Friday, July 31, 2015

Physical Scaffold In NDC Eastern Region, A Hindrance To Development

As a vital part of a healthy democracy with the sole mandate of influencing and shaping both public and government policies at all levels of development in the region, we the Movement for Joint Action unreservedly express our disappointment at the frequent ‘’free for all physical scaffold’’ drama displayed by the leadership of the NDC in the Region.

We have observed with empirical evidence that developmental agenda for the good people in the region, in whom the sovereignty of the state resides and in whose name and for whose welfare the powers of the government are expected to be exercised, is no more the priority of both the NDC regional executives and government appointees.

It is disheartening to note that on Thursday 23rd July 2015, there was a free for all physical scaffolds at the Residency and in the presence of the Regional Minister and his deputy, in which the Kwahu South District Chief Executive threatened to shoot and kill the NDC Executives from Atiwa constituencies, who had earlier on caused their District Chief Executive to collapse at said meeting; after they accused him of failing to share monies meant for development in the district as it has been the case in most of the districts in the region.

Regrettably, such gross display of misconduct exhibited by the NDC leadership in the region, come at the time the president of Ghana, H.E J.D Mahama in 2014 launched the code of conduct guidelines for public officers and Government appointees.

It will be recalled this same Kwahu South District Chief Executive after making unfounded allegation against his Constituency Chairman, was suspended from the NDC party by the Regional Executives, though he still remain the DCE, a development the MJA believes if not stopped could hinder socioeconomic development in the region.

Not too long ago, similar incident happened in the Afram Plains South Constituency where the Constituency Executives threatened to remove the DCE illegitimately, which later, it was reported monies meant for school feeding program in the district was spent on the Constituency Executives to settle the existing loggerheads.

This came to light when the Constituency organizer was refused request for part of school feeding monies and subsequently suspended from the party.

The story is not different in the Nsawam Adoagiri as there was fears battle at the Constituency meeting in which the Constituency Woman Organizer was beaten by the Constituency Communication Director leading to the exit of the DCE in the Area.

MJA can recount several of such unhealthy developments across the length and breadth of the region, as in the case of Lower Manya District and the disturbing power struggling showoffs between the Regional Chairman and Secretary camps.

As a sign of out bursting our rage and in fulfillment of our primary objective of representing the peoples’ opinion and/or articulating the economic development demands as well as the viewpoint of the people in the region to the government, we wish to state emphatically that, the power struggling showoffs and the free for all physical scaffolds behavior that have engulf and entangled the subconscious mind of some government appointees and the two Regional executives camps, continues to expose the NDC-Mahama led government’s lost and misplaced developmental agenda priorities for the poor and vulnerable in the region.

Additionally, such unpardonable behavior is in sharp contraventions of Code of Conduct provisions for Public Service Officers, clearly stipulated in Chapter twenty-Four of the 1992 Constitution of Ghana.

Simultaneously, the very purpose for government’s prescription of code of conduct guidelines for his appointees in 2014 continues to lose measured credibility and value.

The overall effects of such rampant misconducts is not only adding to the already deep-rooted poor attitude of public sector workers with corresponding low productivity, but also hindering the expected economic development in the region.

The MJA condemn in no uncertain terms the recent physical scaffolds and power showoff going on among the NDC leadership in the region and calls on H.E President Mahama to call such elements to order.

Secondly, we call on the Regional Director of the public service commission, Traditional rulers, Civil Society groups and all opinion leaders in the region to add their condemnatory voices to this growing impunity.

We wish to further remind the NDC-Mahama led administration that the Region has seen very little economic development under the seven years better Ghana postulate and therefore recommend more energy be dissipated in measurable and cost-effective developmental projects such as:

  1. Investing in the peoples’ Education and Health
  2. Creating and Improving the requisite Business environment
  3. Creating Jobs through upgrades in cost-effective infrastructure

By this MJA believes if accomplished will enable the Region emerge much stronger in terms of economic empowerment and will eventually help lift millions of people out of Poverty.

Thank you.





No Bail For Greg Afoko, Please!

The prime suspects responsible for the brutal and grisly assassination of Mr. Adams Mahama, the former Upper-East regional chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), continue to desperately battle against the proverbially long arm of the law. But the harder they try, predictably, the faster the hangman's noose tightens around their necks.

The second, actually the third, prime suspect, Mr. Asabke Alangdi, is presently on the lam with his wife. The couple are alleged to have fled their home leaving their baby behind. There is an old American military maxim which tersely goes as follows: "You can run, but you can't hide." It is only a matter of time before the firm and certain brace of justice clamps tight-shut around the necks, waists and ankles of the Alangdis, we hope.

The fourth suspect has been classified by police investigators as an "abettor," an "accessory" or "facilitator" of Mr. Mahama's death. Mrs. Alangdi may well have been brought along by her husband to ensure that his fugitive's trail would be completely and perfectly covered. Now, I don't know where the status of this portion of the case stands, but I would not be the least bit surprised if a bounty is placed on the heads of the Alangdis. We need them in court to bring both justice and closure to the case.

As I have already observed several times in previous columns, the definitive ministration of justice on behalf of the Mahama Family would inure to the benefit of a badly riven and battered New Patriotic Party, because it is likely to bring a well-needed healing to many of the raw wounds provoked by this tragic incident that continue to slow down the onward movement towards the rebuilding of one party with a common destiny and the salubrious and noble objective of making Ghana, once again, work for the benefit of all. It would also, significantly, mark the first time in a long time that a political crime of the most repulsive and heinous nature would have been effectively and healthily solved. This is what a truly functioning democratic culture is inescapably about.

The search for justice for the Mahama Family and their well-wishers is non-negotiable. Justice must first be taken good care of, and then we would have forever to talk about peace and unity. We cannot have the Sword of Damocles hanging over our heads while we make glad-handed or half-hearted gestures towards party unity. That is sheer cant and hypocrisy! A well-meaning and critically thinking electorate will never forgive us, if we play "Peek-a-Boo" with justice and law and order.

Revelation that sulphuric acid of the same kind used in assassinating Mr. Adams Mahama was found in the clothing of Mr. Gregory Afoko, the first prime suspect, on the night of his arrest, and has been forensically affirmed as such, ought to be evidence enough for the Accra Human Rights Court to deny bail to the 53-year-old brother of NPP National Chairman Paul Afoko. We are also informed that a 28-paragraph affidavit submitted by the Attorney-General's Office also confirms that some containers used in the acid-dousing assassination of the former Upper-East NPP chairman have been found in both the houses of Messrs. Gregory Afoko and Issah Musah, the alleged purchaser of the deadly chemical weapon (See "Acid Found On Gregory Afoko" Daily Guide 7/30/15).

And so the steady and meticulous search for justice and fair play is right on course. Which is all well and good. And it is also for this reason that Mr. Musah ought not to have been granted the bail sum of GHC 20,000 (approximately $5,000), not even with ten sureties. I am also interested in the conclusions that both forensic experts and police investigators come up with in explanation of the alleged fresh wound that was found on the leg of Mr. Gregory Afoko. It is also rather annoyingly ironic that the man who savagely violated the human rights of his elder brother's political arch-nemesis should be petitioning the Human Rights Court for admittance to bail. What chutzpah!

We must also quickly add the fact that following his arrest, Mr. Gregory Afoko deliberately misled police investigators into believing that Mr. Asabke Alangdi, the second prime suspect, lived in his parents' house, thus buying time for Mr. Alangdi to be tipped off about the police being hot on his trail. And so by the time that police investigators were able to locate Mr. Alangdi's house, the latter had been informed by somebody in his parents' home to abscond. This is another important angle to the case that police investigators could focus on in the near future.

This is also where NPP National Chairman Paul Afoko comes in. And for those of our readers who may not readily recall, it was elder brother Paul who, located nearly 500 miles away from the Bolgatanga crime scene in Accra, could publicly and confidently vouch that his younger brother, Gregory, had been fast asleep at the time of Adams Mahama's assassination. Elder brother Paul had also insisted that the motorcycle by which Gregory could have traveled to the neighborhood of Mr. Mahama to commit the crime, had been found to be ice-cold by police investigators in the Afoko home. Well, now, we know that was all a lie! The NPP chairman may well have to be called in as a prime witness to the case.

For now, I am leaving out any specific mention of the name of the NPP General-Secretary because it does not seem to yours truly at this juncture that Mr. Paul Afoko's right-hand man at party headquarters has anything to do with Mr. Mahama's death, other than the fact of that one riotous incident at the Bolgatanga regional headquarters of the NPP,

Meet Kenny Andam; The Entrepreneur Extraordinaire, Inventor, Published Author, Etc

"Never listen to the people who say ‘NO’ to you because they are always going to be the same people who will say ‘YES’ he/she did ‘IT’ when you accomplish your goals and dreams!" â€" quote by Kenny Andam.

From Africa to the world, Kenneth Ekow Andam is a retired Ghanaian world class sprinter-athlete; Research Scientist; philanthropist and Innovator and Inventor who has worked with technology, education and natural resources sectors as well as a founding member of some innovative start-up and mid-tier companies in the US and Africa.

He is also tagged as Entrepreneur Extraordinaire, published author and a public speaker, who in his diverse achievements contributed his quota to Africa and the World.

Widely addressed as Kenny Andam, he has been influential in media circles with his avid involvement in focused discussions about global initiatives that have helped shaped business and entrepreneurial zeal of many individuals worldwide.

He featured on CNN Facetime, which was a global sensation that helped many viewers effect changes in their approach towards business and strategic planning of many entrepreneurial ventures. Click to read about it here .

His versatile involvement in contributing to Africa and the world with his inventions, authorship, entrepreneurial skills and impact earned him honorary letters from country leaders including the Mayor of Mexicali and the people of Baja California, (name); former President of Ghana, John Agyekum Kufuor and Globally renowned iconic figure and former President of the Republic of South Africa, President Nelson R. Mandela (1918 â€" 2013), HSH Prince Albert II of Monaco, and HRH the Princess of Hanover.

While an active Athlete, he was a Track and Field Star who competed in many international track and field competitions worldwide. He is an Olympian and a four time world championship competitor. He competed in the 2000 Olympic Games in Sydney Australia and the 2001 World Track and Field Championships in Edmonton Canada.

He is recognized for receiving awards including Western Athletic Conference (WAC) Awards, Mountain West Conference (WMC) Awards, National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Awards, All American Honors in Track and Field from 1997-2001, African Championship Gold, Silver and Bronze Medal Awards in 2000, World Championship Participation 1999, Africa Junior Champion 1995, and Ghana Inter Regional Athlete of the Year 1995 and still the triple jump record holder for high schools in Ghana, among others.

The Brigham Young University’s Marriott Magazine featured Kenny Andam in its 2001 summer edition, describing him as an athlete and a business leader for entrepreneurs in Africa for his contribution to the business sector of the continent.

He graduated with two BS Degrees from Brigham Young University; one in information systems and the other in economics in 2000. He started his career in the Windows division of Microsoft Incorporation.

As an Innovator and Inventor, Kenny Andam with his Midas touch, has lead the innovation and invention of technologies in the medical transcription, social interactive and collaborative networking, video conferencing visual communications, video interactive security management, transaction processing's systems, video compressions, and data simulation and analytics management.

Also a philanthropist; he is a supporter of the Education is Freedom advocacy which provides education prospect for children and communities worldwide; and builds education and medical infrastructures in deprived regions of the world.

Known for his engagements on several speaking platforms worldwide, Kenny Andam as a public speaker has contributed to efforts to lead the new generation of African leaders, who are setting the pace for an evolving new marketplace for business and entrepreneurship.

A few of the forums where he has discussed and lectured with elite internationally recognized educators, scientists, politicians, economists and major entrepreneurs are Gauteng Entrepreneurs Convention-Keynote Speaker on “Sustainable Entrepreneurs grow sustainable economy”; and Global a United Nations summit; African leadership academy South Africa-South African ideas festival keynote speaker on the journey as an entrepreneur.

Kenny Andam, as a Research Scientist has worked on African developing processes that bridges the economic gap between first world economies and third world economies using mobile interactive computing and communications and visual communications using web based interactive video peering.

Best described as the Entrepreneur Extraordinaire for the many successful companies and business ventures he has been instrumental in executing and building to major profitability; Kenny Andam has founded some of the world’s most innovative companies in the technology sector and has been instrumental in the growth and development of major technological advancements in the field of video communications and interactive collaborative networking via the internet.

He is the chairman of Kenny Andam Company Limited, an investment company in the US and Africa and the founder of companies including World Vuer Incorporation, a media communication company that has developed proprietary technologies for communicating bandwidth intensive data across any network; and OS Petro, Incorporation which is an oil and gas company with concessions and reserves in Ghana and Namibia.

He is also a co-founder of Global Incorporation with Johan Meyer that provides mobile banking and mobile remittance to Africans across the continent and their relatives living abroad. Other companies include Side Equity, a company that funds projects in the technology, natural resources, and consumables sector and Big Events, Lexap, a few to mention.

The man with versatile career, is also a published author who authored the ‘Scarlet Minor Chronicles’ novel in 2011. The novel, which is his maiden, tells the story on the career desire of a 16-year old boy-child who yearns to succeed his great-grandfather as a seafarer (sailor).

Scarlet Minor Chronicles comes in five sequences namely Scarlet Minor and the Renegade; Scarlet Minor and the Twin Pikes of Nebo; Scarlet Minor and the Crossed Blades Skull; Scarlet Minor and the Last Atlantic Fleet; and Scarlet Minor and the Isles of Black Gold.

Read all about Kenny Andam via and interact with him on social media platforms as he says, “until you write down a request for information, you will never know what the future might hold for you.

Alcohol : The Friendly Foe

Dear Men,
“Sometimes when I reflect back on all the beer I drink I feel ashamed. Then I look into the glass and think about the workers in the brewery and all of their hopes and dreams. If I didn’t drink this beer, they might be out of work and their dreams would be shattered. Then I say to myself, It is better that I drink this beer and let their dreams come true than to be selfish and worry about my liver.”

~ Jack Handey
I have seen evil under the sun and nature wouldn’t forgive me if I hide the repercussion of the negligence or over indulgence in these nefarious acts from my fellow men. Men! Response: Action. Men! Response: Action. Men! Response: Action. Action! Response: Now! Action! Response: Now. Action! Response: Now! Now!! Now!!!. These are the responses of the able men in every assemblies of God Church. It really makes the gathering of men an interesting gathering. But we want to look at some juggernauts that fight the destiny of my fellow men in our dear nation.

This threat to destiny was formerly an antidote from the drug store or the hospital but now the abuse has reach the gate of heaven and I only want to be a mouthpiece of communiqué to my dear men, and I just hope you will not mistake my concern for blabbermouth. Please men permit me to define alcohol,Alcohol is a drug (a chemical that has an effect on the body, and is not a food).

If it hadn’t been this eye opening definition of Alcohol I would have thought alcohol was a normal consumable because of how some men consume it.Am not also defending Benjamin Franklin when he said “Beer is proof that God loves us and wants us to be happy.” I have seen men, married, dating, single, attached and detached who have used alcohol as food until they experience marginal utility.Men!!! Please don’t be worried why am talking about you today, tomorrow is for the ladies. But since the good book said we are the head, let’s deal with ourselves first.At first the only times I used alcohol is when am under the surveillanceand tonsorial of my barber but now things have changed.

Based on the analyses of 100 individual country profiles, The World Health Organization (WHO) has released The Global Status Report on Alcohol and Health focused on analyzing available evidence on alcohol consumption, consequences and policy interventions at global, regional and national levels.It is dangerous to assume that an unconscious person will be fine by sleeping it off.

Alcohol acts as a depressant, hindering signals in the brain that control automatic responses such as the gag reflex. Alcohol also can irritate the stomach, causing vomiting. With no gag reflex, a person who drinks to the point of passing out is in danger of choking on vomit, which, in turn, could lead to death by asphyxiation. Even if the drinker survives, an alcohol overdose can lead to long-lasting brain damage.( I can hear my colleagues scream eeeeeiiiiiiii, this one deei e be lie). Bro, hold on we are not done. Men maybe you have gotten to a point of overwhelming addiction so going back is almost like waiting for dew in the rain. If so please then pass this message to your younger brother who is arguing that drinking ethanol is not sinful because they deem it thoughtful.

Tell him about Australia. The Law in Australia says that children under 18 cannot buy alcohol, or be served with alcohol in a hotel, and they are not allowed to be given alcohol in any public place unless they are given the alcohol by their parent. But I have seen children below 16 either serving themselves or they are been served under the disguise of human right. If it was good, it would have been recommended in all schools. Please am not saying my dear country does not have laws regulating consumption of alchohol oooh, am only saying I have witnessed. Men please let’s analyze the following as proposed by the National Council on Alcoholism and Drug Dependence, Inc (NCADD):

• Harmful use of alcohol results in the death of 2.5 million people annually, causes illness and injury to millions more, and increasingly affects younger generations and drinkers in developing countries.

• Nearly 4% of all deaths are related to alcohol. Most alcohol-related deaths are caused by alcohol result from injuries, cancer, cardiovascular diseases and liver cirrhosis.

• 6.2% of male deaths are related to alcohol, compared to 1.1% of female deaths.

• 320 000 young people aged 15-29 years die annually, from alcohol-related causes, resulting in 9% of all deaths in that age group.

• Almost 50% of men and two-thirds of women do not consume alcohol.

• Harmful alcohol use is one of four common risk factors, along with tobacco use, poor diet and physical inactivity, for the four main groups of non- communicable diseases (NCDs) â€" cardiovascular diseases, cancer, chronic lung diseases and diabetes.

The above uninvited guests are enough to rethink our decision of been baptized with strong drink whether in this world or the world to come. It was after this I understood why the good book said in Isaiah 5:22 that woe unto those that are heroes at drinking wine and champions at mixing drinks. Hmmmm I have virtually seen young men drinking Agoglo( hard liquor) before eating or drinking a common rice water and I asked myself is this also appetizer or a mere demonic dominance. Anyway let’s move on. Men!! From where I come from, funeral grounds are supposed to be reminiscing moment of life appraisal but where I found myself now, funeral grounds have become a place to demonstrate ones testicular fortitude as it relate to alcohol intake. Men I want to emphasize that the fact that Kurt Paradis said “All is fair in love and beer” doesn’t justify the excessive intake. Am not judging you oooh, am only telling us.

I have not seen a man break down another man than alcohol have done, I hardly see men in green becoming weak and vulnerable but alcohol has the capacity to make and unmake both men in green and black. It has the potency to make a giant fall in a gutter and has the tenacity to cause a king to forget the laws, it can cause a best man fight the groom and cause the man in the six o’clock news end the news when we have not even discuss the penultimate. Alcohol! Alcohol!! Alcohol!!!.

Anyway I envy people who drink because at least they have something to blame everything on and beauty they say lies in eyes of the beer holder. Blame game, unearthing of secret, over talking, inexplicable elaboration and wife- beating is the results of the excessive intake of this chemical fluid. Men, I know for some reasons we may not stop but the minimal intake can cause us to retain mental sanity and emotional stability to make decisions.

Alcohol is not an ordinary commodity. Despite its connotations of pleasure and sociability in the minds of many, harmful consequences of its use are diverse and widespread.

From a global perspective, in order to reduce the harm caused by alcohol , policies need to take into account specific situations in different societies. Average volumes consumed and patterns of drinking are two dimensions of alcohol consumption that need to be considered in efforts to reduce the burden of alcohol-related problems. Avoiding the combination of drinking and driving is an example of measures that can reduce the health burden of alcohol.Men, I hope you know that worldwide, alcohol takes an enormous toll on lives and communities, especially in developing countries and its contribution to the overall burden of disease is expected to increase in the future. Particularly worrying trends are the increases in the average amount of alcohol consumed per person in countries such as China and India and the more harmful and risky drinking patterns among young people. I rest my case until we meet on the issue regarding womanizing and Porous friends.

Yours Sincerely
R. Duafah
([email protected][1]

Nkrumahism, The Can Of Worms I Opened FDR II

Having written about the causes of the American depression I will now proceed to tackle some of the misconception and the dust being thrown in our eyes by even very respectable historians. Many American historians write in glowing account of FDR’s achievements, prominent among them is Arthur M. Schlesinger Jr. Arthur M Schlesinger, Jr. was a Harvard eminent historian who wrote copiously on the great depression and FDR. He stated in his own autobiography that he was not interested in economics, yet he did not have any qualms, but had the ultimate confidence to declare that Roosevelt’s administration saved America’s economy from the great depression.

If as a historian you are writing the history of an era, which was shaped by economic circumstance then you admit that you are not interested in economics then what can that historian possibly write to give an objective analysis of the period. You will basically be short changed if you read such history books like his: The Crisis Of The Old Order and The Coming of the New Deal. You will pick up any nonsense he writes if you do not understand economics.

Of course, Mr Schlesinger was not alone. Before Mr Kwarteng introduced Paul Krugman, I have read quite a few of his articles, and I was not surprised that he used him to support his position. To avoid going in circles I will quote him per Mr Kwarteng’s understanding. Mr Kwarteng wrote, ‘Krugman also says that no economic model, not even the economic models developed by Joseph Schumpeter or by the classical economics, provided satisfactorily answers to address the American crisis (the Great Depression) and, as a result, American economists and politicians turned to the Keynesian model of state intervention. And it worked. Keynesian economics saved American capitalism.’ To start with, all the policies that Krugman espouses as Keynesian were all in full swing before the General Theory was published in 1936. So, it is silly and absolute stupidity for any serious thinker to make that unguarded statement. And this is how silly some of these intellectuals can be when they want to promote a certain narrative. Besides, some of the policies were continuation of what President Hoover started before he left office.

What sort of data did Paul Krugman studied to arrive at such incredibly fantastic conclusion? I will say Mr Krugman lives in a fantasy world; what he said as an economist has no historical basis. I would have shrugged my shoulders and moved on if he is a historian, but since he calls himself an economist and a Nobel Prize winner at that, I will take him on because I hate such fatal wilful ignorance. The Americans always get alarmed when unemployment rolls above 6%. In his book End This Depression Now!, published by W. W. Norton & Company, he stressed on the need to end the debilitating unemployment in America. So, it is fair to judge him on his own terms and moral yardstick.

Based on unemployment, how could he say that FDR’s policies were a success when the median unemployment rate from 1933-40 was 17.2%. According to the statistics there was no single period during his tenure until the war did unemployment fall below 14%; they were always in the high teens. Is this how a Nobel Prize winner interprets data? I think his books should be accompanied with a disclaimer; I am not joking, it is a serious indictment. I am not sure what Mr Kwarteng was thinking whether I will be scared of Nobel Prize winner as source of his ridiculous economic ideas. This brings the whole edifice of the Kwarteng enterprise down. I can stop here, but I am yet to run out of ideas.

When by 1934 the figures showed that American agricultural exports had fallen to $590 million, did they reverse their stupid decision? And you can’t believe this, when they voted for the Smoot-Hawley tariffs, ‘1001’ economists told the bureaucrats and the lawmakers not to do it. But they went ahead to do it anyway. Now, how do you expect a capitalist economist who advocates for free trade to solve a crisis created by the Smoot-Hawley tariff? Tell me, and I will stop my ad hominem attacks. This is stupidity that breaks the concept of proportionality. I don’t care a damn what Mr Kwarteng thinks; he can go to hell if he feels like. I know my subject and I don’t dabble in amateurism that embrace every silly concept and try to draw a common ground. In my philosophy, you are either hot or cold. I don’t entertain any halfway houses; it is a dangerous philosophy entertained by people who are not sure of their beliefs.

If you are unsure of your thought processes it is slightly reasonable when you leave room for maybe. Of course, that is the trade of Mr Kwarteng; he does not know his stuff so he can make room for Washington consensus, Beijing consensus and the Nordic model and jump when there is the need to. Where do you draw the line and who pulls the levers for that decision? Is it Mr Kwarteng, or Paul Krugman who is going to be yanking the economic levers, perhaps some disinterested bureaucrat or someone with his own personal interest and agenda like Benjamin Strong who cut interest rate to save the British Pound? Let’s take the analogy of the preservation of food for example.

To preserve food you either keep it cold or hot halfway in between is a very dangerous and deadly territory where killer organisms flourishes. And economics is just like that. Most damaging corruption occurs when government meets private enterprise. I am not some neophyte believer in capitalism. I graduated from socialism to capitalism, and all the silly argument that Mr Kwarteng is advancing I have made more strident ones in the past with aura of certainty before I saw the light. My conversion was gradual; nonetheless, it was equally traumatic. I sympathise with Mr Kwarteng because when he steps on his road to Damascus he might have to destroy all his neurological connections in order to survive; he may end up in an asylum.

To conclude on the nonsense of Paul Krugman, the American economy was saved by the Second World War when war production and conscription mopped out all the excess unemployed. Don’t let any silly Paul Krugman, whom I think has brought the name of the Nobel Prize into disrepute tell you otherwise.

The answers Joseph Schumpeter and other classical economists offered were tailored made for free economy not for government controlled ones. How does a capitalist economist solve a problem that was not created by capitalism? It is ignorant for him to make that statement. If he had stated that, perhaps, FDRs policies did stabilise the American economy there might be a wiggle room for escape. Ignorance, I think is very mild to describe Paul Krugman; I believe he needs Prozac if he is mad, or methadone will wean him off if he is on drugs.

Now, leaving the silliness of Krugman aside for a while, after the Smoot- Hawley tariff has devastated the U.S. agric industry leading the charge to solve the problem was Henry A. Wallace, the secretary for agriculture and later Vice President. You need a good history book of the era to really have a grip on the insanity of some of the policies adopted, which was supposedly to heal capitalism.

It was like children having a picnic. Mind you they had the backlog of over capacity from the First World War, besides those created after the Smoot-Hawley tariff sent the cadaver of the American agric industry to the mortician. I cannot catalogue all the silly actions the FDR’s administration took to salvage the problems that his predecessor unleashed, but will mention the most outrageous ones.

They started on the premise that the depressive farm prices were the cause of the depression, so they sought to manipulate production and supply in order to push up prices. So the government started paying farmers not to cultivate a third of their land. This did not work. Remember, the farmer is a business man and he will take actions that will benefit his own personal interest as Adam Smith wrote in 1776. This is a fundamental nature of humanity, which can never be altered. The farmers took the money and abandon their least productive part of their land and intensively cultivate the most productive.

They, therefore, ended up coming to the market with more produce than before. Ask yourself where did the money they used in paying the farmers come from. They taxed the food processing industry to finance this devilish scheme. When this didn’t work they started destroying cultivated crops. Millions of acres of planted cotton, tobacco and many other crops were destroyed. It wasn’t just crops that were destroyed; farm animals were also at the receiving end of these draconian measures. Millions of litres of milk were poured down the sewer just to keep the prices of these commodities up. You have to read this in the history books to believe it. These things were done at a time when Americans were suffering from malnutrition. Besides, the most sinister misinformation, which is the hallmark of the proponents of big government was a bulletin issued by the department of agriculture.

I quote the following from ‘The Roosevelt Myth’ by John Thomas Flynn: curiously enough, while Wallace was paying out hundreds of millions to kill millions of hog, burn oats, plough under cotton, the Department of Agriculture issued a bulletin telling the nation that the great problem of our time was our failure to produce enough food to provide the people with a mere subsistence diet. Can you comprehend this Machiavelli style of governing the people by the so called socialist who are supposed to help the common man?

The irony about the last quotation is that FDR before he became president campaigned that he will not do anything of sort. Of course, he is not the first politician to have reneged on his promise, but on such a devastating scale is unpardonable. And a silly person like Paul Krugman want to tell the rest of the world that FDR saved capitalism and his stooge Mr Kwarteng who cannot use his brains believes that nonsense. My case has been sawn here, but I won’t stop, because I take delight in burying Mr Kwarteng’s megalomania. In California fresh peaches were allowed to rot in the orchard just to make sure that prices of those that got to the market got good price.

It was not just consumable and food that had such rough ride. All sort of nonsense transpired during FDR administration, which sounds outlandish now when you read them. For example, a 49 year old immigrant drycleaner was jailed for charging 35cents instead of 40 cents stipulated price. Does this make sense to you in free a enterprise economy? Put yourself in the shoes of a consumer and don’t be prejudiced by your hatred for my position and some of my obnoxious language. First and foremost you have to recognise that we are all consumers bar none.

The efficient running of an economy should be, without a shred of doubt in my mind, in the interest of the consumer. What I have written may sound bizarre to you, and you may not believe it. I will entreat you to get your hands on a book entitled: The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck. The author was inspired by the follies of FDR and it was published in 1939 and won a Pulitzer. He touched on so many subjects, but what I want you to know about is the purposeful destruction of food to keep prices high. Thank you, and look forward to the last part.

29 -Years Old And Fighting Corrupt Forest Exploitation

​ His tender age belies his ability and capability to manage a sensitive Transparency-International anti-corruption project. His charge is to manage a European funded project that aims at reducing emissions from forest degradation in Cameroon and beyond. And Lucain Nyassi Tchakounte has to do this against the daunting odds of corruption and other red tape.

His interview is at once a lesson in prudent management, anti-corruption drive and the patent right of a people to harvest sustainable gains from their God-given environment. Read on:

What’s your precise mission, your charge?

Transparency International is a civil society organisation fighting against corruption and for the promotion of good governance, in partnership with the Government, media, and the private sector. On the environmental aspect, we work with Reducing Emission from Deforestation and Forest Degradation, REDD+ on the reduction of emission from deforestation and reforestation and we are really interested in the Governance aspect because the REDD+ will in the coming years provide additional funds for countries involved in the process.

Cameroon has been involved since 2005, and now, REDD+ is implementing some pilot projects to see how the country can benefit from these mechanisms that I must say were developed by the North. Cameroon has not really improved on the Corruption Perception Index. We found it useful to address the issue of governance so we can prevent corruption from having a negative impact on the process. The project ‘REDD+ Governance and Finance Integrity for Africa’ was launched 2014 and so far, we have had several training workshops, published research works from the knowledge of the population on the REDD+ issue, and it is on the basis of the research that we found out that the population was still lacking on the knowledge of this process.

This is why we decided to organise the sensitisation campaign to explain in very simple words what REDD+ is all about for them to understand, and to help them see what the risks are, especially at the level of land. If REDD+ becomes something very important, land would be like gold, and there is risk that the population might just be sent out, or have their lands taken away by some individuals for economic purposes.

They should know all these and more, and get prepared and go for the information. They have the Ministry of Nature Protection and Wildlife, other civil society organisations like ‘People Health Wise’, to get the appropriate information. We also want to put ahead our Advocacy and Legal Advice Centre, where we present assistance to victims and witnesses of corruption. These victims and witnesses can come to us and the assistance is free. We provide legal assistance, whatsoever the problem. If we find the problem very pertinent, we can go as far as judicial assistance because we have a project on legal assistance in partnership with the Ministry of External Affairs of France.

How do you integrate or are you in any way in conflict with Green Peace?

No, there’s no conflict.
Because the sensitisation campaigns you’re carrying out… ‘Green Peace’ is doing something of a similar nature even though theirs is more of activism.

We are not in conflict. We have different approaches to the issue. ‘Green Peace’ looks more into the pedagogic aspect but ours is the governance. If you say that ‘ok’, this is something you want to get into, you should also put in place the appropriate strategies for all the stakeholders to benefit from this process because they have been identified and someone cannot benefit if he does not at the beginning have the right information. This explains why we come in with transparency. We provide the people with the right information so that at the time we are talking about revenue or some other thing of the REDD+, they should be able to hold you accountable for all the engagements you are into, in the name of the Cameroon Government.

Apparently you’re going to run into certain limitations, especially with the not too informed grassroots people that you are dealing with. How have you designed your strategies; your pedagogy, so to speak, such that everybody understands you and willingly comes on board?

The communication strategy for this sensitisation campaign actually takes into account these challenges. That is why we try to make very comprehensive posters. We put ourselves in the place of the common man because we know that in various localities the levels of understanding are not the same. But the posters present the day-to-day living of the people; they would recognise themselves through these posters. But beyond this, we are also planning to have programmes on community radio stations.

These programmes would have someone who can easily translate what we would be saying into local languages, so that the population can get the right information. We have already selected some villages with who we are going to have some public meetings and get to talk to them one-on-one. We will produce image boxes that present the situation of climate change; its effects on the activities of man. We present what can happen if nothing is done, and why they need to protect the environment, even if not for their sake, at least for the future generations.

We are talking here about Cameroon, a chronic case when it comes to corruption. How transparent is Transparency Cameroon? How transparent are the people who get into this project? How do you intend to work so that there is verifiable transparency in what you are doing? How transparent are the people behind this project for your people to see that this thing gets to the brass tacks?

Talking about how transparent is Transparency; I will say it starts from the recruitment process. Before you work at Transparency International, you have to pass through what we call an integrity test. You have to be of good standing. We know people face temptations and all that, but the issue is, you have to behave in such a way that it does not put the organisation’s interest at risk.

This is what we keep telling our employees, and that is why at Transparency, the hierarchy always makes sure that even though we come on the field, they have direct contact with the coordinators, to follow up if they have done the job and in the right way too. This means that we cannot come and just do what we like, thinking that the hierarchy is in the office and will not know what we do. No. there is follow up at the level of Yaounde.On how to ensure that the work gets transparent, we started at the beginning of the project, identifying strategic partnerships and we went towards the National Coordination body of the REDD+ and presented the project.

We told them the project is out to reinforce the work they are doing so that Cameroonians can benefit from this process. We also work with international partners like World Wide Fund for Nature, WWF, International Union for the Conservation of Nature, IUCN, and GIZ. We share ideas and information so that at our level, the advocacy is strong and shared by all the stakeholders.

About strategic partnership, we’re happy you talked about WWF because they are having so many difficulties. They are encumbered by massive corruption at Cameroonian establishments. For instance, those who are supposed to be stopping poaching are ironically effectively promoting it. Top army and environment officials; even the courts too are corrupt in certain cases. Have you factored in all of these constraints, especially when strategising with bodies like WWF to achieve a wholesome package, a win-win for everyone else?

Transparency International has long been advocating for the enforcement of an anti-corruption law. We also advocate for the implementation of ‘Article 66’ of the Constitution, which has to do with the declaration of assets, because we at Transparency International believe that this can help in the fight against corruption. But then, the time of the Government is not the time of the civil society.

You must be facing some frustrations. What are they? Not yet; because for now, I can say all partners open their doors to Transparency.

They might be opening the door just for you to bring in the budget so that they start stealing. Don’t you think?

No, they cannot have the budget. It is funded by the European Union, EU, for three years and is 350, 000 Euro. We work so that they can use the results. We cannot fund Government activities, but we can bring in support from civil society organisations. Grants are possible. We did it with Platform civil society organization, which is a member of the REDD+ sharing committee.

The typically corrupt Cameroonian Government official wouldn’t buy what you are saying here. Once they see a project like this, they keep asking ‘what is in it for me?’

I understand what you are saying. I want to say also that because of the name, Transparency, it makes us to think twice. It is not easy because sometimes you go somewhere and say ‘please I have this project’ and they say we should give you an envelope. But if you do, we have a different way to approach it. We will say NO! We are doing this for the good of the country so; if you think that you can come along with us, you are welcome, but if you cannot come along with us, we still try and see how possible we can go into it with different people and ignore you. This is the reason I said we have advocacy and legal advice centres that help us to solve such issues. We have these people who go to Government Offices and are being asked to pay for signatures. They just call us and say, ‘I went to sign this document and they asked me to pay’. We just remind them that it is not stipulated in the law.

At least you are conceding here that you have some frustrations….

We have received calls from people mostly in the education sector, and we have used the strategic partnership to solve the issue. You know the difficulty in fighting corruption is to gather proof. In such cases, we usually just tell the victim that, if the payment you are being asked to make is stipulated in the law, let the person make and sign a receipt for you, and then you pay the money. When you do this, we have the proof and at least can take the receipt and now file a case. We can only do our work if they have the boldness to denounce acts of corruption. Once you denounce, we come in with the proof to help solve your matter.

You are 29, and age is not a limiting factor?

No, we usually say the power of ideas wins over the power of age.

Would you mind telling us some of Transparency International achievements so far in Cameroon?

We started in Cameroon in 2000 and have been working in different areas. We have, since 2004 been engaged in Election Observation, and some of our recommendations were taken into consideration after 2011 by ELECAM. We are also working in the extractive industry; we are a member of AIT, where try to protect the interest of the civil society. We also work in the education sector, by sensitizing on free education at the level of Government primary schools, because a decree was signed, stipulating that children should not pay PTA fees to get into classes, but we still realized that in some schools, children are being sent because they have not paid the PTA fee. So we launched advocacy for free education in public primary schools, asking the Government to take up its engagement by asking the schools not to send away children from school. We are also working with the Anti-Corruption Commission; in a project we call ‘Concours Sans Corruption’.

We were observers of the entrance examination into the National School of Public works, from the beginning to the time the results were released. We made sure that it was free fair and transparent. In the environmental aspect, we have this ongoing REDD+ Governance and Finance Integrity Project.

Your bio-data Sir?
My name is Lucain Nyassi Tchakounte. I am 29 years old. I have occupied several positions at Transparency. I am the Forest Governance Purchase Manager, Head of Research and Development Unit of the focal point for the Commission for Central Africa Forest. I work on issues of transparency and the fight against corruption in the Congo Basin. I have been in Transparency International since 2012.

What’s the secret of your progress?

Hard work, integrity, humility and love for the work you do. Borrowing from what an elder once told me, ‘as far as you are young, you have to work, because when you grow old, you won’t have the energy to work again’.

Interviewed By Nester Asonganyi & *Collins Makoge Epie (UB Journalism Student on Internship)

Accident Photos - Funny Face

Comedian, Funny Face has been involved in an accident. The comedian in a facebook post expressed thanks to God for saving his life.

His range rover was hit by a speeding articulator.

"TO GOD BE THE GLORY ... ! am still alive !! How can articulator skip 3 cars and hit mine? Hmmm ... I made him go .... only Him , knows where He is coming from ! The Devil is liar ! #Funnyfans pls remember me in ur prayers !" he posted.

+Ghana Leaks

Caption: Photo of The Day - lol

View Photo

Hide and Seek! This is what discipline is all about. Protect your kids!

Well done grandma!

+Ghana Leaks


A 37-year-old driver who allegedly poured acid on his estranged wife
after she had walked out of their marriage of 14 years has been

The suspect, Yaw Frimpong Adakwa, popularly referred to as Fred, is
said to have ambushed Joyce Frimpong, 37, a trader, and poured
concentrated acid on her.

But after one-and-a-half years in hiding, Adakwa was arrested at Pain,
a suburb of Teshie in Accra.

Couples separate
Briefing the Daily Graphic, the Director General of the Criminal
Investigations Department (CID), Commissioner of Police (COP) Mr
Prosper K. Agblor, said Joyce lived with Adakwa and their three sons
at Teshie Malik in Accra until a misunderstanding ensued between them.

He said as a result of the misunderstanding, Joyce packed out of the
house, taking the children with her, to relocate at Teshie in the
latter part of 2013.

About 4 a.m. on January 13, 2014, Mr Agblor said, Adakwa, who had been
monitoring Joyce's movement for a while, laid ambush near her cosmetic
shop at Teshie and poured concentrated acid on her.

The victim, who suffered injuries on the right side of her head and
neck, also sustained severe burns on her hands and chest.

Some residents who heard her shout for help took her to the LEKMA
Hospital at Teshie where she was admitted and treated.

She was later discharged and the case was reported to the Domestic
Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVSSU) of the Nungua Police.

Source: Daily Graphic

+Ghana Leaks

Men View On Sex After Prostate Cancer Treatment My Research Findings From Ghana

Men don’t cry, but today, Ghanaian men are crying and this is what I have realized from my research with Ghanaian men and prostate cancer. My research interest is strictly on how men of West African descent viewed prostate cancer and how prostate cancer affects men of African descent.

This current study is focused on men and women I had encountered with during an invitation I received to provide expert talk on prostate cancer for Aviation staff this year and my daily interaction with Ghanaian men and women on prostate cancer . I am also working on a research paper on men’s Health in context in Ghana with Michelle Williams, PhD, MPH, CHES-University of Alabama at Birmingham as a coauthor of the paper.

Sex after prostate cancer is a serious issues affecting lot of Ghanaian men diagnosed or yet to undergo conventional prostate cancer treatment. Most Men diagnosed with prostate cancer tried to forgo conventional treatment because of the information they received regarding prostate cancer treatment and their sex life. Men always want to protect their sex life and don’t want to lose it but men in Ghana don’t know why the prostate gland is that powerful and is the bedrock of the men sex life though it is a small gland but with huge repercussions on the quality of life on Ghanaian men.

“I know within me; I am sleeping on duty!

I sometime have to sleep early or pretend to be sick to avoid my wife torching me or demanding to have sex with her; partly because, I can no longer ride the mountain that I used to do. There is always a quarrel in the night when it is time for work. I am unable to have an open communication with my wife to tell her my problem to avoid me losing her to another man.

I am suffering from the side effect of conventional prostate cancer treatment

(A prostate cancer patient’s quote on his experience with sex after prostate cancer treatment)

76% of all men diagnosed with prostate cancer will suffer either permanent or temporal erectile dysfunction and could go on to about 95% after radical prostatectomy-that is surgery to remove the prostate gland and the quality of treatment for prostate cancer men received and survival rates also depends upon where men leave, but do men even get the right treatment for the amount they paid for conventional cancer treatment in Ghana? There are more questions than answers!

“My manhood has shrunk after prostate cancer treatment leaving me thinking”- A patient quote.

Sexual dysfunction is one of the most prevalent and distressing consequences of prostate cancer. Despite this, very little is known about the management of sexual dysfunction and current health care services do not adequately meet sexual health needs of survivors.

Some men find that their penis is shorter after surgery (radical prostatectomy). This happens because of changes to the tissue inside the penis. Other treatment such as hormone therapy with radiotherapy may also cause changes to the size of your penis.

Encouraging blood flow to the penis after surgery may improve erections and stop your penis becoming smaller. In particular, using a vacuum pump on its own or with PDE5 tablets may help maintain your penis size and improve erections. This is called penile rehabilitation.

Effects of prostate cancer treatment
Treatment for prostate cancer can cause a variety of side effects. Any of these can affect your sex life, some more than others. The effects you have will depend on the treatment you have had.

You may not feel like sex at all while you are having your treatment, or for some time after you are diagnosed. Many people feel very low after they have been told they have cancer and don't feel interested in sex. But some people react to their diagnosis by feeling they should be packing as much into life as possible. If you feel like this, and treatment has caused erection problems , this may be hard to bear.

Whatever happens at first, remember that things will change. To see how your sex life will be affected, you will need to wait until at least the end of your treatment. And it is best to wait until you are feeling more back to normal.

Some of the side effects listed here are temporary â€" for example, tiredness and diarrhoea due to radiotherapy will wear off some weeks after your treatment has finished.

Prostate cancer cannot be pass on to a partner

Some men worry that they may pass on prostate cancer in their semen during sex. This is not true. Cancer is not infectious and cannot be passed on to another person in this way. But this can be a very real anxiety. It is important to understand how powerful this fear can be. Talking it through with a partner and getting reassurance from them can be helpful.

Some people find that they need outside help to discuss this issue. They may benefit from talking to a counsellor, the doctors and nurses at the hospital, or a sex therapist. These people are aware of the difficulties people have with cancer and can offer specialist advice and support.

Some men get diarrhoea during radiotherapy and for some time afterwards. This can be unpleasant and tiring and may put you off wanting to have sex. It will gradually go back to normal after a few weeks though.

You may feel too tired to want sex for some time after prostate cancer treatment

Leakage of urine
If you have leakage of urine (incontinence) or a catheter into your bladder, you may feel embarrassed and that may put you off sex.

Less interest in sex
Being less interested in sex can be a side effect of surgery to remove the testicles (orchidectomy) , or hormone treatment . Unfortunately, a lower interest in sex cannot be treated with testosterone injections or patches as it normally would. This is because the testosterone could encourage the cancer to grow or come back.

Lack of interest in sex and erection problems are less likely to occur with anti androgen drugs like bicalutamide , than other types of hormone therapy. So changing your hormone treatment may help. You would need to discuss this with your specialist.

The effects on your sex life can be difficult to live with. The way that the side effects affect you will depend on your own individual situation. It will also depend on your partner (if you have one) and how your sexual relationship has been in the past. It will help to talk things over with your partner and discuss the changes in your lives.

Hot flushes and sweats
Hot flushes and sweats can be a side effect of hormone therapy or removal of the testicles (orchidectomy). They may be at their worst when you have just started your hormone treatment, or have just had your testicles removed. The flushes and sweats may get better with time. They may become less frequent or stop altogether. Or you may not be troubled by them at all.

Everyone reacts to cancer treatment in different ways, both emotionally and physically. If you are having problems with sweats and flushes talk to your doctor or specialist nurse. They can prescribe medicines to help.

Difficulty getting an erection (impotence)
Difficulty in getting an erection can be caused by the following types of treatment.

  • Radiotherapy to the prostate
  • Prostate surgery
  • Having both testicles removed
  • Most types of hormone therapy

Erection difficulties can be very difficult to come to terms with. After surgery you are very likely to have erection problems. This may be temporary, but if you have had the prostate gland removed ( radical prostatectomy ), it is more likely to be permanent.

Hormone therapy can also affect your ability to have an erection. If you stop the injections or tablets, the erections may improve.

With radiotherapy , erection problems may start up to 2 years after your treatment because of nerve damage. It can take that long for nerve damage to show up after any radiotherapy.

If you have erection problems, medicines such as sildenafil citrate (Viagra), vardenafil (Levitra) or tardenafil may help. If these treatments are started early they can sometimes help to prevent erection problems developing. Other forms of treatment include gels (MUSE), injections (Caverject) or vacuum devices to give an artificial erection. Alternative remedies are also available

Your erection problems
Erection problems can be permanent or temporary. And they can be affected by your mood and feelings. If you are having problems, they may sometimes be caused by anxiety and not the effects of treatment. You may find it difficult to talk about these both with your doctor and with your partner.

If you are worried about talking to your partner, it may be because you are afraid that they might reject you, or be angry with you in some way. But your partner may be wanting to talk things over.

Infertility and prostate cancer treatment
Treatment for prostate cancer will mean that you cannot father children in the future. This is called infertility. This can be very hard to accept, especially if you were hoping to have children. You and your partner need to discuss this with your doctor before you start treatment, particularly hormone treatment or radiotherapy . Some men may want to collect and store sperm before they start treatment.

After surgery to remove the prostate gland you don't produce semen. If you have had a TURP operation , you will probably have retrograde ejaculation after surgery. Retrograde ejaculation means that when you orgasm, your sperm goes backwards into your bladder, rather than out through your penis. This is because there is a valve that normally shuts off the route to the bladder when you climax, and this is damaged in the TURP operation. In this situation, if you want to have children, it may be possible to take sperm directly from your testicles. The sperm can be used to fertilise your partner directly or with the test tube baby technique (in vitro fertilization or IVF).

Clinical Recommendations
All men define their masculinity as a part of normal development. When they have to restructure that definition due to sexual dysfunction, few will view that restructuring positively. Yet, men need to be reminded that even without ideal erections, much of their sexuality remains. Sexual feelings, penile sensitivity, orgasms and partnered intimacy (in many cases) are available. Helping men recognize sexuality as a much larger concept than erectile function is an important intervention that reframes the prostate cancer-related sexual side effects. Creating an accepting health care environment for men's vulnerability and feelings about the loss of erections will help them approach mourning as the gateway to a new sexual adaptation alone or with a partner. Movement forward is easier when change is acknowledged, understood, grieved and mourned.

In most cases, this may be a brief, supportive intervention in the context of a cancer survivorship program, preferably with the partner present. Inclusion of information about menopause helps couples recognize that both individuals may face sexual challenges in middle age. Support for communication about new intimacy will be helpful. This comprehensive approach is likely to minimize barriers to penile rehabilitation and sexual recovery. When brief psychoeducational interventions are insufficient to improve couples' sexual relationship, long-term issues may be impinging on this adaptation, and more intensive sex therapy may be required.

Clinicians should create an environment that includes language and teaching materials that are inclusive to men from other ethnic groups or cultures and their partners. Health care providers may need to expand their knowledge of sexual practices and sexual beliefs .

Availability of psychoeducation about changes in sexuality, sex therapy and couple therapy as a part of prostate cancer care would reassure patients that there is a support structure aimed at restoring intimacy and sexuality. It may encourage help seeking that has been less than optimal to date.

Patients with prostate cancer, partners and clinicians need a sexuality-focused road map to guide them from diagnosis, through treatment to recovery. The road map should include real-time assessments to guide interventions: psycho-education, grief, coping, creation of new sexual possibilities and referral for individual or couple sex therapy. If the sexual recovery road map includes periodic evaluation of its efficacy and effectiveness, it can be successfully integrated into evidence-based treatment of prostate cancer.

Prostate cancer is really a test of Manhood for both Ghanaian men and women. The focus should also be channeled to educate the women to understand the side effect of the disease on their men sex life so that they exercise patience. Sex is not the only way to make a woman happy and the women should understand this fact.

Chiefs Threaten Demo Over Mining Royalties

ANGRY CHIEFS from 17 communities within the Asante Akim Central District of the Ashanti Region have threatened to lead their people on a massive demonstration against Owere Mines Ltd, latest by next week, over unpaid royalties due them.

Nana Kwaku Boapiah, Gyasehene of Agyareago and spokesperson for the chiefs, said since 2010 when Owere Mines started operations, the mining company has not paid the chiefs any royalties for them to carry out developmental projects for their people to benefit.

He said all efforts, including dialogue, to make Owere Mines Ltd do the right thing by paying the royalties failed to yield the desired results; hence the chiefs' decision to hit the streets in protest.

Speaking at a mammoth press conference at Patriensa, which was graced by hundreds of the youth in the area, Nana Boapiah said Owere Mines Ltd seemed not ready to embrace peace, threatening, 'and we shall kick them out from our lands with series of demonstrations.'

Company's Reaction
But in a sharp rebuttal, Kofi Nti, Mines Manager of Owere Mines Ltd, stated categorically that there was no iota of truth in what he described as wild accusations being peddled against his company by the traditional leaders of the area.

He claimed that his company duly paid royalties in the sum of about GH ¢1.77 million to the IRS, who in turn forwarded it to the government, within 2011 and 2012 when Owere Mines operated, adding that it was up to the chiefs to take the necessary steps to access the money.

Owere Mines Ltd, Mr Nti said, stopped mining operations since 2012 and that it was only carrying out tests on its concessions. He noted that barring any unforeseen hitches, the company would commence mining in two years time and resume paying the royalties again.

The 17 communities include Nyaboo, Patriensa, Bimma, Kyekyebiase, Krofa, Juansa, Nyanponase, Domeabra, Pekyerekye, Kawkawkaw, Obenemase, Atunsu, Kyekyewere, Agyareago, Odumase, Bomireso and Konongo.

The press conference was organised by Concerned Citizens of Asante Akim Central, a group whose objective is to transform the area. Significantly, all the attendants of the press conference, notably the chiefs, wore black clothes to display their anger.

Nana Boapiah also accused the mining company of not playing any roles to develop the area as part of its corporate social responsibilities, adding that the youth of the area were also not being offered employment by Owere Mines Ltd.

Appeal to Government
On his part, Nana Opuni Ababio Opamago, the Chief of Kawkawkaw, charged government to terminate any contract it has with Owere Mines Ltd and replace it with a mining company which would have the passion to contribute to the development of the area.

Asare Bediako, Secretary, Concerned Citizens of Asante Akim Central, gave Owere Mines Ltd an ultimatum to leave their land in peace by the end of 2015, threatening that else they would face the wrath of the local people, including the chiefs and the unemployed youth.

He accused the company of harassing poor farmers, failing to fence mining pits, destroying the environment by polluting the Apoposu river at Nyaboe, non-payment of ground compensation and refusing to demarcate their concession among others.

Bediako said the people in the area initially had hopes that the mining company would help expedite their developmental aspirations, but noted that it had rather deepened their poverty level. He also called on government and the authorities concerned to support the local people to kick Owere Mines Ltd out of the area.

Unfounded Allegations
Meanwhile, in an interview with DAILY GUIDE, Kofi Nti said all the allegations levelled against his company were baseless, noting that his company had supported education through sponsorships, constructed roads and also supported the communities in diverse ways to grow.

He explained that Owere Mines Ltd inherited about six pits on the concession when it moved to the area, stating that the company operates under the strict guidance of the EPA and that they have not erred in any way to warrant condemnation.

The Mines Manager assured that the company would employ most of the youth in the 17 communities when it concludes its tests and starts operating again and appealed to the Minerals Commission to intervene by educating the people to know the good works of Owere Mines Ltd.

FROM I.F. Joe Awuah Jnr., Kumasi

Capitation Grant Challenged

Even though parents generally finds the capitation grant very relevant, they are not satisfied with its implementation, according the National Development Planning Commission's [NDPC] 'citizens' Assessment Report on the Capitation Grant Scheme 2014.'

The report noted that parents, notwithstanding the grant, are still made to pay levies such as examination fees, and sports and culture levies.

Only about 40 percent of parents consider the capitation to have had a positive impact on the quality of education.

The capitation grant scheme, according to the views of teachers, has increased enrollment and improvement in the availability of teaching and learning materials.

In sharp contrast, the report indicated that about 70 percent of head-teachers perceived the capitation grant to have had a generally positive impact on quality education.

However, the report stated that there are a number of concerns, including concerns from teachers that the release of the capitation grant to the schools unduly delays.

The grant, although has increased enrolment in schools but the delay tendencies and the headache head-teachers went through in accessing the grants are likely to collapse the scheme since quality delivery of education is undermined.

This and the undue delays in the release of the grant are some of the reasons why some schools still charges levies to fill the gap and to be able to keep the school running.

According to the report, some head-teachers misapply the grants because the teachers, in some instances, have limited understanding of the capitation grant scheme.

Even some head-teachers get confused about what the capitation grant can and cannot be used for, the report added.

The introduction of the school capitation grant scheme in 2004, which currently allocates a GHc4.50 per child enrolled to a school, is an intervention aimed at lessening the burden of the numerous levies and fees charged at the school level which are thought to prevent a considerable number of parents from enrolling their children in school, especially in the rural deprived areas.

NDPC, at a launch ceremony in Accra, invited other stakeholders and CSOs to examine the overall objectives of the survey and access whether the capitation grant is achieving the objective of eliminating extra fees and charges at the basic school level, at least from the perspective of the citizenry.

Doctors Strike Over Pay

Dr Opoku Adusei - President  Ghana Medical Association

Medical doctors under the umbrella of the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) have laid down their tools to press home their demand for proper conditions of service.

That was after a meeting between the doctors and the Ministers of Employment and Labour Relations, Finance and Health ended in a deadlock on Wednesday.

The doctors subsequently declared a sit-down strike action to demand for proper conditions of service, amidst threats to resign en masse. They have refused to admit new patients, threatening that after discharging inpatients, they would shut down the hospitals and look for jobs elsewhere.

A facebook post by presidential staffer, Stanislav Xoese Dogbe, which sought to incite the public against the angry doctors, seems to have provoked the doctors the more.

Most health facilities, especially in the capital city, Accra, were almost abandoned yesterday when our roving reporters went round.

The empty OPD at Korle Bu Teaching Hospital
Korle-Bu OPD Closed
The management of the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital has already announced the closure of its Outpatient Department (OPD).

In a statement copied to DAILY GUIDE, the hospital said the measure by the GMA had affected outpatient services at Ghana's premier health facility.

'Management of the Korle Bu Teaching Hospital wishes to inform the general public that its Outpatient services have been closed to patients as a result of the action by members of the GMA,' it stated.

The hospital however, indicated that by the GMA measures, doctors would continue to attend to inpatient and emergency cases.

'The hospital therefore, wishes to inform all patients who will require outpatient services to go to other private and peripheral hospitals in the metropolis,' it added.

There were no doctors on hand to attend to patients yesterday except nurses and other supporting staff who were trying to give some first aid.

In certain instances, some doctors were attending to only emergency cases while patients were being turned away.

Scores of people who visited various public hospitals with the hope of being attended to by doctors therefore left disappointed.

Most of them, who had gone to the hospitals either for review or consultation, had no other choice than to look elsewhere for medical attention.

Unlike the Korle-Bu Teaching Hospital where doctors were not caring for patients, the situation was different at the Ridge, Regional, 37 Military and the Police Hospitals where doctors were seen attending to patients.

Although the authorities at the Ridge Hospital declined to talk about why its doctors were at post, patients were delighted they were being attended to.

'This always happens and we the patients suffer in the end,' said woman who had brought a daughter to the OPD of the hospital.

Libya's UN envoy to discuss peace plan with rival lawmakers

Tripoli (AFP) - UN envoy Bernardino Leon was to hold talks with members of the General National Congress parliament which boycotted a UN peace deal for the conflict-hit country, both sides said Thursday.

The United Nations Support Mission in Libya said Leon would hold "consultations" with GNC representatives in Algiers Thursday night and Friday "to discuss ways to reinforce and move forward the dialogue process."

Plunged into chaos after the 2011 overthrow and killing of dictator Moamer Kadhafi, Libya has two parliaments and governments vying for power, as a slew of armed groups battle for control of its oil wealth.

The elected parliament, which is recognised by the international community, initialled a UN draft deal on July 11 aimed at setting up a national unity government and holding fresh elections.

Members of political parties, civil society and local officials also signed the agreement, but the GNC refused to endorse it, saying it was "unsatisfactory" and calling for "modifications.

On Thursday the GNC, which is based in Tripoli and was installed by the powerful militia alliance Fajr Libya that seized the capital last year, said it was sending a delegation to Algiers for talks with Leon.

WCO trains CEPS Officials to takeover DIC's role at the ports

The World Customs Organization (WCO) has organized a four-day training programme in Accra for officials of the Customs Division of the Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) to take over the core functions of Destination Inspection Companies (DIC’s) at the country’s ports.

This is part of the WCO’s support to Customs Division as it takes over the Valuation, Classification and Risk Management from the DIC’s on 1st September 2015. The training is being led by WCO’s Senior Technical Officer, Tariff and Trade Affairs Directorate (Valuation), Ian Cremer.

A high-level management meeting was first held yesterday, Wednesday, 29th July 2015 at the new Customs Technical Services Bureau (TSB), located at the Customs Headquarters in Accra. The TSB will house the operational activities of the service on 1st September, 2015.

The Niamey Declaration underline the willingness of Customs Services in the West and Central Africa region to undertake the necessary steps to enable this. Article 10.5 of the World Trade Organization, WTO (Bali) Trade facilitation agreement contain new requirement in this regard.

Court sentences farmer to death by hanging

Sunyani, July 30, GNA - A Sunyani High Court 'One' presided by Justice Don Bosco Nabrese, on Monday sentenced a farmer, aged 29 to death by hanging.

Kofi Dabou, the convict had earlier pleaded not guilty, when he appeared before the Court for allegedly murdering his brother's wife and son at Banoffour village in the Nkoranza South Municipality of Brong-Ahafo Region.

But a-seven-member jury, in a unanimous decision, found the convict guilty of the offence and was accordingly convicted.

Presenting the facts of the case, Mrs. Angela Oboshie Tooto, a state Attorney at the Attorney-General's Department in Sunyani told the Court that on January 5, 2010, the deceased, Ama Kayera popularly known as 'Ama Dagarte,' together with her three-year-old son left home to give food to her husband, Kwaku Dagarte in the farm.

The prosecutor said Kayera and her son did not return home, and the husband reported the matter to opinion leaders in the community.

She said a search party was organized, but could not find them, adding that, the following day another search was organized and the bodies were found buried under a palm tree at the convict's farm.

The police exhumed and deposited the bodies at the Nkoranza St Theresa's hospital for autopsy.

Mrs. Tooto said the victim fled the area but was arrested upon a tip-off by the Police in Techiman, whilst on his way to Wa, his hometown.

ADB's IPO controversy has no bearing on our partnership

International money transfer operator, Western Union has ruled out any possible impact of the ongoing confusion over ADB’s Initial Public Offering on its partnership with the bank.

Agricultural Development Bank is the pioneer agent for Western Union money transfer services not only in Ghana but the entire African continent. But given the current controversy that led to an injunction on the bank’s IPO, many wonder whether Western Union as a partner is not concerned.

Speaking to Joy Business Editor, Emmanuel Agyei during his visit to Ghana as part of his company’s 20th Anniversary in Africa, Western Union’s President for Africa and other regions, Jean Claude Farah explained, they have no cause for worry.

“As Western Union, our business model relationship basically ends with our agents, we respect the privacy of our agents. But I heard about the IPO and I even had a discussion on it with the Managing Director of ADB but it was a social discussion. So I’m not sure it’s going to have lots of implications because at the end of the day it is not the way an agent is structured but as long as customers are serviced the right way.”

He further explained why the development would have no bearing on their operations.

Scout contingent leaves for World Jamboree in Japan

Accra, July 30, GNA - A five-man contingent from the Ghana Scout Association has left the country to represent the Scout Association at the 23rd World Scout Jamboree in Japan.

The Contingent, who are aged between 14 and 17 years are Masters Alhassan Abdul Razak, Awal Tasunti Abdul Rauf, Quarshie Samuel Tettey, Nana Yaa Asantewaa Okyere and Achia Akosua Owusu.

Led by Commissioner George Akakpo, the contingent left Ghana last Sunday for Yamaguchi in Japan for "Operation Kirara," courtesy the Scout Association of Japan and they are expected to return to Ghana on August 10, 2015.

The Chief Commissioner, Gregory Manful, prior to their departure, reminded the contingent not to see themselves only as representatives of the Ghana Scouts Association, but as representatives of Ghana, and urged them to 'have fun, share and learn experiences and above all do your best to make Ghana proud.'

The 23rd World Scout Jamboree would see the active participation of over 30,000 scouts from around the world, where participants would discover, experience and learn the integration of traditions, cutting-edge technology and peace building efforts as well as environment and disaster prevention techniques.

Its taking place from July 28 to August 8 and the theme for this year's programme is "a spirit of unity,' and all participants will return to their countries as Messengers of Peace with the feeling of Unity to create a better world.

The jamboree is organised by the World Organization of the Scout Movement every four years and offers an opportunity for participants to experience a quality scouting programme, based on the definition, purpose, principles, and needs of young people, as well as the Scout Method.

Participants will develop physically, intellectually, emotionally, socially and spiritually through a large-scale camping experience in an international environment supported by adults.

DCE calls for support for SMEs

Tolon,(N/R) July 30, GNA - Alhaji Seidu Abubakari, Tolon District Chief Executive has said access to capital and resource remained one of the major challenges facing small scale businesses especially women groups who undergo training in entrepreneurial skills.

He said government agencies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) continued to equip women with self-help skills but they still failed to meet conditions of securing the needed capital to start working on their own and called for committed efforts to support them to grow.

The DCE therefore appealed to financial institutions to take keen interests in investing in women with potentials and support them as their contribution towards job creation to help in promoting made-in-Ghana goods, to grow the economy.

Alhaji Abubakari was speaking at the closing ceremony of a ten day training programme in pomade and liquid soap production for women groups at Nyankpala in the Tolon district of the Northern Region, on Thursday.

The initiative is being championed by the Business Advisory Committee (BAC) of the National Board for Small Scale Industries (NBSSI), aimed at creating jobs to improve the livelihood of women in rural areas.

The skill would serve as an additional income generation and an alternative livelihood venture during the dry season.

The DCE challenged the beneficiaries to generate innovative ideas that would help sustain their businesses without depending on government for incentives and assured of government's commitment to support those ready to establish their own businesses.

Mr Haruna Mohammed, Head of BAC NBSSI advised the groups to register their association so that they would be recognized by investors to support them.

Mr Abubakari Jacob, Resource person, stressed the need for educational institutions to add entrepreneurial skills training to their curriculum to ensure that students, who want to do business after school did so with little support.

Hajia Zaratu Abdul, a beneficiary, commended government, the Assembly and the NBSSI for such the initiative, which would give them additional income aside farming.

70,000 Liberian births unrecorded in Ebola crisis: UNICEF

Monrovia (AFP) - More than 70,000 Liberian babies were born without being registered as the deadly Ebola epidemic ravaged the impoverished west African nation, leaving them without healthcare and vulnerable to trafficking, UNICEF said Friday.

With maternity wards across the country forced to close last year as health workers were infected, birth registrations plummeted by almost 40 percent compared to 2013, the UN children's fund said, citing government estimates.

"Children who have not been registered at birth officially don't exist," Sheldon Yett, UNICEF's Representative in Liberia, said in a statement.

"Without citizenship, children in Liberia, who have already experienced terrible suffering because of Ebola, risk marginalisation because they may be unable to access basic health and social services, obtain identity documents, and will be in danger of being trafficked or illegally adopted."

Just 700 births were reported in the first five months of this year, UNICEF said, as local and international health authorities battled alongside aid workers to bring the outbreak under control.

A spokesman for UNICEF told AFP the Liberian government estimate of 70,000 unregistered babies was extrapolated from the projected number of births against actual registrations.

But he added that there was no data to show if the intense spread of the virus -- passed from human to human via bodily fluids -- led to a decline in actual births, which might explain in part the drop in registrations.

UNICEF is helping Liberia rebuild its shattered health services ahead of a government campaign planned for later in the year to reach all babies not registered during the epidemic.

Ebola has infected almost 28,000 people and killed nearly 11,300 across Liberia and its neighbours Guinea and Sierra Leone, according to official data widely thought to underestimate the real toll.

The highly-infectious tropical fever emerged in Guinea in December 2013, spreading across the border and killing 4,800 Liberians before the country was finally declared free of transmission on May 9.

It lost its "Ebola free" status, however, when a 17-year-old died in the coastal county of Margibi at the end of June after passing the virus on to five others, one of whom also died.

Nigeria military poorly equipped to fight Boko Haram: military chief

Abuja (AFP) - Nigeria's military is underfunded and poorly equipped in its battle to check Boko Haram's rampaging insurgency, the country's outgoing chief of defence staff said on Thursday.

Air Chief Marshal Alex Badeh made the remarks in a valedictory speech to mark his retirement, after President Muhammadu Buhari this month sacked Badeh and the entire military top brass who served under his predecessor, ex-president Goodluck Jonathan.

"I was head of a military that lacked the relevant equipment and motivation to fight an enemy that was invisible and embedded with the local populace," Badeh said.

"Over the years, the military was neglected and underequipped to ensure the survival of certain regimes, while other regimes, based on advice from some foreign nations, deliberately reduced the size of the military and underfunded it," he lamented.

Badeh did not specifically say which regimes allegedly neglected or underequipped the military, or the foreign countries that apparently advised them to do so.

The activities of "of fifth columnists in the military and other security agencies who leaked operational plans and other sensitive military information to the terrorists" also made the fight against Boko Haram insurgents "particularly difficult", he said.

The leakage of vital information "led to the needless deaths of numerous officers and men who unwittingly fell into ambushes prepared by terrorists who had advance warnings of the approach of such troops", he stated.

Badeh, a former air force chief before he was appointed chief of defence staff in February last year, had served in the military for more than 38 years.

The decision by certain countries to deny Nigeria the needed weapons to prosecute the war against the jihadists was a major challenge the military faced, he added.

Troops had protested their lack of weapons to fight Boko Haram and there were reports that some of them fled at the approach of the insurgents who had superior fire power.

The huge cost that would be required to rebuild the nation's northeast that was devastated by the Boko Haram attacks and other trouble spots in the country could have been avoided if the military had been adequately equipped to contain the current insurgency before it became serious, said the ex-military chief.

Financial sector needs more indigenous IT companies -GhIPSS

Accra, July 30, GNA - Mr Archie Hesse, Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Ghana Interbank Payment and Settlement Systems (GhIPSS), has called on indigenous players in the Information Technology (IT) industry to develop appropriate solutions needs for financial services sector.

He said since the direction of the sector is electronic, a lot of IT solutions are in demand in a broad range of services.

Speaking in an interview, Mr Hesse said there are too few indigenous players in the industry, compelling a lot of financial service companies to look outside for service providers.

'Relying on external service providers could be challenging as the slightest challenge will require flying down the personnel, which has time and cost implications,' Mr Archie said.

He said the move towards a 'cash-lite' economy is real and options such as payments using ATM cards, online payments and mobile payments are gradually making inroads.

This development, he explained, would require a lot of IT service providers, an opportunity for indigenous players could seize.

The GhIPSS CEO explained that because the financial sector largely deals with people's money, the standards for services provided cannot be compromised.

He suggested that indigenous companies partner their foreign counterparts to build their skills and reputation as well as acquire the requisite certification, to become major players in the sector.

He said some Ghanaian IT companies are doing very well and urged others to device ways of getting mentored.

Mr Hesse said there are wide range of IT services and asked the players to be abreast of developments within the financial services sector.

He said the introduction of Point of Sales (POS) terminals which accept local cards as well as e-zwich cards, IT companies should be able to develop additional services on these POSes to make them multi-functional.

He commended Fossil Pay which has ventured and encouraged indigenous players to think through other value added services as well as support service solutions.

Mr Hesse said very soon, it would be possible to use the local ATMs to make payment online and urged IT companies to support businesses to build good websites that can accept payments online.

'We are in the era of electronic based products and services and our indigenous IT players must cash in and they need to follow developments in the sector to be able to do that,' the GhIPSS CEO stressed.

Online payment with local ATM cards is expected to be a reality soon, and it is anticipated that lots of services in IT would be required.

But Mr Hesse warned that unless the indigenous players position themselves in readiness to grab the opportunities, only a few would benefit from it.

Guinness Ghana commissions GHC 350,000 Water Health project at Akomade

Guinness Ghana has commissioned a GHC 350,000 Water Health Centre for the people of Akomade, a community in the Atebubu-Amantin district of the Brong Ahafo Region.

The project is part of Guinness Ghana’s Water of Life programme which seeks to provide sustainable access to clean drinking water to unserved and under-served communities in the country.

The facility, partly funded by the Diageo Foundation (the foundation of Guinness Ghana’s company Diageo) has sufficient capacity to serve the water needs of the over 25,000 inhabitants of Akomade and its surrounding areas.

Speaking at the commissioning, Preba Greenstreet, Corporate Relations Director of Guinness Ghana said the beverages company is passionate about growing thriving communities through the sustainable provision of clean drinking water and sanitation.

“Over the last two years alone, GGBL and the Diageo Foundation has jointly sponsored 9 WaterHealth Centres across the country. The AkomadeCentre is the 10th such centre, and as such today is indeed a milestone and we are truly excited about the impact we have made and continue to make through our Water of Life programme.

“As we make significant strides in improving access to water, let us not forget that sanitation is of equal importance. As a nation, we have failed to meet the Millennium Development Goal sanitation target and we require the collective effort of all coupled with behavioural change across the board to improve and to change the status quo. As a business we are committed to the development of awareness in this area and are working with the relevant ministries to enhance their activities in this sector,” she said.

Deputy Brong-Ahafo Regional Minister, Justice Samuel Agyei, thanked Guinness Ghana and the Diageo Foundation for supporting the Akomade community and entreated the community leadership to take ownership of the facility and to support the project managers to ensure its long term sustainability.

“The provision of water is not enough to ensure we are a cholera-free or diarrhoea-free community. We need to do our part by keeping our township clean. Indiscriminate disposal of waste and other related behaviours must stop. We thank corporate bodies such as GGBL for contributing to the government’s effort to make potable water accessible to all,” he said.

The Akomade area was selected as a beneficiary as a community from which GGBL sources raw material for production of its’ Ruut Extra Premium Beer through an indigenous firm.

Water Health centres are community based water treatment plants with ultra-violet and reverse osmosis systems for purifying water.

With a storage capacity of 65,000litres per day they can serve the needs of upto 30,000 inhabitants of a community.

Guinness Ghana and the Diageo Foundation have so far sponsored the construction of 9 such mini treatment plants.


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