Thursday, July 31, 2014

Youth Poised For Agricultural Evolution




'When the discovery and oil trade began, majority of the people who were farmers, or were into any agribusiness abandoned the agricultural sector to get involved in the oil industry. Nigeria is now struggling to revamp the agricultural sector once again,it must be so, and done well because we must all eat. This was what motivated me to participate in this year's IHAV conference, which I believe would help me gather more knowledge and share ideas with fellow participants from other African countries, to help boost Nigeria's agricultural sector'.

These were the views of a 20-year-old Ibiyinka Amokeodo, a second-year Food Science and Technology student at the Bowen University, Nigeria; who is one of the hundred (100) youth from all over Africa gathered in Accra for a conference in agribusiness.

According to Miss Amokeode, agricultural is branded as a job for the 'poor' in Nigeria because many people 'feel they are too rich to work on a farm, or do something relating to agricultural'.

She discarded that notion, saying that all must be on board to make agricultural function because Africa's economy depends largely on agriculture.

She disclosed that after school, she hopes to set up a food processing company, which would go a long way to make agribusiness a 'necessity' for Nigerian youth.

The conference is organized by the 'I Have A Vision' (IHAV) Foundation, a non-governmental organization (NGO)founded in 2012 with the aim of tackling problems facing the Africa continent and finding solution by targeting the youth because it believes the future of the continent lies in the hands of its youth.

This year's conference is taking place from 30th July to 2nd August 2014 on the theme: 'Creating An Agribusiness Revolution With Africa's Youth', and has brought together young people from the ages of 18 to 28 from African countries including: Ghana; Nigeria; The Gambia; Kenya; Ethiopia; Uganda; Zimbabwe; Guinea; Tanzania; Botswana; Malawi.

According to a spokesperson of IHAV, MsSabtiyaBalogun, the conference seeks to inspire the young people to take up agribusiness by bringing them together to share ideas, and deliberate on the prospects of Agriculture in Africa.

She said there were many opportunities in the agricultural industry which have been shunned by many people, especially the youth, therefore, the IHAV Foundation thought it was the best way to make agribusiness appealing and interesting to the youth.

Miss Balogun was hopeful that the objective of the conference, i.e., getting the youngsters to take up agribusiness projects after the conference would be met because they (the participants) have shown enough commitment right from their application to attend the conference.

Another participant, Ms. Jeanne Naseria, a third year student at the University of Nairobi, Kenya, said agribusiness in Kenya is regarded as job for the 'oldies', which she disagrees with.

She stated that agribusiness should rather be seen as work for the young people because with the global technology advancement, they (the young people)can deploy more modern methods of agricultural to increase yield than the old people can do.

According to Miss Naseria, currently, there are a lot of talks going on in Kenya about how the young people could contribute their quotas to develop the agricultural industry in the country.

This, she said, motivated her to participate in the IHAV conference to enable her build her capacity, learn, share ideas on how to improve agricultural in her country and Africa at large.

JeannedNaseira is nurturing the dream of helping small-scale farmers in her country to be sustained in agricultural.

Personalities expected to talk with the participants include: Mrs. Eva Lokko, former PPP running mate, Mr. Philip Abayori, Sherrie Thompson, Mr. John Armah, et cetera.




3 perish in mining pit in Prestea




Three people have been confirmed dead after a pit caved in on them at Besechem, near Prestea in the Western Region.

The incident happened Wednesday July 30, 2014.
The three were said to have been prospecting for gold at a mining concession when the pit caved in and trapped them, killing them instantly.

Their bodies have since been deposited at the Prestea government hospital.

ASP Emmanuel Nwinsori, Prestea Huni Valley crime officer said they have identified the deceased persons and handed them over to their families.

Early this month, one person died, while nine others were rescued from underground when an illegal mining pit collapsed on them at Banda Nkwanta in the Northern Region.

It took the combined effort of community members and a police team to remove the trapped people from the collapsed pit.

Death of illegal miners through collapsed pits are fairly common in mining zones across the country.




Ebola crisis: WHO to announce $100m emergency response




The head of the World Health Organization and leaders of West African nations affected by the Ebola outbreak are to announce a joint $100m (£59m; 75m euro) response plan.

They will meet in Guinea on Friday to launch the initiative aimed at tackling a virus which has claimed 729 lives.

Sierra Leone's president has declared a public health emergency over the outbreak after 233 people died there.

Ebola spreads through human contact with a sufferer's bodily fluids.

Initial flu-like symptoms can lead to external haemorrhaging from areas like eyes and gums, and internal bleeding which can lead to organ failure.

Ebola kills up to 90% of those infected with patients having a better chance of survival if they receive early treatment.

Ghana to establish three isolated health centres 

In Ghana, government has announced plans to establish three isolated health centres purposely to tackle the deadly Ebola viral disease.

The announcement was made during a news conference held on Thursday July 31, in Accra, by the government's inter-ministerial team on the Ebola Viral Disease.

The team comprises of the Ministers for Health, Interior, Defense, Communications and Local Government and Rural Development, and is under the Chairmanship of the Minister for Health, Dr. Kwaku Agyeman-Mensah.

Relaying the plans of the Health Service, Head of the Disease Surveillance Department of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Badu Sarkodie, stated that these new health centres to be established will be set up in the southern, middle and northern belts of the country.

'By the end of the week at least three designated facilities which shall cover the southern zone, middle zone, northern zone and based at Accra-Tema area, Kumasi and then Tamale to be specifically used for Ebola,' Dr.Sarkodie announced.

Debunking rumours of suspected Ebola cases within the country, Dr. Sarkodie asserted that though they had earlier managed 24 cases suspected to be the Ebola virus, all of them tested negative. 

He further reminded all health workers across the country of their mandate to 'ensure strict adherence of infection prevention and control measures within the health facilities' and to 'observe the regular universal standard practice of infection prevention and control'.




Gender Ministry inaugurates Domestic Violence Management Board




Minister of Gender, Children and Social Protection,Nana Oye Lithur on Thursday said the high prevalence of domestic violence in Ghana threatens the every individual security and the nation's development.

She said Ghana's Constitution guarantees the Human and Equal Rights of all persons, and that, Government with the support from Civil Society, had made several efforts in furtherance of these enshrined provisions, including legislative policy and institutional reforms.

Nana Oye Lithur said this at the inauguration of a 17-member board of the Domestic Violence (DV) Management Board of the Ministry.

Members of the board include the Minister as Chairperson, Mrs Comfort Doyee Cudjoe Ghansah, a Minister of State at the Presidency, Mr Kwasi Armo-Himbson, Chief Director of the Ministry and Secretary to the Board, and Rosemary Ardayfio, Daily Graphic.

Others are Sophia Karen Ackuoku, Managing Director of Amsos, Carlos De Souza, a Legal Practioner, Ernest Otoo, Ministry of Education, Mr Joseph Adomako, Attorney General Department and Lawrencia Akorli, DOVVSU Coordinator.

The rest are Adolf Awuku Bekoe, Domestic Violence Coalition, Dr Patrick K. Aboagye, Ministry of Health, Dorothy Onny, a Director at Local Government Ministry, Lawrencia Ofori-Addo, Department of Social Welfare, Her Ladyship Georgina Mensah-Datsa, Judicial Service, Nortey Dua, Ghana Medical School and Nana Ama Ayuesua Saara III, Queen mother of Denkyira.

She said the Board is to make recommendation for National Plan of Action (NPA) against Domestic Violence, monitor and report on the progress of the NPA through the Minister, Advice the Minister on policy matters under the Act, propose and promote strategies to prevent  and combat Domestic Violence.

The Board, the Minister said 'are to liaise with Government agencies and organizations to promote the rehabilitation and reintegration of victims of domestic violence, prepare guidelines for disbursement of the DV Fund, Management of the Fund, Conduct Research on international and regional development and deal with any matter with Domestic Violence'.

Nana Oye Lithur said the functions mention above were very essential in the national response to domestic violence, especially in the prevention of DV, as well as guaranteeing survivors access to better service delivery.

She congratulated the old board for the many successes they had achieved and thanked them for their service to the nation.

Dr Aboagye of the Ministry of Health, on behalf of the members, thanked the Minister for the confidence reposed in them and assured her of their commitments, and will ensure that their mandate and duties are well executed.




Wa Court hands nine year jail sentence to Policeman for defiling 14 year old




A Wa Circuit Court has today sentenced one of three police officers who were accused of abducting and defiling a fourteen year old primary six pupil to nine years in prison and in hard labour.

General constable Appiah Donald pleaded guilty to the two charges and was sentenced accordingly.

His other two colleagues General Constable George Tanoe and Corporal Joseph Kwakoh   are to reappear on August 7. The police is on a man-hunt for a fourth suspect said to be at large.

Rafiq Salam sat through the proceedings and reports the four accused persons were arrested following a complaint filed to the Wa police on June 29 by the father of the victim.

The complainant said his fourteen year old primary six pupil went missing from the grandmother's house for several days.

Prosecutor, DSP Owusu Bempah told the court that the accused persons abducted the victim and kept her for eight days during the repeatedly defiled her.

The first and the second accused persons spent four and three days respectively with the victim and each had unprotected sex with her twice.

The third and fourth accused persons, were alleged to have had a one nightstand with the victim. The second accused person pleaded guilty to the two counts of abduction and defilement whilst the third and fourth accused persons pleaded not guilty.

The Wa Circuit Court Judge, his honour, Isaac Bright Akwantey in sentencing the second accused said the court has taken into account the plea for mercy from the accused lawyer as well as the fact that he is a first time offender who has not wasted the time of the court.

He added that whilst considering the aforementioned, he also has a duty to stretch his neck and also consider the nature of the offence and the circumstance of the victim, the society and the accused  who is a policeman.

He said considering the accused person's stature in life and his circumstance especially as a policeman, his acts to say the least were reprehensible.

His Honour Justice Akwantey said the importance of the sentence will be to serve as a deterrent for all serving police men and other public officers who have any intention to go that way.

He therefore sentenced the second accused to nine years imprisonment in hard labour on each account and they are to run concurrently.

The Wa Circuit Court Judge commended the Upper West regional command of the Ghana Police Service for not shielding the accused persons and allowing the law to take its course.

Meanwhile the other two accused persons, General Constable George Tanoe and Corporal joseph Kwakoh are to reappear on August 7.




European Union Bans Vegetables From Ghana




The European Union (EU) has put a temporary ban on exports of vegetables from Ghana to their region. The ban was put in place after EU authorities identified some vegetables from Ghana which did not meeting their quality standards.

This is not the first time Ghanaian farmers and exporters have had to face this setback having failed to meet certain set benchmarks.

Some months ago, mangoes from Ghana was also banned because of fly infestation.

Ghana faced another sanction last year, when the EU noted that fish supposedly from Ghana did not really come from Ghanaian territorial waters.

Reacting to the latest news, Agric Minister, Fiifi Kwetey said the Ministry is putting measures in place to address the issues.

'As a country, we will from time to time have some of these concerns. I don't think it is the first time we have had those concerns. We are clearly going to take them on board in order to ensure that if we are going to have sustainable exports, we cannot afford to compromise on quality,' he assured.

According to him, 'some of the quality we are talking about is not something at the Ministerial level. It has to do with production that is taking place down in the farms. We will give to support to them in terms of equipment to ensure that those minimum standards are kept.'




RE: Ghanaian Supporters Denied Visa To Canada U-20 World Cup




In response to your story Ghanaian supporters denied visa to Canada U-20 WorldCup, we would like to provide you with information on how Canada processes visas, including specific measures we have put in place to facilitate FIFA Cup participants and delegates, so that you can provide a balanced and accurate story.

Canada is looking forward to welcoming participants, team delegates and visitors to the FIFA U20 Women's World Cup. Towards this end, Citizenship and Immigration Canada (CIC) has been working closely with the FIFA Cup organizers to make it as easy as possible for team delegations, including athletes, coaches, judges and referees, to enter Canada. Canada's visa offices are aware of this special event and have been processing visa applications for these individuals as quickly as possible. Indeed, those involved with the FIFA World Cup who applied early and are genuine visitors have already received their visas.

Canada also welcomes genuine visitors who are coming to attend the World Cup.

While CIC can't comment on the admissibility of any particular individual, we can say in general that Canada welcomes visitors that meet the requirements for temporary residence in Canada, as set out in the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act (IRPA).

Visa applications are considered on a case-by-case basis on the specific facts presented by the applicant in each case. The onus is on the applicant to show that they meet the requirements for a temporary resident visa.

Visa decisions are made by highly trained visa officers in accordance with Canadian immigration law.

Visa officers look at many factors in assessing whether an applicant is a genuine temporary resident. They consider the purpose of the visit and the applicant's ties to his or her home country, including the family and economic situation.

Foreign nationals wishing to come to Canada as temporary residents must show that they will respect the conditions that apply to temporary residents. One of these conditions is that they will leave voluntarily at the end of the visit.

Individuals who apply to come to Canada as temporary residents must satisfy the visa officer that they:

o are in good health (in some cases, a medical examination may be required);

o have not committed a crime;

o do not pose a threat to Canada's security;

o have a valid passport or travel document;

o have enough money to support themselves and their family members while in Canada (The amount of money needed can vary and depends on things like the length of stay, and whether one is staying in a hotel or with friends or relatives);

o will leave Canada voluntarily at the end of their authorized stay; and

o meet all other requirements of the IRPA.

To find out more about eligibility and admissibilityto Canada, visit CIC's website.

CIC is aware of attempts to exploit the interest of those wishing to visit the FIFA U-20 Women's World Cup in Canada and would suggest visa applicants consult our website to protect themselves from fraud: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/protection/fraud/index.asp

Sincerely

Sonia

Sonia Lesage

Media Relations Advisor/Spokesperson | Les Relations avec les médias/Porte-parole

Western Region - Communications | Région de l'Ouest - Communications

Citizenship and Immigration Canada | Citoyenneté et Immigration Canada

300 - 800 Burrard Street Vancouver BC V6Z 0B6 | 300 - 800, rue Burrard Vancouver C.-B. V6Z 0B6

[email protected]
Government of Canada | Gouvernement du Canada




Hansen Road SDA School complex holds 21st graduation


Felix Ofosu Kwakye

Accra, July 30, GNA - Mr Felix Kwakye Ofosu, Deputy Minister of Communications has urged students of the Hansen Road Seventh-Day Adventist School Complex to learn hard to justify their parent's investment in them.

Mr Ofosu asked the students to uphold the values of perseverance, discipline, determination and humility as their guiding principles to succeed in life.

He said this at the school's 21st graduation ceremony in Accra for the pre-school, upper primary and 39 candidates who completed their basic education certificate examination.

The graduation ceremony was on the theme: 'Sound Christian Education; A tool for Molding a Morally Responsible Youth.'

Mr Ofosu said the theme is critical because a sound Christian education builds the students spiritually to stand the test of any temptation and succeed in life.

He urged the students to abide by rules and regulations ahead of their careers and avoid friends that would influence them negatively.

Mr Ofosu also reminded parents that the best legacies they could bequeath their children are knowledge and skills that could make them self-reliant and contribute meaningfully to national development.

Mr James Arthur, Headmaster of the school said education is relevant to the development of every nation and it is imperative for parents to support teachers to develop the social, physical and psychological needs of students.

He explained that sound Christian education prepare students to be submissive, principled, obedient and law abiding and 'it also help children 'to see no evil, hear no evil and speak no evil',' which will at the long run help them to become useful citizens.

He said the school complex was the first Adventist school to be established in Accra, and has helped in transforming many lives through sound Christian education.

Mr Arthur said providing Christian education in the school is not intended to make all students pastors but to complement the education curriculum with biblical teachings.

The students were presented with awards for performing well in their field of studies. GNA EN-GB X-NONE X-NONE




Airtel Ghana Makes A Difference At Village Of Hope, Gomoah Fetteh, To Crown End Of Customer Experience Week




Accra, July 30 2014: Airtel Ghana, CSR Company of the Year has donated food items, GHC1,000 cash and scholastic materials to the Village of Hope orphanage in Gomoa Fetteh in the Central Region of Ghana. This crowns the end of a successful Customer Experience week which saw the Managing Director of Airtel and senior members of staff serving customers at its customer touch points.

Mr. Asare, Managing Director at the Village had this to say about the donation: 'We are extremely grateful to Airtel Ghana for thinking about this orphanage as one worthy of support. The cash and other items will go a long way in easing the financial burden that the orphanage goes through on a daily basis'.

Mrs. Yacoba Amuah, Customer Experience Director at Airtel Ghana said that Airtel Ghana was proud to support the Orphanage, and was grateful to the guardians of the children who were making a difference in their lives through mentoring, and just being there for them during these trying times of their lives.

The donation forms part of Airtel Ghana's internal CSR staff driven campaign called Make a Difference Day. The initiative encourages its employees to get involved in their local communities by identifying and supporting sustainable projects within their communities or lending a hand towards a charity project which they are passionate about. Make a Difference Day, (MADD) offers a platform for staff to engage in sustainable CSR in the communities where they live while inspiring hope and enhancing people's quality of life.

The Village of Hope cares for 260 children (Orphans and destitutes), with 34 in SHS and 22 in Tertiary institutions. The remaining are in JHS and Primary or waiting to enter Tertiary Institutions. The system is based on family communal setting with a mother and father in each home. Guided by the belief that all children should have an equal opportunity to thrive, the Orphanage works to create conditions for vulnerable children so they can realize their full potential in school, work and life.





WAEC issues BECE guidelines for private candidates


WAEC Logo

Accra, July 31, GNA - The West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) has issued guidelines for the conduct of the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) for private candidates.

A statement issued by Mrs Agnes Teye-Cudjoe, Principal Public Relations Officer of WAEC, and copied to the Ghana News Agency, in Accra on Thursday, said 'the Examination will be known as the Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) for private candidates'.

It said the examination is opened to re-sitters and first-time sitters, explaining that a re-sitter must provide the index number and year of examination for his/her previous sitting of the BECE, while a first-timer must be 18 years or above.

It, however, warned that students in Junior High Schools are not qualified to register for the examination.

It said the date of birth of candidates would be printed on their certificates, whereas unqualified candidates caught taking part in the examination would have their registration nullified, and be barred from taking any WAEC examination for two years.

Candidates may take a number of subjects ranging from one to nine, it said.

'The examination is private; therefore, candidates will be required to pay for the full cost of the examination. The fees for the examination will be made available online at the Council's website - www.waecgh.org.

No government subsidy is expected,' the statement said.

It said each district capital would have one examination centre provided the candidature in that district is 200 or more.

It explained that in cases where the candidature for the examination is less than 200, the centre would be moved to the nearest Centre/District to make the conduct of the examination viable.

It said the registration for the examination would begin on September 1, 2014, adding that it would be online and the bio-data of candidates would be captured as part of the registration process.

The examination would be conducted from February 16-20, 2015, and the time-table would be made available online when the examination is floated, it said.

Additionally, directions to candidates would be made available online at the time of floating of entries for the examination.

It said Continuous Assessment Scores would not be required for this examination; however, grading of candidates would be based solely on their final score as done for the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) private candidates.

The results of the examination should be expected in May, 2015.

It said a handbook containing the syllabuses, scheme of examination, specimen questions and rules and regulations for the examination, is being prepared in collaboration with the Ghana Education Service, and would be published soon for the guidance of prospective candidates.

It said candidates could download it from WAEC website when it is ready.

GNA
     




3 Rapist Robbers Nabbed




Moro Issah, Tofic Mohammed and Ali Mohammed 

The Dansoman Divisional Police Command has arrested three out of six suspected armed robbers who raided a house and raped a victim in the process.

The lady victim, aged about 30 years, was raped by three of the suspected armed robbers in turns at gunpoint after succeeding in robbing her of household items, mobile phones and others.

The suspects arrested are Ali Mohammed, 20, currently serving a 20-year jail term for another robbery, Moro Issah, 20 and Tofic Mohammed, 18.

The three others whose names are being withheld and currently at large are on the police wanted list.

Briefing the DAILY GUIDE, Chief Superintendent K Antwi-Tabi, the Dansoman Divisional Police Commander, said the suspects committed the act on May 26, 2014 but the three were apprehended separately on June 6, 2014 upon a tip-off.

The six suspects, led by Issah Moro, the ring leader, attacked the house at Dansoman around 8:00pm that fateful day with guns and machetes and succeeded in robbing the occupants of the house items including a plasma television, three laptops, two Nokia phones, an Iphone, and a cash of GH¢1,800.

They also picked a Louis Vuitton ladies' bag containing assorted items.

The lady victim who was raped by three of the armed robbers had returned from the bathroom and was dressing up when the robbers pounced on her and raped her.

The police were informed about the attack and when they proceeded to the scene, the robbers had bolted.

Upon a tip off, police first apprehended Issa Moro, the ring leader, at his hideout at Dansoman Russia.

A search in his room revealed the Louis Vuitton ladies' bag and a mobile phone belonging to the raped victim being used by the suspect.

The police also found some assorted drinks in the suspect's room but when he was questioned, Issah Moro said the drinks were stolen in a separate operation.

He further mentioned Ali Mohammed, Tofic Mohammed and three others currently at large as his accomplices.

In Issah Moro's caution statement, he mentioned one Christian Mugu, a friend as the one who allegedly contacted them to rob that particular house and its occupants.

He said Christian Mugu told them that his business partner lived in that particular house and that after helping him get more money in some business dealings, the victim had refused to share the money with him.

The suspect said when they attacked the house; the targeted victim was not available but met the lady who was apparently his girl friend.

The suspect said after taking the aforementioned items, they subjected the victim to some beatings before three of them raped her.

Efforts are being made to apprehend the three other suspects currently at large.

( [email protected] )
By Linda Tenyah
 




Kessben Lawyer Cries Foul




The arrest of Kumasi-based business mogul, Kwabena Kesse, CEO of Kessben Group of Companies, by the Bureau of National Investigation (BNI) officials, has angered his legal team.

The business man was arrested on Monday by the BNI for allegedly indulging in fraud and money laundering.

Mr. Kesse was reportedly picked up at the Kotoka International Airport in front of his wife and children shortly upon arrival from a trip abroad.

He was accused of using Kessben Shipping, Forwarding and Trading Ltd to facilitate the transfer of money amounting to $127 million.

From January 2013 to February 2014, Mr Kesse was said to have sent an amount of $127,931,727.65 outside the country.

But a member of Mr. Kesse's legal team, Lawyer Ohene Gyan, stated emphatically that his client was innocent.

He suspected foul play on the part of his captors, indicating that Mr. Kesse was a genuine businessman who did not indulge in illegalities.

Mr. Kesse, according to reports, was supposed to be processed by the BNI for court on Wednesday, but at the time of filing this report, it had not been done.

His arrest came as big shock to the people of Kumasi, especially hundreds of workers of his chain of businesses.

He owns Kessben Group of Companies comprising Kessben 93.3 FM, Kessben TV, Kessben Travel and Tours, Kessben Driving School, Kessben Shipping and Forwarding Ltd, Kessben Computer School, Fosua Hotel and Aseda Clinic. He is also the majority share-holder in Multi Credit Savings and Loans Ltd.

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said on Kessben Fm that Mr. Kesse's company had, for years, transacted business for its clients via Stanbic Bank.

According to Lawyer Ohene Gyan, 'Kessben Shipping, Forwarding and Trading Limitedfor about eight years, was involved in acting as agent for people and importers who import items from various destinations including China, Dubai and other countries'.

He stated that Stanbic Bank was sanctioned by the Bank of Ghana to undertake the said transfers.

Mr. Gyan therefore expressed surprise that his client had been accused of money laundering because 'the transactions are done through Stanbic and sanctioned also by Bank of Ghana.'

He stated that Mr. Kesse was innocent of any wrongdoing, describing his arrest as a witch-hunting exercise.

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said his client had not been allowed to meet his lawyers since he was arrested on Monday. 'We tried to see him on Tuesday but to no avail.'

According to him, reports reaching them indicated that Mr. Kesse would be sent to court on Wednesday.

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said the arrest of Mr. Kesse was based on unfounded allegations, stressing that his client would be cleared of any wrongdoing in due time.

DAILY GUIDE gathered that Mr. Kesse provides employment to hundreds of people across the country.

Scores of people called into his radio station, Kessben Fm, on Wednesday morning to register their support for Mr. Kesse.

Most of the callers said the government was struggling to fix the economy, so it wanted to use innocent people as scapegoats.

Some of the listeners also argued that Mr. Kesse was arrested for political reasons, even though he was not a politician.

Other reports gathered by DAILY GUIDE indicated that some taxi drivers in Kumasi were peeved over the arrest of Mr. Kesse.

According to the angry drivers, Mr. Kesse had been engaged in legitimate business in the metropolis for years, so it was unfair for him to be arrested and disgraced by the BNI.

The taxi drivers, reports indicated, had planned to embark on a demonstration at the weekend if Mr. Kesse was not released by that time.

FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi




Highway Tenders More Certificates On CP’s €90M Payment




The company was said to have received £85.2 million, in addition to a previous sum of £7 million, during the tenure of Betty Mould-Iddrisu as Attorney General and Minister of Justice between 2009 and 2011a move that has aroused the public's suspicion about how the payments were determined.

The Ghana Highway Authority (GHA) has already told the commission, presided over by Justice Yaw Apau of the Court of Appeal, that CP was paid millions in the 1990s for road projects. Some of these projects, GHA disclosed, were not executed by the construction giant.

The Authority cited the Akim Oda-Kade/New Abirem - Nkawkaw road in the Eastern Region, which CP never executed, but managed to claim loss of profit with interest from the Government of Ghana.

The GHA has already testified that, the initial contract sum for Akim Oda - Kade/New Abirem - Nkawkaw, for which payment was made for no work done, was GH¢10.6 million (¢106 billion old cedis), with a foreign component of 155 million Deutsche Marks.

The Authority confirmed that the Assin Praso - Yamoransa road, which was 'shoddily done' by CP, also attracted a contract sum of GH¢1.5 million (¢15.2 billion old cedis), with a foreign component of 28.3 million Deutsche Marks which was subsequently paid.

The Biriwa-Takoradi road was executed at an initial contract sum of GH¢2.9 million (¢29.5 billion old cedis), with a foreign component of 49.4 million Deutsche Marks. The evidence already before the commission was that CP was overpaid by 44 million Deutsche Marks for that project. The Obuasi township roads were completed and the government issued a defect liability certificate.

The GHA has already retrieved certificates covering the overlay of the Biriwa-Takoradi road project and tendered it to the commission, but the Accra City Centre Improvement Project's certificate was still not found.

Executive Director of GHA, Michael Abieteh Abbey, told the commission yesterday that the GHA submitted the payment certificate for the Obuasi township roads contract to CP but were still searching for the Accra City Centre Improvement Project's certificate.

He said they were also searching for back-ups for all the payment certificates issued to CP, and asked the commission to contact the Department of Urban Roads (DUR) to provide payment certificates for the Accra City Roads Projects since GHA did not award those contracts.

Mr. Abbey also tendered, in evidence, a compilation of what he called a reconstructed CP judgement debt issue saying, 'a few people were there when CP was working and they have confirmed some of the issues for us.'

Justice Apau commended the GHA boss for always wanting to assist the commission with its work saying, 'you are one of the few heads who attend our sittings personally.'

Adentan Lands
Earlier, Nii Adjei Kpobi Asaawa II who claims to be the head of the Agbawe Family in La, Accra, and whose family is claiming compensation for the Adentan lands which were compulsorily acquired by the government for the then State Housing Corporation, also testified.

Evidence before the commission indicates that another chief, Nii Sowah Okataban II, has also been making similar compensation claims since 1993.

Nii Asaawa II said the family sued the SHC, SSNIT and the AG to force the government for compensation but its efforts proved futile.

He said when they put in a claim in 1993 for 1,395.11 acres of land, the valuation was about ¢4.420 billion.

Justice Apau however, advised the factions to settle their differences before approaching the State Housing Company since the SHC had made it clear that it was willing to negotiate with a united front.

EOCO Testimony
Jacqueline Avotri, a staff officer of the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO), formerly Serious Fraud Office (SFO), also testified on the investigation the office conducted into the compensation claims of some of the Volta flooded areas following the construction of the Akosombo Dam.

She tendered, in evidence, documents covering Apaso and Makango areas and said they were yet to retrieve documents covering Pai areas.

She said the outstanding report for the Pai flooded areas was still not retrieved but added that SFO handed copies to the Ministry of Finance who had asked them to conduct the investigation.

By William Yaw Owusu
 
 
 
 




Gov't may seek technical advice from IMF in rescuing the economy - Nii Moi Thompson




Senior Economic Advisor to the President, Dr Nii Moi Thompson says government could sign up to an IMF bailout as it considers its options on how to revive the ailing economy.

Ghana is reeling under severe economic downturn with soaring interest rates and a depreciating currency.

Government is now considering ways to restore confidence in the economy. Dr Nii Moi Thompson said any option taken would also include home-grown programmes currently being run by government.

'all options are on the table,' Dr. Thompson said in an interview on the Super Morning Show on Joy FM Thursday, July 31, 2014.

         
'A lot of the issues the IMF may raise [should government opt for assistance] are issues that we are working on any way,' he remarked.

The economic advisor however noted that any assistance from the IMF would be more of technical expertise than financial.

'there's more leveraging for their technical expertise and so on that's what we are looking at,' he stated.

Meanwhile, government has also began discussions on how to rationalise the huge size of the public sector which is absorbing about 60% of national revenues.

The move will be a major step towards reducing the enormous wage bill.

The Ghana Education Service alone, according to Dr. Thompson, has over 40,000 drivers on its pay role who draw salaries each month.

'That's simply not something that we can sustain in the future,' he stressed.

 
In a related development, President John Mahama is Chairing a meeting of the Presidential Advisory Committee on the Economy at the Peduase Lodge near Aburi in the Eastern Region.

Participating in the meeting is Vice President Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur who also chairs Government's Economic Management Team.

Other persons in attendance are Governor of the Central Bank, Henry Kofi Wampah, economist, Mr. Kwame Pianim and former Finance and Economic Planning Minister, Prof. Kwesi Botchwey. 




Make SHS Free - Chief




 According to the traditional ruler, education has a wide range of  benefits, especially in terms of health, civic engagement and subjective wellbeing, asserting that educated people tend to live longer.

The chief made the call when he cut sod for work to commence on one of government's 50 new Community Day Senior High Schools at Fumso in the Adansi North District of the Ashanti Region, saying that the initiative would make every child to access secondary education.

When completed, it would be the first SHS for the people of Fumso and other surrounding communities.

John Cobbina Horn's Construction Company Limited is constructing the Fumso Community Day SHS building.

Deputy Minister of Education, Alex Kyeremeh, said the two-storey building comprised a 24-unit classroom block, a computer laboratory, offices and toilet facilities.

According to him, the Fumso SHS formed part of government's first batch of 50 new schools to be built across the country as part of the 200 new community day SHS promised by President Mahama.

He asked Ghanaians not to allow politics to divide them, and called for support for government's policies and programmes in order to bring about development and improve on the quality of life of Ghanaians.

He said that Ghana's development hinged on the state of mind of the citizenry, and called on all to desist from polarising national issues.

( [email protected] )
From Ernest Kofi Adu, Kumasi
 




Ashaiman Assembly Members Boycott Meeting




Some Assembly members walking out of the venue.
Members of the Ashaiman Municipal Assembly last Wednesday boycotted the 2 nd Ordinary Meeting of the 4 th Session due to the failure of the assembly to execute some projects in the municipality.

The aggrieved members, who have about four months to end their term, said they would continue to boycott all meetings if the assembly fails to install street lights to illuminate some major streets in the municipality.

The meeting was to be used to submit executive report, discuss the executive report and a brief report by the Member of Parliament for Ashaiman (MP).

But the Assembly members boycotted the meeting to press home their demand for the provision of streetlights in all the 25 electoral Areas in Ashaiman.

DAILY GUIDE has gathered that the assembly managed to secure about 180 street lights, out of which 50 were procured by the MP for the Ashaiman and 130 provided by the Local Government.

According to reports, the street lights have been kept in the Assembly's storeroom.

Thomas A. Adongo, Assembly member for Obakatse Electoral Area, who supported the move, explained that the assembly had deceived them for a long time.

According to him, the neglect of the roads in Ashaiman and lack of street lights, among other projects, have created enmity between them and the electorate who are planning to embark on a demonstration.

He called on the assembly to execute the priority projects in Ashaiman to prevent any calamity.

Ibrahim Baidoo, Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) for Ashaiman and Daniel Akumah, Presiding Member of the assembly, encouraged the aggrieved members to rescind their decision to allow the assembly to address their grievances.

From Vincent Kubi, Ashaiman




Ebola is not an airborne disease - WHO




The World Health Organisation (WHO) says the deadly Ebola virus is not an airborne disease as many Ghanaians perceive it to be.

According to Dr. Magda Robalo, the WHO Country Representative, Ebola does not spread through coughing and sneezing but only by coming into contact with body fluids of persons suffering from the viral disease.

'The Ebola disease is not an airborne diseaseit is a disease that takes direct contact from people to people with body fluids before you can pass it on to another person,' Dr. Robalo stated.

           
The WHO representative was speaking Thursday July 31, in Accra, at a news conference by the government's inter-ministerial team on the Ebola Viral Disease.

The briefing was to update the public on not only the measures taken so far but also, to indicate further steps to ensure that Ghanaians are protected from the disease.

The team which comprises the Ministers for Health, Interior, Defence, Communications and Local Government and Rural Development, is under the Chairmanship of the Minister for Health, Dr. Kwaku Agyeman-Mensah.

The inter-ministerial team is responsible for the intensification of the fight against the spread of the deadly disease to Ghana. They will also supervise the work of an existing technical team made up of representatives from multiple state agencies.

            
Dr. Robalo however, stressed that one sure way people can avoid contracting the disease is constantly practising good personal hygiene.

'We need to practise personal hygiene [regular hand washing] after visiting the washroomso that you can avoid not only Ebola disease but any other disease that can be contracted through those means'.

              
Isolation centres
The Head of the Disease Surveillance Department of the Ghana Health Service (GHS), Dr. Badu Sarkodie announced plans to establish three isolated centres in Accra, Tema and Kumasi to handle patients under surveillance.

Dr. Sarkodie said the facilities have also been provided for at major health centres across the country and at the various points of entry into the country to handle persons diagnosed with the disease.

          
He advised caregivers at health centres to strictly adhere to directives to avoid contracting the virus which currently has no cure.

             
On the issue of funding, Minister of Communications, Dr. Edward Omane Boamah said government has enough funding to control the spread of the virus should it be confirmed in the country.

According to him, government is determined to scale up ongoing activities to ensure that Ghanaians are protected from the Ebola Virus.

'We will continue to do more to ensure that we take the message to every nook and cranny of the countryWHO [World Health Organisation] has provided some assistance [technical, logistics and cash],' Dr. Omane Boamah announced.

Ebola virus disease (EVD) or Ebola hemorrhagic fever (EHF) is the human disease caused by the ebola virus. 

Symptoms typically start two days to three weeks after contracting the virus, with a fever, throat and muscle pains, and headaches. 

There is then typically nausea, vomiting, and diarrhea, along with decreased functioning of the liver and kidneys. At this point, some people begin to have problems with bleeding. Story by Ghana | Myjoyonline.com | Jerry Tsatro Mordy | [email protected]




NHIA increases tariff paid health service providers by 12.5%




The National Health Insurance Authority would from 1 st August increase tariff paid health service providers by 12.5 percent.

This is one of several agreements reached at a meeting called by the presidency with the Christian Health Association of Ghana.

The meeting was attended by officials from Health Ministry, the Minister of State at the Presidency in charge of Regulatory Bodies, the Christian Health Association of Ghana (CHAG) and the National Health Insurance Authority. 

The agreement reached on 22nd July, 2014 allowed the hospitals to resume services to NHIS card holders.

The association earlier this month withdrew services to NHIS card holders to protest delays in payments and low tariff paid to them.

Providers have repeatedly complained that the reimbursement rates for some medicines on the NHIS are too low.  The low tariff made it for the providers to prescribe more medicines.




Emirates Innovates With Inflight Entertainment For The Visually Impaired




ACCRA, GHANA, 31st July, 2014 - Emirates, the global connector of people and places, continues to set industry standards by becoming the first airline to introduce Audio Description on movies for visually impaired customers on its inflight entertainment system, ice Digital Widescreen.

Emirates' ice (information, communication and entertainment) was recently awarded the 'World's Best Airline Inflight Entertainment' award at the SKYTRAX World Airline Awards for the 10th consecutive year. ice now offers Audio Description soundtracks on 16 Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures films including Frozen, Saving Mr. Banks, Cars 2, Monsters University , Marvel's The Avengers, Toy Story 3 and all four Pirates of the Caribbean movies. Audio Description, increasingly common in cinemas and TV, is a recorded narration explaining the scene during the gaps in dialogue, while the film soundtrack continues at its normal pace.

In 2007, Emirates also worked with Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures to introduce Closed Captions, the technology used by the hard of hearing, for the first time in inflight entertainment. As well as showing the actors' dialogues in subtitles, Closed Captions also include references to sound effects used in the movie. This August ice Digital Widescreen will offer over 50 movies with Closed Captions.

'Our focus is not just the depth and diversity of our on-board entertainment, but also relevance. Making entertainment accessible to our diverse customers is very important to us. It was our motivation to introduce movies that can be enjoyed by customers with visual difficulties.

Our greatest satisfaction comes from delivering an exceptional customer experience, which we hope our constant innovation fulfils. In future, we want to add more content with Audio Description, so visually impaired passengers can be entertained with an even wider choice of content when flying with us,' said Patrick Brannelly, Emirates' Vice President Corporate Communications Product, Publishing, Digital & Events.

Emirates' award-winning ice Digital Widescreen offers a staggering choice of over 1,800 channels of entertainment, including over 400 movies from around the world, hundreds of hours of TV and thousands of hours of music from contemporary to classical. Customers onboard Emirates' new Airbus A380 and Boeing 777 aircraft will now be able to enjoy the ice system on larger personal TV screens with HD resolution: 27-inch in First Class, 20-inch in Business Class and 12.1 inch in Economy Class.





NUGS Begs Teacher Unions Over Strike


Sammy Dakwa Binfoh

Sammy Dakwa Binfoh
Leaders Of the National Union of Ghana Students (NUGS) have appealed to teacher unions in the country to control the frequency of strike actions embarked upon in attempts to compel government to response to their grievances.

The union has stated that although lecturers may have legitimate concerns, they should endeavour to rescind their decisions in certain instances due to the consequence of such industrial actions on students.

Their plea was hinged on a months-long strike the Polytechnic Teachers Association of Ghana (PoTAG) had embarked on to demand the payment of their Book and research Allowance, and another 'indefinite strike' the University Teachers Association (UTAG) recently embarked on.

Sammy Dakwa Binfoh, President of NUGS, made the request at a stakeholders' meeting between the executives of the student union and leaders of some teacher associations in Accra.

He said government had assured that the grievances of teachers would be addressed, but the student body must also engage the various unions to better understand specific concerns teachers had raised.

He stated: 'We don't have to depend solely on government information churned out by the media. We must meet with the stakeholders so that our own actions, in future, would be grounded on realities and not rumour.'

The president stated that issues such as the supply of teaching and learning materials, the prompt payment of government subventions and the settlement of fringe benefits for teachers must also be addressed.

He said extensive consultation between government and the respective unions on attempts to establish a National research Fund was ideal.

However, he said, when government appeared to take an entrenched position on the issue without paying attention to the views of teachers, the policy would continue to suffer resistance.

He added that NUGS would continue to plead with teacher unions so that students do not suffer the effects of impasses between government and lecturers.

'We would collaborate with the teacher unions to ensure their grievances are resolved amicably. We want to assure them that we are in the battle with them as they fight for what they deserve', mr. Binfoh noted.

Christian okla odoi, Deputy General Secretary, NAGrAT, repeated that the delay in releasing capitation grants and the delay in implementing the Second Tier Pension Policy for teachers were, among others, the concerns of teachers at the secondary level.

He said teachers appreciated government's assurance to address their needs but said they would continue to press until such promises manifested in the lives of lecturers and teachers.




74 Former Scanstyle Employees In Court


Kwaku Mensah, one of the plaintiffs

Kwaku Mensah, one of the plaintiffs
A total of 74 former employees of Scanstyle Mim Limited, a timber and wood processing company at Mim in the Brong-Ahafo Region, have dragged the company and the National Labour Commission (NLC) to court.

The plaintiffs are among 205 workers laid off by Scanstyle in 2008 after they had embarked on a sit-down strike to demand the payment of their three months unpaid salaries.

According to their lawyer, Nana Obiri Boahen, the 1 st defendant (Scanstyle Mim) employed the plaintiffs as workers on different dates, but from 2008 onwards it started subjecting the plaintiffs to unfair, inhuman and unorthodox treatment.

Mim Scanstyle, without recourse to the due process of the law and labour rules, purportedly dismissed the plaintiffs after they demanded their salaries.

The plaintiffs petitioned the NLC for redress, and the NLC on August 5, 2009 declared that their dismissal was contrary to the provision of Act 651.

NLC also ordered Mim Scanstyle to recall the workers and allow them to sign a bond of good behaviour for a stipulated period in addition to any other condition.

The company however refused to comply with the recommendations made by the NLC a year after the ruling, compelling the dismissed workers to write petitions to various institutions and personalities including the former President Prof John Evans Atta Mills.

According to their statement of claim, not long after they wrote a reminder to the Office of the President about their plight, their attention was drawn to a purported review in a letter dated 5th November, 2009 purported to have been written by the 2 nd  defendant (NLC) to set aside the recommendations made on 5 th  August, 2009.

The plaintiffs described the said review which was clandestinely and fraudulently done by the defendants as wrong, improper and unlawful since such a review cannot be done without their knowledge.

'The defendants have teamed up and in a concerted effort denied or deprived the plaintiffs off their severance awards, salary arrears and all other payments due them,' it stated.

The plaintiffs are therefore seeking general damages for the unlawful and improper termination of their appointments and an order compelling the company to pay their severance awards, accumulated salaries, arrears and allowances due them.

They are also seeking a declaration that the purported review by the NLC on November 5, 2009 'is/was wrongful in law, abuse of the natural justice rule, procedurally incompetent and same tainted with fraud.'

One of the plaintiffs, Kwaku Mensah, told DAILY GUIDE that he and his colleagues have gone through a lot of hardship over the period, as seven of them have died due to the situation.

He also disclosed that the majority of them have been divorced due to the situation.

FROM Fred Tettey Alarti-Amoako, Sunyani
[email protected]
 
 
 
 




Supreme Court Blocks NHIS Cards


Abu Ramadan

Abu Ramadan
The Supreme Court yesterday unanimously granted an order restraining the electoral Commission (EC) from using National health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) identity cards in the impending voter registration exercise.

The EC had scheduled a revision of the voters' register for last week to register citizens who had recently turned 18 and sought to use the NHIS cards for the registration ahead of the 2016 elections.

But Abu Ramadan, National youth Organiser of the people's National Convention (PNC), Kwasi Danso-Acheampong and Evans Nimako, a farmer, filed separate suits, which were later merged, to challenge the EC over the use of the NHIS cards as a means of identification for the exercise.

The PNC National youth Organizer was suing the EC for allowing the use of the NHIS card as one of the identity cards to be used for the registration of persons who turned 18.

Abu Ramadan also sought an order of perpetual injunction to restrain the EC from using the NHIS card and other identification cards that do not establish qualification to register voters.

Mr. Ramadan described the use of NHIS cards as proof for qualification to register voters as 'unconstitutional, void and of no effect' since it is tantamount to an applicant registering twice or more. he therefore sought an order of perpetual injunction to restrain the EC from using the NHIS cards.

The seven-member panel presided over by the Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood unanimously ruled in their favour, preventing the EC from using the NHIS cards for the registration.

She said the use of the NHIS card to register a voter pursuant to regulation 13 (d) of CI 72 is inconsistent with Article 42 of the 1992 constitution, indicating that 'by the powers conferred on us by Article 22 of the 1992 constitution, the said regulation is hereby struck out.'

The court also granted the request for an order of a perpetual injunction restraining the EC from using the NHIScard to register voters.

The ruling therefore gives the EC the green-light to commence the registration exercise which was earlier put on hold by the court, but without the use of the NHIS cards.

The court however fixed October 17 as the date on which it would give reasons for its ruling.

7th Judge Travels 
Prior to the judgement, the Chief Justice told the court that the seventh judge, Justice A.A. Benin, who was currently engaged at the eCOWAS court, had given his consent for the judgement.

 Reliefs 
Earlier, moving his motion, lead counsel for the plaintiffs Nana Asante Bediatuo, had wanted the court to make a decision on whether or not upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 42 of the 1992 constitution, the NHIS card is proof of qualification to register as a voter.

He also wanted a decision on whether or not upon a true and proper interpretation of Article 42 of the 1992 constitution, an existing ID card could be used as proof of qualification to register as a voter pursuant to regulation 13 (e) of CI 72, adding that it will be tantamount to an applicant registering twice or more and therefore unconstitutional.

Kwasi Danso-Acheampong who associated himself with Nana Bediatuo, in a submission, said parliament had no power to bless the CI 72 that the EC brought to the house because it opened a window of opportunity for non Ghanaians to stray into the country's elections.

He warned that the country should not use subtle ways to get non-Ghanaians into its elections because of the passion associated with its politics.

Responding, James Quarshie- Idun, counsel for the defendants, while praying the court to dismiss

the motion of the plaintiffs among others, sought an interpretation on whether the use of the NHIS card under CI 72 is proof of qualification to register as a voter or use of evidence of  identity or identification.

He also wanted a declaration on whether regulation 13 (e) (d) of CI 72 is inconsistent with Article 42 of the 1992 constitution.

Other members on the panel were Justices Sophia Adinyira, Jones Victor Dotse, Kwasi Anin yeboah, Sulley Gbedegbe and J.B. Akamba.

By Jeffrey De-Graft Johnson
[email protected]




Judge throws out case after 50 adjournments




An Accra Circuit Court last Wednesday struck out a robbery case which had been adjourned 50 times.

The trial judge, Justice Obiri, who appeared fed up with the excuses from the prosecution indicated that both the investigator and the complainants who claimed they had been robbed have stopped coming to court.

He said under the circumstances, he had no other option than to free the accused as it appeared the com­plainants had no interest perusing the case.

Sadat Anul Musah, aka Under, and one Nasiru Mohammed Tanko, aka TK, both unemployed were standing trial for allegedly robbing the com­plainants of one Dell computer lap top valued at GhÈ» 1,200, five mobile phones valued at GhÈ»650 and a cash sum of GhÈ»300, all totalling GhÈ» 2,150.

At the initial stages of the trial, the prosecutor had told the court that the complaints, Benjamin Nii Boi Tagoe, Eddy Kwadwo Mensah, Emmanuel Kwasivi Tsadi, Michael Appiah and Nana Osei Asibey Bonsu are residents of Dansoman whilst the accused per­sons are unemployed and have no fixed place of abode.

According to prosecution, at about 10:00pm on August 31, 2012, the com­plaints were browsing the internet at Allied Media Services Cafe at Tunga, a suburb of Dansoman when the accused persons entered the place with a Coca Cola bottle.

The prosecutor said Sadat then broke the bottle, pointed it at the com­plaints and ordered all of them to move to the corner of the cafe or else be butchered with a broken bottle.

The police officer said the com­plaints sensing danger retreated into a corner as ordered by Sadat, adding that he (Sadat) then collected all their five mobile phones and one Dell com­puter laptop from them and also broke into a drawer where their daily sales are kept and took away GhÈ» 300 from it and gave them to Nasiru, and all took to their heels.

The prosecution further added that the complainants gathered courage and raised an alarm for help and Sadat was arrested with the help of some Good Samaritans while Nasiru managed to escape with their items.

The prosecution said Sadat led the police to the hideout of Nasiru at Adabraka where he was arrested and a when a search was conducted on him, one of the complainants' mobiles phones was found on him




$127m money laundering: Lawyer for Kessben suspects witch-hunting




The lawyer for CEO of Kessben Group of Companies arrested for money laundering has stated that his client, Kwabena Kesse is innocent of any wrongdoing, describing his arrest as a witch-hunting exercise.

Lawyer Ohene Gyan, stated emphatically that his client was innocent and suspected foul play on the part of his captors, indicating that Mr. Kesse was a genuine businessman who did not indulge in illegalities.

The arrest of Kumasi-based business mogul, Kwabena Kesse, CEO of Kessben Group of Companies, by the Bureau of National Investigation (BNI) officials, has displeased his legal team. The business man was arrested on Monday by the BNI for allegedly indulging in fraud and money laun­dering.

Kwabena Kesse
Mr. Kesse was reportedly picked up at the Kotoka International Airport in front of his wife and children shortly upon arrival from a trip abroad. He was accused of using Kessben Shipping, For­warding and Trading Ltd to facilitate the transfer of money amounting to $127 million.

From January 2013 to February 2014, Mr Kesse was said to have sent an amount of $127,931,727.65 outside the country.

Mr. Kesse, according to reports, was supposed to be processed by the BNI for court on Wednesday, but at the time of filing this report, it had not been done.

His arrest came as big shock to the people of Kumasi, especially hundreds of workers of his chain of businesses.

He owns Kessben Group of Companies comprising Kessben 93.3 FM, Kessben TV, Kessben Travel and Tours, Kessben Driving School, Kessben Shipping and Forwarding Ltd, Kessben Computer School, Fosua Hotel and Aseda Clinic. He is also the majority share­holder in Multi Credit Savings and Loans Ltd.

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said on Kessben FM that Mr. Kesse's company had, for years, transacted business for its clients via Stanbic Bank.

According to Lawyer Ohene Gyan, "Kessben Ship­ping, Forwarding and Trading Limited...for about eight years, was involved in acting as agent for people and importers who import items from various destinations including China, Dubai and other countries".

Mr. Gyan therefore expressed surprise that his client had been accused of money laundering because "the transactions are done through Stanbic and sanctioned also by Bank of Ghana."

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said his client had not been allowed to meet his lawyers since he was arrested on Monday. "We tried to see him on Tuesday but to no avail."

Lawyer Ohene Gyan said the arrest of Mr. Kesse was based on unfounded allegations, stressing that his client would be cleared of any wrongdoing in due time.

Scores of people called into his radio station, Kess­ben FM, on Wednesday morning to register their sup­port for Mr. Kesse.

Most of the callers said the government was strug­gling to fix the economy, so it wanted to use innocent people as scapegoats.

Some of the listeners also argued that Mr. Kesse was arrested for political reasons, even though he was not a politician.

Some taxi drivers in Kumasi were peeved over the arrest of Mr. Kesse.

According to the displeased drivers, Mr. Kesse had been engaged in legitimate business in the metropolis for years, so it was unfair for him to be arrested and dis­graced by the BNI.




Why You Must Be At 2014 Agbamevorza (Kente Festival)




Once again, the people of Agortime Kpetoe will this year celebrate their annual Kente Festival (Agbamevor za). It is scheduled for September 7th through to September 14 and promises to be another exciting event worth attending.

The celebration was instituted in 1995 to promote the Kente fabric and give the people of Agortime Kpetoe, both home and abroad an opportunity to come home and contribute to the development of their town. The celebration has been consistent to date. Secretary to this year's Festival Planning Committee, Mr. Elvis Attivoe, told Spy News Agency in an interview that visitors to 2014 Agbamevor za will surely appreciate the essence of the Kente which has become an international symbol of Ghana.

'This festival is our way of attracting citizens outside to come and contribute to the development of their hometown and it was instituted following the realization that most of them don't visit at all. We realized there was no point of convergencefor us, so the youth and elders kept asking the question 'what can we do to bring our people home' and the Kente product came to mind. It is a celebration intended to be a rallying point for development projects,' Mr Attivoe stated.

According to him, it also followed the realization that the Kente fabric was losing its value and as such, there was a need for some drastic measures to salvage it. It is also to promote the tourism value of Agortime Kpetoe as the foremost town of original Kente fabric, among others.

The Agortime Kente Festival (Agbamevor za) is a weeklongcelebration.

ECONOMIC VALUE
Almost every Ghanaian now (home and abroad) owns a piece of Kente as a sense of pride and symbol of nationalism.

It is also a sense of pride that every Ghanaian who travels outside this country has a piece of Kente in his luggage and this has obviously added market value to the fabric.

It has created a lot of tourism for the country and people now look forward to this festival every year. Indeed the festival has revived the interest of Kente usage in the country, to the extent that almost every citizen of Kpetoe now has a cause to visit home at least once in every year. The celebration has caused the springing up of hospitality facilities in the town and this has given a boost to the local economy.

Undoubtedly, the annual celebration of the Agbamevor za has helped put Agortime Kpetoe on the world tourism map, and now the whole nation looks up to the sole festival that celebrates Kente.

LONG TERM VISION
The organizers of the festival say they have plans to make it a truly national event and are looking forward to the state to soon absolve it onto its national calendar.

'We believe that Kente is a pride of Africa, it is beyond Agortime Kpetoe and should be placed on a national festival calendar and supported by government and corporate institutions,' Mr Attivoe stated, adding that 'But for this festival, Kente would have become an endangered species. Now it is an important fabric used by important people at various functions at both home and abroad. We need to do more of it though'.

Here is what happens at every Agbamevor za
The one week activity packed celebrations starts with Prayers to God Omnipotent and Omnipresent on the first Sunday.

Monday:Convergence at traditional homes to perform some vital traditional rites inremembrance of the ancestors.

Tuesday: There is a general clean up exercise by all citizens to tidy up the community, followed by a commemorative tree planting exercise. A health-walk and football competition is organized for the youth as a way of keeping the people healthy.

Wednesday: This day is termed Women and Children day. It is set aside for the young ones to learn the intricacies of their culture. According to history, the day was set aside upon the realization that women have a major role to play in the entire Kente venture. Right from their puberty age, through marriage, delivery, naming ceremonies, mourning, among others, women dress to tell the story of Kente throughout the stages of life. So on this day, the various patterns of Kente are displayed by women.

On the same day, Kente weaving competition is held as part of a mini durbar to identify new patterns and designs. It is basically to test the creativity and speed of Kente weavers who are the prime focus.

A quiz competition is also organized for schools to get the young ones to understand the meanings of the various Kente patterns on the market.

Thursday: On this day is what is called 'Godigbe' otherwise known as 'The Day of Landing'. It is a day to depict when the people of Agortime arrived on the shores of the then Gold Coast in boats and canoes. It is performed to show the significance of the landing.

'Asia le torme' is another significant indigenous cultural event where women go to the Riverside to fetch water for visitors to the festival. It is a tradition of old being kept alive by today's people as a demonstration of the good hospitability of the people of Agortime Kpetoe. According to history, this used to be an activity for old ladies and pure maidens. The beauty of it is when they are all walk back from the riverside in a single file cladded in different Kente attires carrying water in bottles to pour in a pot for use by visitors.

Friday: Fridays are very important days on the activity list of any Agbamevor za. It is on this day- known as Heroes day that ancestors who died or survived in war are remembered. The people clad in red and black attires, converge at a designated venue for the various clans of Agortime Kpetoe to display their heroism as they return from war. They depict the ranks of the military and it is a spectacle to behold.

Friday evenings are dedicated to the activities of the youth. That is where a dance competition and a beauty pageant- Miss Agbamevor za (Kente Queen) are crowned. The aim is to identify role models that can promote the Kente fabric so winners are mostly those who display deep knowledge of the act of Kente.

Saturday: This is for the Grand durbar. The traditional leaders of all 37 towns and villages converge at the paramountcy and take a procession to the durbar grounds through the principal streets if the town. Dressed in their various traditional regalia, in different patterns of Kente and palanquins accompanied by their entourage, amidst loud drumming and dancing and cultural displays they exchange greetings with their people. The sight of this is simply memorable. It is an activity that really brings out the best value of Kente and makes it come alive.

After the durbar, streetsin the town are 'set ablaze' with fun and entertainment; every street comes alive with celebrations amidst loud music and dancing.

Sunday: on the last activity day of the Agbamevor za, religious prayers are said to thank God for a successful celebration. In the afternoon, the finals of the community football gala are held and in the evening, a State dance is organized for the elderly.

According to the organizers, there would be a new addition to the activity list this year in line with their vision of introducing something new to the festival each time. There would be a search for the 2014 Kente Treasure between the two main divisions- The Adusis and the Adontris. They would be sent on an expedition to find a hidden treasure. The idea is to test the leadership and mobilization skills of the youth as well as their speed, time energy and vision.

This year's celebrations have the Commissioner of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Mr George Blankson, as the Special Guest of Honor. It promises to be another lively event worth attending.

I don't know about you, but I am not ready to miss this even for anything in this world. Why don't we meet at Kpetoe in September and have fun. Let us celebrate the Kente.




Ghana Free Zones Eulogizes Chief Imam




The Ghana Free Zones Board (GFZB) has presented a cash donation to support Ghana's National Chief Imam, His Eminence Dr. Sheik Osman Nuhu Sharubutu for his continue support to the poor and needy in the Ghanaian society.

'GFZB over the past few years had endeavored to extend a hand of felicitation to the National Chief Imam inorder to assist him, as he has been extending his love and compassion to the poor, needy, aged, children and the vulnerable in the society in general,' the Investor Support Services Manager of GFZB, Hajia Hanatu Abubakar, has said.

The GFZB, according to Hajia, went to the Chief Imam's house to replicate what they have been doing over the years but this time around decided to act succinctly and particularly, during the festive period of the Edi al-Fitr.

The world's 1.6 billion Muslims celebrated the festival of Eid al-Fitr, one of the biggest religious events in the Islamic calendar on Monday 28th July this year.

But Hajia, who is also the founder and President of the Al-Hayaat Foundation,which places much premium on the less-privileged in the Ghanaian society indicated that the Eid al-Fitr is a festival occasion which is celebrated for a period of three days in every Muslim community.

Hajia Hanatu explained that the main reason for donating the cash item to the National Chief Imam was because of how people, during the month of Ramadan, troop into presence of His eminence Chief Imam's residence to source some food items and other support.

Therefore, the GFZB has presented a cash cheque (details unannounced) on the third day of the Ramadan climax to assist the Chief Imam to extend his compassionate and love-kindness to the very needy ones in the society.

The Investor Support Services Manager of GFZB, Hajia Hanatu Abubakar urged every Ghanaian businessman, entrepreneurs and potential investors to acquire the freezones status.

According to her, this will enable them export of more their products through value addition that will also increase export promotion rather exporting the raw materials.

'Ghana stands to have an entrenched position in adding value to its raw materials,' Hajia stated.

Meanwhile, she has demystified that the Ghana Free Zones Board does not operates as a hub for only foreign investments however, the Ghana Free Zones programmes allows both foreign and domestic companies to establish their businesses to produce more and manufacture for export.

Hajia added that about 40-50% of the registered freezones companies are made up of Ghanaian indigenous companies.

National Chief Imam, Dr. Sheik Osman Nuhu Sharubutu has expressed his profound gratitude to the representatives of the GFZB for their kind gesture shown over the years.

Dr. Sheik Osmanu Sharubutu, is also a member of the National Peace Council and the founder of the SONSETFund and IPASEC, and the live patron of the Javsalynn Foundation.




No Ebola virus recorded at Korle Bu




The Korle Bu Teaching Hospital has stated there is no Ebola virus case recorded at the infirmary.

A police officer visited the hospital coughing, with blood in his stool  Tuesday, creating suspicion that he might be carrying the deadly virus.

His blood samples have since been taken for medical tests. Even before the results are out, hospital officials are optimistic it is not an Ebola case.

The medical staff on duty that day, reports said, fled the Surgery, Medical and Emergency Unit of the hospital upon seeing the patient.

But the Public Relations Officer of the infirmary, Mustapha Salifu told Joy News they were confident it could not be the Ebola virus and therefore, the general public should not be alarmed.

According to him, the hospital is fully equipped to handle cases on Ebola. 'We have been provided with some protective gears. We apply that as and when it's necessary.'

CNN's Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Jupta also told Joy News' Evans Mensah that the most typically affected persons were doctors and health care professionals.

He said they were at risk because they took care of a very sick person carrying the disease.

Aflao
Joy News' Edem Mutah reported from Aflao that public health officials have been gearing up for a screening exercise on travelers, in order to detect possible carriers of the disease.

 
He said the screening was not all that effective, citing that he (Edem) went to the other side of the border without being screened.

Others also expressed disappointment that they entered Ghana without being screened at the border.

The only way health officials screened persons entering the country was by verbal interviews.

Disease update from the World Health Organization

New cases and deaths attributable to EVD continue to be reported by the Ministries of Health in the three West African countries of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone.

Between 21 and 23 July 2014, 108 new cases of EVD, including 12 deaths were reported from the three countries as follows: Guinea, 12 new cases and 5 deaths; Liberia, 25 new cases with 2 deaths; and Sierra Leone, 71 new cases and 5 deaths.

These numbers include laboratory-confirmed, probable, and suspect cases and deaths of EVD.

Communications Ministry statement
INTER-MINISTERIAL TEAM ON EBOLA VIRAL DISEASE FORMED

As part of efforts to scale up ongoing activities to ensure that Ghanaians are protected from the Ebola Viral Disease, Government has constituted an inter-ministerial team comprising the Ministers for Health, Interior, Defence, Communications and Local Government and Rural Development.

Under the Chairmanship of the Minister for Health, the inter-ministerial team will be responsible for the intensification of the fight against the deadly disease.

They will also supervise the work of an existing technical team made up of representatives from multiple state agencies.

A press briefing will be held tomorrow at the Ministry of Communications by the inter-ministerial team to update the public on not only the measures taken so far but also to indicate further steps to ensure that Ghanaians are protected from the disease.

Signed: 
Edward K. Omane Boamah (Dr) 
MINISTER FOR COMMUNICATIONS 
Accra- July 30TH, 2014.




Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Network Of CIMG Marketing Women Of The Year Launch “Believe It, Achieve It”




Accra -29th July-The Network of CIMG Marketing Women of the Year have launched 'Believe It, Achieve It' a leadership mentoring program for young females. The launch took place on Tuesday, 29th July 2014 at the Golden Tulip Hotel in Accra.

Ms. Maidie Arkutu, the first female Managing Director of the Ghana subsidiary of Unilever launched the initiative. She was excited that young females will have the opportunity to be mentored through this concept and gave assurance of her personal support to the realization of the goal of the initiative and added, 'I wish I had this when I was growing up'.

The initiative was developed by the current marketing woman of the year, Esther A. N. Cobbah, Chief Executive Officer of Strategic Communications Africa Ltd., (Stratcomm Africa).

The initiative is designed to harness the knowledge and leadership skills of various marketing women of the year as well as other women in leadership as a resource for mentoring young females in high schools and corporate institutions as well as young female entrepreneurs.

Presenting the concept, Ms. Cobbah said 'Sowing the seed of future success at an early stage helps attain what we aspire to be over the course of our lives' and added, 'It is not intended that we just paint a rosy picture of the working experiences of the women who are part of this network. Challenges, the strivings and even the failures can provide important life lessons'.

In his remarks, Mr. Kojo Mattah, Vice President of CIMG said, he was delighted that women are evolving solutions to obstacles that have hindered their progress in the past and gave assurance of CIMG support to the initiative.

Ms. Sherry Aryittey, Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, 1990 Marketing Woman of the Year, Chaired the function. In her remarks, she said, the initiative is providing a solid platform for women leaders who seek to support the realization of goals of young women to channel their efforts to better society.

The event was attended by past CIMG Marketing Women of the Year including:

Ms. Sherry Ayittey - 1990
Mrs. Vivian Adu - 1996
Mrs. L. B. Osafo-Addo - 2000
Ms. Adelaide Ahwireng - 2003
Mrs. Bella Ahu - 2004
Mad. Vida Acquah - 2006
Mrs. Norkor Duah - 2008
Mrs. Doreen Owusu-Fianko - 2010
Mrs. Ellen Hagan - 2011
Ms. Esther A. N. Cobbah - 2012
Also present were personnel from UNICEF, UNFPA, Ghana Education Service, CIMG Council members and members of the media.

ABOUT CIMG
CIMG is an umbrella body of Marketers in Ghana. It was established in July 1981. The Institute seeks to improve the marketing profession in Ghana. It is committed to the development of world class marketing professionals and proactiveness for effective marketing practice in Ghana.

ABOUT THE NETWORK OF CIMG MARKETING WOMEN OF THE YEAR

The Network of CIMG Marketing Women of the Year was formed to impact lives of other females. It was formed in 2012 with Ms. Joyce Aryee as its matron. The Network currently has twenty four (24) women drawn from various fields including public service, communication, finance, advertising, media, academia, creative arts and the service industry. Every year, the current Marketing Woman of The Year is expected to come up with a project and coordinate in implementation by members of the network.

ABOUT BELIEVE IT ACHIEVE IT
Believe It Achieve It was developed by the current Marketing Woman of the Year (2012) to provide a platform for women in the network to impact lives. The initiative is designed to harness the rich pool of knowledge and leadership skills of various marketing women of the year as well as other women in leadership to benefit young females.

Contact: Linda Mireku
Corporate Services Officer
0247278195
[email protected]




Network of CIMG Marketing Women of the Year launch Believe it; Achieve it mentorship project




The Network of Chartered Institute of Marketing Ghana (CIMG) Marketing Women of the Year has launched 'Believe It, Achieve It'; a leadership mentoring program for young females.

The initiative a brainchild of the current Marketing Woman of the year and Executive Officer of Strategic Communications Africa Ltd., (Stratcomm Africa), Esther Cobbah, is aimed at helping girls at the Senior High Schools level to make the right career choices and other lifetime decisions including education, to meet both personal and professional goals.

It is also to harness the knowledge and leadership skills of various marketing women of the year as well as other women in leadership as a resource for mentoring females in corporate institutions as well as young female entrepreneurs.

The project involves all 24 past Marketing Women of the Year, who are drawn from the Public services, Communications, Finance, Advertising, Media, Academia, the Service industry and Creative Arts.

They include: Ms. Sherry Ayitey, Mrs. Vivian Adu, Mrs. L. B. Osafo-Addo, Ms. Adelaide Ahwireng, Mrs. Bella Ahu, Madam Vida Acquah, Mrs. Norkor Duah, Mrs. Doreen Owusu-Fianko and Mrs. Ellen Hagan.

Speaking at the launch, Ms. Cobbah said sowing the seed of future success at an early stage helps attain what we aspire to be over the course of our lives.

'It is not intended that we just paint a rosy picture of the working experiences of the women who are part of this network.  Challenges, the strivings and even the failures can provide important life lessons' he added.

On her part, Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, 1990 Marketing Woman of the Year, Ms. Sherry Ayitey commended Ms. Cobbah for the laudable initiative.

She added that the initiative will provide a solid platform for women leaders who seek to support the realization of goals of young women to channel their efforts to better society.

Sherry Ayitey underscored the need for more support for young girls to enable them overcome their psychological obstacles and achieve their dreams in life.

Also, the Managing Director of the Ghana subsidiary of Unilever, Maidie Arkutu, who launched the project, was excited that young females will have the opportunity to be mentored through this concept.

She said mentoring, coaching and guiding young women is critical and sees the Believe it; Achieve it mentorship project as a step in the right direction.

Maidie Arkutu gave assurance of her personal support to the realization of the goal of the initiative and added, 'I wish I had this when I was growing up'.

In his remarks, Vice President of CIMG said, he was delighted that women are evolving solutions to obstacles that have hindered their progress in the past and gave assurance of CIMG support to the initiative.

Also present at the launch were personnel from UNICEF, UNFPA, Ghana Education Service, CIMG Council members and members of the media.




Vodafone Ghana Supports Ramadan With Food Items Worth GHS15, 000




Telecommunication service provider, Vodafone Ghana has presented assorted food items including bags of rice, boxes of water, cartons of non-alcoholic drinks, gallons of oil, and Ghc 1,000.00 cash to the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Dr. Osmanu Nuhu Sharubutu to support this year's celebration of Ramadan.


The gesture by Vodafone is to strengthen its cordial relationship with the Muslim community. Over the past three years, Vodafone Ghana has supported the Muslim community during Eid-al-Adhar and Hajj, the annual pilgrimage to Mecca.

Presenting the items at a short ceremony held in Accra, the Head of International Business at Vodafone Ghana, Joseph Babu said: 'At Vodafone, we have been consistent in supporting and joining our Islamic brothers and sisters as they celebrate important occasions on the Islamic calendar. We appreciate the significance of fasting season among the Muslim community; we will continue to support them during this essential period.

''This year we will be offering 70% discount on current roaming charges for Hajj pilgrims travelling to Saudi Arabia to allow pilgrims stay connected to their loved ones and pay less during and after the season.''

On his part, a member of the Advisory Board of National Chief Imam, Sardauna Ali Kadiki-English, who spoke on behalf of the Chief Imam thanked Vodafone for the kind gesture, adding 'We appeal to other corporate to emulate this remarkable spirit of sharing that Vodafone has continuously exhibited towards Muslims.'




Ebola virus scare hits Ashanti Region; doctors run from suspected patient




Reports of an Ebola case at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) over the weekend caused a temporary closure of the facility, reports Nhyira FM's Ohemeng Tawiah.

Even as hospital officials have initiated investigations into the report of Ebola case at the facility, some doctors were alleged to have left a suspected Ebola victim to his fate for fear of contracting the virus.

According to some artisans at the Suame Magazine, the suspected Ebola virus carrier allegedly returned from Liberia, where the virus has claimed some lives.

Ebola has killed 672 people in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone since it was first diagnosed in February this year.

However, tests at the Noguchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research on the suspected case came out negative.

Authorities at the Ashanti Regional Health Directorate are worried about what they say is increasing panic among the public as sensitization on Ebola virus intensifies.

Regional Director, Alexis Nang-Beifubah, told Ohemeng Tawiah the directorate is facing a herculean task of managing public anxiety about Ebola virus in the Ashanti Region.

'We give the alert but the reaction from the public is what we call a scare', he explained.

He said the current awareness level has gotten to 'panic' levels.

'We should avoid the panic. I want to plead with everybody in this region [Ashanti Region] to hear this messageand take a personal responsibility to protect yourself', he admonished.

He however, gave the assurance that the directorate is ready to contain any possible Ebola outbreak in the region.




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