Friday, September 30, 2016

Lets Focus More Effort On Restoring Destroyed Forests

The Most Reverend Professor Daniel Yinkah-Sarfo, Primate and Anglican Archbishop of the Church of Province of West Africa, has asked the church to focus more effort on helping to restore the nation’s destroyed forests.

He asked that it actively engaged in the establishment of tree plantations and led from the front the campaign to promote sustainable management of the forest and its resources.

The wanton destruction through illegal timber operations and mining should not be allowed to continue, he added.

Archbishop Yinkah-Sarfo, who spoke to the Ghana News Agency in Kumasi said the unrestrained degradation of the environment had become a real threat and it was time “we sit up” and worked together to neutralize the threat and bring some sanity.

He said the church was not only concerned about the spiritual growth of the people but their physical wellbeing.
It could therefore not sit on the sidelines as the forest and water bodies got ruined.

He said the church has a mission to render service to the community in the areas of health development, education and the protection of the environment.

He encouraged Christians and people of other religious faith to make tree planting a major priority.

Archbishop Yinkah-Sarfo said recent extreme weather conditions should be “a wake-up call to all of us, to get our acts right and stop the recklessness” to avert disaster.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Pupils From La Wireless Cluster Of Schools Go On Tour With Airtel Ghana

Airtel Ghana through its CSR programme has taken over 30 pupils from La Wireless Cluster of Schools and their teachers on a tour of Logos Hope Ship, the world’s largest floating book fair at the Tema Port.

The on-board book fair â€" a selection of over 5,000 quality different titles at affordable prices covers a wide range of subjects including science, sports, arts, languages and philosophy with children's titles, medicine, academic texts, dictionaries, cookery, hobbies, and atlases among others.

The visit was primarily to expose the pupils to wider literatures and explore the various books on display as well as give them the opportunity to decide from the wide array of books to stock their school library which was sponsored by Airtel Ghana.

Hannah Agbozo, Legal & Corporate Affairs Director at Airtel Ghana stated “Books play a important role in the education of our children. Today we are touring one of the world’s most renowned book fair with pupils from La Wireless to give them the exposure that the Logos Hope provides and the opportunity to select books to augment the stock in their school library.

Bringing these young minds to the book fair reiterates our commitment to empowering and encouraging young people to cultivate the habit of reading which ignites their power of potential.  Promoting education is one of the core pillars of our CSR programme and we remain committed to raising the standards in education to shape the minds of the next generation of leaders”.

Mr. Edward Opoku, Circuit Education Supervisor of La-Dadekotopon Municipal Office said ‘’we are excited to participate in this book fair courtesy Airtel Ghana. On behalf of the teaching body I will like to extend our gratitude to Airtel Ghana for adopting La Wireless and for their continuous support.

The Logos Hope is operated on behalf of OM Ships International by GBA Ships, a private, non-profit, charitable organization registered in Germany which brings knowledge to the world by distributing important literatures to students and organizations worldwide.

Airtel Ghana has over the years contributed significantly to improve educational standards across the country its sustainable CSR initiatives such as the School Adoption Programme through which schools like La Wireless Cluster of Schools are supported. The  initiative supports selected schools with infrastructure, teaching and learning materials.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

50 Cent Sued For Copyright Infringement Over Power

Rapper 50 Cent has been hit with another copyright infringement lawsuit over his TV show Power.

Aspiring TV writers R. Byron Hord and Curtis Scoon have filed a lawsuit in Manhattan Federal Court against the hip-hop star, who produces and features in the crime drama, as well as cable network Starz and parent company CBS.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

DVLA Targets Student Drivers

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA) has launched a Tertiary Driver Licence Project (TDLP) aimed at granting students the opportunity to learn how to drive and obtain driver licence before they complete their programme of study.

The product, ‘TERTDRIVE’ has been developed in acknowledgement to a growing need of tertiary students to acquire genuine driver license before completion of their academic and professional studies.

All processes leading to the acquisition of a driver licence such as training, testing, personalization and issuance of licences will be done on campus. Students do not need to travel to any of the DVLA’s offices to do that.

Participating institutions will be required to provide classrooms for the theory aspect of the training and a dedicated place for a practical training.

Speaking at the launch, Chief Executive Officer of DVLA, Ing Noble John Appiah, said it is the expectation of his outfit that all tertiary students will take advantage of this unique opportunity to acquire a driver license while in college.

“This is DVLA’s reply and contribution to promote safer drivers and road users as part of the National Road Safety Strategy III spearheaded by the National Road Safety Commission” he noted.

The product, he reiterated, offers very unique benefits such as convenience, reduced cost, staggered payment, genuine licence, additional value to academic and professional qualifications, as well as the promotion of positive road user behaviour.

DVLA, he said, will help institutions which will take advantage of the product to establish in house training facilities for training and education of students for acquisition of driver licenses.

A Minister of State at the Presidency, Mr Elvis AfriyieAnkrah, launching the product, advised students to take advantage of the product as driving has now become a pre-requisite for most companies.

He said the transformation of an economy is not solely the duty of government but equally rest on the shoulders of institutions and agencies and as such commended DVLA for the innovation to develop TERTDRIVE.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Duterte Cites Hitler, Wants To Kill Millions Of Addicts

Philippine President Rodrigo Duterte has appeared to compare himself with Adolf Hitler, saying he would be "happy to slaughter" millions of drug addicts just like Nazi Germany killed three million Jews.

"Hitler massacred three million Jews ... there's three million drug addicts. There are. I'd be happy to slaughter them," Duterte said early on Friday on his arrival in Davao City after a visit to Vietnam.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Ghanas Ranking For Starting Business Drops

Regulatory reforms and the ease of doing business matter for long term economic growth and prosperity in Ghana, Mr Jim McAlpine, the Country Director of the United Kingdom's Department for International Development (DfID) - Ghana has said.

Speaking in Accra to mark the maiden Better Regulatory Forum and Ghana Business enabling environment programme annual review, he said Ghana has so much to gain going for the reforms.

This is because Ghana’s ranking for starting a business has fallen from 97th in 2015 to 102nd in 2016 in the World Bank’s world ‘Doing Business’ rankings," he said.

"With the exception of construction permits, every other key indicator in the Doing Business survey has stayed the same or worsened.

"This is horrible news for Ghana because a country’s business environment matters, not just for the entrepreneurs, but also for the people who have jobs in their businesses, and the families that depend on these incomes. 

"It’s also horrible news for economic growth and poverty reduction, for all Ghanaian’s today and for future generations," he stated.

Citing the UK's Engine programme held in September, for 108 companies whose business ideas had been selected to receive support, Mr McAlpine said the talent and entrepreneurial spirit of Ghana’s young women and men abound for all to see for themselves.

He stated that it is high time the young people are assisted to deliver for themselves and for Ghana in the face of the challenges of doing business.

The Country Director said the business environment is an vital part of the broader investment climate and refers to the quality and efficiency of business laws and regulations, which together with the rule of law, political stability, issues around corruption, land tenure, the macro-economic framework and infrastructure constitutes the investment climate.

He said taken together, the factors support to decide the cost and risk involved in doing business in a country and could affect the opportunities that firms have to expand. 

Mr McAlpine explained that they often represent severe constraints to both domestic small and medium-size enterprises, and foreign direct investors.

He said for UK companies looking to invest in finance, insurance, energy (both conventional and renewable), real estate, hospitals, and agriculture, issues around the investment climate make them think twice, particularly if there are other markets in the region that they consider to be easier.

"Underneath this gloomy news, there is no doubt that Ghana is making progress in rethinking approaches to the business environment," he stated.

He recounted that the World Bank, funded by the DfID presented research on how government, donors and the private sector could learn from the experiences of Ghana’s two previous Private Sector Development Strategies.

He noted that this renewed sense of the need to come to together to effect a Public Private Dialogue that really delivers across sectors must work within the framework of the 40 year Long Term Development Plan for Ghana currently being finalised by the National Development Planning Commission. 

He said the Plan would guide the medium term planning process and provides an critical framework for action that can guide this dialogue.

"Ghana’s peers in Sub-Saharan Africa are reforming faster and going further. For example, Kenya has improved its Doing Business ranking from 129 to 108 in the last year alone.

"Ghana faces competition from other countries that have cottoned on to the importance of institutional reforms and cutting red tape, initiatives that allow businesses to thrive, create jobs and pay taxes," he said.

He said many countries are redoubling their efforts in reforms and in some cases are cutting substantially the regulatory burden and thereby easing the cost of compliance. 

He said in some jurisdictions businesses could be registered in a day. 

He said in Sub-Saharan Africa the best performers for starting a business are Burundi four days  and Liberia four and a half days 

Mr McAlpine said: "In Ghana it takes on average 14 days to register a business, and the cost of starting a business rose by 70 per cent in 2012 alone. 

"This means Ghana has competition for investment, and needs to do more to attract it."

The two-day Better Regulation Forum in Accra brought together 70 participants from the public sector, the business community, policy think tanks and civil society to look at best practices and new approaches to reducing the regulatory burdens. 

Guest speakers came from countries such as Bangladesh, Rwanda, Ethiopia, Uganda and Kenya to share their experiences of reform and the tools they have used. 

The Better Regulation Forum was organised by the Business Enabling Environment Programme (BEEP), a £10 million business environment reform initiative by the Government of Ghana and DfID. 

BEEP facilitates policy dialogue between government agencies and the firms that have to comply and implement regulation, and supports government to enact reforms that make it easier and cheaper for agencies to regulate and firms to comply.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Prudential Life Insurance Honours Five Outstanding Actuarial Science Students

The top five students in Actuarial Science department at the University of Cape Coast have received valuable awards from Prudential Life Insurance Ghana.

The awards are part of a major initiative by the life insurer to help high achieving actuarial science students in Ghana. The five outstanding students received the cedi equivalent of 500USD, had their exams fees reimbursed and were presented with study notes at an awards ceremony.

The award winners were Alfred Annan Bentil, Isaac Nketsiah, Nii Amoo Decardi-Nelson, Isaac Debrah Asirifi and Precious Kobina Aklasu who achieved the highest grades in the group and was also awarded a year-long internship at Prudential.

Emmanuel Mokobi Aryee, Chief Executive of Prudential Life Insurance Ghana, said: “We are absolutely committed to investing in the community in Ghana and helping to help the next generation. We hope these awards enable these superb students to achieve their aims.”

Prof. David K. Essumang, Dean of Physical Sciences, said: “All of the staff here and the award winners are delighted with the help from Prudential Life Insurance Ghana. These awards will not only support these students to achieve their career goals but also support to develop actuarial science in Ghana.”

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Kenny Rogers To Retire From Music

Kenny Rogers isn't just calling it a wrap on the road with his current tour. He'll be done with music -- at least making public music -- altogether.

Rogers, whose last album You Can't Make Old Friends, came out in 2013, toldBillboard during a conference call with reporters that he has no future recording plans.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Oil Pipeline In Nigeria Bombed

A rebel group in Nigeria’s oil-rich south says it has bombed an oil pipeline as part of “We own our lands” campaign. 

A Nigerian intelligence official told AFP news agency that according to his information, dynamite was used in the attack by the Niger Delta Greenland Justice Mandate (NDGJM) rebel group on the pipeline in the Ughelli area of Delta state.

The pipeline is operated by the Nigerian Petroleum Development Company, a subsidiary of the state-run Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation.

Ogheneochuko Emurotu, from the local Evwreni community, said residents heard the explosion overnight and troops were deployed at first light, AFP reports.

However, they could not gain access to the scene “due to the degree of fire on the pipeline”, he added.

It’s the group’s second attack in the area this month.

The oil-rich south has seen a surge of attacks by rebel groups since President Muhammadu Buhari, a northerner, took office last year.

The rebels are demanding that a greater share of Nigeria’s oil wealth be spent in the region to tackle grinding poverty, and have also demanded an end to pollution caused by the industry.

In its statement, the NDGJM also hit out at multinational oil companies operating in the region, accusing them of being “wicked and ungrateful.”

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Accra Psychiatric Hospital Rejects New Cases

The Accra Psychiatric Hospital has suspended admissions for new cases, Starr News has learnt.

The hospital has also stopped operations at its Outpatient department.

This is the second time in two months the hospital has had to take such an action over the shortage of food and medical supplies.

A nurse and a member of the hospital’s PR team, Emmanuel Febiri, told Starr News their suppliers are demanding full payment of debts owed them before resuming service to the hospital.

“Our suppliers were expecting that monies owed them are paid to the last penny but that didn’t happen and they are demanding that if their monies are not paid, they won’t supply and even if they pay them all, we equally need money to run the facility. We don’t have money to run the place as we speak now, even common pen to write we don’t. And as a result, we cannot continue to to admit new cases,” he bemoaned.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

DPS International: Pupils Appeal For Peaceful Elections

Pupils of the Delhi Public School (DPS) International Ghana, a world-class centre of child education in Community 25, Tema have appealed to political parties to ensure no blood is spilt during the impending general elections.

According to the pupils, politicians should make peace the central theme of their campaign messages.

They had, consequently, advised political parties and their activists to desist from commentaries or acts that were likely to divide Ghanaians, spark violence and, disturb the peace of the nation.

Pupils of DPS International Ghana made the passionate appeal when they joined other children, politicians and some citizens at the launch of the National Peace Video in Accra.

A Class 1 pupil of the school said they felt so depressed when they heard some social analysts and politicians issuing threats, especially during radio and television discussions.

Another pupil called on politicians to channel their energy to talk about how they were going to develop the country rather than engaging in discussions that fuel political tension.

Mr Mukesh Thakwani, Director of DPS International Ghana said peace in Ghana is essential to the country’s growth, development and education, and indicated that without peace Ghana’s future would be compromised.

“Ghana has been marked as one of the calm nations in the world so we must not use this period to ruin that fine image,” the director of DPS International Ghana pointed out.

He indicated that the upcoming election is an opportunity for Ghana to prove to the rest of the world that it truly understands the thought of democracy thus allowing everybody to exercise his or her franchise without insults and attack.

According to him, the electorates should avoid insulting people who they will not vote for and see each other as one people.

Special guest of honour, Rev. Prof Emmanuel Asante, Chairman of the National Peace Council (NPC) stated that Ghanaians should not engage in provocative acts that might disturb the peace of the country.

According to him, election of people to lead Ghana in the development of the nation should not lead people to engage in insults, fighting and inflammatory acts that might create problem for the nation.  

He stressed that Ghanaians should be proud of people from different ethnic groups joining the same political party instead of seeing the parties as enemies, urging Ghanaians to do the right thing to avoid destruction and killings that other countries had experienced as a result of political violence.

He said Ghanaians should let Ghana lead by ensuring no rigging occurred and the elections, transparent, by ensuring nobody used the elections as a tool to ruin Ghana.

He advised activists of all the political parties to avoid insulting candidates they would not vote for since they were the ones who had offered themselves to be servants of the nation though they represent other political parties.

“So let me say this to you members of the NDC, the supporters of NPP cannot be your enemies, I say to NPP people today, people of the NDC cannot be your enemies and I say the same thing to other political parties because at the end of the day, we are all Ghanaians,” Rev Asante stressed.

However, Mr. Sam V. Muthu, Director of Goodluck Africa, the company that put together the peace video said the aim of the audiovisual was to ensure peace before, during and after the general elections in Ghana.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Akua Donkor, Konadu, 7 others submit nomination forms Photos

The first day for the Electoral Commission's (EC) submission of nomination forms saw nine persons file their forms to contest as presidential candidates in the 2016 elections.

Aside the two candidates of the two main political parties; the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), seven other nominees presented their forms at the EC's headquarters on Thursday.

Akua Donkor (L) of the GFP
The others include the National Democratic Party (NDP), the United Front Party (UFP), United Progressive Party (UPP), All People’s Congress (APC), the Independent People's Party (IPP), and the Ghana Freedom Party (GFP).

Kofi Akpaloo of the IPP
The final nomination on the day was filed by the Reformed Patriotic Democrats (RPD), led by its Flagbearer, Kwabena Agyei.

The day begun with the NPP Flagbearer, Nana Akufo-Addo, presenting his forms on Thursday morning, when it emerged that the EC would not be accepting the bank drafts for the filing fees.

This is because of a court injunction secured by the Progressive People's Party (PPP) over the hike in the filling fees.

The PPP  filed a suit  at the High Court on September 19, seeking an interlocutory injunction to prevent the EC from receiving the nominations in protest of the amount being charged.

PPP Flagbearer, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom
The EC opened nominations earlier in  September  , and pegged the filing fees for presidential hopefuls at GHc 50,000 and that of parliamentary nominees at GHc 10,000. Some aggrieved parties subsequently asked the EC to review the amount describing it as “exorbitant.”

The Vice-President Kwesi Amissah-Arthur later submitted the nomination forms on behalf of the Flagbearer of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), President John Mahama.

Photo credit: Godwin Allotey
By: Delali Adogla-Bessa/

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By Ghana Leaks Blog

Ten BRT Buses Now Registered

Ten of the buses being tested as part of the redefined ‘Bus Rapid Transit’ (BRT) services, have been registered, after the operators were criticized for hurriedly dispatching the buses onto to the road without registration and insurance cover.

Twenty-eight buses are also expected to be registered today [Wednesday].

Buses not registered

The move comes a day after the Marketing and Communications Manager of the Greater Accra Passenger Transport Executive, operators of the Service, indicated that none of the buses had either been registered or insured.

The BRT transport service commenced test operations on Monday with 9 buses plying the Amasaman â€" Achimota â€" Circle â€"Accra route with free rides.

However operators identified challenges with the log system which provided information such as when and where passengers would alight to drivers.

Concerns over the non-registration and lack of insurance for the buses and challenges with communication between passengers and the bus drivers, forced the Managers of the service to suspend operations a day after the buses were put on the streets in a test.

Officials of the BRT system told Citi News that services were also suspended to enable them train the drivers on how to use the system to facilitate non-obstructive communication between them and passengers.

Service to be expanded

The newly introduced bus service is expected to be expanded to other parts of Accra to support commute passengers faster and more conveniently.

The bus will soon be operational on the Accra â€" Legon â€" Madina â€" Adenta stretch.

No dedicated lanes for ‘BRT’, it’s now Quality Bus System

Meanwhile, the Greater Accra Passenger Transport Executive (GAPTE), implementers of the supposed Bus Rapid Transport (BRT) service, have given the project a new name because the buses for now do not have dedicated lanes as expected.

Speaking on Eyewitness News, the Chief Executive Officer of (GAPTE), Sampson Gyamenah, admitted there were currently no dedicated lanes, a important element of any BRT system and instead called what was being implemented a Quality Bus System.

“We do not have a full blown dedicated lane for the buses so I will also hesitate to call what we are putting in place a BRT. It is called a Quality Bus System,” he said.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

St. Andrew Hospital Receives GH50,000 Donation From Dalex Finance

Dalex Finance (Business of the Year), has donated GH¢50,000 to the St. Andrew Hospital, Kordiabe. This is the second installment of a Ghc 300,000 pledge. The hospital, 30 beds and a theatre was inaugurated at a colourful and moving ceremony at Kordiabe.

Kordiabe, is a rural community in the Shai Hills. Thirteen years ago, a small clinic, St Andrews Clinic, was established by the Catholic Church. Unfortunately, the needs of the community, over 16,000 outpatient visits per annum, have outgrown the clinic. It therefore became necessary to build a hospital.

Dalex Finance has been involved with the project since 2015. Last year, the company sponsored a benefit breakfast in aid of the project. This raised over Ghc120,000. Mr. Thompson (CEO, Dalex Finance, Businessman of the Year) leveraged his contacts to get non Catholics (including Muslims, Buddhists and atheists) to contribute to the project.  

Mr. Thompson also chaired the 2015 Christ the King Harvest and has committed to chair the 2016 and 2017 harvests.

Speaking at the inauguration, Mr. Kenneth Thompson expressed his appreciation to the Catholic Church and Rev.  Father Campbell (Parish Priest, Christ the King Parish) in particular, for giving Dalex Finance the opportunity to “change lives”.

He spoke about Fr. Campbell’s credibility as a ‘philanthropist’, who “gave all and expected nothing”. He was also glad that all the money contributed was going directly to the project.

Mrs. Matilda Amissah-Arthur, the second lady of the Republic of Ghana who was also present, donated medical supplies and equipment to the hospital. She encouraged institutions and individuals to contribute to this worthy course. She charged the staff and indigenes of Kordiabe and its environs to take fine care of the facility and treat it as their own. Fr. Campbell thanked all the project partners and urged them to continue the fine work.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

We Will Not Spare Election Wreckers - Cephas Arthur

The Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Police Service Supt Cephas Arthur, has warned to deal ruthlessly with politicians who will want to cause violence during the December polls.

He therefore appealed to the various political parties to desist from causing mayhem before, during and after the elections.

‘Our pepper spray, tear gas, cannons and other accoutrements are ready to be unleashed on election wreckers who will steal ballot boxes,’ he said.

He further called on the citizenry not to engage in activities that will mar the elections and at the end jeopardise the peace enjoyed by Ghanaians.

Police have identified 5,000 flash points in the country, which according to Supt Arthur include area-prone such as land guards, murder, robbery, chieftaincy relatedâ€" issues among others.

Supt Arthur believes all flashpoints will turn into safe points if citizenry abide by rules governing the country.

‘Citizens should channel all their grievances to the appropriate quarters than taking the law into their own hands,’ he urged.

Speaking on Abusua FM’s Abusua Nkommo hosted by Kwame Adinkrah, he further called on Journalists to be circumspect in their reportage, advising them to desist from inflaming passion.

He assured that the service is poised to protect the country before, during and after the elections.

‘We will ensure that the election is calm just like 2012 election, we will deepen security in all areas, but we are appealing to the National Peace Council, Journalists, National Media Commission (NMC), citizens and Civil Society Organisations (CSos) to support promote peace ahead of the elections,’ he encouraged.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Reinhard Bonnke Crusade To Attract 1000 Security Officers

One thousand security personnel would be deployed to maintain law and order at the Christ For All Nations (CFAN) crusade, to be hosted in the Sunyani in the Brong-Ahafo regional capital.

The crusade is expected to be attended by 400,000 people.

The security officers would be selected from the Ghana Armed Forces, Ghana Police Service, Ghana National Fire Service and Ghana Prisons Service.

According to Apostle Mark Andoh, the Chairman of the planning committee, about 20,000 ushers are expected to help the security agencies in their work.

The Greater Peace Gospel Crusade, which is expected to usher in the spirit of peace and tranquility during and beyond Election 2016, would host German International Evangelist Reinhard Bonnke.

Addressing a meeting of pastors, church leaders and workers on preparations toward the four-day crusade scheduled for November 3 to November 6, Apostle Andoh said preparations for the great gathering of the believers and unbelievers are steadily progressing.

He explained that out-patient and in-patient department set-ups would be mounted at the crusade grounds to attend to emergency cases. There would be also two standby ambulances.

Apostle Andoh said temporal structures would be put up for the various denominations and very soon giant billboards would be erected at vantage points, while the national flag would also be hoisted in the Sunyani Municipality.

He said arrangements had been made for special mobile toilets and urinals, whilst vehicles would also be provided to convey participants to and fro.

Apostle Andoh expressed optimism that the crusade would bring salvation, spiritual peace and progress to Ghana and consolidate the democratic gains

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Citizens Manifesto Launched To Highlight Concerns Of Ghanaians

The Financial Accountability and Transparency-Africa (FAT-Ghana), with funding from Oxfam America, has compiled and launched the Citizens’ Manifesto, in Accra.

Mr Francis Darko Asare, the Programmes Manager at FAT-Ghana, said the document was considered as a very critical contribution towards improving governance, service delivery, poverty reduction and the achievement of the Sustainable Development Goals.

“We, therefore, expect the elected government to adopt our demands as part of its programme of governance in the next four years,” he said.

Mr Asare, who presented the highlights of the 25-paged document, at a media launch, said the Citizens’ Manifesto, which covers 2017 to 2020, contains an inventory of the concerns and wishes of Ghanaians, which they want the incoming Government to address during its tenure of office.

He said it was to support in finding solutions to key governance challenges facing the nation, accelerate the growth of the economy and promote inclusive human development.

He said the development of the document was inspired by the preamble of the nation’s Constitution, which required the establishment of a framework of governance to secure the posterity of liberty, equality opportunity and prosperity.

It also highlights how the national economy should be managed to maximise the rate of economic development and to also secure the maximum welfare, freedom and happiness of every person in the country.

It also addresses the provision of adequate means of livelihood and suitable employment, as well as public assistance to the needy.

Mr Asare said five thematic governance challenges, which involves Accountability, Transparency, Inclusiveness, Equal Opportunities and Human Development, emerged as the major issues after an initial team of experts were convened to review the extensive national survey conducted by FAT-Africa.

Additional issues, which include; Good Financial Governance and Accountability, Public Sector Corruption, Transparency in Governance, Funding Political Parties, Inclusiveness and Equal Opportunity for all, and an Effective Sanctions Regime, also emerged from the five thematic governance challenges.

He said vital issues, such as Human Development and Pro-poor Programmes, Good Quality and Purposeful Education, Youth employment, Accelerated agriculture development, Rapid Industrialisation and Tourism Development, Accelerated Economic Growth, Environmental Protection and Climate Change, Human Rights and Rule of Law, Improved Health Services for all, as well as Quality Public Infrastructure, were also considered.

He said the survey revealed that, unemployment had assumed an urban phenomenon, where the proportion of the youth who were inactive and out of education were more than one-third of those in rural areas.

It was established that about 14 per cent of the youth fall into the “Not in Employment, Education or Training” category and were thus vulnerable to violent behaviour, which could pose a security threat.

Mr Asare said based on the stark realities elected governments were, to among other things, develop a decent work idea for the country, which encapsulated fair income for all, job security, social protection for families, freedom to organise into social and trade unions and equality of opportunities.

He said the document also demanded that mechanisms be urgently put in place to enhance the quality of trained teachers in all public and private schools, provide adequate and timely teaching and learning aids, as well as school infrastructure to enhance teaching and learning.

It also seeks to ensure that the Ghana Education Service strengthens its monitoring and supervisory role as well as compliance with educational standards in both public and private schools.

It urges elected Governments to introduce diverse policies, aimed at food security for all Ghanaians, tackle the problematic land tenure systems that leaves the farmer attached to small holder farms with limited incentives to invest in farms.

They must also introduce measures that would place farmers in the position to afford improved technology and also venture into commercial agriculture so that young farmers would remain attracted to farming rather than leaving the sector.

He said Ghanaians demanded that key social protection intervention programmes, such as the Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty, Capitation Grants and School Feeding Programme, National Health Insurance Scheme and Labour Intensive Public Works be put in place, to address extreme poverty and other human development deficits.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Paris Jackson's Not Engaged!

Paris Jackson is not engaged to her rocker BF, Michael Snoddy, despite photos of them both wearing rings on their engagement fingers.

Paris and Snoddy, a drummer for Street Drum Corps, have only been dating a few months, so a proposal seemed unlikely.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

I Swallowed Snake, Killed Over 20 Ladies Sakawa Man, Zigha, Confesses

The Sakawa story of young guys in the country still continues as another man known as Mike Zigha is out telling the world how he was initiated into the evil world and some of the sacrifices he made.

The man who is now an evangelist was on Hitz FM’s This Is Gospel (TIG) show hosted by Franky5 and during the long chat, he made several shocking revelations.

Mike Zigha after telling the world how he was admitted into the obscure society continued that he killed countless people through different means because the spirit kept changing how it needed the sacrifices.

Narrating how he renewed his vows, he disclosed that most ladies he slept with died days after their encounter. He added that it got to a time he had to let his bodyguards go round picking pads, which had menses for his ritual. These innocent ladies whose menses were used he said died few days after the sacrifice.

Not only that, Mike Zigha told Franky5, host of the show that he was tasked to swallow snake. He also disclosed that he had to support some popular men of God to also join the evil world.

Mr. Zigha continued that he decided to leave everything behind when he realised all his friends he started the evil act with were dying giving him a sign that his time was due.

Saying goodbye to the occult world was another horror for Mike Zigha.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Rob Kardashian's Family Scared for His Life After Massive Weight Gain

Rob Kardashian has given up on life again, retreating to the confines of his home and gaining all his weight back ... so claim members of his family who are worried his life is now in danger.

Our Kardashian sources say ... Rob and Blac Chyna have split, and he's been living at his own home for nearly 2 months, almost never walking out his front door.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Police Begins Investigations Into Bole-Bamboi Clashes

Police in the Northern Region have commenced investigations into recent clashes at Babator in the Bole-Bamboi District in the Northern Region.

Two rival factions, the Gonjas and the Moshi clashed over a parcel of land two days ago.

The clashes left a Chief priest in the area in vital condition. Speaking to Citi News, the Bole District Police Commander, ASP David Azumah said, quiet has been restored.

He said, “According to our investigations so far, the chief priest alleged those who came to his out accosted him so he reported the case to Bomboi Police and a medical report form has been issued to him to go to the hospital for treatment.

We are currently waiting for him to return with his medical form for us to continue with the investigation.”

He added that “The place is calm, there is nothing going on, and everyone is going about their businesses without any problem. No arrest has been made yet, we are still investigating the matter.”

‘9 die in Chieftancy conflict’

In July this year, 9 people died as a result of clashes between two feuding factions at Kiblima, a community in the Bole/Bamboi district of the Northern Region.

An opinion leader in the area told Citi News that the enskinment of Kilblima-Wura Suale Mahama by the overlord of Gonjaland traditional area triggered the bloody conflict.

According to him, residents of the community rejected Kiblima-Wura Suale Mahama and also enskinned their preferred choice. They described Kiblima-Wura Suale Mahama’s enskinment as an imposition on the community, hence their action.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

All Set For SHS Placement

All is set for the placement of this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) candidates into senior high schools and technical institutes (TIs).
This follows the West African Examinations Council’s (WAEC) submission of the raw scores of the candidates to the Computerised School Selection and Placement System (CSSPS) Secretariat.

The Head of Public Affairs of WAEC, Mrs Agnes Teye-Cudjoe, who confirmed the submission of the raw scores to the Junior Graphic, said the council also submitted results of the 321 schools that were withheld as investigations into the matter had been completed. 

“Now we do not have any results in our custody, everything has been sent to the CSSPS,” the Head of Public Affairs of WAEC, Mrs Agnes Teye-Cudjoe, told the Junior Graphic. 

She said some of the results of candidates from the 321 schools were cancelled but could not give the details of the cancelled results. 

The raw scores are the actual marks obtained by the candidates in the various subjects. The total raw scores of six subjects; four core and two other best subjects,  are used to place the candidates in schools according to their choices rather than the grades they had.

A total of 516,867 vacancies have been declared in SHSs and technical institutes for the placement of this year’s BECE candidates.

The vacancies are in 832 public and private SHSs, 151 technical institutes and 41 community day SHSs.

According to the regional breakdown of vacancies, the Ashanti Region has the highest number of 130,512, followed by the Eastern Region with 81,442 and the Greater Accra Region with 53,817 vacancies. 

The others are: Volta Region, 56,051; Brong Ahafo, 51,435; Central, 50,931; Western, 35,050; Northern, 27,447; Upper East, 16,435 and Upper West, 13,747 vacancies. 

A total of 460,930 candidates, made up of 239,898 males and 221,031 females, sat for the examination this year. The number is 5.25 per cent higher than last year’s. 

The candidates were from 14,267 schools and the examination was administered in 1,598 centres. 

Out of the number of candidates who registered for the examination, 3,281 (0.7 per cent) were absent.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Tecno Expands Into New Markets

Africa’s leading mobile manufacturer of high-end smartphones and feature phones â€" TECNO, has announced its expansion into the Middle East. Celebrating its tenth anniversary year, the move into the region comes after successfully establishing itself as one of the biggest phone brands in Africa.

Over the past decade, the mobile phone penetration rate in Africa has risen to 80% from 6%, with TECNO Mobile products shipped to over 30 African countries. Currently, the Chinese mobile multinational enjoys its largest market share of 41.1% and 31.1% in Tanzania and Nigeria respectively. Also, recent market survey places TECNO Mobile as Africa’s No 1 smartphone brand, controlling an average 25.3% market share of the entire African market â€" the highest for any mobile phone manufacturer.

“We believe that emerging markets are where the future growth is for smartphones,” said Vane Ni, Global Marketing lead, TECNO Mobile.

 “We are excited to be making our Middle Eastern debut with the launch of our latest Phantom flagships, the TECNO Phantom 6 and 6 plus. The Middle East will be an critical market for us as part of our growth strategy. We believe it is the perfect landscape to be taking our next step” Vane added.

IDC 2015 report on Africa puts sales of smartphones on the increase, by 108% which surprisingly represents only one third of the total mobile phone sales volume in the African market. While the worldwide smartphone market growth is showing a noticeable slowdown, emerging markets are just taking off.

International Data Corporation (IDC)* report also showed decline in mobile phone shipments to the Middle East in 2016 which it attributed to a lack of smartphone innovation and a variety of socioeconomic factors. Phones priced less than $300 now make up 52% of the GCC's smartphone market, with consumers looking for an attractive value proposition, IDC stated.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Ford Gift Saga: Mahama Breached Gift Policy - CHRAJ

The Commission of Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ) has said the president breached the country's gift policy in accepting the controversial Ford gift given by a Burkinabe contractor Djibril Kanazoe.

However, the Commission in its preliminary investigations concluded the president's action did not breach the bribery, corruption or conflict of interest laws of the country.

The findings were contained in a 78-paged report released by CHRAJ, Thursday.

The Commission received three petitions, two from political parties, the Progressive People's Party and the Convention People's Party Youth League and one from a private citizen, Nana Addo Ofori.

The petitions followed a Joy News investigative piece by Manasseh Azure Awuni which revealed how the Burkinabe contractor struck a friendly cord with the presidency, gave a Ford gift to then Vice president John Mahama, now president and how the contractor was given three separate contracts by the government.

The president admitted receiving the gift but said he handed it over to the state to be added to the pool of vehicles at the presidency. He however vehemently rejected any allegation of bribery, corruption or a breach of the Procurement laws in the award of the three contracts to the Burkinabe contractor.

Not happy with the admission by the president, the petitioners proceeded to CHRAJ, demanding, among other things, a thorough investigation into the matter, ascertain whether or not the president breached the conflict of interest provisions in the constitution and whether or not the president's conduct amounted to bribery.

Forinstance Article 284 provides that:
A public officer shall not put himself in a position where his personal interest conflicts or is likely to conflict with the performance of the functions of his office. The petitioners have cause to believe that by receiving the Ford gift the president put himself in a conflict of interest position especially after it emerged that the same contractor who donated the Ford vehicle subsequently received contracts, some of which the Auditor General found problematic.

In accordance with provisions of Article 287 of the 1992 Constitution, the Commission wrote to the president requesting him to comment on the allegations made against him.

The president, through his lawyer, Tony Lithur, responded to the allegations in a letter dated July 18 2016 and denied claims of bribery, corruption and conflict of interest.

The Commission therefore begun an independent preliminary investigation into the matter to ascertain whether the claims made by all parties had basis.

The investigation saw the Commission speaking to key players in the scandal, including ministers of state, Manasseh Azure Awuni, as well as evaluating essential documents including A declaration that Quedrago Cheik Mohammed, the alleged importer of the said Ford Expedition 2010 model with engine No. E173A1905101 and Chassis No. IFMJUIJ58AEB748 was an instrument of fraud in the hands of the sitting President of the Republic of Ghana, John Dramani Mahama.

CHRAJ concluded its investigations and found as follows;

On whether the president breached the guidelines spelt out in the gift policy, the Commission on the evidence of the document and admissions, found the president guilty.

On the issue of whether the acceptance of the gift placed the president in a conflict of interest situation, the commission observed that the acceptance of prohibited gift, did not in itself constitute conflict of interest. However, it is the failure to declare the gift to the appropriate institutions; and failing to take oneself away from any transaction involving the giver of the gift is what constitutes conflict of interest. The Commission said because the president declared the gift, surrendered it to the state's vehicle pool and did not use his public office for private benefit he could not have been found to have breached the conflict of interest procedures.

Please click here to read the Commission's decision.

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By Ghana Leaks Blog

One Shot Dead In Nungua Over Land Dispute

One person has been shot dead and another injured following a misun­derstanding over a half plot of land at Coco Beach, Nungua in Accra.

The deceased person, identified by the police only as Razak, is alleged to be among three armed men who attacked one Bismark Attoh over the piece of land.

The said land has been under litigation between Bismark Attoh and Ebenez­er Ekow Agaim for years now, according to police reports.

An injured person, also identified only as Ansah, is on admission at the 37 Mili­tary Hospital receiving treatment.

The body of Razak been deposited at the Police Hospital for preservation.

Police reports indicated that the three armed men were allegedly led by one Ebenezer Ekow Agaim, one of the litigants at Coco Beach, Nungua.

The Accra Regional Police Public Relations Officer, ASP Afia Tenge said the incident occurred on Mon­day, September 26, 2016 at about 7:15 pm.

She said the three men, armed with knives, went to the house of Bismark Attoh and allegedly attacked him over the said disputed land.

She said unknown to the three men, Attoh was armed with a pump action gun and immediately they attacked him, he fired the weapon indiscriminately at them.

In the course of the melee, Attoh allegedly shot and killed one of the three men in the process.

Ansah also sustained gunshot injuries but Agaim was able to escape.

ASP Afia Tenge said the Nungua police later received a distress call from some neighbours upon hearing the gunshots and had since arrested Agaim and Attoh to support investi­gate the matter.

The police also retrieved the pump action gun used by Attoh, two empty shells and three knives.

Further investigations revealed that Agaim had earlier led a group of men to the litigated land to offload a truck full of stones.

Attoh allegedly went there to confront them and he was beaten mercilessly by the gang.

This made him arm himself when they visited his house to attack him and succeeded in shooting one of his attackers.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Trump-Clinton Debate Breaks TV Record

The presidential debate between Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump was watched by 84 million people on US TV, breaking a previous record set 36 years ago.

Jimmy Carter and Ronald Reagan's debate in 1980 drew 80.6 million viewers.

Read Full Story ....HERE >>>[1] :   Source: BBC  

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By Ghana Leaks Blog

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Former Israeli President, Shimon Peres Dies Aged 93

Shimon Peres, who served twice as Israel's prime minister and once as president, has died at the age of 93.

Mr Peres suffered a stroke two weeks ago. His condition had improved before a sudden deterioration on Tuesday.

His son Chemi led tributes to "one of the founding fathers of the state of Israel" who "worked tirelessly" for it.

Mr Peres was one of the last of a generation of Israeli politicians present at the new nation's birth in 1948.

He won the Nobel Peace prize in 1994 for his role negotiating peace accords with the Palestinians a year earlier.

He once said the Palestinians were Israel's "closest neighbours" and might become its "closest friends".

Mr Peres died in a hospital near Tel Aviv early on Wednesday, with his family at his bedside.

He had been in the intensive care unit of the Sheba Medical Centre after suffering a major stroke on 13 September.

'Giant among men'
He "left us without suffering", said Rafi Walden, his son-in-law.

Mr Peres's son, Chemi, said of his father: "He served our people before we even had a country of our own.

"He worked tirelessly for Israel from the very first day of the state to the last day of his life.

"My father used to say - and I'm quoting - you are only as great as the cause you serve."

Israel's Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu expressed his "deep personal sorrow over the passing of the nation's beloved former president".

Meanwhile US President Barack Obama called Mr Peres his "dear friend" in a statement, and said: "He was guided by a vision of the human dignity and progress that he knew people of goodwill could advance together."

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Signs That You've Lost Yourself In A Relationship

A lot of people think that the process of losing oneself in a relationship is very obviousâ€"that it always involves things like dressing exactly like the partner, assuming all of his friends, giving up their careers to be a kept woman and disappearing from social media.

Most women think, “If I were losing myself in a relationship, I’d know it.” But, by the very nature of losing one’s self, you won’t see it coming when it happens.

Losing yourself also means losing some very critical things like perspective and feelings of self-worthâ€"all of which you need to have intact to see anything clearly.

So, no, you probably won’t see it if you’re losing yourself in a relationship. You just have to know the signs ahead of timeâ€"write them down somewhereâ€"so if it ever happens you can take a long hard look in the mirror and say, “It’s happening…” Here are signs you lose yourself in relationships.

You suck at texting your friends back

You’ve started getting a lot of, “Hello?” texts, “Are you alive?” messages and “Alright, guess you don’t want to response me…” follow-ups. You’re so lost in the relationship you can’t take two seconds to respond to your friends.

A small argument can destroy your week

Fighting with your partner sucks, but it shouldn’t destroy your week. It should ruin your ability to enjoy the things you used to enjoy, like yoga, happy hour, walks on the beach, etc. You’re too consumed with the relationship if that’s happening.

You think a lot before you speak

You find yourself doing a lot of thinking before you speak. You want every sentence to come out perfectly…That’s probably because you’re frightened of losing your partner because you’ve lost yourself,so you never want to accidentally upset him.

You take too many pictures together. Too many

It’s funny how the people who have the most photos on social media with their significant other also seem to have, well, the most significant others. Putting up 12 photos a day together is usually a sign that you cling desperately to the relationship because it’s all you have left.

Your goals have come to a halt

You’ve stopped attending that night class, going to those networking events, sending out ask letters, attending work happy hours and such. You now spend all the free time you used to spend on forwarding your career with your partner.

You only feel present when he’s there

If you’re not with your partner, you cannot focus on the people around you or the thing you are doing. Moments without him just seem like wasted moments. That could be love…but it could also mean that you don’t know how to be happy without your partner anymore.

You can’t remember the last time you did what you wanted to do

Let’s see: last weekend you hiked to that monument he wanted to see and saw the movie he wanted to watch. The weekend before that you visited his old college friend in another town. The weekend before that the two of you worked on his work presentation…

You consult your partner on everything

You compulsively call your partner to query what sandwich you should order, how much you should cut your hair, what font to use on your resume and just about any minuscule decision you come across. It’s as if you’ve lost the ability to think for yourself.

You won’t make plans without consulting him

Your friend asks you to hang out on Saturday. You know that you don’t have plans on Saturday. But you would first like to make sure that your partner didn’t have something he wanted to do with you Saturday. But, wait: didn’t your friend just call dibs on your Saturday?

The concept of being alone terrifies you

If the concept of being alone terrifies you, then you’ve definitely lost yourself in the relationship. It’s normal to feel very sad at the thought of losing someone you love, but it’s not normal to feel like you wouldn’t know how to function.

Your mom suggests you take some personal time

Hint, hint: maybe if you remove yourself from the relationship for all of ten minutes, reflect on things, and spend time with friends and family you’ll realize that your relationship is unhealthy.

Your friends say things like, “look who crawled out of her hole.”

This is your friends’ very polite warning that you’re getting close to losing them as a friend entirely since you put your relationship way above them.

And “can we steal you away for one night?”

This is another polite way your friends will imply that you let your boyfriend completely control your life and your schedule, so much so that they feel like they have to get permission to hang out with you.

You won’t go on a trip without your partner

Travel is still incredibly enriching without a romantic partner. In fact, it can be even more enriching because you’re totally free to do what you want to do. If you won’t go on a trip without your partner, you’re totally lost in the relationship.

You’re very defensive of the relationship

You usually know on a subconscious level that your attachment to this partner has reached unhealthy levels. As a result, you become especially defensive when anyone suggests as much.

You feel a burst of rage and resentment

When you lose yourself in a relationship, you end up making too many compromises. You don’t speak up much, you don’t say what you want or need, and you mostly just lay down to the will of the other person. This will lead you to feel strong and bizarre bursts of rage and resentment.

You align yourself with other lost women

You find yourself drawn to women whose whole lives are their partners. All they talk about is their partners, they plan their lives around their partners, and they run home the second their partner calls.

You say “we” all of the time

So you’ve completely lost a sense of personal identity at this point. It’s okay to say “we” when someone actually asked you something about you and your partner. But if you just say “we” instead of “I” all of the time, that’s scary.

Your wardrobe/taste in food/interests has done a 180

You went from a diehard vegan to a diehard meat eater; you went from wearing mostly jeans and tank tops to wearing pleated pants, expensive blouses, and designer shoes. A lot of people don’t even recognize you anymore.

Every partner has been drastically different

Women who lose themselves in relationships are generally just, well, lost. So their boyfriend choices are rather eclecticâ€"it’s a symptom of the fact that they have no concept who they are. One boyfriend will be the CEO of a financial firm, and the next will be a couch-crasher/life coach/jewelry maker.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Family Planning Use Still Low In Central - GHS

The Ghana Health Service (GHS) has expressed worry about the low patronage of family planning services in the Central Region, despite the increase in awareness campaigns.

It said, though the Region had more than 90 per cent awareness on family planning, many of its residents, especially women, were adamant to accept it, while teenage pregnancy continued to increase in the communities.

Ms Margaret Forson, the Deputy Central Regional Director, in charge of Public Health at the GHS, expressed the worry when she addressed media practitioners and other key stakeholders at a media briefing after the National launch of Family Planning Week Celebration, in Cape Coast, on Tuesday.

The celebration was launched on Monday, September 26, in Accra, on the theme: “Family Planning is Your Life: Take Control, It is an Everyday Thing”.

Ms Forson stated: “It is very disturbing to note that family planning acceptor rate in the Central Region is on a downward trend from 16. 5 per cent in 2012 to 13. 5 per cent in 2015; but now it stands at 15.6 per cent”.

She said the Abura-Asebu- Kwamankese (AAK) District had the higher acceptor rate with 35 per cent, while Assin South and Hemang Lower Denkyira all recorded very low percentages in patronage.

She said a high patronage of family planning services would reduce maternal deaths, infant mortality, unwanted pregnancies and abortion as well as improved wellbeing of women and children in general.

She said family planning was one of the most cost effective interventions available to save lives and improve the health of children and mothers, and called on the communities to get involved and create an enabling environment to strengthen family planning education. 

She mentioned negative perceptions, discriminatory attitudes, lack of trained service personnel in some family planning methods, lack of education, lack of male involvement, socio-cultural as well as religious beliefs as some of the major hindrances to the efforts by GHS.

Ms Forson, however, said the acceptance of family planning services would be high with the support of males, and urged male groups to strongly involve themselves as it would enable them, as fathers, to properly cater for the needs of their families.

She noted that as long as young people remained sexually active, they would not stop engaging in sex, therefore, there was the need to make information on reproductive health available and guide them to make informed decisions about family planning.

She called on both the young and adults to patronise family planning services to promote reproductive health and ensure socio-economic development.

She said the Health Directorate would continue to embark on sensitisation programmes and build the capacities of service providers to improve family planning service provision and counselling adding that, the Directorate was determined to close the family planning gap.

Mr. Mathew Ahwireng, the Regional Health Education Officer, who led a discussion on the role of the media in promoting family planning acceptance, urged the media practitioners to devote much time to talk about family planning.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Government Appointees Must Swear To Deities - Kwaku Bonsam

The dreaded Afrancho-based fetish priest, Nana Kwaku Bonsam is set to petition the President, John Mahama and Parliament of Ghana next week to amend the constitutional provision of Ghana to enable all elected and appointed government officials take a traditional oath “ntam” and curses of deity invoked on them before assuming their various position to prevent misappropriation of State funds.

Nana Kwaku Bonsam, who was speaking in an interview with Koforidua-based Kingdom FM’s Kwaku Dawuro on the Dwedwam programme, said that is the only means to safeguard the state purse.

Kwaku Bonsam believes this will instill fear in corrupt officials not to mess with State coffers.

He said politicians who steal money and mismanage State resources are left off the hook all the time in the name of Christian and Islamic religion.

“They steal our money because they swear with the Bible and Quran, so let them swear with the deity even if they are Christians or Muslims.

The fight against corruption is not an easy one. However, it can be won with concerted efforts,’ he added.

According to Nana Kwaku Bonsam, he wants to make corruption and phantom election campaign promises a costly enterprise with the threat of a curses.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

First 'Three Person Baby' Born Using New Method

The world's first baby has been born using a new "three person" fertility technique, New Scientist reveals.

The five-month-old boy has the usual DNA from his mum and dad, plus a tiny bit of genetic code from a donor.

US doctors took the unprecedented step to ensure the baby boy would be free of a genetic condition that his Jordanian mother carries in her genes.

Experts say the move heralds a new era in medicine and could support other families with rare genetic conditions.

But they warn that rigorous checks of this new and controversial technology, called mitochondrial donation, are needed.

It's not the first time scientists have created babies that have DNA from three people - that breakthrough began in the late 1990s - but it is an entirely new and significant method.

Three person babies

Mitochondria are tiny structures inside nearly every cell of the body that convert food into usable energy.

Some women carry genetic defects in mitochondria and they can pass these on to their children.

In the case of the Jordanian family, it was a disorder called Leigh Syndrome that would have proved fatal to any baby conceived. The family had already experienced the heartache of four miscarriages as well as the death of two children - one at eight months and the other at six years of age.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Let's Work Together To Push Education -Tourism Minister

Mrs Elizabeth Ofosu-Adjare, the Minister of Tourism, Culture and Creative Arts, has said education, being an instrument of change and development, is a shared responsibility.

“As parent, the only legacy we can bequeath to our children is fine education,’’ she added.

Mrs Ofosu-Adjare was speaking at a durbar to climax the celebration of a week-long Munufie festival at Mpuasu-Japekrom.

Nana Amoah Aturu, Nkonkonkyia II, the Omanhene of Mpuasu-Japekro, used the opportunity to launch the “Omanhene’s Educational Endowment Fund”.

The festival affords the people of Japekrom the opportunity to come together to plan its developmental projects.

Mrs Ofosu-Adjare said education offered the surest route for empowering the people and it was a major social project to addressing decades of underdevelopment.

She said this would make Japekrom and its environs a learning society by developing the talents and harnessing the skills of all.

She said fine education offered young ones the basic tools for life and work.

She advised the youth, who would benefit from the Fund, to make fine use of the opportunity to make positive changes in the area.

“Government, teachers and parents need to work together by using education to improve our lives,” she said.

Mrs Ofosu-Adjare, therefore, urged parents to reduce the high expenditure mode of funeral activities and rather invest in their children’s education.

She said the Government would continue to provide the investment and necessary logistics to make education accessible and improve the quality of life of the people.

The Minister called on Nananom to help the Government’s effort to ensure a peaceful, free and fair elections.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

US Names First Ambassador To Cuba In More Than 50 Years

The United States has tapped career diplomat Jeffrey DeLaurentis to become the first official ambassador to Cuba in more than five decades.

"The appointment of an ambassador is a commonsense step forward toward a more normal and productive relationship between our two countries," President Barack Obama said in a statement on Tuesday.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

RTI Coalition Fear Parliament Will Abandon Bill

Members of the Coalition on the Right to Information (RTI) have expressed fear that the country’s decade old information bill would not be passed before the end of the Sixth Parliament.

The Coalition, in a statement to the Ghana News Agency, in Accra, noted that: “Being an election year, the failure by the 6th Parliament to pass the Bill before its tenure lapses would mean that the process will have to begin all over again with a new Parliament.”

The Coalition said the progress to secure the review and passage of the Bill, since 2013 when the executive resubmitted it before legislators, had been “very slow.”

The consideration of the Bill was stalled in June 2016 due to the “lack of political will” by Parliament to give priority to the Bill at the Consideration Stage.

The Coalition said it petitioned President John Dramani Mahama, through the Chief of Staff, on August 18, this year, appealing to the President “to deliver on his Party’s previous manifesto promises,” but “till date the Coalition has not received any answer to the petition.

“It is interesting to read the NDC’s 2016 Manifesto promising as part of its 2017 to 2021 commitments to ‘implement the Right to Information Bill when passed by Parliament, same promise that was made in 2012,” it said.

According to the Coalition, the NDC omitted “very relevant” part of the 2012 manifesto in its 2016 policy document, which had stated, “The next NDC administration will…and work with the Legislature to prioritise the passage of the Freedom of Information Bill.”

The Coalition also questioned whether Ghanaians should wait for another four years before the law was put in place, saying “as Co-Chair of eminent persons on the SDGs and given that the UNESCO’s celebration this year focus on ‘powering sustainable development with public access to information, shouldn’t the passage of RTI law be a priority now?

“We would like President Mahama to know that Ghana as the beacon of democracy in Africa, as he emphasised at the recent UN General Assembly is lagging behind in terms of promoting access to information for citizens to effectively participate in governance and make informed choices,” the statement said.

Many African countries, including those in democratic transitions, have passed the Right to Information Bill.

They are; South Sudan, Guinea, Niger, Cote d’Ivoire, Liberia, Sierra Leone, Togo, Nigeria, Rwanda, and most recently, Kenya and Tanzania.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Shocking Moment Woman Is Pictured Performing AS3x Act On A DINOSAUR Model

THIS is the shocking moment a woman was pictured performing a sex act on a dinosaur model at a kids park in a seaside resort.

The explicit image â€" described as an “all time low” â€" shows the woman naked from the waist down straddling the model.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Make Kintampo Ghanas Capital - SADA Boss

The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Savanna Accelerated Development Authority (SADA), Mr Charles Abugri is advocating for Kintampo in the Brong Ahafo Region, to be made the national capital of the country.

He observes that the area is at the centre of the country aside its vast landmass and also accessible by other parts of the country.

Speaking at the World Tourism Day Commemorated on Tuesday September 27, 2016, he observed that the area is abound with enough facilities to be used as the country’s capital and therefore appealed to relevant authorities to take it into consideration.

“This is the centre of the country and very easy to reach. If ever we have a choice to relocate a national capital, this ought to be the national country”, he said.

His proposition concurs with a similar one by the Director General of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) Dr. Nii Moi Thompson who thinks the capital needs to be relocated.

A Former CPP Presidential Aspirant Prof Agyeman Badu Akosa is also among a tall list of persons who proposed that Ghana’s political and administrative capital be moved from Accra to an enclave between Gonjaland and the Brong Ahafo region.

“I have not been there but looking at the map of Ghana, it sits at the Geographical centre. It is my ‘peninsular’ of the Northern region surrounded by the Brong Ahafo region”, the Pathologist observed.

He said the enclave, which is bordered to the North and North East by the Volta Lake, has shores that can be beautified and not used for free ranged activities. It is surrounded by the South East and West by the Brong Ahafo region.

“The only way it is currently administered by the Northern region is by a trip from Tamale to Kintampo, Nkoranza, Ejura, Atebubu before one gets to this project of the East Gonja District. Let me reiterate that it will open up Ghana tremendously and reduce the tension that goes with overcrowded and ethnic tensions that have surfaced the present capitation from time to time”.

He believes that move will not only open up the country but also transfer development to other parts of Ghana.

“It would, in my view, open up this country for greater development; bring the country closer together; nowhere will be more than 400 km from the capital and will therefore have greater accessibility and bring the people together”, he argued.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Mental Illness Is Not A Curse

Mental illness, according to medicine is a chronic disorder diagnosed most often by a psychiatrist, of a behavioral or mental pattern that may cause suffering or a poor ability to function in life.

Such features may be persistent, relapsing and remitting, or occur as a single episode. Many disorders have been described, with signs and symptoms that vary widely between specific disorders.

The causes of mental disorders are often unclear. Theories may incorporate findings from a range of fields.

Mental disorders are usually defined by a combination of how a person behaves, feels, perceives or thinks.

This may be associated with particular regions or functions of the brain, often in a social context.

It is believed that cultural and religious beliefs, as well as social norms, should be taken into account when making a diagnosis.

Services are based in psychiatric hospitals or in the community, and assessments are carried out by psychiatrists, clinical psychologists and clinical social workers, using various methods but often relying on observation and questioning.

Treatments are also provided by various mental health professionals and psychotherapy and psychiatric medication are two major treatment options.

Other treatments include social interventions, peer help and self-help while in a minority of cases there might be involuntary detention or treatment. Prevention programmes have been shown to reduce depression.

According psychiatrists and historians, common mental disorders in Ghana include depression, dementia and schizophrenia.

Stigma and discrimination could also add to the suffering and disability associated with mental disorders, leading to various social movements attempting to increase understanding and challenge social exclusion.

Mental health problems could cover a broad range of disorders, but the common characteristic is that they all affect the affected person’s personality, idea processes or social interactions.

They could be difficult to clearly diagnose, unlike physical illnesses.

Sometimes clinical history, family history and outlook are similar among a group of people with mental disorders and in these situations, their condition could be defined as a specific disorder syndrome.

According to medical experts, the human brain is the source of mental illness.

Although the symptoms of a disorder may affect any part of the body, the electrical events that produce the symptoms occur in the brain.

Societal myth surrounding mental disorders is a huge challenge that impedes treatment of patients.

Because of societal marginalisation, discrimination and stigmatisation of epileptic patients, some family members fail to send patients for treatment or seek medical advice with the concept that the problem is linked with witchcraft.

Though medicine have proven beyond every reasonable doubt that strict adherence to the course of medication could facilitate treatment and curing process of people with mental disabilities, families conceal them in homes to protect family dignity.

Sometimes the situation is very horrible in deprived areas as communities continue to stigmatise patients, families and relatives of the mentally-deranged because they habour the superstitious belief that the ailment is linked to witchcraft and trans-generational curse. 

Lack of required human resources and other necessary logistics over the years, increased access to mental health treatment services still remains a challenge in the country.

But in the Brong-Ahafo Region, the opportunity has been created to augment government’s efforts and  thanks to MIHOSO International, a health centred non-governmental organisation (NGO) and its partners for the implementation of a three-year project on mental health in the Region.

The NGO in collaboration with BasicNeeds Ghana, another NGO sought funding from the Department for International Development of the United Kingdom and started the project’s implementation in all the 27 Municipal and District Assemblies in the Region in 2014.

According to Dr Gabriel Gbiel Benarkuu, the Chief Executive Officer of MIHOSO International, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency said the three- year project expected to end in 2017 aimed at fighting discrimination and improve access to quality healthcare for patients in the Region.

The project, he said after two and half years of implementation had achieved significant successes.

Outlining some of the achievements, Dr Benarkuu said almost all public health facilities in the eight Municipal and 19 District Assemblies in the Region had accepted the need to integrate mental healthcare into mainstream health care delivery.

Initially, the CEO observed that stigmatisation of mental illness patients is very high in the health facilities as some health workers abuse the rights of patients when they seek medical attention.

Aside these, Dr Benarkuu said the project had identified and trained managers of 69 prayer camps and traditional healers and created a link between them and the various Municipal and District Directorates of Health Services in the treatment and curing processes of patients.

He stated that 112 people suffering from mental illness and epilepsy have been put into groups in 17 Districts with many of them engage in employable skills training to enhance their socio-economic well-being.

Dr Benarkuu said the project had also trained 100 community volunteers who detect and refer early warning signs of mental and other neurological disorders to mental health coordinators in the various Districts.

He called for a Legislative Instrument (LI) to facilitate a realistic implementation of the Mental Health Law, saying because of the lack of an LI, the law could not operate effectively.

Mr Joseph Yere, the Regional Coordinator of Mental Health told the epilepsy is recording high figures in the Region.

The cases were highly reported among patients from four -18 years, he said and commended MIHOSO international and its partners for the help towards addressing mental health situation in the Region.

He appealed to pregnant women to attend antenatal clinics regularly and ensure that they always deliver at health facilities.

Mr Yere said some mental disorders and epilepsy could be treated when patients strictly adhered to their prescriptions and advised parents and guardians to ensure that the patients regularly took their medication.

He said depression, especially among women is also assuming alarming proportions and  financial constraints and marital problems are some of the causes.

Mr Yere commended government for addressing the recurrent shortages of drugs for mental health patients, saying many are recuperating as a result of drugs availability.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Kojo Bonsu Pops Up At KMA

All hell broke loose when the name of the former Kumasi Mayor, Kojo Bonsu was mentioned during an assembly meeting yesterday.

Aspiring Presiding Member (PM) of the assembly, Nana Kofi Senya, mentioned Kojo Bonsu’s name and it instantly caused confusion at the venue.

Supporters of Kojo Bonsu went wild and nearly pounced on Nana Kofi Senya and his supporters due to the mere mentioning of the name of Kojo Bonsu.

Nana Kofi Senya, who was officially withdrawing from the KMA PM polls, told the House that the KMA is now an orphan because their head, Kojo Bonsu had sadly resigned.

He noted that it was unfortunate that Kojo Bonsu, who was the father of the assembly, resigned to impoverish the Assembly.

Nana Kofi Senya’s comment was seen as a mockery of Mr Bonsu so supporters of the former Kumasi Mayor, who are government appointees, became angry.

They therefore hooted at Nana Kofi Senya, which disrupted the activities of the House for some minutes before sanity eventually prevailed.

Kojo Bonsu and Nana Kofi Senya, a former PM of the KMA, were seen by the public, including the assemblymen, as arch rivals who didn’t see eye to eye.

Government appointees in the House, especially those who are loyal to Kojo Bonsu, claim Nana Senya took steps to make Kojo Bonsu unpopular which eventually led to his resignation.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

We Will Not Spare Election Wreckers - Cephas Arthur

The Director of Public Affairs of the Ghana Police Service Supt Cephas Arthur, has warned to deal ruthlessly with politicians who will want to cause violence during the December polls.

He therefore appealed to the various political parties to desist from causing mayhem before, during and after the elections.

‘Our pepper spray, tear gas, cannons and other accoutrements are ready to be unleashed on election wreckers who will steal ballot boxes,’ he said.

He further called on the citizenry not to engage in activities that will mar the elections and at the end jeopardise the peace enjoyed by Ghanaians.

Police have identified 5,000 flash points in the country, which according to Supt Arthur include area-prone such as land guards, murder, robbery, chieftaincy relatedâ€" issues among others.

Supt Arthur believes all flashpoints will turn into safe points if citizenry abide by rules governing the country.

‘Citizens should channel all their grievances to the appropriate quarters than taking the law into their own hands,’ he urged.

Speaking on Abusua FM’s Abusua Nkommo hosted by Kwame Adinkrah, he further called on Journalists to be circumspect in their reportage, advising them to desist from inflaming passion.

He assured that the service is poised to protect the country before, during and after the elections.

‘We will ensure that the election is quiet just like 2012 election, we will deepen security in all areas, but we are appealing to the National Peace Council, Journalists, National Media Commission (NMC), citizens and Civil Society Organisations (CSos) to support promote peace ahead of the elections,’ he encouraged.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Brad Pitt To Miss Film Premiere After Split

Brad Pitt is to miss a premiere of his latest film to focus on his "family situation", he has said.

The actor has been the focus of press attention since it was revealed that Angelina Jolie has applied for divorce.

Read Full Story ....HERE >>>[1] :   Source: BBC  

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By Ghana Leaks Blog

Jennifer Aniston Secretly Met Brad Pitt Two Months Ago...

JENNIFER Aniston secretly met up with ex-husband Brad Pitt at a posh New York hotel just weeks before his life with Angelina Jolie exploded, claims

According to the US website the meet-up between the former husband and wife was captured on the security cameras at the Gansevoort Hotel as they headed to a private suite.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Shippers Protest New Charges

Players in Ghana's shipping sector are planning a protest against the continuous implementation of Terminal Handling Charges (THC) by the by Shipping lines.

With the new charges, shippers would have to pay between 140 and 155 dollars for a 20-footer container, and 260 to 275 dollars for a 40-footer.

The body says the payment of THC is a duplication of payments as their freight charges covers the THC.

The payment of the THC will mean that shippers would have to cough out about $78 million per year, if it persists.
According the stakeholders, even after the Ministry of Transport on September 2, 2016, issued a directive for shipping companies in the country to stop charging the THC, some continue to flout the directive.

Some of the shipping companies include, International Shipping Agency Ghana, MSC Ghana Limited, Intermodal Shipping Agency, PIL Ghana Limited, MESK Ghana among others.

Shippers, both importers and exporters, have vowed to the resist the Terminal Handling Charge (THC), which some shipping lines operating in the seaports of Ghana are charging locally.

At a news conference on Thursday, September 27, the body asked members to raise hand written protest before they issue any money in connection with the THC.

Members who have already paid have been directed to seek refunds from the shipping lines.

The body leading the charge, comprises of the leadership of the AGI, Ghana National Chamber of Commerce, Ghana Chamber of Mines, Federation of Associations of Ghanaian Exporters, Ghana Union of Traders Associations and Private Enterprise Federation.

The rest are Ghana Root Crops and Tubers Exporters Union, Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders, and the Greater Accra Regional Shippers Committee.

They added that, the THC will continue to increase the ever rising shipping cost in Ghana until all efforts to ensure its total abolishment see the light of day.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

When Tom Hanks Runs Into Your Wedding Photos

For one pair of newly-weds, the professional photographs of their big day will have to compete with a selfie with one happy passer-by - Tom Hanks.

The Oscar-winning actor was out for a jog in Central Park, New York, on Saturday when he bumped into Elisabeth and Ryan who, resplendent in white gown and tuxedo, were having their wedding photos taken.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Rihanna Introduces Her First Ever SS17 Collection...

She has been working hard on her latest project, collaborating with Puma.

And Rihanna was welcomed into the elite realms of high fashion at Paris Fashion Week as she introduced her first ever SS17 collection.

Taking to the catwalk at a packed room in the Hotel de Salomon De Rothschild, the 28-year-old Diamonds singer was full of smiles as the crowd applauded her.

By Ghana Leaks Blog

Serena Williams Vows: 'I Won't Be Silent' On Police Violence

Serena Williams has voiced her fears about police violence, writing on Facebook: "I won't be silent."

The US tennis star posted that she found herself feeling wary of law enforcement during a recent journey with her teenage nephew.

Read Full Story ....HERE >>>[1] :   Source: BBC  

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By Ghana Leaks Blog


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