.”
“In total, about GH¢1.5 billion loans were restructured, of which the Manufacturing sector accounted for 24.5 percent share, Services with 24.3 percent, and Transport, Storage and Communication had 11.5 percent.
“These timely fiscal and monetary policy responses helped avert a very sharp contraction of the economy and spurred a faster recovery in the domestic economy.”
One of the greatest images on the campus of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) is the conglomeration of trees that provide an amazing canopy in a combination of natural and built environment.
On entering the campus, one is greeted with the refreshing ambience of a ‘university in the forest’.
Apart from its academic excellence, which the university guards with jealousy, another unique thing on which the institution places premium is environmental protection, which dates back to the time when the then Asantehene, Otumfuo Sir Osei Agyeman Prempeh II (1931–1970) gave out a vast tract of virtually virgin forest for the establishment of the first university in Kumasi.
Over the years, the greenery of the total land area of about 13 square kilometres has fiercely been preserved, while new trees are planted for the benefit of future generations.
There is a policy which consistently encourages the university community to pay particular attention to its environment.
With an enormous deal of green space and extraordinary commitment to sustainability, KNUST’s organic environment — the trees and the green grass and the way they are immaculately maintained — typifies the aesthetic standard that has kept the institution as a bastion of environmental friendliness.null
There are economic, as well as medicinal, trees, some of which are used for teaching purposes.
The management of the university has a vision to keep the campus environmentally friendly and super serene for teaching and learning.
Therefore, since the launch of the government’s Green Ghana Project on June 11, this year, the university, in spite of its green environment, has not stayed back.
In response to the Green Ghana Project, KNUST has so far planted 6,000 tree seedlings (2,000 on the main campus and 4,000 on its virgin land at Anwomaso, which is earmarked for another campus).
“We are taking the Green Ghana Project very seriously. As you look around, the university is beautifully green, but we continue to plant more trees,” the Pro Vice-Chancellor of the university, Prof. Prof. Ellis Owusu-Dabo, told the Daily Graphic in Kumasi last Saturday.
One student, one tree
The Vice-Chancellor, Prof. (Mrs) Rita Akosua Dickson, led staff and students to plant 2,000 trees at the Prince of Wales Park, KNUST, and other sites on campus on June 11, in an exercise dubbed: ‘One student, One tree’, which was supported by Friends of Rivers and Water Bodies, an environmental non-for-profit organisation which donated 1,000 seedlings.
“We supported the university in that important exercise because we believe that KNUST is a good example of what commitment to the environment is all about,” the President of Friends of Rivers and Water Bodies, Nana Dwomoh Sarpong, said.
The Pro Vice-Chancellor said: “We want an environment that supports learning. Our philosophy is to become an ecological teaching and learning hub”.
He said the university’s tree planting activities were intensified during the tenure of the immediate past Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Kwasi Obiri-Danso, which practice was being continued by the current Vice-Chancellor, Prof. Dickson.
Prof. Obiri-Danso, as part of his effort to improve the aesthetic beauty of the campus, also collaborated with Friends of Rivers and Water Bodies to plant over 2,000 tree seedlings of various species on the campus. Significantly, the seedlings that were planted have been well nurtured.
The Students Representative Council (SRC) had equally engaged in the planting of trees on the campus.
On October 20, 2019, the SRC organised its biggest tree planting exercise as part of its special initiatives, with the trees being nurtured.
The KNUST believes that it still has open spaces that must have vegetative cover.
“Naturally, some of the trees will die, and because of the long period it takes trees to grow, we believe we have to plant consistently,” the University Relations Officer (URO), Dr Daniel Norris Bekoe, told the Daily Graphic.
He was of the belief that life could be better with trees, saying that given the adverse effects of global warming, creating a serene atmosphere for teaching and learning was the way to go.
“So, as you go round the campus, you see students sitting under trees studying,” Dr Bekoe said.
“Every member of the university community is encouraged to protect the environment, and for that reason no one is allowed to cut trees in the university. Even when a tree branch obstructs someone in his house, the person cannot cut it because the rule is that you have to invite the estate department to come and prune.
“There is a special budget for the maintenance of the university environment.
“We have all kinds of species for teaching and learning, especially botany and herbal medicine. Now herbal medicine has become part of the health medicine and so we plant medicinal trees,” Dr Bekoe said.
According to the URO, anytime people visited the campus, one conspicuous thing that hit them was the green environment.
“Many Ambassadors and High Commissioners who have come here have been amazed at the way we keep the environment. They are thrilled by how we keep the environment and the amazing infrastructure,” he said
The Member of Parliament for North Tongu Constituency in the Volta Region, Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has made an interesting revelation of the new rumored appointment of former Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports, Curtis Perry Kwabla Okudzeto. According to Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, they are cousins and felt the President should have offered him a better position in his second term.
Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa and Perry Kwabla Okudzeto bears the same surname. They are both from the Volta region as well. However, it was never public knowledge if they relate. The two belong to different political parties, whilst Samuel Okudzto Ablakwa is a member of the National Democratic Congress, Mr. Perry Kwabla Okudzeto is with the New Patriotic Party. Mostly, some families, due to their extended nature are hidden until an insider reveals their real identities.
Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa in interaction with Philip Osei Bonsu confirmed that Perry Kwabla Okudzeto is a direct cousin. “Perry Okudzeto is my direct cousin. He is Uncle Paul’s son. He indicated. It is unknown who Uncle Paul is since Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa did not reveal but he is sure to be a member of the family.
He added that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo should include Perry Kwabla Okudzeto in his appointment list. But the host of the program confirmed to him that Perry Kwabla Okudzeto is rumored to have been appointed as the Deputy Chief Executive Officer of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA). In response, Mr. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa indicated that the position is a demotion since his cousin was a Deputy Minister for Youth and Sports.
“I hope President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has other plans for him. I heard is going to the NPA as a Deputy CEO which the family considers a demotion but we will take it like that, it is better than nothing”. He noted. Form Deputy Minister to Deputy CEO.
He further indicated that Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has not been fair to the people of the Volta Region by appointing only Peter Amewu as a substantive minister in his government. “Our constitution talks about regional balance but the whole Volta region has just a minister in this administration”. He indicated.
But there are similar examples of relatives belonging to different political parties in Ghana. However, Hon. Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa should be appreciative of the position offered by his cousin since there are several members of the New Patriotic Party (#NPP) who are still lobbying for positions in government.
Ghanaian politician, Kennedy Agyapong has stated the two major political parties in Ghana are the reason the country has not been able to improve despite strides made by most sectors.
The MP for Assin Central who was addressing the youth at a conference held at the UPSA main auditorium stressed that it is because of the two dominating political parties that the country remains divided.
According to him, when in opposition, the politician throws dust into the eyes of the public to deny, convince them not to buy into the idea of the good works of the governing party because of their selfish nature.
He stressed that politicians must learn to criticize each other irrespective of party affiliation to develop the country.
“NDC, NPP and CPP, we’re all bogus, we are polarizing the country and it’s about time we speak and criticize ourselves and make sure we change the destiny of this country,” Kennedy Agyapong stated.
He added, “I live for you, so live for your brother too, that is the only way we can change the destiny of this country.”
He admitted that “There are good things being done in this country, you get to your opponent to turn it around to destroy the good intention of what you want to do, that must stop so we move this country.”null
Kennedy Agyapong’s rage comes after some Cardiothoracic surgeons struggled to raise funds to travel and study the disease.
He said, “Doctors, they crack their brains, work, study and they don’t pay them well. They wanted just $11,000 to come and man this facility and they don’t have it. For one year, 7 doctors can’t afford $11,000 each. I gave them times seven of the money so they use the rest for other things.”
The businessman has cut the sword for the construction of an 80-bed Cardiothoracic Centre at the 37 Military Hospital for $4million.
The Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Godfred Dame, on Monday, June 21 urged the High Court hearing the case between organisers of the yet-to-be-staged #FixTheCountry demonstration and the Ghana Police Service to make same a criminal matter.
He, therefore, said he was competent enough to intervene as the Chief Prosecutor of the Republic.
This came to light in court on Monday as the organisers fight an injunction sought by the police against their intended demonstration.
Reports say the Minister of Justice was in court, as at previous sittings, to move a motion but told the court that the earlier reliance on the Civil Procedure Act will be changed.
However, lawyers for the #FixTheCountry campaigners were surprised as no charges on this new development were preferred against them, neither was a plea as to guilt or otherwise taken.
“Further, the Attorney-General did not address the fact that even the reliefs sought by the Republic in this case, an injunction, is a civil remedy and not a criminal remedy,” the campaigners stated in an update from the court, which adjourned hearing to Friday, June 25.
The Minister for Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh has expressed his commitment to strengthening the relationship between Ghana and Nigeria to tap into the latter’s rich experience in the petroleum sector for the mutual benefit of the two countries.
Dr Opoku Prempeh was speaking following a visit to Abuja where he met with his Nigerian counterpart.
The two ministers centered their discussions on leveraging on the experience of Nigeria with which has decades of discovery know-how.
ECOWAS The minister who is also the Chairman of the Committee of Energy Ministers of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), said there is the need for collaborative efforts and drawing of useful lessons Nigeria has accumulated over the years.
With Ghana recently joining the comity of oil producing nations, he said, “there is the need to take lessons from Nigeria and learn from all the mistakes they made regarding the signing of petroleum agreements and maximizing their quota of local content and local participation, something Ghana is still getting a grasp on.”
He said it was heartwarming that he and his Nigerian counterpart deliberated their positions on the global conversations around energy transition and what the implications were for developing countries such as Ghana and Nigeria.
Powering industrialization Dr Prempeh said whilst it is important to recognize the need to gravitate towards clean energy, “African countries must make this move organically, in order to use available fossil fuels to power the industrialization agenda across the continent.”
The Minister and the Nigerian Minister of State for Petroleum Resources also discussed the need for the African Petroleum Producers Organisation (APPO) to protect the interest of petroleum resource rich nations.
“We both shared our commitment to support the APPO, which are championing the cause for Africa to be dealt with fairly when it comes to decisions such as prices and importation of petroleum products,” he said.
Going forward Dr Prempeh said he is looking forward to hosting his counterpart in Ghana to continue the discussions.
Collaboration vital For his part, the Nigerian Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, commended the Dr. Prempeh for the move and called for more collaboration.
Ghana and Nigeria over the years have collaborated in many areas especially gas and power supply as well.
Member of Parliament for Assin Central, Kennedy Agyapong, has advised the youth not to spend most of their time at religious centres praying and casting out demons when there is work to be done.null
According to Kennedy Agyapong who believes in hard work, pastors always take advantage of the weak to dupe them of their hard-earned income.
He said, “Don’t rely on any pastor for your destiny, the moment you go to the Pastor, he knows you’re vulnerable so they begin to put fear in you. When you have the money you give it to them by the time you realize you’re broke.”
Speaking at a ceremony to mark his 61st birthday ceremony, the parliamentarian said, “If you doubt me think about this, go to church 7-days in a week but the very day I go to church, I’m given a front seat because they know Kennedy Agyapong has arrived so everything will be sorted.”
The businessman stated that he would have been dead by now if there were indeed witches who hunt people because of his bragging lifestyle.
According to Kennedy Agyapong, it was high time the youth of the country took their destiny into their own hands instead of pushing blame on people.null
“There is no witch anywhere; when you fail in life and you attribute it to your mother, father but when you were smoking jar, was your grandmother there. When you were stealing from your boss, were they there,” he said as monitored by GhanaWeb.
He added, “If there were witches, I would have been dead by now because I run my mouth.”
He, however, attributed his source of wealth and life on earth to God because “When I go to bed I don’t know where my spirit goes but I know there’s a superior being and he is God, who will not make anyone toil in vain.”
The Nkawie Circuit Court has sentenced two friends to 25 years imprisonment each for conspiring to rob a couple at gunpoint at Abena Ntiriwaa near Adiembra in the Atwima Mponua District of the Ashanti Region.
Kwame Agyei, alias Pizaro, 36, and Adamu Abu, alias Rasta, 23, pleaded guilty to conspiracy to commit crime and robbery.
The Court, presided over by Michael Johnson Abbey, convicted the two on their own plea.
Detective Inspector Anthony Acheampong, prosecuting, told the court that Agyei and Abu were farm labourers at Agogoso near Adiembra.
He said on May 31, 2021, the accused persons, who often worked on a farm near the cottage of the couple, noticed that they had sold their cocoa produce.
The two later met at the house of Abu, where they conspired to rob the couple.
On June 1, at about 1250 hours, they attacked the couple with a locally made pistol and a cutlass and managed to take away GHC1,640.
A report was made to the Nyinahin Police, who traced them to their hideout, upon intelligence, and arrested them. GNA
• GHS has denied reports that AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines are not effective against the Delta strain of COVID-19null
• This was contained in a press release copied to GhanaWeb
• Prof Gordon Awendare had said, vaccines may not be entirely effective against the Delta variant
The Ghana Health Service (GHS) says it is untrue for anybody to suggest that the AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines are not effective against the new Indian Delta strain of COVID-19 which has been detected in Ghana.
Patrick Kuma-Aboagye, Director-General, GHS, in a statement copied to GhanaWeb indicated that the claims were not backed by data.
“According to Public Health England (PHE), two doses of the Oxford-AstraZeneca vaccine are highly effective against hospitalization due to the Delta variant and showed no deaths among those vaccinated.null
A study conducted by Gamaleya Centre suggests that Sputnik-V is more efficient against the Delta variant of coronavirus first detected in India, compared to other COVID-19 vaccines,” the statement read in parts.
Professor Gordon Awendare, Head of the West Africa Centre for Cell Biology and Infectious Pathogens, WACCBIP, University of Ghana, told Joy Prime on Monday, June 21, that the AstraZeneca and Sputnik V vaccines may not be entirely effective against the Delta variant.
“Now we have to be looking at the right vaccines. All this while, we’ve been fixed on AstraZeneca and Sputnik V but we have to shift towards more of Pfizer and others which have a better chance of protecting against this variant. Because the future is, we are going towards these aggressive variants,” he said.
Dr Patrick Kuma-Aboagye’s statement noted the data available to the GHS “suggest that the AstraZeneca vaccine is effective against symptomatic disease caused by the Delta variant”.null
He assured Ghanaians that, “in the midst of global supply shortages, the MOH and GHS are diligently working with Government to ensure that adequate vaccines are procured to protect the population. The MOH, GHS and the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) are working collaboratively to ensure that vaccines that come into the country are safe and effective.”
Dr Kuma-Aboagye, then urged, “Ghanaians to take advantage of [the] vaccination when their turn is due while entreating the general public to adhere to the COVID-19 prevention protocols i.e., wearing of face masks, practising of hand hygiene and physical distancing as part of the strategies.”
• He indicated that people are luring him to accept the challenge
• But Okudzeto Ablakwa says he does not want to rush to make any mistake
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa has dined reports that suggest he has a presidential ambition even though some well-meaning Ghanaians want to lure him into it.
According to him, becoming the President of Ghana is not something that he is aiming at.
Speaking on Asempa FM’s Ekosii Sen monitored by GhanaWeb, Ablakwa explained, “I have seen insatiable ambition destroy a lot of people so I don’t believe in electing or positioning yourself or self-aggrandizing when it comes to the issue of positions in any organization.”null
He continued: “It is one of the things I see a lot. Anytime I roll out an intervention, people align it to presidential ambition but my view on leadership is that every generation has its own leaders.
Leaders emerge from the people and if you make a mistake and think that you are better than everybody else and should be a leader, you will be disappointed.”
Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa indicated that he could have contested for the parliamentary seat in about six constituencies but settled for North Tongu because the people wanted him to serve.
“You should never see yourself as cut out for anything because I see that to be ignorance and self-distracting,” he said.Source: www.ghanaweb.com
• Government has promised to establish one million enterprises across the countrynull
• The move is hinged on government’s commitment towards industrialization, value addition and job creation
• The One District – One Factory initiative was introduced by the Akufo-Addo government in 2017
The Akufo-Addo administration has pledged to establish one million enterprises across the country.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo speaking at Kwaso in the Ejisu Municipality following the commissioning of a One District – One Factory initiative pointed that the move formed part of his government’s agenda towards industrialization; value addition and job creation.
On the back of the president’s pledge, Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre, Yofi Grant, has disclosed that Ghana is targeting to raise US$3 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for 2021.null
Addressing journalists at a press briefing on Sunday June 20, Yofi Grant revealed the country has so far accrued US$780 million in FDIs for this year.
“For every country, foreign direct investments are recognised as very important to its economic and socio-economic development. In Ghana, I dare say that over the past few years we have upped our game and our economy has become more attractive.
“Indeed, I dare say that since 2017 Ghana’s economy grew by 8.1% and through 2019 we had an average growth of 7%. This symbolises a country that is walking the talk and doing all it needs to do to become one of the fastest-growing economies in the world,” Yofi Grant told journalists.
He continued, “Foreign Direct Investments grew. Our FDI in 2017 was $4.9 billion; it dropped marginally in consonance with the drop in global FDIs in 2018 to US$3.54 billion. In 2019, it further dropped to $1.01 billion.
“The interesting thing however is that, despite the negative impact of COVID-19 on global economies, Ghana saw an increase in FDIs in 2020 to $2.65 billion,” he stressed
The Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey, has vowed to cause the dismissal of Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives in the region who do not perform satisfactorily in their roles.
According to him, the performance of MMDCEs in Accra will be assessed every six months, after which recommendations would be made for the dismissal of the low-performing officials.
He insisted that the job of MMDCEs is not limited to the confines of their offices but on the ground, and that they must be ready to be on the field to work.
Mr. Quartey said he will plead with President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to sack any MCE who fails to perform creditably after the six-month duration.
“I don’t know about other regions, but in Greater Accra, if you are confirmed as an MCE, I want to go and kneel down before Mr. President that six months into your administration and you are not performing, we will sack you.”
“As an MCE, we expect you to work hard. Don’t sit in your office and do capacity building. Go to the field, that is where the work is. We will try and get an appraisal to the Local Government Minister, every six months, and if we think you are not doing well, we will sack you.”
Henry Quartey, since assuming office under his ‘Let’s Make Accra work campaign, has undertaken several initiatives to provide lasting solutions to everyday challenges in the region, with the view to transform the national capital.
He has supervised the removal of unauthorized traders along some major streets, the pulling down of unauthorized structures, and carried out decongestion exercises and other sanitation drives aimed at ridding the capital of fifth.
Although these initiatives have won him the admiration of some Ghanaians, the Minister believes the totality of these efforts should not be viewed as political vindictiveness.
“There is a vision the President has for the region, so as a servant of the President, we have to ensure that he is able to realize his vision. Various stakeholders have thrown their support behind me. It shouldn’t be seen as political vindictiveness. We need to see how best we can create an enabling environment in Accra for all of us to live in this region”.
Henry Quartey gave assurances that the efforts to making Accra work are sustainable and not “a nine-day wonder”, explaining in details his longterm plans for sustainability
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has expressed satisfaction with work so far undertaken on the construction of a GH¢36 million watermelon juice factory, being established in Walewale in the North East Region.
Touring the facility on Tuesday, 22nd June 2021, at the commencement of his 2-day tour of the North East Region, President Akufo-Addo visited Champion Foods and Beverages Limited, a wholly-owned Ghanaian beverage manufacturing, distribution and marketing company.
The President was informed that the company is employing the use of PET line technology, as compared to the Tetra Packs technology, and it is being financed with a facility from the Ghana EXIM Bank.
With minor construction works to be undertaken, President Akufo-Addo was informed that the overall project is 90% complete, with offices and staff accommodation at 80% completion, and plant, equipment, and machinery all on site ready to be installed.
Full operationalization of the factory has been deferred to March 2022, with the company having installed a 10 metric tonnes per hour facility.
It is expected that, upon completion, the company will create direct employment opportunities for 300 Ghanaians and over 2,000 indirect workers, including farmers and aggregators, to be engaged in an out-grower scheme, covering parts of North East, Northern and other Regions of the country.
1D1F TAMANA RICE FACTORY
The President also visited Tamanaa Company Ltd., a rice farming and processing company located in Nasia near Walewale, which is also operating under Government’s 1-District-1-Factory initiative.
As a result of the support received from Government, the company has been able to expand its operations, by adding a 250-metric ton per day rice milling facility, to its already existing 40 metric ton per day plant.
So far, some 148 workers have been employed, with the company generating a turnover of some $1.5 million annually. The company markets 60% of its rice as parboiled and the remaining 40% as non-parboiled under the brand name Nasia Star Rice.
Tamanaa company currently engages over 4,000 rice farmers and aggregators operating in the West Mamprusi, East Mamprusi, Savulugu, Nanton and Mamprugu-Moagduri Districts
GOVERNMENT HAS raised GH¢1.86 billion from the sale of a seven-year bond to tackle the country’s debt burden.
Proceeds from the bond, which drew near-record demand, would help refinance the debt of a five-year bond which is due to mature.
The long term bond, expected to offer both safety and liquidity, was snapped up by investors who oversubscribed it by 3.3 per cent with the interest cost of the debt instrument going down by 6.4 per cent from 24.5 per cent to 18.10 per cent.
This means significant savings for government on its interest payment aimed at restructuring its debt.
This debt re-profiling is understood by experts to give the government the economic space to repay debts that are falling due.
Government plans to issue a gross amount of GH¢21,430.00 million, of which GHȼ17,301.00 million is to rollover maturities.
The remaining GH¢4,129.00 million is fresh issuance to meet government’s financing requirements, according to the Ministry of Finance.
Per the Ministry’s issuance calendar for April to June, 2021, the government aims to build benchmark bonds through the issuance of the instruments of the 91-day and 182-day will be issued weekly; and the 364-day bill will be issued bi-weekly also through the primary auction, with settlement being the transaction date plus one working day; securities of two-year up to seven-year will be issued through the book-building method
• The NDC and the NPP MP for Techiman South are in court over the 2020 polls
• The NDC is to pay a GH¢4000 fine
• This was reduced from GH¢7000 after the lawyers of the NDC argued against it
A GH¢4000 fine has been slapped on the National Democratic Congress (NDC) by the case management conference of the Techiman South Parliamentary Election petition, by the Wenchi High Court.
Christopher Beyere Baasongti, who represented the NDC in the parliamentary elections of 2020 at the constituency, had sued the current Member of Parliament, Martin Adjei-Mensah Korsah, and the Electoral Commission, praying it to quash the declaration of the MP as winner of the polls.
Listening to the case at the case management sitting on Tuesday, the court partially granted the petitioner’s motions for an amendment of his suit, on the grounds that “no proper collation” was done in the 2020 Techiman South Parliamentary elections as well as another relief, the portal reported.
But the petitioner, Christopher Beyere Baasongti, rather received a punitive cost of GH¢7,000.00 which was later reduced to GH¢4,000.00, following a series of legal arguments.
The court also said it was also for the delay in the court proceedings.
Peter Mac Manu, the 2020 election Campaign Manager for the New Patriotic Party (NPP), who was also in the court, explained that the NDC is deliberately trying to delay the process of the court.
“The judge did not allow all the [NDC’s five] motions to fly. Rather, he gave them two [out of the five] to go and amend… They repeated some of the dismissed motions already ruled on, and because of that they were initially awarded a cost of GH¢7,000, and after several pleadings for review, the judge settled on GH¢4,000 against the petitioner.
“I think we’ve been moving on, but the NDC should stop the up and down, amendments and motions. This should be avoided as far as possible,” he said.
However, the NDC did not make any comments.
The case will be recalled on June 30, 2021, for further hearing.
Seasoned Journalist, Kwesi Pratt Jnr. has rubbished the survey that Ghana is the second peaceful country in Africa.
Ghana has been ranked the second most peaceful country in Africa in the 2021 Global Peace Index report by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).
The country is also ranked 38th in the world out of 163 countries.
The IEP is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank dedicated to shifting the world’s focus to peace as a positive, achievable, and tangible measure of human well-being and progress.
But Kwesi Pratt has taken the report with a pinch of salt.
According to him, the security situation in Ghana, which he described as being worse, is a clear contradiction with the survey.
“When you look at mobile money operators who have been shot, in fact two have been shot just this morning and you look at the bullion vans attacks and so forth, and someone tells us Ghana is one of the most peaceful countries in the world; what does that mean?”, he asked, asserting that “we, the citizens, are all living in fear and panic. The way things are going is very dangerous”.
Mr. Pratt stressed that hearing Ghana is second peaceful country in Africa got him annoyed.
“They should stop saying those things . . . Ghana is second peaceful country in Africa and so what?”
National Communications Officer for the largest opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Sammy Gyamfi says Dr Dominic Ayine has done nothing wrong in his presentation at the CDD organized forum to warrant the Chief Justice, His Lordship Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah to write to the General Legal Council of Ghana to punish him [Ayine].
Sammy Gyamfi in an interview on Okay FM’s ‘Ade Akye Abia’ Morning Show on Tuesday, 22nd June 2021 said that the 1992 Constitution allows Dr Dominic Ayine to offer his opinion on the ruling of the Supreme Court on the 2020 election petition.
“Ghana is a democratic country and so the 1992 Constitution which is being used to govern the country allows everybody to express their opinion or the freedom of expression. In view of this, anybody can express their opinion or views after a judgment has been given on a case”.
“The opinion may not favour the Chief Justice, or it may not base on law, and it may be wrong, but that is the opinion of someone and the person is entitled to it and the law says that the person cannot be persecuted or harassed for expressing their opinion”.
According to Sammy Gyamfi, it is unfathomable for the Chief Justice to write to the General Legal Council of Ghana to punish Dr Dominic Ayine for expressing his opinion on the verdict of the Supreme Court on the 2020 election petition when other lawyers expressed their opinion on the same verdict of the Supreme Court.
“Lawyers from both NPP and NDC expressed their opinions; while the NPP lawyers supported the ruling of the Supreme Court on the 2020 election petition, the NDC lawyer, Dr Ayine disagreed with the ruling of the Supreme Court and that has angered Justice Anin-Yeboah to write to the General Legal Council to punish Dr Ayine,” he wondered.
“We in the NDC would have understood Justice Anin-Yeboah if his petition to the General Legal Council is based on the fact that he [Dr. Ayine] has denigrated and insulted the 7 judges who sat on the 2020 election petition, but he did not rebuke the Supreme Court. Dr Ayine was talking about his confidence in the Judiciary and nobody can punish anybody about his or her opinion on an issue,” he argued.
The officers in the image were facilitated into the service by the MP
The Member of Parliament for Mpohor in the Western region John Kobina Abbam Saani has posted images of some new police officers he helped to get into the service.
According to the lawmaker, he facilitated the recruitment of the five new officers who passed out over the weekend.
“As always, I was filled with much joy and satisfaction, when the gentlemen and their families paid a courtesy call on me yesterday, 20-06-21, to show gratitude for having facilitated and supported their recruitment into the distinguished service. I was particularly super glad to know that Master Emmanuel Nyarko of Obrayebona received the best shooter award at the graduation ceremony,” he wrote on Facebook.The MP being introduced at a rally by the President during the 2020 polls
He said the move is part of efforts in creating jobs in his constituency.
Some Ghanaians have in recent times raised concerns over the seemingly partisan nature of the Police force and other security agencies.
Below are details of the write up on the Facebook wall of the MP
MORE JOBS FOR THE YOUTH: The JOHN SANIE Agenda.
Last Friday, 18-06-21, five gallant young men from the Mpohor District, namely: Messieurs Simon Inkoom (BOPP), Emmanuel Nyarko (Obrayebona), Godbless Agbasah (Mampong), Stephen Abekah (Tumantu) and Nabot Nyarko (Senteaw), successfully graduated from the Upper East Regional Police Training Schhol in Pwalugu to become full-fledged Police Officers.
As always, I was filled with much joy and satisfaction, when the gentlemen and their families paid a courtesy call on me yesterday, 20-06-21, to show gratitude for having facilitated and supported their recruitment into the distinguished service. I was particularly super glad to know that Master Emmanuel Nyarko of Obrayebona received the best shooter award at the graduation ceremony.
Gradually, we are fiercely tackling, and shall eventually eradicate the canker of youth unemployment from our society.
The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has confirmed that forty-one students belonging to a school (name withheld) in the Greater Accra Region have contracted COVID-19 and are undergoing treatment.
Speaking with Beatrice Adu on the Big Bulletin on Monday (21 June), Asiedu-Bekoe Franklin, a physician epidemiologist at the GHS said the issue was detected four days ago and had initially begun with five students from the same dormitory.
He said after contact tracing, forty-one tested positive to COVID-19.
“Actually, that is about four days now and five students started showing symptoms and we identified their contacts and that was over ninety contacts. We did a test and the number of students who tested positive were forty-one.”
He added, “The forty-one affected students are asymptomatic and are confined in a dormitory because most of them were dormitory mates. Only the initial five showed symptoms and are doing well now,” Asiedu-Bekoe said.
Information from the Ghana Health Service website indicates that, Ghana has recorded 95,059 confirmed COVID-19 cases with 93,005 recoveries and discharge. The number of active cases stands at 1,260 with 45 new cases and a COVID-19 death toll of 794.
Africa is in the middle of a full-blown third COVID-19 wave and there is need for more vaccination, the World Health Organisation (WHO) has said.
The total infections have crossed the five million mark and at least seven African countries have run out of vaccines.
“Africa needs millions more doses here and now,” WHO’s Africa Regional Director Matshidiso Moeti said.
South Africa, Morocco, Tunisia, Ethiopia and Egypt have recorded the most virus cases in the continent.
Uganda and Namibia are experiencing a deadly third wave, with dozens of fatalities recorded daily. A total of 136,030 people have succumbed to the virus in different African countries, according to WHO.
The Delta variant is in 14 African countries while the Beta variant, first detected in South Africa, is in 25 countries.
The WHO says there’s no clear timeline on when more vaccines will be available but there is an urgent need for them.
Onion sellers at Agbogbloshie in Accra have thronged the governing New Patriotic Party(NPP) headquarters protesting against the planned relocation of their market centre by the Regional Minister. The onion sellers want the Minister, Henry Quartey to shelve the relocation plan for now and give them ample time to prepare themselves for the exercise.
Meanwhile, they have debunked allegations by the Greater Accra Regional Minister that they have contracted a spiritualist to have him killed.
Speaking to Kasapa News, the traders said the Minister should not pay attention to the lies being peddled around, since they have no such intention of killing him as it’s been rumoured.
“We beg the Minister, and we never said we will not relocate so he should not out of anger move us forcefully. He should give us 2-years so that by then we can pay off the loans we’ve injected into our business. There is no truth in the claims that we are using a spiritualist to kill him, never, we can’t do that,” one of the traders stated.
Members of the Private Road Transport Operators have hinted at increasing fares again.
The decision, according to them, follows the recent three per cent hike in the price of fuel at the pumps.
According to the group, the government is also making frantic efforts to increase road tolls, complaining that “transport operators are going to bear the brunt should it be implemented.”
The group further expressed its disappointment with the government for its inability to have kept the “assurances given to transport operators that it will ensure that fuel prices and spare parts remain stable.”
The transport operators, in a statement, entreated customers and the general public to bear with them, explaining that their transport business is reeling under a lot of pressure following the rising cost of inputs.
Commercial transport operators recently announced a 13 per cent increase in fares which took effect on 5 June 2021.
They explained back then that the hike was “to accommodate, predominantly, an increase in the price of fuel”.
The reviewed transport fares covered inter-city(tro-tro), inter-city (long-distance) and shared taxi vehicles.
PRESS RELEASE JOINT STATEMENT BY PRIVATE ROAD TRANSPORT OPERATORS ON DECISION TO INCREASE LORRY FARES FOLLOWING THE FATHER’S DAY 3% FUEL PRICE GIFT AT THE PUMP, ON MONDAY, 21ST JUNE, 2021.
Following the Father’s Day 3% gift of increase in fuel price at the pump, Ghana Committed Drivers Association, Concern Drivers Association and True Drivers Union, wish to inform our numerous customers and the general public of our resolve to also adjust upward our lorry fares.
The percentage increase will soon be announced. As a result of the 3% increase in fuel price, a gallon of fuel, which was sold for GHC 27. 22 pesewas is now being sold for GHC 28. 035 pesewas. The resolve to adjust upward our lorry fares is in fulfilment of our statement issued on 16th May 2021, in which we announced 20% upward adjustment in lorry fares.
In that statement, we said, “We have therefore resolved that any time fuel prices, spare parts, and other levies relating to road transport go up, we will also adjust our lorry fares to reflect the increment”. We also said “It is our considered view that we will only go by the decision to increase lorry fares twice yearly if the powers that be can also ensure that prices of petroleum products and spare parts are not increased in the course of every year so as to guarantee stable prices and lorry fares”.
As we speak, the government is making frantic efforts to increase road tolls and transport operators are going to bear the brunt should it be implemented. We are deeply disappointed in the government for its inability to have kept assurances given to transport operators that it will ensure that fuel prices and spare parts remain stable.
We wish to entreat our customers and the general public to bear with us in this situation as our transport business is reeling under a lot of pressure following astronomical increases in our input cost.
Charles Danso (Chairman, Ghana Committed Drivers Association)
Yaw Barimah (PRO, Truth Drivers Union)
William Osei (Chairman, Concern Drivers Association
President Akufo-Addo has appointed Dr Mustapha Hamid, the former minister of inner-city and zongo development, as the chief executive officer of the NPA
Dr Mustapha Hamid, the newly appointed chief executive officer of the National Petroleum Authority
President Akufo-Addo has appointed Dr Mustapha Abdul-Hamid as the chief executive officer of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), one of the most sought-after positions in government.
The NPA oversees all operations in the multibillion-dollar downstream petroleum sector.
The appointment takes effect from 1 July 2021. The news was communicated in a letter dated 17 June.
Dr Hamid, 50, previously served in the first-term government of President Akufo-Addo as the minister of information and subsequently as the minister for inner-city and zongo development. He also served as the deputy national campaign manager for President Akufo-Addo’s successful second-term bid in 2020 and was in charge of campaign communications.
The NPA currently boasts over 5,000 service providers and, according to 2020 estimates, an annual sales value of between GHC24 billion and GHC28 billion (US$4-US$5 billion), which is roughly 7% of Ghana’s GDP. The industry works closely with international suppliers such as BP, Glencore, Vitol and Trafigura to supply approximately 80% of the petroleum products currently consumed in the country.
Dr Hamid will champion the mission of the NPA, which is to regulate, oversee and monitor the downstream petroleum industry in Ghana “for efficiency, growth and stakeholder satisfaction” and to ensure that its vision, which is to be a “catalyst for economic transformation and growth in Ghana”, is achieved.
Think tank boss
Dr Hamid succeeds Hassan Tampuli, the immediate past NPA chief executive, who was elected as the MP for Gushegu on the ticket of the New Patriotic Party in December 2020, and has since been nominated to serve as a deputy minister of transport.
Dr Hamid served as leading spokesman for Nana Akufo-Addo from 2008 until 2017, when he became the information minister and presidential spokesperson.
Before that, he was the executive director of the Danquah Institute and a lecturer at the University of Cape Coast.
Celebrated for his honesty and integrity, Dr Hamid has gained a reputation over the years as a trusted loyalist and close confidant of President Akufo-Addo.
Mustapha Abdul-Hamid entered Tamale Secondary School in 1987 to sit for his Advanced level examinations. In 1991 he entered the University of Cape Coast to pursue a Bachelor of Arts degree, eventually majoring in religious studies.
He subsequently obtained an MPhil and a PhD in religious studies from the same university.
The institution that Dr Hamid will be leading was established by an act of Parliament, the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) Act 2005 (Act 691), to regulate the downstream petroleum industry in Ghana.
As a regulator, the NPA ensures that the industry remains efficient, profitable and fair and, at the same time, that consumers get value for money. The downstream petroleum industry in Ghana encompasses all activities involved in the importation and refining of crude oil as well as the sale, marketing and distribution of refined petroleum products in the country.
Commercial activities of the industry include: importation, exportation, re-exportation, shipment, transportation, processing, refining, storage, distribution, marketing and sale of petroleum products. The petroleum industry is one of the key subsectors and a major contributor to Ghana’s gross domestic product.
Since the establishment of the National Petroleum Authority in 2005, the Authority has supervised the acceleration of the petroleum downstream deregulation process by facilitating the removal of restrictions on the establishment and operations of facilities, as well as on importation of crude oil and petroleum products.
In June 2015, the NPA successfully implemented the final phase of the deregulation process – price liberalisation. This involved the full removal of control over pricing of petroleum products by the government.
Private importers, distributors and retailers are empowered to set ex-refinery and ex-pump prices with no intervention by the government. The Ghana downstream petroleum industry boasts over one million metric tonnes’ worth of state-of-the-art storage infrastructure.
Given the country’s position on the coast of West Africa, as well as the country’s democratic credentials, security and stability, Ghana’s downstream industry is well placed to store strategic stocks of petroleum products efficiently as well as serve as a reliable point for exportation to neighbouring, land-locked countries.
This is evident from the rising volumes of petroleum products that Ghana is exporting
An 18-year-old woman died while she was having sex on her wedding night after suffering a heart attack.
Cops said the young bride was consummating her marriage with her new husband, 29, when she started to feel unwell and collapsed at the couple’s home in the city of Ibirite in Brazil on Thursday evening.
The husband dashed out to call his neighbour for help and ordered a taxi to take his wife to hospital, O Tempo reports.
But the taxi driver refused to take the couple, who have not been identified, to the hospital.
A second taxi was called, but the driver also refused to help and said the husband needed to call the emergency services instead.
When paramedics finally arrived, they found the woman struggling to breathe and confirmed she had suffered a heart attack.
She sadly died on the way to the hospital, G1 reports.
The husband claimed it took an hour for the ambulance to arrive at the couple’s house.
But the emergency services said the first ambulance was cancelled and then the second arrived within 21 minutes, according to reports.
The bride’s body showed no signs of foul play or violence and her tragic death is being treated as accidental, cops said.
The neighbour reportedly told the police she didn’t hear any screams or noises before the woman died.
And post-mortem examination found the woman had a history of bronchitis.
The couple had been married during a ceremony at the husband’s farm earlier in the day.
The devastated man said he wasn’t sure if he could continue living in the same city in Brazil following his wife’s death.
It comes after a Colombian woman died after having sex for five hours while taking drugs.
The 32-year-old was said to have complained of feeling unwell before going into cardiac arrest in Cali, Colombia.
The woman is believed to have lost consciousness and begun “convulsing”, El Periodico reports.
Her male partner reportedly called for help, but emergency services took too long to arrive and he decided to wrap her in a sheet and rush her to the University Hospital del Valle in a taxi, it is claimed.
But medics couldn’t save her and she died shortly after arrival.
An Accra High Court has adjourned to Friday, 25 June 2021, to rule on some objections raised against the Attorney General in the matter of the Republic versus the conveners of the #FixTheCountry campaigners.
Attorney General Godfred Yeboah Dame, on Monday, 21 June 2021, read an application “seeking an order directed at the organisers and conveners of an intended demonstration dubbed #fixthecountry protest March, their associates, agents, assigns and workmen, prohibiting the conduct of the said demonstration on grounds of public safety, public security, and public health, till the restrictions imposed on large public gatherings are lifted by law.”
He was, however, interrupted by a lawyer for the conveners, Mr Julius Asinyo, who objected to the motion.
Mmr Asinyo argued that the proceedings were civil in nature and should have been instituted and led by the police and not the Attorney General.
Mr Dame counter-argued that the police service is a public service per the Constitution and must enjoy the legal services of the legal representation of the Attorney General.
The High Court will rule on this objection on Friday, 25 June 2021.
The #FixTheCountry campaigners want to demonstrate against the government for what they describe as economic hardships and are also demanding better governance.
The police, however, want to stop them with the excuse that the ban on mass gathering is still in force to prevent further spread of the coronavirus
The National Democratic Congress has slammed Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah, describing his petition to the General Legal Council against lawmaker, Dominic Ayine, as an attempt to suppress free speech.
Dr Ayine is reported to have said the Supreme Court failed to apply the rules of procedure during the trial. He is also believed to have raised concerns over the regular dismissal of the petitioners’ applications during the case.
He made the comments at an event organised by the Centre for Democratic Development (CDD) and the KNUST.
The petition by the Chief Justice urged the GLC to probe the lawmaker over the comments and apply the necessary sanctions.
Addressing a Press Conference on Monday, the General Secretary of the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketia called on the Chief Justice to immediately the petition against the MP for Bolgatanga East.
“Public confidence in the judiciary must be earned and not forced on us. How many times have you heard any court telling anybody that I’m going to give a judgment but I’m warning you not to talk about it?” Mr Asiedu Nketia popularly known as General Mosquito said.
He added that “The judiciary, like parliament or executive, is not above criticism…Our laws and constitution protect the integrity and independence of the judiciary and not the sensibility of a judge. The notion that the judicial arm of gov’t is beyond reproach is a fantasy that can’t be sustained.”
Mr Asiedu Nketia also accused the Chief Justice of targeting NDC affiliated lawyers and called on him to stop the witch-hunt.
“It’s no coincidence that virtually all the lawyers who have been reported to the disciplinary committee of the General Legal council by the Chief Justice, Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah in recent times are aligned to the NDC. What is the Chief Justice’s personal interest in the punishment of NDC affiliated lawyers that his he’s so keen to initiate unwarranted actions against them
Some youth groups in the Ashanti region have threatened to shut down branches of the Lighthouse Chapel International in the region over a critical sermon delivered by the leader of the church Bishop Dag Heward-Mills which appeared to attack the Ashanti Monarch Otumfuo Osei Tutu.
The said sermon, which has found its way onto social media, is said to be questioning the impact of the influential king on his subjects and community.
According to the group, the popular televangelist has slighted the revered traditional leader and must go beyond an apology to atone for his sins.
“We are calling on Bishop Dag to seek wise counsel within 48 hours. Otherwise, none of his churches in the Asanteman enclave will be allowed to operate. Also, we are warning all and sundry who hide behind religion and politics to push this evil agenda against Asanteman and his royal majesty Otumfuo Osei Tutu. We will let them know that we will meet them up with brute force” the General Secretary of one of the groups Kwabena Frimpong said.
Bishop Dag Heward-Mills has however apologised over the sermon.
In an apology, the Preacher said: “I am deeply saddened that a message I shared at a conference, nearly 20 years ago, has been taken out of its context and circulated by persons who have previously declared that they will maliciously cause our churches in Kumasi to be closed down.
“I wish to apologize to His Majesty Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu II for any disrespect, insult or harm caused him or his royal court. Please accept my profound apologies for the statements I made”.
Bishop Heward-Mills has been in the news lately following reports of some misunderstanding between him and some of his pastors which has ended up in court. The pastors accuse the church of not paying their social security
A 34-year-old man Kwame Frimpong has been stabbed to death at Akyem Oda -Nkwanta in Birim Central Municipality in the Eastern Region.
The deceased was stabbed multiple times with a kitchen knife in both left and right ribs by the suspect Nana Kwame, 36, who is a family member.
The body has been deposited at Oda Government Hospital mortuary for preservation and autopsy.
The Public Relations Officer of the Eastern Regional Police Command DSP Ebenezer Tetteh told Starr News, preliminary investigation by Police indicate that the deceased and the suspects were extended family members and natives of Oda Nkwanta.
The Suspect is a Carpenter while the deceased is a Farmer.
About a week ago, the suspect’s friend, who is a farmer in the community, needed a labourer to clear his farm. The suspect recommended the now deceased Kwame Frimpong to him.
The farmer was not impressed with the haphazard work done by Kwame Frimpong and expressed same to Nana Kwame.
On June 18, 2021, around 2:00 pm, the suspect met the deceased at a funeral ground in the Akyem Oda- Nkwanta and rebuked him for the poor work done.
This created misunderstanding between the two and as a result led to a fight in which they slapped each other.
A few hours later, around 6:30 pm, the suspect met the deceased by the roadside in the town and stabbed him twice with a kitchen knife under both the left and right ribs of the deceased.
Sensing danger, the suspect picked his motorbike and escaped from the town.
The victim was rushed to Oda Government Hospital for treatment but died shortly on arrival.
The body is being preserved at the hospital morgue, awaiting autopsy.
DSP Tetteh said efforts are underway to arrest the Suspect
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has promised that his government will establish One million Enterprises across the country as he commissions a 96,000 metric ton capacity processing plant of Premium Foods Limited.
According to the president, the move forms part of his government’s commitment to Ghana’s industrialization; value addition and job creation drive.
He made the statement at Kwaso in the Ejisu Municipality where he commissioned a new factory of Premium Foods Limited under the 1 District 1 Factory initiative.
Meanwhile, the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC), is targeting to raise $3 billion in Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) for the country in 2021. This was disclosed by the CEO of GIPC, Mr Yoofi Grant at a press briefing on Sunday in Accra.
According to Mr Grant, $780 million in FDI had already been raised so far this year.
“For every country, foreign direct investments are recognised as very important to its economic and socio-economic development. In Ghana, I dare say that over the past few years we have upped our game and our economy has become more attractive. Indeed, I dare say that since 2017 Ghana’s economy grew by 8.1% and through 2019 we had an average growth of 7%. This symbolises a country that is walking the talk and doing all it needs to do to become one of the fastest-growing economies in the world.
“Accordingly, Foreign Direct Investments grew. Our FDI in 2017 was $4.9 billion; it dropped marginally in consonance with the drop in global FDIs in 2018 to $3.54 billion. In 2019, it further dropped to $1.01 billion. The interesting thing however is that, despite the negative impact of COVID-19 on global economies, Ghana saw an increase in FDIs in 2020 to $2.65 billion
Five accused persons who are Okyeman Environmental Taskforce members including two sub-chiefs involved in a shooting incident at Adeiso, have been granted bail of GHC200,000 with 2 sureties each after they were put before Koforidua Circuit Court, in the Eastern Regional capital.
The suspects were arraigned before the court on Friday, June 19, 2021, on charges of robbery, kidnapping, conspiracy to commit crime to wit kidnapping, possession of firearm, and causing harm.
The suspects, Nana Sarpong Baffuor Awuah, 59; Nana Barima Twum, 59; Jonathan Martey, 39; Eric Yaw Obeng, 49; and Victor Ahenkora Koranteng, 37 have been asked to reappear before the court on July 19, 2021. The suspects last week, stormed the Tank Akuraa community near Adeiso, on several land-winning concessions and unleashed brutalities on some workers who had questioned and resisted their operations.
They reportedly kidnapped one Osae Kwame, a sand winner, and threw him into a Nissan Pick Up but was pursued by the youth who rescued him. Later the taskforce members attacked the summer tide sand winning Company site at Obeng Yaw village, also near Adeiso, amidst the firing of guns and arrested five workers and shot two. They reportedly shot the thigh and legs of two of the workers on duty who had questioned why they retrieved the over GHC96,000 from his accountant.
The victims are 25-year-old Razak Hassan and Bright Apaw, 30.
The Police from Adeiso responded to distressed calls about the incidents but the Taskforce failed to stop when signaled by Police where they were given a hot chase but to no avail.
The angry community then mounted roadblocks and attacked the task force.
Sensing danger, Okyeman Mponuahene, Barima Twum Tabriade and Okyeman Akwansrahene went to the Adeiso police station to seek refuge in a Jeep Patriot SUV with registration number GS 9835-19 which had three tyres deflated. But the angry youth and sand winners massed up at the Police station seeking the release of the two chiefs for instant justice.
A search in the Jeep SUV which belongs to Akwansrahene, Baffour Sarpong who also claims to be National Security Operative, contained one AK 47 assault rifle with 3 magazines and 7 Pump-action cartridges.
The five suspects including the two chiefs were whisked to Asamankese Divisional Headquarters by the reinforcement team where they were granted Police inquiry bail.
Samuel Atsu Forson, one of the persons whose concession was attacked explained that the suspects intimidated and extorted money from the workers.
He explained that they alerted the firm’s drivers, who blocked the main Adeiso road with their tipper trucks to aid the police and some residents in arresting the suspects.
Narrating the incident further, he said the police retrieved AK-47 assault rifles, ammunition, a pistol, police and military uniforms, and other accouterments when they searched their vehicles.
They were, however, paraded before the court, presided over by Mercy Addai Kotei, where they pleaded not guilty to all the charges slapped on them by State Attorney Cyril Keteku.
Their plea for bail was admitted and granted bail of GH¢200,000 each with two sureties.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) has adopted a new road map to launch its single currency in 2027. President of the ECOWAS Commission, Dr Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, told a press conference that the new road map was agreed by the heads of state of ECOWAS at the 59th ordinary summit in Accra on Saturday “Due to the shock of the pandemic, the heads of state had decided to suspend the implementation of the convergence pact in 2020-2021,” Dr Brou said. “We have a new road map and a new convergence pact that will cover the period between 2022 and 2026, and 2027 being the launch of the Eco,” he said. Dr Brou said the heads of state had asked the ministerial committee to look at the new roadmap and the convergence pact, taking into account the lessons from the Covid-19 pandemic.
The Accra Regional Police Command has embarked on an enhanced operational exercise in Accra and arrested 215 suspected criminals, seventeen being women.
The operation follows disturbing incidences of violent crimes in Accra, the recent being the bullion van attack which led to the killing of a policeman and a woman on Monday, June 14 at Jamestown, the pig farm robbery and killing of 43-year-old man, and the Honey Suckle forex bureau attack and shooting.
The Regional Public Relatioms Officer, DSP Efia Tenge, who briefed the media during the weekend, said the three-day operation which begun on the June 17, 2021 will end on June 20, 2021.
“The Ages of suspects ranges between 17 and 52 years and areas of focus for the exercise include Korle-Bu, Tesano, Amasaman, Nima, Dansoman, Abokobi, Accra Central, Teshie, Madina, Bastona, Jamestown, Osu and Lakeside,” she pointed out.
The exercise is part of a series of exercises by the command since the beginning of this year, the PRO explained, adding the three-day operation will tackle violent crimes, drug peddling and street robberies.
Items intercepted during a search included wrapped narcotic substances, sharp implements, mixtures of concoctions laced with narcotics, tramadol, etc.
“The operation also targeted and impounded 168 motorbikes, believed to be used in facilitating the robberies.
“The arrested suspects have been detained and undergoing various levels of screening for possible connection to recorded crimes under investigation,” she revealed.
DSP Tenge said the Accra Regional Police Command would protect lives and property within the region.
“We have also opened our doors for continuous public cooperation and volunteering of useful information in stemming crime,” she added
Ghana’s Minister for Food and Agriculture, Dr Owusu Afriyie Akoto, has been elected the first Chairman of the Steering Committee of the Ghana-Côte d’Ivoire Cocoa Initiative at its first meeting in Abidjan today (21st June 2021).
The two countries unanimously elected Dr Afriyie Akoto to chair the Committee for the next fifteen (15) months.
His Chairmanship will span the remainder of the current cocoa season which ends in September 2021 and continue until the end of the next cocoa season in 2022.
The Steering Committee is the highest decision-making body of the initiative. It is responsible for formulating rules and regulations; ensuring the smooth implementation of the charter and functioning of the Secretariat; approve all budgets and work programmes of the Initiative; approve the rights and responsibilities of member countries and resolve conflicts among the member countries.
Dr Afriyie Akoto in an earlier address described the meeting as historic and important since it seeks to ensure that the vision by the Presidents of the two countries – Excellencies Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo of Ghana and Alassane Ouattara of Cote d’Ivoire – are realised.
Dr Afriyie Akoto, however, expressed concern about the “dragging of feet” by some participants, which he noted is unfriendly to efforts to ensure that the Living Income Differential (LID) initiative is fully realised.
He charged the participants of the meeting to ensure that all parties share the burden of compliance with the dictates of the initiative, as that is the only means to achieve the vision of President Akufo-Addo and his Ivorian counterpart.
The meeting was attended by all members of Steering Committee.
Also present was the Chairman of the Food and Agriculture/Cocoa Affairs Committee of Ghana’s Parliament, John Osei Frimpong and his ranking member, Eric Opoku as well as a delegation of senior Ivorian government officials
The Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (GIPC) will on 23rd and 24th June 2021, hold the maiden Ghana Diaspora Investment Summit at the Kempinski Gold Coast City Hotel.
The event, themed “The New Normal, leveraging Diaspora investments to build back better” will create an avenue to foster partnerships between local and Diaspora investors, and showcase Ghana as a choice destination for doing business, to spur the inflow of Diaspora Direct Investments.
The two-day programme will bring together various primary stakeholders to steer conversations on the Ghana-Diaspora business relationship.
Chief Executive Officer of GIPC, Yofi Grant who disclosed this at a press briefing in Accra on Sunday, said the summit provides Ghana with the opportunity to partner persons in the diaspora to the benefit of the country.
“A lot of Diasporas have consistently expressed interest in either living or establishing a business in Ghana. It is, therefore, our expectation to convert these opportunities to viable economic activity that will benefit the nation and the continent as a whole” said Yofi Grant, CEO of the GIPC.
“I’m confident that the summit will thus open the door for partnerships and encourage sustained home-based investments by persons in the diaspora, as we consider them as our partners in development”, he added.
The summit is consistent with the recent “Beyond the Return” initiative, which is a follow-up to the “Year of Return” campaign that was launched in 2019. It is expected to engender a more constructive interaction with Africans in the diaspora and all people of African descent in areas such as trade and investment, as well as skills and knowledge development.
It will be recalled that while commemorating the “Year of return”, President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo stressed the need to effectively mobilize and engage the diaspora as active partners in the nation’s development.
This Mr Grant said GIPC has since made conscious efforts in creating awareness and allow for a greater contribution from diasporas, including the setting-up of the Diaspora Investment Desk (DID) at the GIPC.
The Ghana Diaspora Investment Summit is being held under the auspices of the President, His Excellency Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo and supported by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Ministry of Information, the Diaspora Affairs Office at the Office of the President, Diaspora Africa Forum, and Beyond the Return Secretariat under the Ghana Tourism Authority.
Among the host of esteemed speakers include; the Secretary-General of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) Secretariat, H.E Wamkele Mene, Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta, Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Shirley Ayorkor Botchway, Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, and the Chief Executive Officer of the GIPC, Yofi Grant.
There will be exhibitions and opportunity to pitch projects during the two-day summit. Interested persons should call 050 572 3242 or Email: email@example.com.
Additionally, interested participants can follow the GIPC on its social media platforms @gipcghana on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Linked In and YouTube for a link to register, or catch the live event on 23rd and 24th June 2021 from 8:30 AM to 3:30 PM each day
The Managing Editor of the New Crusading Guide newspaper, Kweku Baako Jnr seems confused over some deals the country is involved in as far as purchasing of the COVID-19 vaccine is concerned.null
Ghana is securing some 3.4 million doses of Russia’s Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccines through Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum; acting as the middleman.
Ghana has negotiated for the vaccines at $19 per dose instead of the ex-factory price of $10 per dose and according to a report by a Norwegian tabloid Ghana was being shortchanged by Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum.
According to Kweku Baako, the deal to purchase this vaccine is not clear to him.
“How many people are we dealing with . . . ?” he sought to know.
The renowned Journalist further indicated that the Russia-Sputnik deal with Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum “has serious challenges and I hope we’ve not gone far with that deal”.
This is “because it must go to parliament in accordance with article 181:5 (of the 1992 constitution). The agreement might have been signed but it cannot be effective until it gets parliamentary approval”.
“. . but I learnt there are other deals making the whole saga confusing; it is not good enough,” he added.
Overpriced purchase of Sputnik V vaccines
Responding to a media publication regarding the overpriced purchase of Sputnik V vaccines, the MoH said the move was against the background of non-response from direct channels and global shortages of the vaccine.null
It confirmed the MoH on March 9, 2021, responded to an offer from the private office of Sheikh Ahmed Dalmook Al Maktoum of the United Arab Emirates (UAE) for the supply of a total quantity of 3.4 million doses of Sputnik V vaccines, at a unit cost of US$19.
“The unit price was negotiated at a meeting held at MoH, with representatives from MoH and Office of Dalmook Al Maktoum, who had travelled to Accra for the purpose. The MoH, after ascertaining the type and nature of the vaccine, through the delivery of 15,000 doses, placed an order for the supply of 300,000 doses of the vaccine at a cost of US$5,700,000,” the statement said.
“This is yet to be delivered. This undertaking includes an option to opt-out of any obligations if supply conditions are not met,” the statement added.
A report by a Norwegian newspaper published on June 3, 2021, alleges that the Ghana government has signed a contract for the purchase of Sputnik V vaccine with an Emirati official which it said was involved in the controversial Ameri power deal and a Norwegian citizen charged with money laundering in Norway.
The newspaper alleges that Ghana is buying the Sputnik V COVID-19 vaccine produced in Russia for $19 per dose from businessmen instead of $10.
The Speaker of Parliament, Alban Bagbin, has cautioned the leadership of both majority and minority against springing surprises on him while presiding on the floor.
The caution follows some dramatic scenes on the floor Thursday evening during the presentation of the report of the Appointments Committee on some 12 deputy ministerial Nominees including a deputy Education Minister-designate Gifty Twum Ampofo.
The minority shot down an attempt by the majority to secure an expedition of approval since a member of the Appointments Committee Alhassan Suhuyini voted against her approval at the Committee level.
The Speaker ordered a headcount which was disrupted by the majority side.
Addressing the MPs on Friday, the speaker charged leaders on both sides to adequately brief him during pre-sitting meetings and not make moves on the floor that may undermine his authority.
He warned the MPs that Thursday’s episode must not repeat itself.
A mobile money vendor has been shot dead by armed robbers at Okorase near Koforidua the Eastern Regional capital. The 36-year-old Solomon Arhin Prost was gunned down Saturday, June 20,201 at 11:14pm. He was shot on his way home after closing from work.
The deceased was reportedly walking home with his friend when they were attacked by the robbers and run helter-Skelter. The friend however escaped unhurt.
According to a witness Mohammed Shaibu, he heard gunshots while in his room but a few minutes later he heard the victim who had been running towards his house shouting for help. But he came out of his room to see the victim lying in a supine position in a pool of blood wearing black shorts with a white shirt with gunshot wounds on the chest.
Two black backpacks containing cash of GHC 8,290.30, One HP Laptop with charger, one Infinix Mobile Phone, One Itel Mobile phone, one Android mobile phone, two small itel mobile phone, one pendrive, a modem, earpiece, and some bank documents were found lying beside the victim.
Police who visited the scene upon receipt of the information after taken inventory of the crime scene conveyed the victim to St. Joseph Hospital where he was confirmed dead by the medical Doctor on duty Dr. Benjamin Sam.
His body has been deposited at the morgue of the same Hospital.
The murdered Solomon Arhin was a teacher at Behenase RC Basic school near Tinkon in Akuapem North Municipality. He was also a member of the Pentecost International Worship Center (PIWC) of The Church of Pentecost in Koforidua.
The Resident Minister of PIWC-Koforidua Pastor Musa Yahaya led members of the church to commiserate with the bereaved family.
Kingsford Kalefe, Headteacher of Behenase Basic School described the deceased as a hard-working and industrious young man. He called on the Inspector General of Police to intervene to ensure that the perpetrators are arrested
The national Chairman of Mobile Money Agents Association of Ghana (MMAAG) Dela Abotsie said robbery attacks on their members is one too many therefore wants a collaborative effort to curb the menace.
The Public Relations Officer of the Eastern Regional Police Command DSP Ebenezer Tetteh said an investigation has commenced into the incident.
The deceased left behind a pregnant wife and two children.
Ghanaian businessman, Dr Kofi Amoah has disclosed the secrets behind his early success as an entrepreneur. According to him, he faced a lot of setbacks in trying to earn his first million dollars, so he increased his target to two million and that came faster.
He told television show host Doloris Frimpong Manso (Delay) that he got the first idea for success from attending a lot of seminars. In an interview on the Delay Show, Dr Amoah said at one of such seminars, a speaker said an ideal business was one where you earn money while sleeping.
When pressed further by the host, Dr Amoah said he made the vast majority of his wealth by facilitating the entry of global remittance service provider, Western Union, into Africa. He said he got the idea because he encountered difficulty in sending money to his mum in Ghana in the ’90s.
Dr Amoah, said as the Chief Executive Officer of Progeny Ventures he had to travel across the continent to advertise and sign-on agents. Western Union started its African operations from Ghana in 1995. Twelve years on, the company had expanded its operations to almost all 54 African states.
He said among the many countries he signed onto the money transfer service were Eritrea, South Africa and Ethiopia.
Franklin Cudjoe, the President of IMANI Africa has responded to claims by Interior Minister Ambrose Dery that comparatively, Ghana is a safer country than most countries in the sub-region.
The bullion van robbery in Accra, coupled with recent robberies has heightened fears of insecurity in the country with the head of the Inspector General of Police being called by some people for not being proactive with his mandate of protecting Ghanaians.
Government has also been faulted for not doing much in ensuring that Ghanaian the lives of Ghanaians are safe from the actions of criminals.null
Ambrose Dery in responding to critics compared the situation in the country with the other countries in the West African sub-region that are dealing with issues of terrorism and political unrest.
“What we should know is that the criminals continue to change the modules and we have to be changing with them and the police is doing all it can. We have not lost control. I always want to emphasise that, we need to go to neighbouring countries to see what is happening there, but we are not in the same league with them.”
“We want to do better than we are doing now, but believe me, Ghana is safe; that is why all the other countries are running to Ghana.”
But Speaking on Citi FM, Franklin Cudjoe questioned the relevance of Ambrose Dery’s comment and quizzed why members of parliament will request police protection in a state where security is apt. . “The Interior Minister suggests that Ghana is relatively safer than other countries. He was the same person who suggested that the country wasn’t safe, so we needed police protection for the MPs.”
“What informed this type of talk? In one breath, MPs need to be provided with police protection because the country is not safe and in another, the country is relatively safe. It appears as if the citizenry is lost in all these conversations” he lamented.
Ghana has been ranked the second most peaceful country in Africa in the 2021 Global Peace Index report by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP).
The IEP is an independent, non-partisan, non-profit think tank dedicated to shifting the world’s focus to peace as a positive, achievable, and tangible measure of human well-being and progress.
A look at the snapshot of the global state of peace as captured in the report, Ghana is ranked 38th in the world out of the 163 countries reviewed. Ghana scored 1.715 which represents a two point move upwards from the previous Global Peace Index report.
Other African rankings
Mauritius, the only African country ahead of Ghana in the Peace index on first position in Africa ranked 28th in the global space. Botswana took the third place in Africa and was ranked 41st on the global peace index.
Iceland is ranked number one as the most peaceful country in the world with a score of 1.1. New Zealand, Denmark, Portugal and Slovenia are ranked second, third, fourth and fifth respectively.
Least peaceful countries
The five least peaceful countries in the world, according to the 2021 global peace index are Iraq (ranked 159th), South Sudan (ranked 160th), Syria (ranked 161st) Yemen (ranked 162nd) and Afgahanistan (at the bottom ranking163rd)
COVID-19 impact on peace
As part of the key findings of the 2021 Global Peace Index, the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic which has wreaked massive economic havoc around the world also had “a significant impact on levels of conflict and violence”. The level of civil unrest the report says “rose in 2020, fuelled in large part by responses to coronavirus restrictions”. Over 5,000 pandemic-related violent events were recorded between January 2020 and April 2021 worldwide.
“The deterioration in militarization and improvement in ongoing conflict were both influenced by the COVID-19 pandemic, which had a major negative impact on economic activity, human movement, and international relations in 2020. The pandemic had a noticeable impact on the violent demonstrations and political instability indicators, with 25 and 46 countries respectively recording deteriorations on these indicators,” the report further highlighted.
Global peace deterioration
According to the Index, “the average level of global peacefulness deteriorated by 0.07 per cent in the 2021 Global Peace Index. Although a relatively small deterioration, this is the ninth time in the last 13 years that global peacefulness has deteriorated”.
The report notes that “in the past year, 87 countries recorded an improvement in peacefulness, while 73 countries recorded a deterioration. Three countries recorded no change in their overall score. The Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region remained the world’s least peaceful region. It is home to three of the five least peaceful countries in the world. However, it recorded the largest regional improvement over the past year”.
Europe the report says “remains the most peaceful region in the world. The region is home to eight of the ten most peaceful countries, and no country in Europe is ranked outside the top half of the index”.
The GPI and IEP
The 2021 Global Index report is the 15th edition of the Global Peace Index (GPI), which ranks 163 independent states and territories according to their level of peacefulness. Produced by the Institute for Economics and Peace (IEP), the GPI is the world’s leading measure of global peacefulness.
The report presents the most comprehensive data driven analysis to-date on trends in peace, its economic value, and how to develop peaceful societies. The GPI covers 99.7 per cent of the world’s population, using 23 qualitative and quantitative indicators from highly respected sources, and measures the state of peace across three domains: the level of Societal Safety and Security, the extent of Ongoing Domestic and International Conflict, and the degree of Militarization.
IEP achieves its goals by developing new conceptual frameworks to define peacefulness; providing metrics for measuring peace; and uncovering the relationships between business, peace and prosperity as well as promoting a better understanding of the cultural, economic and political factors that create peace.
IEP is headquartered in Sydney, with offices in New York, The Hague, Mexico City, Brussels and Harare. It works with a wide range of partners internationally and collaborates with intergovernmental organizations on measuring and communicating the economic value of peace
• Kwesi Pratt has criticized the Israeli government, calling it an apartheid governmentnull
• He says the Israeli security should not an example for Ghana
• He narrated how Israeli forces allegedly kidnapped and tortured a businessman in Ghana
Veteran journalist Kwesi Pratt Jnr has given a detailed account of how a businessman who was en route to Ghana was, in his words, kidnapped by Israeli security forces at a place with close proximity to Ghana’s Kotoka International Airport.
Kwesi Pratt said on Pan African TV that the businessman was coming to Ghana to undertake a business activity but was apprehended by Israeli officials and taken to a residence in Accra where he was allegedly tortured.
Pratt narrates that the said businessman was ‘smuggled’ out of Ghana on the blindside of the country.
“Two years ago, a businessman who [was] coming into Ghana to carry out a business was kidnapped a few kilometres into the Kotoka International Airport and was taken into [a] private residence and tortured. He was smuggled out of this country by Israeli forces. Is this criminal activity what we want [to] emulate?”null
Kwesi Pratt further hit out at the Israeli nation and accused them of committing crimes against humanity.
He said that Ghana must not consider emulating the Israeli security setup as it is targeted at abusing rights and perpetuating apartheid.
“Israel is a rogue and apartheid state. Its security services are not to promote human rights or a democratic state but to promote apartheid and commit all kinds of heinous crimes. The insecurity we are talking about in Ghana has been partly perpetrated by the Israeli security services. The Israeli security services do not present an example we should emulate,” he said.
Kwesi Pratt was commenting on the security situation in the country which has been triggered by the robbery of a bullion van at Jamestown in Accra.
A police officer and a trader were killed in the robbery. The Ghana Police Service has placed a GH¢20,000 bounty on the killers.
• Asiedu Nketia is unhappy with the decision by the Chief Justice to haul Dr. Dominic Ayine before the GLCnull
• He says the Chief Justice is trying to gag lawyers from commenting on issues
• He says the NDC will resist any attempt to silence its members
Johnson Asiedu Nketia, the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress has issued yet another caution to Chief Justice Kwasi Anin Yeboah over his petition to the General Legal Council over some comments made by a former Deputy Attorney-General, Dr Dominic Ayine.
Asiedu Nketia in an interview with Adom TV reminded the Chief Justice that the respect and confidence of legal practitioners must be earned and not forced.
He maintained that the NDC will resist any attempt by the Chief Justice to gag them or frustrate its members.
“You earn the faith and belief of the people; you do not force it. What is Dr Ayine going to explain and to whom because I don’t even know who is the chairman of the council,” he said.null
“We have realized the Chief Justice is trying to intimidate Dr Ayine but we also want to tell him that you may want to scare a Zongo boy but not with a long beard,” he said.
Dr Dominic Ayine has been dragged to the GLC by the Chief Justice after making some statements which he considers to be an attack on the Supreme Court.
The Chief Justice said that Dominic Ayine’s comments in which he accused the Supreme Court of bias were unbefitting of a lawyer.
“These comments are made against the backdrop of the Supreme Court discharging Dr. Ayine on a charge of contempt for similar comments made against members of the Supreme Court during the Election Petition hearing. Dr. Ayine apologized profusely when he appeared before the Court on the contempt charge and admitted to having made comments which were unbecoming of a Lawyer of his standing and a former Deputy Attorney-General.
“His Lordship the Chief Justice, therefore, finds his alleged disparaging comments totally unacceptable and would like you to investigate this matter further,” the petition averred.
Popular televangelist and leader of the Lighthouse Chapel International Bishop Dag Heward-Mills has apologized to the Ashanti Monarch Otumfuo Osei Tutu over an old sermon that appears to have provoked some Ashantis.
The said sermon, which has found its way onto social media, is said to be questioning the impact of the influential king on his subjects and community.
Some indigenes of the Ashanti region have raised concerns over the message with some retorting that Ghanaians do not pay taxes to the king hence he owes nobody a responsibility of development.
In an apology, the Preacher said: “I am deeply saddened that a message I shared at a conference, nearly 20 years ago, has been taken out of its context and circulated by persons who have previously declared that they will maliciously cause our churches in Kumasi to be closed down.
“I wish to apologize to His Majesty Otumfuo Nana Osei Tutu II for any disrespect, insult or harm caused him or his royal court. Please accept my profound apologies for the statements I made”.
Bishop Heward-Mills has been in the news lately following reports of some misunderstanding between him and some of his pastors which has ended up in court. The pastors accuse the church of not paying their social security
The Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG) says it is not enthused about the recent comment attributed to the Minister of Railways Development, John Peter Amewu, to the effect that all civil servants are sacked when a government is voted out.null
CLOGSAG said the comments are simply a violation of the 1992 Constitution and it will be good for Mr Amewu to educate himself on the difference between civil servants and public servants.
“Mr. Peter John Amewu was full of himself when he was proposing an ‘utopian government’ where all workers in the civil service are sacked because there is a change in a democratic dispensation,” Executive Secretary of CLOGSAG Isaac Bampoe-Addo said in a rejoinder to the news report on the Minister.
“If this is the policy he deems good, a well discerning civil servant would question it and point out its deficiencies.”
Find the rejoinder below:
RE: I WISH ALL CIVIL SERVANTS ARE SACKED IMMEDIATELY GOVERNMENTS ARE VOTED OUT- AMEWU (ARTICLE 1289329)
In an article on the GhanaWeb dated 18th June, 2021, the Hon. John Peter Amewu, the Minister for Railways Development is reported to have made certain derogatory remarks about civil servants and by extension the Civil Service.
By the report, the Minister noted as follows:that “civil servants fail to implement the vision of Government; that “regardless, they remain untouched while governments are changed; that “Mr. Amewu would prefer the dismissal of all civil servants for the effective operation of a new government who would have a new set of civil servants”.null
For the avoidance of the doubt, the Article quoted him as saying
“I come to government, I come out with good policies….unfortunately, the people voted me out of power because they think my policy is not good. Unfortunately, the people who are supposed to implement remain there. They must also go so that we stop this nonsense of allowing people who work in the system destroy the system and the blame is put on a politician. We can’t allow that to continue”.
It is normal for a person who poses a silly question to expect nothing less than a silly answer. Civil servants, as we are, we would not describe a system as nonsense or categorize all civil servants as destroying the system.
Mr. Peter John Amewu was full of himself when he was proposing an “utopian government” where all workers in the civil service are sacked because there is a change in a democratic dispensation. If this is the policy he deems good, a well discerning civil servant would question it and point out its deficiencies.
The Minister who had headed two ministries in the past four years, did not seem to know the difference between the public servant and the civil servant. Workers at the Railways are not civil servants but could be public servants. It would be necessary to distinguish between the civil service and the public service by referring to Article 190 of the 1992 Constitution of the Republic of Ghana. Broad generalization of all public servants as civil servants is quite erroneous.
The assertion by Mr. John Peter Amewu that as a politician he comes to government with good policies that are not implemented by civil servants being the reason for a politician to be voted out of power is quite preposterous.
The Minister cannot consider himself as the only repository of knowledge else when he left the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources, the ministry would have collapsed.
Could he sincerely say, that as the Minister for Energy, he would have succeeded without using the civil servants in the ministry?null
Mr. Peter Amewu should tell the world his educational and professional background as well as experience in Lands and Natural Resources, Energy and Railways Development. Is it not the civil servant that guided him in his vetting in Parliament? Shame.
He should realize that politicians do not necessarily need any educational or professional qualifications. Neither do they need any experience on the job.
For politicians of his type, all they do is to distribute essential commodities and money to their constituents to influence their voting pattern.
The dynamics of governance show that it is a continuum and not an event. To say, the least, his proposal for every government to select its own civil servants indicates that governance is an event.
Is it even easy to pick engineers, architects, human resource managers and accountants with many years of experience like picking oranges and mangoes?
It is not fair to be simplistic in saying that the downfall of politicians could be ascribed to non-implementation of their policies by civil servants. What about politicians who alienate themselves from members from their constituencies or fail to fulfil their promises?
The Minister should be aware that the politician is a creation of the 1992 Constitution so is the civil servant. A careful analysis of his utterances depicts violation of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.
The development of a nation is not only a function of politicians and civil servants. Apart from the Executive, Legislature and Judiciary, the media is often referred to as the fourth estate. The traditional rulers and religious bodies play a role in facilitating growth and development of a country.null
The Civil and Local Government Staff Association, Ghana (CLOGSAG) is not enthused about the low opinion of civil servant professed by Mr. John Peter Amewu.
It is significant to remind ourselves of the famous quotation by the Late Nathan Anan Quao …which reads:
“it takes the perfection of civil servants to move the country forward and not politicians”.
The Association would continue to be a catalyst in achieving this noble objective.
At this time of our national development, it is better to create an enabling environment that would bring the Government and Workers together than to make statements that would destroy the harmonious labour relations existing between them.
Meanwhile, CLOGSAG would wish to assure its members that it would not stand aloof for any politician to truncate their service.
Continue with your good deeds and God will shower its blessings on you.
Hydroxyurea, a modifying therapy for sickle cell is expected to be provided under the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS).
The move, according to Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, is to help improve the physical health of people living with sickle cell in Ghana.
“This is a promise that has been fulfilled by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo,” he said in a post on Facebook.
“As the world marked Sickle Cell Awareness Day on 19th June, I am pleased to announce that at a meeting I chaired on June 8, 2021, with stakeholders including Professor Ohene Frimpong, President of the Sickle Cell Foundation, the Minister of Health, the National Health Insurance Authority and Novartis, it was agreed that hydroxyurea, a modifying therapy for sickle cell will now be provided under the NHIS to improve the physical health of people living with it.
• He is of the view that they are even serious than Dr Ayine’s comments on the Election Petition
• Some public institutions are charging the citizens for access information by using the RTI law
Manasseh Azure Awuni, an Investigative Journalist, has observed that some judgements by the courts in Ghana are an insult to judicial integrity.
An Accra High Court in a judgement directed the National Communication Authority (NCA) to accept GH¢1,500 from the Media Foundation for West Africa (MFWA) for the information it requested regarding the number of radio stations operating in the country as of the end of the third quarter of 2020.
Since the Right to Information (RTI) Law was passed in 2019, concerns have been prevalent over how state agencies have gone about its implementation.null
Some citizens in their quest to access information have sometimes been met with resistance by state officials charging monies to provide information, the latest victim being the MFWA.
MFWA had prayed the High Court, among other reliefs, to declare that the amount of GH¢2,000 demanded by the NCA to generate the information constitutes constructive denial, refusal, failure or neglect, and breach of Applicant’s right to information under Article 21(1) (f) of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.
But the court was not convinced and slashed only GH¢500 from the NCA’s proposed amount.
Though the RTI law allows for some fees to be charged, it requires that this is done in line with the Fees and Charges Act. However, the Parliament has yet to decide on the approved amounts.
In a post on his Facebook timeline to Chief Justice Kwasi Anin-Yeboah, Manasseh Azure Awuni linked the judgement by the High Court to Dr Dominic Ayine being hauled before the General Legal Council’s disciplinary committee over comments he made on the 2020 Election Petition.null
Samson Lardy Anyenini, recently announced 2019 Ghana Journalist of the Year, has also expressed his dissatisfaction with the unregulated fees charged for acquiring information from state departments and agencies.
Lardy Anyenini opined on Newsfile that public institutions charging fees for public information demanded by the citizens makes “nonsense of the law”.
• Charles Owusu says he has resigned from the Forestry Commissionnull
• He says it has nothing to do with the death of Sir John
• He has appealed for support for the commission
Charles Owusu, head of monitory at Forestry Commission has revealed that he has resigned from the commission.
Making the disclosure on Peace FM, Charles Owusu wished the company well and urge Ghanaians to embrace the Green Ghana project.
He paid tribute to the late Chief Executive Officer of the Commission, Sir John for elevating him to the position he held before his resignation.
He disclosed that the resignation has got nothing to do with the demise of Sir John but would not disclose the reason for his resignation.null
“The time has come for some of us to take a step away and allow the Forestry Commission to do their job. I have tendered in my resignation. I was already working with the Forestry Commission but when Sir John was made CEO, he offered me some of his duties as head of monitoring.
“Sir John is no longer alive and it is not because he is not alive I can’t everything so I have resigned. I wish the commission well and I hope everything they doing will be a success,” he said.
Charles Owusu came under public scrutiny following non-adherence to coronavirus protocols at the funeral of Sir John.
He revealed later that he was arrested and granted by the Ashanti Regional Police Command.
“I went to the Ashanti Regional police headquarters. I went with other family members from Wonoo. We were about five. We were invited two days ago by the Mamponteng police that the GMA had petitioned the IGP over the breaches at the funeral so we should be investigated. “I had a conversation with them and they told us the signal is from regional command. I was not feeling well so we asked for some days and went this morning.
“The case is before the Regional Police CID. We were quizzed on the provisions we made. After the conversation, the police informed me that I have been arrested so I need someone to bail me. I was in charge of the funeral so I decided to step up and avail myself as the family member,” Charles Owusu narrated.
The Director-General of Welfare of the Ghana Police Service, Commissioner of Police (COP) Mrs Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo-Danquah, has called on families of newly recruited Police Officers to limit their expectations and financial demands on them.null
She said the Recruits should be allowed to concentrate on their work, and support their families with financial and material resources in line with their earnings.
She said undue demands might compel them to engage in unprofessional activities, which may trigger unpleasant consequences.
“They have taken national and organisational oaths to serve mother Ghana,” she added.
COP Mrs Addo-Danquah was speaking at the passing-out parade of 581 newly recruited Police Officers at the Police Public Safety Training School at Pwalugu in the Talensi District of the Upper East Region.
She said continuous guidance and advice to the Recruits would help them to succeed and reminded them that the profession demanded a lot of sacrifices.
She told the recruits that they had chosen a career, which called for selfless service to humanity, commitment and sacrifices and indicated that it was not a sanctuary for them to make unjustified wealth.
“Therefore, desist from corrupt practices, which tend to bring the image of the Service into disrepute. Never forget the motto of the Service ‘Service with Integrity.
“Avoid bad association and put on the cloth of patriotism, humanity, courtesy, honesty, civility and commitment to the career you have chosen.
You will excel in every endeavour of your career when you consistently observe these professional virtues,” she advised.
She entreated them to bring the knowledge acquired over their period of training to bear on their work after which they would be assessed by their various Commanders to ascertain their suitability for the job.
She cautioned that any unsatisfactory performance would attract the needed sanction under the regulations of the Service.null
“I, therefore, urge you to work diligently to guarantee your confirmation into the Service as Police Constables.”
The COP congratulated the Recruits, especially General Recruit (G/R) Wonder Segbedzi of the Regional Police Training School in Ho for emerging as the overall national best recruit, G/R Ebenezer Nkrumah for being the best recruit in the Pwalugu Police Training School and Recruit Hannah Arthur for her outstanding performance as the best female recruit.
Mr Stephen Yakubu, the Upper East Regional Minister, said President Nana Akufo-Addo’s vision to change Ghana through his flagship policies and programmes aimed at also transforming the security systems, the economy and general living conditions.
This, he noted, could only be realised in a peaceful atmosphere. “All of you will be responsible for upholding the law and protection of all our citizens, residents and visitors. We all want to sleep and wake up peacefully which is only possible if we take up those roles seriously.
The Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) will from March 2022 reduce its current 15-member Commission to seven.
The decision, which was taken at the ended of the 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government in Accra is aimed at cutting down cost.
The new seven-member structure Commission, which takes effect from March 2022, will consist of the President, the Vice President and five other Commissioners.
The Session, which was formally opened by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, Chair of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government, was attended by all ECOWAS Member States, with the exception of Mali, due to a military coup d’etat there.
The Accra Meeting adopted the reconstituted ECOWAS Council of the Wise for Preventive Diplomacy, with Dr Goodluck Jonathan, a former Nigerian President as the Chairman.
Dr Jonathan is currently serving as the ECOWAS Chief Mediator in the Malian crisis.
The reconstituted Council consists of 30 members, two from each of the 15-Member States of ECOWAS.
Ghana’s representatives to the Council are Mrs Gifty Afenyi-Dadzie, a former member of Council of State and Dr Williams Collins Asare, a former Country Representative of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.
The 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government in a communique urged the Malian Transition Government to abide by the transition programme and hand over power to an elected civilian administration in 2022.
The Session reaffirmed its commitment to intensify the fight against terrorism and insecurity in the Sahel.
To address the issue of piracy at sea, the Accra Meeting reiterated ECOWAS leaders’ commitment to strengthen maritime security in the Gulf of Guinea.
The Session extended the mandate of the ECOWAS Mission in The Gambia (ECOMIG) to ensure the security of their December 2021 polls.
With regards to efforts to contain the spread of COVID-19 in the West Africa region, the Session tasked the West African Health Organization (WAHO) to intensify its efforts in the local production of the COVID-19 vaccine.
The Accra meeting agreed to launch the ECOWAS single currency, the Eco by 2027.
Abuja will host the next ECOWAS regular Session in December.
• The NMC, after hearing a complaint case brought to it by lawyer for a former DVLA boss, has ruled that Kwame Sefa Kayi errednull
• The NMC has therefore ordered that he begs the former DVLA boss or risk forfeiting his license
• The NMC also wants him to offer an apology on air
The National Media Commission has issued an order to award-winning broadcaster and host of Accra-based Peace FM’s Kokrokoo Morning Show, Kwame Sefa Kayi, to apologize for claims made against Yao Amegashie, a former DVLA boss, some years ago.
Specifying the nature of the apology, the NMC has asked the ace broadcaster to go on his knees and offer his apology to the former Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority boss or risk losing his license to practice on air.
In a report by ghanaguardian.com, Sefa Kayi further claimed that Yao Amegashie was asked to proceed on leave in 2001 after former president, John Agyekum Kufuor, came into office but was recalled to the same position in 2009 when the National Democratic Congress’s John Evans Ata Mills became president.
This, Yao Amegashie held, were non-factual claims by Kwame Sefa Kayi, and offensive to his person.null
Following this, the former DVLA boss ordered his Lawyer, Dometi Kofi Sokpor, to report Kwame Sefa Kayi to the Disciplinary Committee of the NMC.
Several years after deliberating on the case, the Committee is said to have found Kwame Sefa Kayi guilty, with a ruling that he begs Yao Amegashie over the false claims.
As part of the ruling, the broadcaster is expected to go on air and announce that all the words he said about Amegashie were false and then ensure that the same apology is published on Peace FM’s official website.
This, the report added, is for the world to know that what he said about Amegashie were from his own imaginations and not realistic.
In its explanation, the NMC said that the only time it can revoke a license of a media practitioner is when such a person flouts its orders, especially since they cannot impose fines as would the courts.
The mandate of the National Media Commission is to, among other things, regulate and bring sanity to Ghana’s media.Source: www.ghanaweb.com
• It’s Fathers’ Day and the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo, has sent her wish to her husband, the presidentnull
• She touted what she said are the sleepless nights the president has just to make this country work
• She also celebrated all fathers for their commitment and dedication to making lives better
The country needs fixing; at least that is the assertion of a lot of Ghanaians today but in celebrating her husband on the occasion, the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo, eulogized the president, praising what she described as his sleepless nights just to make the country work.
In what appears to be a subtle commentary on the ragging #FixTheCountry campaign that has swept through social media in the last months, the First Lady, used her Fathers’ Day wish to the president, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to tell the world how the Number One man is literally breaking his back to fix the country.
In a Twitter thread, Rebecca Akufo-Addo wrote, “Over the last four years having watched and prayed for my husband as father of the nation, I have had a close view of the sleepless nights, the countless overstretches and the physical strain to make this country work. @NAkufoAddo remains a father we all would be proud of.”null
She also celebrate all the towering efforts of fathers across the country, stressing that it is a day that reminds us of the “commitment and dedication” of all fathers.
“Every Fathers’ Day is a reminder of the commitment and dedication the journey of fatherhood requires. A lifetime of commitment to providing for us and giving us the adequate protection needed to grow,” she wrote.
Every Fathers’ Day is a reminder of the commitment and dedication the journey of fatherhood requires.
• Nana Akufo-Addo says his government gave some 36 companies exemptions on their import dutiesnull
• He explained that this is to make them competitive brands even beyond the shores of Ghana
• He spoke during the commissioning of a factory under the 1D1F
The president, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has disclosed that a total of 36 companies in Ghana benefitted from duty import exemptions.
He explained that these companies, all who fall under the One District One Factory (1D1F) program of government, benefitted from the initiative that amounted to a total of GHs435 million.
He said that such measures were put in place to help such business thrive and to expand into cross-border markets.null
Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo was speaking on Thursday, June 17, 2021, during the commissioning of the new factory of Premium Foods Limited, a company operating under Government’s 1-District-1-Factory initiative.
Speaking at the site of the factory, located at Kwaso in the Ejisu Municipality of the Ashanti Region, President Akufo-Addo explained that the establishment of the factory is a concrete manifestation that the new paradigm of economic development of insisting on value-addition industrial activities within a conducive and business-friendly environment is making headway.
“Government remains committed to support private sector enterprises like Premium Foods to become globally competitive and thereby take advantage of market integration frameworks such as the African Continental Free Trade Area, whose Secretariat has been established and commissioned in Accra.
“To this end, government as at December 2020, has granted import duty exemptions to 36 companies under the 1D1F program amounting to some GHs435million. The main sections that have benefitted from the exemptions are agro processing, ceramics manufacturing, hardware manufacturing and vehicle assembling plants,” he said.
Speaking at the event, Tom Gambrah, the Managing Director and Founder of the PFL, indicated that it is a humbling feeling for the company since it has exceeded its expectations since its inception.null
“At our inception, we hoped to create 5,000 jobs. By 2012, we had created 25,000, direct and indirect jobs. When this new plant reaches full capacity, we would have created 100,000 sustainable jobs in the value chain,” he said.
He also explained how much of a help rural producers have contributed to their business, adding that they believe in the capabilities of the local industry to help the business thrive.
“Our business depends on rural producers who supply the raw material. Thousands of farmers depend on us to provide a market for their harvest, allowing them to pursue higher yields without fear of the uncertainties of trade,” Tom Gambrah said.
Over the years, Premium Foods has supplied blended fortified and non-fortified products, and ingredients to global organizations, including international relief organizations, and multinational food and beverage manufacturing companies across Africa, including “Feed the Future” programme, under the US Government’s Global Hunger & Food Security Initiative, the statement from the presidency.gov.gh stated.Source: www.ghanaweb.com
• Henry Quartey has accused the onion sellers of showing bad fate and vowed to move themnull
• The onion sellers are now pleading with more time to evacuate
• July 1 is the deadline for their relocation
The onion sellers at Agbogbloshie who had earlier threatened not to relocate have gone back on their words and are now pleading for ample time to move their products and other properties to Adjen Kotoku.
After initially agreeing in a meeting with Greater Accra Regional Minister, Henry Quartey to move, the trades made a u-turn and as per reports sought refuge in some members of parliament to offer them protection.
The MPs, according to The Regional Minister, after being briefed on the plans made by his outfit for the traders withdrew their support for the traders and back the relocation.null
With their political protection and Henry Quartey vowing to move them in the face of spiritual machinations on his life, the traders are now begging for enough time to move to the new marketing site secured for them.
Some traders according to a Citi FM reportage are pleading with Henry Quartey to extend the July 1 deadline for their resettlement.
“It is unfair for the Minister to give us short notice to relocate. We pleaded with him for more time, but he did not heed to it. Besides, the stalls that have been provided are not good enough for selling onions. We have not said that we’ll not move; we are only begging for more time to put things together,” a trader said.
Another trader said “1st July is a few days away, we won’t be ready by then. We are pleading with the Regional Minister to give us some more time.”Source: www.ghanaweb.com
• The Police PRO says it is not proper for police officers to be wearing bulletproof jackets and helmets every daynull
• She says the police is working hard to apprehend every criminal
• Constable Emmanuel Osei was killed on Monday, June 14, for providing escort for bullion van
Sheilla Kessie Abayie-Buckman, Director of Public Affair, Ghana Police Service, has said that, it would not be appropriate for the police to be seen every day by the public wearing bulletproof jackets and helmets when going about their duty.
According to her, when the police are seen by the public wearing their bulletproof jackets and helmets, it has an impact on the public that they give protection to.
“Look at this, if you saw every police officer wear the bulletproof jacket and the helmet, what will you say? The best practice does not indicate that every police officer must at every time, wear these things,” she said while contributing to a discussion on Joy FM’s Newsfile on Saturday, monitored by GhanaWeb.
Abayie-Buckman explained, “because it also impacts on the people to whom we are giving protection. So, we are doing the right thing…”null
The wearing of bulletproof jackets among police officers on duty, has become topical recently after the unfortunate killing of Police Constable Emmanuel Osei by armed robbers while transporting money in a covered bucket truck often described in Ghana as a bullion van.
The late Emmanuel Osei, experts say, would have survived the bullet wounds if he had been in either bulletproof or helmet.
The Police PRO noted that her outfit considers every feedback from the public “through the media and we look at the best practices so that the police service will not only be the best police service for Ghana but internationally recognized and you can say proudly everywhere that ‘I trust my police service’ and that is exactly what we are doing.”
Sheilla Kessie Abayie-Buckman further urged the media to paint the picture right “such that those that are not so right, they can be made right and those that are right, let our citizenry hear about them so they can give the necessary support.”
She assured the public that the police is working so hard to get the criminals associated with the recent murder situations in the country arrested.Source: www.ghanaweb.com
• President Akufo-Addo has called for a collaborative effort from ECOWAS countries to be vigilant against terrorismnull
• He also urged neighbouring countries to help with the production of COVID 19 vaccines in Africa
• High on the agenda of the ECOWAS meeting will be the address of the security issue in Mali last month
I welcome Your Excellencies to your second home, Accra, Ghana’s capital, for the 59th Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS). I acknowledge with gratitude the presence of the representatives of the African Union and the United Nations, and Members of the Diplomatic Corps, and, most especially, that of Madam Louise Mushikiwabo, our Rwandan sister, who is the Secretary-General of La Francophonie, and our Special Guest. I say a hearty akwaaba, our word of welcome, to each one of you, and I hope you are enjoying the famed Ghanaian hospitality.
On behalf of the Government and people of Ghana, I thank all ECOWAS Member States and all AU Member States for the support of Ghana’s recent successful candidature for a non-permanent seat in the United Nations Security Council for the years 2022-2023. Ghana received the highest number of votes on the day, i.e., one hundred and eighty-five (185) out of one hundred and ninety (190) votes.
It would not have been possible without your active support. I assure you, Excellencies, that Ghana will make sure that Africa’s voice is heard loud and clear in the deliberations of the Security Council, both on matters affecting our Region and the Continent, and on global issues, and we will consult broadly to define Africa’s interests.
Africa’s Common Position on UN Reform, based on the Ezulwini Consensus, is one matter Ghana is determined to urge on the global agenda. We will work to solicit the backing of countries around the world for this long, overdue reform. We believe it is time to correct the longstanding injustice that the current structure and composition of the UN Security Council represents for the nations of Africa.null
Excellencies, let me congratulate warmly our brothers and colleagues, H.E. Mohamed Bazoum and H.E. Patrice Talon, who have been elected as Presidents of the Republic of Niger and of the Republic of Benin, respectively, since our last Summit. I offer them my and the Community’s best wishes for their success during their terms of office. I commend also the Republics of Cote d’Ivoire and Cape Verde for the conduct and outcomes of their latest legislative elections. Our Region continues to strengthen its democratic credentials through the holding of successful elections.
Excellencies, the Agenda for this meeting has been well defined. At our Extraordinary Summit, in February 2021, you entrusted me with the task of leading the reflection on the institutional reform of our Organisation. The purpose of the reform is to improve the performance and operational efficiency of ECOWAS Institutions, in order to ensure the implementation of integration programmes for the economic and social development of the Region.
The reform focuses on the optimal structure of the Commission and other Institutions, on modalities for the allocation of statutory positions, and on streamlining ECOWAS’ operating costs. These were the subjects of several meetings at the ministerial level, and their conclusions will be presented to us for our adoption or otherwise during our Closed Session.
Furthermore, as part of the consolidation of our solidarity and pursuant to the decision taken at our last Extraordinary Summit, we will consider, for adoption, a rotation mechanism that will enable the various linguistic groups of our Community and each Member State a fair, orderly opportunity to lead and represent the Community in regional, continental and global affairs.
The importance of all these issues is an indication of the richness and depth of our community. I remain convinced that the quality of our discussions and the decisions we take together will, as is customary, be commensurate with the ambitions we have for our Region.
Unfortunately, we are still confronted with serious security challenges with deadly terrorist attacks and kidnappings, not only in the frontline countries, namely Mali, Nigeria, Burkina Faso and Niger but also in the coastal countries of our Region, such as Cote d’Ivoire. Recently, the terrorist attack, which resulted in the death of someone hundred and thirty-two (132) civilians, including children, in Burkina Faso, on 5th June, is the latest such outrage.
I went, in the name of the Community, to Ouagadougou, on Wednesday, 9th June, to commiserate with President Roch Marc Christian Kabora, and offer our condolences, sympathies and support to the Government and people of Burkina Faso in their dark hour.
Excellencies, these developments should reinforce our collective commitment to pursue and implement, with renewed vigour, the decisions taken at our Extraordinary Summit on Terrorism on 14th September 2019. This concerted effort, which must be a major issue and a priority objective for the Community, is the best way for us to address this security challenge. It is a matter of dignity and sovereignty, which affects all nations in the Region. None of our countries is insulated from the threats of terrorism.
Whilst thanking the countries that have already contributed to the ECOWAS Regional Security Fund, I appeal to other countries, who are yet to contribute, to do so.
We must also pay urgent attention to the growing threat to maritime security in our Region. Acts of piracy and maritime destabilisation are on the rise in the Gulf of Guinea, thus affecting trade in our community, and increasing the cost of imported products. We must operationalise the maritime centres we have established in the Region, and agree on the way forward to combat these acts of piracy. We cannot hand over control of the Gulf to pirates.
Excellencies, we will have the opportunity to discuss the political situation in Mali, with a view to assessing the progress made since our last decisions taken at the Emergency Summit held here in, Accra, on 30th May, when we suspended Mali from our Organisation, pending the restoration of democratic rule. We will hear a report from the ECOWAS Mediator on the Malian Crisis, His Excellency Goodluck Jonathan, former President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, and the President of the ECOWAS Commission, His Excellency Jean-Claude Kassi Brou, who went together to Mali after the investiture of Colonel Goita.null
One issue of concern for all of us has to do with the pandemic of COVID-19, which continues to ravage the world and our Region. The strong measures taken at national and regional levels, since the outbreak of the pandemic, have enabled us to contain and mitigate, with the blessing of the Almighty, its impact in our respective countries, the tragic deaths we have recorded, notwithstanding.
We need, as a community, to contribute to the global discourse on access and availability of vaccines for all the peoples of the world. Through the COVAX initiative, all the countries in the Region have taken delivery of some vaccines, supplemented by direct procurement by some Member States. I thank foreign friends of the Community who have contributed to funding the initiative. We note, however, that the quantities received are woefully insufficient.
We must, thus, continue to work on the purchase and production of vaccines in our Region. We have to encourage Members of our Community, Nigeria, Senegal, and my own country, Ghana, which are making the effort to produce their own vaccines. We cannot afford to be naked the next time.
The recent decision of the G7 to provide more vaccines to developing countries is commendable, just as is its decision on the taxation of multinational companies. It is a first step towards addressing the illicit flow of funds, in which these multi-national companies play a major part, and which lead to the huge exodus of resources from our Continent. There is still more to be done.
Excellencies, beyond these challenges, we must work to achieve strong economic growth, based on the construction of resilient economies. Let us continue to focus on the implementation of programmes and projects, in all areas of national life, to ensure job creation and the well-being of our peoples.
This requires that we strengthen our regional integration by pursuing the free movement of goods and people, and the development of our economic infrastructure and our human capital bases. In this regard, the entry into force of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA), on 1st January 2021, offers us a historic opportunity to enhance our levels of intra-regional trade, and inspire the momentum for rapid economic growth. We have to rise to the occasion and change our destiny.null
Work on the Community’s single currency must also continue. According to our programme, the new convergence pact and the new roadmap for its implementation will be submitted for adoption during this Summit.
Excellencies, the world continues to value the work of our Organisation, which is held up as a model of regional engagement on the Continent, and we must continue to do whatever is required to strengthen it and help realise its objectives.
Excellencies, I conclude my address by, again, welcoming you to Accra, and wishing our meeting success. I, hereby, declare the 59th Ordinary Session of the ECOWAS Authority of Heads of State and Government open.
• Kweku Baako Jnr says there is an abundance of solutions to the cases of crime in the countrynull
• He believes that the lack of commitment to implement them is the biggest setback these documents have received
• He also stressed the fact that the country is insecure and as such, the police should admit it and fix the mess
The Editor-in-Chief of the New Crusading Guide, Kweku Baako Jnr, has explained that it is not the lack of solutions to tackle issues of security in the country, but the commitment to implement them.
In the past week, issues of crime and security have become topical after two bullion vans were attacked by armed robbers, with the first leading to the killing of a police constable and a civilian woman.
The police have since come under a lot of pressure to do something about the security situation in the country but Kweku Baako Jnr says the solutions are already there.
He explained that there are several documents that proffer the way out but there is the need for leadership across the divide to commit to implementing them, adding that this is not a present challenge.null
He also stressed that the attempt by the police administration to infer that there is no insecurity in the country because the numbers of cases of crime aren’t so abundant should not be entertained.
“The police service and other security agencies are working to cure this mischief because they realize that it has an impact on people’s sense of security as well as the economic development of this country. And I have to be very honest that this is not the first time this country has been challenged or confronted with this phenomenon and each time, the various administrations that have come and gone, including the police administration itself, regardless of the leadership, they’ve all recognized these things.
“I have this report here, dated March 1997, it’s the Justice Archer report. It was in recognition of the state of the Ghana police, not just morale and equipment; the training, the recruitment and all that.
“Each one of these documents here [referring to a number of documents he had earlier made reference to], is a clear recognition of authorities in this country, law enforcement authority, political leadership, security leadership that we have a problem. So, it’s not as if because not everybody feels insecure, it means there’s no problem. There is!
“There is a challenge for law enforcement and security management of this country and I believe, if we have to be honest, is that all these things, if we read all, you’ll see that we know what to do. It is how to do it – the commitment that we must show to operationalize these fine documents,” he said.
Kweku Baako Jnr made these known on the Saturday, June 19, 2021, edition of NewsFile on the JoyNews channel and monitored by GhanaWeb.
Ghana leader Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has charged West African leaders to come together and enforce decisions taken on September 14, 2019, at the Extraordinary Summit of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) on terrorism.null
He said recent developments in the region should reinforce the collective commitment “to pursue and implement with renewed vigour the decisions taken at [the summit]”.
President Akufo-Addo made these remarks on Saturday, June 19 when he opened the 59th Ordinary Session of the Authority of Heads of State and Government of Ecowas in Accra.
Heads of state of all the countries in the region, except suspended Mali, are in Ghana’s capital for the summit.
It comes on the back of recent terrorist attacks in countries such as Mali, Nigeria, Niger, and Burkina Faso, where about 132 civilians including children were killed a fortnight ago.
Ghana’s President, who is also the Chair of the Authority, intimated that he was in Ouagadougou a few days after the terrorist attack on Saturday, June 5, 2021, to commiserate with the government and people of Burkina Faso “and offer our condolences, sympathies, and support”.
But he insisted that the time is up for the implementation of collective measures to staunch terrorism in the sub-region.
“These concerted efforts, which must be a major issue and a priority objective for the Community, is the best way for us to address this community challenge.
“It is a matter of dignity and sovereignty which affects all nations in the region. None of our countries is insulated from the threats of terrorists.”
He appealed to countries that have failed to contribute to the Ecowas Security Fund to do so as that will ensure that the fight against terrorism in the sub-region is sustained
Mr Sarah Adwoa Safo, Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection, has said that the promotion of good sexual and reproductive health and rights was a critical prerequisite for human development, particularly for adolescent girls.
She said sexual and gender-based violence was a major factor undermining the health, dignity, security and autonomy of victims, who are mostly women and girls.
As a result, she said Government had prioritized the improvements in the health status of adolescents and children through various interventions.
She said, “government through the Ministry has initiated various interventions to ensure that adolescents grow up attaining their full potential and contribute meaningfully to national development.”
Mrs Safo said this at the National Gender Equality Clinic organized by the Ministry through its Department of Gender [DoG] with support from the United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA) on Friday, in Accra.
She said the Clinic seeks to engage adolescents on issues of gender equality, sexual and gender-based violence, sexual and reproductive health rights and provide them with the requisite information on life skills, including career development.
It is also aimed at bringing change in the gender equality narrative by involving males and creating a network of adolescents to debunk gender equality myths.
She said adolescence was the transitional period between childhood and adulthood with specific health and developmental needs and rights, and during this period, adolescents were at risk of substance use and abuse; unsafe sex, teenage pregnancy, and teenage parenting; school underachievement, failure, dropout and delinquency, crime, and violence.
“In Ghana, adolescent girls are most vulnerable to harmful traditional and cultural practices, sexual and gender-based violence (SGBV) of all forms and unwanted pregnancies. “
Available statistics indicated that in 2019, 14, 920 cases including rape, defilement, incest, and compulsory marriage were reported to the Domestic Violence and Victim Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service.
The sector Minister said the District Health Information Management system (DHIMS) of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) recorded astounding numbers of adolescent pregnancy cases in 2020 with 2,865 girls between 10 and 14 years and 107,023 girls between 15 and 19.
A regional breakdown of this report across the country indicates that Ashanti, Eastern and Central regions recorded cases of 17,802, 10,865, and 10,301 respectively.
“In 2020, adolescent pregnancy saw a sharp rise with thirteen (13) teenage pregnancies recorded every hour in Ghana. This change was attributed to the impact of Covid-19 pandemic. This revelation is indeed alarming and needs immediate attention.”
Mrs Safo said it was time to help the adolescents develop their knowledge and skills, learn to manage emotions and relationships and acquire attributes and abilities necessary to enjoy their adolescent years and assume adult roles.
“It is an opportune time to inculcate the values of an equal society where males and females are seen as partners in development, as well as empower them to make informed choices about their lives.”
She urged adolescent parents, to take responsibility and take advantage of the natural connection they have with their children to correct, direct, discipline and advise them in love towards attaining their full potential.
Ms Faustina Acheampong, Head, DoG, said the programme which brought together more than 100 youth from all the regions were part of Ghana’s effort towards the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), particularly goal 5, which urged state actors to achieve gender equality and empower women and girls by 2030.
She said women and girls constituted more than half of the world’s population yet, they were regularly discriminated against.
However, it was necessary for society to acknowledge that the potential for growth and prosperity could be achieved when women and girls were empowered and afforded equal opportunities as men and boys.
President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana has urged his fellow heads of state of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), which he chairs, to endeavour to put in the necessary infrastructure and investment to enable them to produce their own vaccines, when the need arises, so that the continent is not caught unprepared and dependent on the western world the next time a pandemic à la COVID-19 strikes.
Currently, the continent is struggling to come by COVID-19 vaccines for her citizens due to the global scramble for them.
Speaking at the opening session of the 59th ECOWAS summit in Accra on Saturday, 19 June 2021, President Akufo-Addo said: “All the countries in the region have taken delivery of some vaccines, supplemented by procurement by some member states”.
“I thank foreign friends of the community who have contributed to funding the initiative.”
“We note, however, that the quantities received are wholly insufficient”, he complained.
“We must, thus, continue to work on the purchase and production of vaccines in our region”, he urged.
The Ghanaian leader said: “We have to encourage members of our community such as Nigeria, Senegal, and my own country, Ghana, who are making the efforts to produce their own vaccines”.
“We cannot afford to be naked the next time”, he warned.
In a recent speech at an SDG forum at the Jubilee House, the seat of Ghana’s presidency, Mr Akufo-Addo confessed thus: “We have obvious difficulties as far as the [COVID] vaccination programme is concerned”.
“Unfortunately, we are the victims of this worldwide shortage of vaccines that poor and less-advantaged nations are experiencing by not having access to the vaccines”.
“So, that, of course, is a major challenge for us, the procurement logistics and the issues involved in it.”
A member of Ghana’s COVID-19 response team,Dr Bernard Okoe Boye,also noted that the government is considering other options to get vaccines for the country.
“What is happening to Ghana is a global issue. So, what we are doing is that this government is engaging directly with other European countries who have stock of AstraZeneca and are not deploying them that much. So, we will continue to explore,” he said.
He continued: “It will be difficult to speak and state the specific date because with this Africa platform that we are using and the direct Russia government engagement people are talking about, they tell us that it will take six or 12 months before the vaccines will come and remember in a year, a lot can happen
Speaker Alban Bagbin has said the question filed by North Tongu MP Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa about the cost of President Nana Akufo-Addo’s recent 9-day international trip on a chartered flight, will definitely be answered, denying media reports that he had rejected the question.
Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta appealed to the house for more time to collate his figures on the trip when he appeared in Parliament on Thursday, 17 June 2021.
Denying claims that he had rejected the question, Mr Bagbin said in the house that: “Let me disagree with what has been put on social media that the honourable speaker rejected the questions”.
“There is no iota of truth in that publication”.
“The questions were admitted and forwarded to the ministers and the ministers have indicated to me their readiness to come and answer the questions, so, it will be no problem”.
“The business committee should do the right thing and get them programmed for the minister to come and answer.”
Mr Ablakwa also denied the media reports.
“Kindly disregard and treat with contempt the fake news in circulation, claiming that the Rt. Honourable Speaker has rejected my urgent questions to the Defence and Minister of Finance on the state of the presidential jet and the total cost of President Akufo-Addo’s recent profligate luxury travels to France, Belgium and South Africa, respectively.”
Meanwhile, Defence Minister Dominic Nitiwul has he intends to petition the National Media Commission in connection with an attribution made to him by the media, in relation to a story about the presidential jet which, in his view, was calculated mischief.
According to him, the reports by the media that he had said President Nana Akufo-Addo could not shower in the Falcon, and, thus, it was not fit for his international travels, were wrong, since, they were couched out of wrong inferences from his comments on the floor of Parliament.
“I said ‘no president can shower in this aircraft’. I never said Akufo-Addo or John Mahama or Kufuor”, Mr Nitiwul explained to Paul Adom-Otchere on Metro TV’s Good Evening Ghana programme on Thursday, 17 June 2021.
“In fact, three presidents have used this aircraft – Mills, Mahama and Akufo-Addo”, he noted.
“I was very amazed they [media] chose to say: ‘Akufo-Addo cannot shower in it’” he noted.
“Why didn’t they say ‘John Mahama could not shower in it’? Why didn’t they say ‘President Mills could not shower in it’? Why didn’t they say that? That’s why I said it was pure mischief”, he stressed.
In his answer to parliament on Wednesday, 16 June 2021, the Bimbilla MP said: “This aircraft will carry a load of 11 persons minus the crew. When this aircraft is travelling to the eastern part of the USA or Asia, it will not load a crew of more than eight plus the luggage”.
“So, it depends on where it is going”, he noted.
Secondly, he added, “I have also said the aircraft has to do refuelling stops and, also, in this COVID-19 [era], when you are travelling to multiple destinations like the president’s recent travels, the Falcon couldn’t have been taken because he would have had to do technical stops, which are not desirable”.
“And when he is travelling with more than 20 people like he has been doing for business trips that brought huge sums of money to this country, he will need more than just a Falcon, otherwise, the others would have to go a day ahead before the president to prepare themselves.”
“In fact, the president would also have to go a day ahead because no president can shower in this aircraft. He cannot move from this aircraft straight into a meeting”, Mr Nitiwul said.
In the heat of the controversy, the Minority in Parliament said President Akufo-Addo could have used Ghana’s “airworthy” presidential jet, Falcon 9Gexe, instead of chartering the £15,000-per-hour “lavish, ostentatious and extravagant” AJC320neo flight he recently used for his 9-day trip abroad that cumulatively cost the Ghanaian taxpayer £345,000 (GHS2,828,432.80). “Today, we want to present to you further evidence that we are definitely certain that the presidential jet is available, in good shape”, Mr Ablakwa told journalists on Friday, 28 May 2021.
According to him, on 11 May 2021 – five days ahead of his 9-day trip – the president used the presidential jet to Uganda to attend the ceremony swearing-in of President-elect Yoweri Museveni.
Denying claims that the Falcon cannot travel long hours without refueling, Mr Ablakwa said the president’s Uganda trip on the presidential jet was 5h:4m while his Paris trip took six-and-a-half hours.
“The Minority insists that the Falcon could have been used”, Mr Ablakwa stressed. “One, the Falcon is airworthy and it took this same president to Uganda only a few days prior to the 16th of May when the president departed to Paris with this rather luxurious monster; the most outstanding, extravagant, luxurious airbus aircraft to be manufactured – the Airbus AJC320neo, which originally was manufactured to take 150 people at the minimum but it has been reconfigured to take only 17 people so a luxurious empire can be created”, he said.
In the Minority’s view, instead of the president using the chartered flight, which has a master bedroom, an en-suite bathroom with showers, dining facilities for all 17 passengers and sophisticated IT connectivity installations, he could have opted for other chartered flights from the same company, Acropolis Aviation.
“First of all, our contention is that the Falcon is available”, he stressed, emphasising: “It’s airworthy”.
“If it can take you to Uganda safely, it can take you to Paris safely and Brussels, Belgium safely”, he argued. “So, the point we are trying to emphasise is that in this time of austerity, where the president himself has said: Times are rough; let’s bear with him’, … the president himself embarked on this trip to go and beg for debt forgiveness and this is how you go and beg for debt forgiveness when the person you are going to beg for debt forgiveness from doesn’t travel in such luxury, in such ostentation”, noting: “The level of extravagance, the extreme opulence that the president displayed is condemnable, unconscionable”.
“How do you think these western leaders will perceive African leaders? No wonder they have very little respect for a lot of our leaders but we cannot continue this way”, Mr Ablakwa said
• He has appealed to the country’s leaders to learn from him
Legal luminary, Tsatsu Tsikata has proffered that Ghana needs a leader whose main preoccupation will be to execute a national agenda and not champion partisan or regime agenda.
Tsatsu Tsikata in a TV interview noted part of the reasons the country’s progress has been slow-paced is because successive governments tend to focus on implementing their plans for the country instead of focusing on completing the works of their predecessor.
He singled out late President Professor John Evans Mills for praise as a leader who was neither vindictive nor partisan and had the national interest at the heart of any move he made.
Tsatsu Tsikata said that, unlike other leaders who come into government with a mindset to prosecute members of the opposing party, late President John Evans Atta Mills was only concerned with what could benefit the country.null
He, therefore, appealed to leaders to take a cue from the Mills concept and focus on things that will impact the country positively.
“I look forward to the days in this country where we can actually have leaders like President Mills who are not pre-occupied with trying to prosecute and jail people from other side but say that we are all in this country together, lets see how we can enhance what has gone on before.
“Let’s see how what happened under President Rawlings, Kufuor, Mahama should be continued. That is not really what our records show we have been doing except for the example I gave,” he said.
Tsatsu Tsikata in the same interview spoke about his incarceration under the Kufuor regime and mentioned that the testimony by the states Star witness Jude Arthur untrue.
He said, “the judge had asked us to come early that day so we went at 8 o’clock earlier than usual. One of the first odd things that I noticed was that Attorney General Joe Gartey at that time, had come with his full team and he had been in court for the last one and half years but suddenly that day he is there with a full team of five people. I thought perhaps because we had been applying that what he said in the Supreme Court should be brought, so maybe he was coming to explain something about that. To cut a long story short, things turn in a different direction when the judge actually sat.”
He also added, “originally, the prosecution said they had issues with the viability of the project but then, when we went to the Supreme Court the Attorney General was saying they had no problem with the viability of the project. That was why we were insisting that the records of what the Attorney General had said in the Supreme Court should be now part of the records of the High Court proceedings together with whatever testimonies the IFC was going to be given. So we were not at the stage where judgement really should be expected.null
“I did not act on my own as an individual or GNPC didn’t just act on its own as a corporate body. We had Merchant Bank not only as a financial advisor, at that time Jude Arthur was the Managing Director of Merchant Bank, they were not only our financial advisor; they were trustees of GNPC in respect of that project. So, Merchant Bank, and specifically Jude Arthur was actually representing GNPC’s interest on the Board of Valley Farms.”
He continued: “In fact, they introduced the project to us so in terms of viability we were insistent that the records of the IFC together with what the Attorney General had admitted in the Supreme Court would set to rest the matter of viability and that was never allowed.
“Jude Arthur was the key prosecution witness against me and what was interesting was that his testimony was in many respect shown as false.
“Because we managed to get under subpoena, records from Merchant Bank regarding how the Valley Farms project became part of their work in the first place because the imp…Source:
Female police recruits have been charged to prove their worth and justify an increase in their quota into the service by the police administration.null
Addressing 581 recruits at the passing out ceremony at the Police Public Training School at Pwalugu in the Upper East Region, the Director-General of Police Welfare, COP Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo Danquah noted that Ghana is on its way to achieving the United Nations gender ratio.
“The United Nations recommended gender ratio in uniformed officers is 40%. It is heartwarming to reveal that female recruits passing out today constitute about 34% of the total recruits strength. This means altogether, Ghana is gradually inching towards meeting the uniformed officers gender parity”, she stated.
In respect of that, she urged the new recruits especially the females to live up to the task in order to achieve the needed results.null
“Don’t just be part of the added numbers but contribute towards achieving results in our core mandate”, she admonished them and congratulated Recruit Hannah Arthur for her outstanding performance and adjudged as the Best Female Recruit.
COP Maame Yaa Tiwaa Addo Danquah advised all female recruits not to relent in their endeavours and continue to make themselves and their families proud.
“Never relent in your endeavours and continue to make yourselves, female police officers and your families proud”, she stressed
The government of Ghana has been urged to stay away from interfering with the work of the West African Examination Council (WAEC).null
Jonathan Otchere Asante, a senior lecturer at the University of Cape Coast (UCC), made this known in an interview with Eric Ahianyo on the Morning Update on TV XYZ.
His comments come on the heels of a research findings by education Think Tank, Africa Education Watch, that has revealed damning revelations about the education sector.
The think tank wants the government to break the monopoly enjoyed by the West African Examination Council, WAEC, in assessing students and conducting examinations in Ghana.
Presenting the report, the Executive Director of Africa Education Watch, Kofi Asare, said independent international examining bodies should be given the opportunity to assess students in the basic education level so as to promote healthy competition in the examination space.
“The Education Ministry must set up a regulator of assessment to regulate WAEC and other assessment bodies before their activities become ungovernable. We need to break the WAEC monopoly. WAEC operates in other countries, but they do not have a monopoly in Nigeria, for instance, ” he said while pointing to examination malpractices in recent times.
But contributing to the development, Mr Asante backed the education think tank, saying reports of examination malpractices had become rampant in recent years, especially when the Free SHS policy was launched.null
“I think that it’s quite revealing… Most of the things that have come up are solid and more factual,” Asante said.
Jonathan Otchere also suggested that like WAEC, any activity that has many human intervention along the value chain is compromised, urging government not to get closer to the activities of WAEC.
He said the research indicates the “integrity of the [WAEC] certificate is at stake.”
Touching on the malpractices, he said ” Students attacking invigilators… Was created by the panicky situation that was created by the government. ”
Government has been blamed for buying past questions for SHs students and assuring them their examination questions would be from the books.
• President Akufo-Addo has been addressing the 59th ECOWAS Ordinary Summit in Accranull
• He called for support for countries in the region who want to produce their own coronavirus vaccines
• The Summit is being attended by 15 Heads of State, excluding Mali
Ghana’s president and Chairman of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has applauded the frantic efforts being made by some member countries to manufacture their own vaccines, while urging support for same.
The president, speaking at the opening session of the 59th ECOWAS Ordinary Summit in Accra, said that this move is laudable as it aims at tackling the situation at hand instead of waiting on foreign aid.
He explained that the coronavirus pandemic has devastated a lot of economies in the sub-region, calling for the need to encourage collaborations among countries in the region to deal with the situation, reports citinewsroom.com.
“We note, however, that the quantities received are wholly insufficient. We must thus continue to work on the purchase and production of vaccines in our region. We have to encourage members of our community such as Nigeria, Senegal, and my own country Ghana who are making the efforts to produce their own vaccines. We cannot afford to be naked the next time,” he said.
This 59th ECOWAS session is deliberating among other things, the pertinent issues threatening the peace and stability of the West African sub-region, as well as proffer solutions to them.
Fifteen Heads of State except Mali, which has been suspended from the regional bloc following the recent political upheavals in that country, are attending the summit.
They include the President of Liberia, George Manneh Weah, President of Guinea, Alpha Conde, Burkinabe President, Roch Marc Christian Kabore, Sierra Leonean President, Julius Maada Bio, President of Guinea Bissau, Umaro Sissoco Embalo and President of The Gambia, Adama Barrow.
A former Nigeria president, Goodluck Ebele Jonathan, who is the ECOWAS Special Envoy mediating Mali’s political crisis, is also attending the summit.
PARLIAMENT YESTERDAY approved 12 more Deputy Ministers of State after three of the nominees were dropped from the report of the Appointments Committee over what the Speaker described as “miscommunication and lack of information” between the leaderships of the House.
The nominees, whose approvals were put on hold by Parliament, were Gifty Twum-Ampofo, Deputy Minister-designate for Education; Amidu Issahaku Chinnia, Deputy Minister-designate for Sanitation and Water Resources; and Diana Asonaba Dapaah, Deputy Minister-designate for Attorney General and Justice.
There was no reason assigned for the deferment of approval of the nominees, but wrangling over one of them, Gifty Twum-Ampofo, prolonged the approval process that started on Thursday evening, thereby forcing the leaders of both the Majority and Minority to go into conclave.
Minority Chief Whip, Mohammed-Mubarak Muntaka, raised preliminary objection to the procedural motion moved by the First Deputy Speaker of Parliament, Joseph Osei-Wusu and seconded by the Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, asking for amendments to the Committee’s report.
Those who received approval are Andrew Kofi Egyapa-Mercer, Deputy Minister-designate for Energy; John Ntim Fordjour, Deputy Minister-designate for Education; George Mireku Duker, Deputy Minister-designate for Lands and Natural Resources; Kofi Amankwah-Manu, Deputy Minister-designate for Defence; Naana Eyiah Quansah, Deputy Minister-designate for Interior; and Hassan Sulemana Tampuli, Deputy Minister-designate for Transport.
The rest are Dr. John Ampontuah Kumah, Deputy Minister-designate for Finance; Frederick Obeng Adom, Deputy Minister-designate Transport; Mavis Nkansah-Boadu, Deputy Minister-designate for Roads and Highways; Evans Opoku Bobbie, Deputy Minister-designate for Youth and Sports, Mohammed Hardi Tufeiru, Deputy Minister-designate for Food and Agriculture; and Tina Naa Ayeley Mensah, Deputy Minister-designate for Health.
This figure brings to 24 the number of deputy ministers approved so far by Parliament, with 16 more to go.
On Wednesday, 21st April, 2021, President Akufo-Addo submitted to Parliament nominations of a Minister of State and 39 Deputy Minister-designates for consideration and approval in accordance with Article 78 (1) and 79(1) of the Constitution.
Speaker Bagbin subsequently referred the nominations to the Appointment Committee for consideration and report pursuant to Order 172 of the Standing Orders of the House.
He told the newly approved appointees that their primary duties were to the people of Ghana as “the representatives of the people.”
“That is your primary duty. The people elected you to represent them in Parliament. You own that primary duty to the people and to Parliament that given an additional responsibility by His Excellency, the President, is secondary.
“If you decide to sacrifice the mandate and the legitimacy of the people of that of His Excellency the President you do that at your own peril,” the Speaker admonished
Joyce Bawa Mogtari, Special Aide to former President has received tons of congratulatory messages on social media following her delivery of triplets.
The former Deputy Minister of Transport is seen in a picture in a Facebook adorned in a white dress carrying one of the babies while her husband, Hudu Mogtari, a former CEO of Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) and ex Mahama carry the rest.
Social media users have expressed their joy for the lawyer cum politician who’s now a mother of four.