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General News (9374)

The executive summary of the auditor general's report for the year ending 31st December 2015 has revealed that some 116 MMDAs out of 201 owed a total amount of ghc 9,428,730.92 as at the end of 2015. The bulk of the Assemblies' debts were deposits made to the Assemblies and unpaid retention amount. According to the AG's report, Sefwi Akontonmbra and Suaman Assembly coordinating directors and their finance officers willfully diverted ghc 150,981.00 lands revenue into privately opened bank accounts. In view of this , the Auditor general has recommended that, management should report the theft to the police to institute the necessary action aimed at recovery of the stolen funds. Total income 2015 201 MMDAs out of the 216 in 2015 accrued a total income of ghc 1,228,259, 398.30 , the income sources remained unchanged and comprised of internally generated revenues and external inflows. The internally generated funds accounted for 17.9% of the incomes on the average and amounted to ghc 219,769,349.41, whilst the external inflows were district Assemblies common fund allocations, government grants for salary payments accounted do budgetary support to decentralised department, and grants from Ghana's development partners. Internal Generated Funds The IGF collections continued to declined acrose board mainly because management did not involve their finance and administration sub-commitee to review the rates to be paid as well as devise effective measures for collecting unpaid revenue. The AG has said that , the general weaknesses in accounting for value books and revenue collected also contributed to the low record of IGF collections. Operational Result A total expenditure of the 201 Assemblies amounted to ghc 1,095,075,584.65 as against a total income of the ghc 1,228,269,398.30 as a result, a net surplus of 133,183,813.65 was recorded. Some 18 Assemblies however recorded a total deficit of ghc 8,640,697.91 in their operations. Assets The assets of the MMDAs comprised cash resources with the banks, investments in shares and interest bearing banking products in financial institutions and unredeemed loans granted under the poverty alleviation funds as well as uncovered advances with staff of the Assemblies. The total bank balance of the 201 Assemblies as at 31 December 2015 was ghc 277,568,523.80 with none of the Assemblies endind the year with net overdrawn bank balance, The bulk of the bank balances were held by the metropolitan and municipal Assemblies. Liabilities 116 of the 201 Assemblies owed a total of ghc 9,428,730.92 as at the end of the year. The bulk of the Assemblies, debts were deposits made to the Assemblies and unpaid retention amount.
Mrs. Mary Chinery-Hesse, has taken over from H.E Kofi Annan, as Chancellor for the University of Ghana. Mrs. Chibnery-Hesse was elected to the office and a statement signed by the University’s Registrar, Mercy Haizel Ashia, Mrs. Chinery-Hesse assumes the role officially on 1st August, 2018. The new Chancellor is taking from the former Secretary General who was appointed Chancellor of the University of Ghana in 2009. About Mrs. Chinery-Hesse: About Mrs. Chinery-Hesse: Mrs. Chinery-Hesse is an alumnus of the University of Ghana. She was also awarded an honorary degree of Doctor of Laws (Honoris Causa) by the University of Ghana in 1991. Mrs. Chinery-Hesse is a distinguished national and international public servant. She has also received several prestigious awards and decorations including the Order of the Star of Ghana in 2006, and the Gusi Peace Prize for International Diplomacy and Humanitarianism in 2010. Below is a highlight of her profile: • Chief Advisor, to H.E. John Agyekum Kufuor, May 2006 – January 2009. • Member, Council of University of Ghana, 2006-2009 • Commissioner, Public Utilities Regulatory Commission, 2003 – 2006 • Vice-Chairman, National Development Planning Commission, 2001 – 2009 • Member, National Council for Higher Education,1974 -1980 • First female Deputy Director-General, International Labour Organization (ILO) Geneva, 1989 – 2000. • Chairperson, UN Consultative Committee on Programme Operational Questions (CCPOQ), 1993 – 1998
Communications Director at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin, has refuted claims that government of Ghana will soon legalize homosexuality. He therefore called to disregard any circulation on social media to the effect that the Nana Addo led administration has initiated processes to legalize same sex relationship. According to him, ‘’All official releases from the Communications Directorate at the Presidency are put on the official letterhead, and can be found on website of the Presidency, i.e. www.presidency.gov.gh. No statement has been issued by Government to “initiate process of legalizing same sex marriage in Ghana.” Please disregard any story to that effect.’’
Private legal practitioner, Nana Obiri Boahen, has revealed on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that, he has sued the doctor who reportedly ordered for the removal of oxygen on a nine-week-old baby who died at the St. Gregory Hospital at Kasoa in the Central Region. In an interview with Kwame Tutu, host of Frontline, the lawyer said he filed the suit last week and has equally sued the hospital and administrator over the death of the baby. Nana Obiri Boahen, described the circumstances that led to the death of the baby as inhuman and painful and believes the bereaved parents will use the system to demand for justice. Nana Obiri Boahen told the host that his is offering free legal service to the parents of little Prosper, who died after a doctor reportedly pulled off the oxygen machine as a result of the inability of the parents to pay for the care. Hospital management could face sanctions if it is established that a doctor pulled the plug from an oxygen machine which resulted in the demise of the infant due to the parents' inability to afford the cost of keeping it on. He concluded by saying, although I do not want to sound prejudicial, I believe someone’s neglect caused the death of Little Prosper. I have filed my suit and sued the doctor, administrator and the hospital.
Communications Manager for the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), Barimah Sarpong, has confirmed on Frontline on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that, the firms has received an amount of GHc1.139 billion from government to pay outstanding arrears. He explained to Kwame Tutu today [Tuesday] that amount was used to pay arrears from January to September 2016 adding, we will soon be paying the arrears for October, November and December 2016. ‘’We have used what we received to pay arrears for 2016 (January-September) and we will soon be paying the remaining three months (October-December),’’ he added. On those who have not received payments for 2016, he said, ''that could be a peculiar situation and we would have to look into that situation and find out reasons for that perculiar situation.'' He admonished those who not received the payment to notify the scheme for the anomaly to be corrected. President Akufo-Addo has revealed that his administration has managed to pay GHc 1 billion out of the total GHc1.2 billion debt left by the previous government. According to President Akufo-Addo, “of the GH¢1.2 billion debt we inherited, the equivalent of $300 million, we have paid, in the last 15 months, GH¢1 billion, the equivalent of $250 million.” He added that payments to service providers, since his government took office in January 2017, are current. As a result, “the Scheme is regaining its effectiveness, so that for a minimum amount, subscribers can have access to a wide range of medical services.” President Akufo-Addo made this known on Saturday, 21st April, 2018, when he delivered the keynote speech at the London School of Economics’ Africa Summit, on the theme “Africa at Work: Educated, Employed, Empowered.”
The Association of Private Clinics has disputed claims by government that the outstanding 15 months of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) debt has been settled. Spokesperson for the association, Sam Donkor, told Kwame Tutu in an interview that, government is discriminating against some service providers. He alleges that whereas some have been paid what is due them, others are yet to receive what is owed them by government. President Akufo-Addo has revealed that his administration has managed to pay GHc 1 billion out of the total GHc1.2 billion debt left by the previous government. According to President Akufo-Addo, “of the GH¢1.2 billion debt we inherited, the equivalent of $300 million, we have paid, in the last 15 months, GH¢1 billion, the equivalent of $250 million.” He added that payments to service providers, since his government took office in January 2017, are current. As a result, “the Scheme is regaining its effectiveness, so that for a minimum amount, subscribers can have access to a wide range of medical services.” President Akufo-Addo made this known on Saturday, 21st April, 2018, when he delivered the keynote speech at the London School of Economics’ Africa Summit, on the theme “Africa at Work: Educated, Employed, Empowered.” But reacting to the claims by the president, Sam Donkor said, the health insurance scheme is creating problems in the system. They have paid some service providers and failed to pay others. ‘’As I speak to you today, there is an outstanding arrears of four months from 2016. In 2017, they paid some providers up to September, August, June and May. Why should that be the case? So when we heard that the president saying he has paid almost all the arrears, we were surprised and quizzed where the money was.’’ He lamented that nothing has been paid for 2018 and so it is true the president has said the money has been paid. But where is the money? I will blame the NHIS for creating this problem. They have paid some providers and left others out,’’ he added. When asked how much government owes service providers he said, ‘’government's indebtedness to service providers is 11 months.’’ ''We are suffering because of government's indebtedness. We cannot pay our staff. There is favoritism when it comes to the payment and that is what we cannot understand as service providers. You have asked some people to use an online system and others to use your office but when it comes to the payment, you choose to pay some and leave others out.''
Traditional leaders in the Bia District of the Western Region have threatened to order their youth to beat up politicians who will come to the area to campaign for votes in any upcoming elections. The traditional leaders have issued the threat because they believe government have failed in addressing their challenges. According to the leaders, they have not had their fair share of the national cake and so no politician should mount any campaign platform when the time approaches for the 2020 elections. The chiefs are also saying the district is one of the poorest in terms of developmental projects in the country. They claim that their major challenge is electricity and poor road network. They could have power interruption popularly known as dumsor for more than 20 times in a day without any prior notice and government has promised to solve the challenge but nothing has been done yet. The poor road network is also damaging vehicles and killing passengers through accident, they complained. The past government promised them of constructing the Benchema Nkwanta Oseikrom road but it is now a death trap, they added. ’With these and other challenges we have vowed not to vote or allow any political party to campaign over there during elections until our grievances are addressed,’ spokesperson for the chiefs Nana Kwamebi III said. The youth in the area have also supported the call and promised to carry out the threat by the chiefs.
Canadian police are questioning the suspected driver of a rented van that ploughed into pedestrians in northern Toronto on Monday, killing 10 and injuring 15. Alek Minassian, 25, was not previously known to authorities, police said. The incident appeared to be deliberate but the motive was not clear, officials added. Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau said the "tragic and senseless attack" had brought him "great sadness". Meanwhile, an officer has been praised for not opening fire during a tense standoff with the suspect, who claimed to be armed. Video broadcast on CBC News showed a man pointing what appeared to be a gun at officers and shouting "kill me". The officer tells the man to "get down" and when the suspect says he has a gun, the officer repeats: "I don't care. Get down." The suspect was then arrested without shots being fired. How did the incident unfold? Police said the white rental van mounted the kerb on Yonge Street between Finch Avenue and Sheppard Avenue at about 13:30 local time (17:30 GMT) on Monday and drove into pedestrians along a 2km (1.24 mile) stretch. Reza Hashemi, who owns a video shop on Yonge Street, told the BBC he heard screaming on the other side of the road. He said the van was repeatedly mounting the pavement and running into people. "People, fire hydrants, there's mail boxes being run over," said the unnamed man, who said he was driving behind the van during the incident. As the van continued, the man said he sounded his horn to try to warn pedestrians. "I witnessed at least six, seven people being hit and flying in the air, like killed, on the street," he said. Pictures from the scene showed bodies covered in orange sheets along the van's route. Debris and items of clothing were scattered across the pavements and road. The van was brought to a halt by police several streets away and was quickly surrounded. The suspect was arrested 26 minutes after the first emergency call was made to the police. What is known of the suspect? Police said Alek Minassian was from the northern Toronto suburb of Richmond Hill and was not previously known to authorities. "The actions definitely looked deliberate," said Toronto Police Chief Mark Saunders. Public safety minister Ralph Goodale said there "would appear to be no national security connections" and Canadian broadcaster CBC cited government officials as saying Mr Minassian was not associated with any known terror groups. Minassian had previously attended a school for students with special needs in north Toronto, former classmates said. He would be seen walking around Thornlea Secondary School with his head down and hands clasped tightly together making meowing noises, Shereen Chami told Reuters. But she said Minassian had not been violent. "He wasn't a social person, but from what I remember he was absolutely harmless," she told Reuters. Another former student, Ari Bluff, said Minassian did not seem to have many friends. "I remember seeing him probably just walking down the halls, usually by himself, or in the cafeteria by himself," he said. He was speaking to CBC. Minassian went on to attend Seneca College in the North York area of Toronto, where the van incident took place, CBC reported. What else is known? Van rental company Ryder System Inc confirmed that one of its vehicles was involved and said it was co-operating with authorities. The incident happened while foreign ministers of the G7 leading industrialised nations - Canada, the US, Britain, France, Germany, Italy and Japan - were holding talks in Toronto. Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland said the G7 meetings would continue on Tuesday as planned. "The work of the ministers obviously goes on. This is a very sad day for the people of Toronto and the people of Canada," she said. City Mayor John Tory urged residents to remain calm. "This kind of tragic incident is not representative of how we live or who we are or anything to do with life in the city on a day-to-day basis," he said. The White House issued a statement saying the US "stands with the Canadian people" and offering "any support Canada may need". Source:BBC
The National Democratic Congress (NDC), MP for South Dayi, Mr. Rockson-Nelson E K Dafeamekpor, is alleging that the president has concealed information with regards to the total number of staffers working for him. The list by the president he lamented is incomplete and inaccurate due to embarrassment. The legislator told the host that, the total number of people that should have been on the list was over 1,600. He said, the Minority will continue to demand for the true reflection of the number of people and the emoluments they are enjoying. The MP said he knows some individuals working at the presidency but their names were not captured on the list presented to parliament ‘’and the reason for doing that was to conceal information so Ghanaians will not know they are working with more 1,6000 individuals.I personally know some people who have been given official vehicles and working at the presidency.’’ Speaking in an interview with Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, he alleged added, the president budgeted for a total of 953 staffers but has presented a list of 998 persons and so ‘’the question to ask is, where did the president get the money to pay the others? The letter from the president said as at December 31st, 2017, the number of persons working for him were 998. However, the budget approved for you was for 953.’’ He accused the ruling government of peddling falsehood and doing the opposite of what they promised Ghanaians. ‘’The Nana Addo led administration is using his ‘obolo size’ government to mismanage, overspend and dissipate our resources. When you complain, they will justify the numbers and tell you the president appointed all these individuals for the specific projects he promised Ghanaians and yet, we cannot trace these projects. We will continue to mount pressure on government and demand for further details on the number of staffers working at the presidency. Parliament will resume on Thursday and I am sure this will be part of the issues we will raise on the floor. We will hold them to account for every pesewa,’’ he said. When asked if he agrees with the argument that numbers does not matter but the efficiency, he disagreed saying, numbers matter because this same government when opposition attacked the late Mills for appointing about 75 ministers. They have appointed 110 ministers, he added. He also disputed claims by Defence Minsiter, Dominic Nitiwul that, the current NPP inherited the numbers and has challenged him to provide the list of the persons they inherited.
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Monday, 23rd April, 2018, commissioned the refurbished Sekondi Fishing Harbour, at a ceremony in Sekondi, in the Western Region. According to President Akufo-Addo, “the completion of this harbour is critical, because the fishing industry is an important mainstay not only of many of the residents of Sekondi, but also of some two million Ghanaians across the country.” The refurbishment of the Harbour, which was began by the Mahama administration in July 2016, and now completed by the Akufo-Addo government, the President said, “is evidence of the pledge I made in the run-up to the 2016 general elections that I will not abandon any project merely because it was started by a previous government.” Whilst extending sincere appreciation to the Government and people of Japan, who, through the Japan International Cooperation Agency (JICA), are responsible for the technical and financial support given to this project, President Akufo-Addo underscored the importance of the fishing industry to Ghanaians. He stressed that the welfare of fisher folks in the country are important to his government, “that is why, upon my assumption of office in January last year, I appointed a full Minister to oversee the activities of the sector, just as was done during the period of the 2nd President of the 4th Republic, His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor.” With the first rehabilitation of the Sekondi Harbour taking place in 2005 under the Kufuor-led NPP government, with its attendant boost to the fishing industry, the President stated that this current refurbishment, which cost some US$20 million, has equipped the harbour with a lay-by wharf, access road to boats, a fish market shed, fuel dumps, an administration block, a fresh water storage tank and a state-of-the-art ice-making machine. The ice-making machine has the capacity to produce some 30 tons of ice per day to preserve the catch, as against the previous capacity of 15 tons of ice per day, with the President expecting a substantial rise in the activities of our fisherfolk and traders in Sekondi, and in surrounding communities, following the completion of the Harbour. President Akufo-Addo, thus, charged Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA), responsible for supervision of the Harbour, to take good care of it, in order to protect the US$20million investment for current and future generations. He also used the opportunity to reiterate the unwavering commitment of Government to protect the territorial integrity of our country, in the face of the activities of pirates in the Gulf of Guinea. “We will not allow pirates or criminals to rob us of this hard-won reputation, and create a sense of insecurity on our waters. To the fourteen tuna fishing companies that are reported to have recently halted operations due to the menace posed by the pirates, I urge them to resume. They have the full assurance of Government of their protection and safety, as they go about their day-to-day activities. We will not leave them to fight this menace alone. The full force of the state’s security apparatus is being marshalled to curb the threats of piracy,” the President said. The President also revealed that plans are underway for the construction of mini-fishing harbours and landing sites across the coastal belt of the country. Already, Government has signed an agreement with the Chinese Government for the establishment of the Jamestown fishing port complex, at a cost of US$50 million, with construction scheduled to commence this year. “Under the Fisheries Sector Infrastructural Development Programme, the Ministry of Fisheries will commence the development of three landing sites at Winneba, Mumford and Axim; rehabilitate three public hatcheries at Vea, Sankana and Dormaa-Ahenkro; rehabilitate three fish health laboratories at Takoradi, Koforidua and Kumasi; complete and commission the Anomabo Fisheries College; and refurbish the Tema Boat Yard to increase productivity of fisher folk,” he added. As Co-chair of the Group of Advocates of Eminent Persons of the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, President Akufo-Addo concluded by stressing that “even though we may have little or no control over climate fluctuations or changes, one thing we can have control over is our day-to-day activities.” The President continued, “Illegal, unreported and unregulated fishing (IUU) methods are depleting our fish stocks. Our beautiful coastal wetlands are threatened by high volumes of plastic and metal waste that choke breeding habitats for fish. This must not be allowed to continue. Together, nananom, ladies and gentlemen, let us protect endangered species, achieve food security, and protect our oceans for the future.”
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