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Ghana may soon be slapped with visa restrictions to the United States, a statement from the US Embassy has warned. According to the statement, Ghana has failed to comply with international obligations regarding the issuance of travel documents. The statement indicated that, the US will be forced to begin implementing the visa restrictions in accordance with U.S. law as a responsibility owed to the American people. The statement said he Government of Ghana became a signatory to the Convention on International Civil Aviation which obliges Ghana through its Embassy in Washington, D.C., and its Consulate General in New York to interview deportees on a regular basis and issue the necessary travel documents. "This helps to facilitate deportees’ departure on commercial flights. When the Government of Ghana fails to meet its ICAO obligation regarding the regular issuance of travel documents, the U.S. government is forced to employ charter flights for deportations. The Government of Ghana has the power to reduce, or even end, the use of charter flights by meeting its obligation to issue travel documents in a timely manner," the statement added. Read the entire statement below; Statement on Immigration Law and International Agreements June 20, 2018 Accra, GHANA — As sovereign nations, the Governments of the United States and Ghana each have obligations to their citizens to uphold their laws, as well as obligations to the international community to comply with international agreements. All nations have the right to enforce their immigration laws. The United States embraces its special character as a nation of immigrants, and we continue to welcome those who enter the United States legally and respect U.S. laws. However, enforcing our immigration laws is a responsibility we owe to the American people, just as Ghana enforces its own laws. So far this year, Ghana has used its own legal processes to deport 100 individuals of different nationalities who were found to be in violation of the law. The Government of Ghana became a signatory to the Convention on International Civil Aviation in 1957. Under International Civil Aviation Organization guidelines, the Government of Ghana, through its Embassy in Washington, D.C., and its Consulate General in New York, has an obligation to interview deportees on a regular basis and issue the necessary travel documents. This helps to facilitate deportees’ departure on commercial flights. When the Government of Ghana fails to meet its ICAO obligation regarding the regular issuance of travel documents, the U.S. government is forced to employ charter flights for deportations. The Government of Ghana has the power to reduce, or even end, the use of charter flights by meeting its obligation to issue travel documents in a timely manner. In December 2016, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) identified Ghana as being at risk of non-compliance on removals of those under deportation orders. Since then, the U.S. government has repeatedly engaged the Government of Ghana in both Washington, D.C., and Accra and has urged the government to abide by its international obligations and issue the necessary travel documents so that Ghanaians under deportation orders may depart the United States on commercial flights. If Ghana fails to comply with international obligations regarding the issuance of travel documents, the United States may be forced to begin implementing visa restrictions on Ghana, in accordance with U.S. law. The United States of America takes its legal and human rights obligations very seriously. In the course of enforcing U.S. immigration laws, the U.S. government would strongly prefer that individuals under deportation orders depart the United States via commercial air carriers, as regular passengers. We encourage Ghanaians to abide by legal processes if they seek to immigrate to the United States. We commend the Government of Ghana for taking steps to promote private sector growth that will create employment opportunities for Ghanaians; foster even greater security; and ensure a promising future for Ghana’s youth, thereby minimizing illegal immigration to the United States.
Daniel Asiedu, the prime suspect in the murder of J.B. Danquah Adu has confessed that he was contracted to kill the lawmaker. Daniel Asiedu on Wednesday said that he will name his contractors when the time comes and that they are officials of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP). Asiedu's confession in court came as a surprise. When the case was called Wednesday morning, he raised his hand and indicated that he had something to say. When he was offered the opportunity, he confessed that he was contracted to kill the former Member of Parliament for Abuakwa North. J.B. Danquah Adu was killed in his house at East Legon in February 2015. Daniel Asiedu is currently facing a committal process at the District Court for a murder trial at the High Court. The Attorney General will therefore take account of his confession at the District Court and add it to the bill of indictment for the court to consider whether the state has a prima facie case against Asiedu for him to be tried for murder. It is at the High Court that the jury will determine whether Asiedu is guilty. Credit: GraphicOnline
The body of Dr Aya Hayfron who drowned last Monday has been found in the Kpeshie Lagoon. According to GraphicOnline, body was covered with weeds when it was found. She was carried away by floodwaters at Teshie Rasta in Accra and was swept in the Lagoon, GraphicOnline reported.
The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has advised the National Democratic Congress (NDC), to rescind its decision to boycott the registration for the National Identity cards popularly known as Ghana card. The PPP is of the view that, it will be politically suicidal for the largest opposition party to hold onto their hypocritical and unacceptable stance on the criteria for the registration. Murtala Mohammed, General Secretary of the PPP said, the decision by the Minority to boycott the exercise, is untenable because they exhausted all the laid down procedures before the Act governing the NIA, was amended and unanimously supported its passage. A statement issued by the Minority on the matter read: ‘’…we remain opposed to the restriction of identification requirements for registration to Passports and Birth Certificates. Our analysis show that this will prevent about 23 million Ghanaians from obtaining the Ghana Card and deprive them of any benefit thereof. We also have grave concerns about potential breaches of Procurement laws and processes. In view of the foregoing, we are unbale to participate in the registration exercise slated for tomorrow at Parliament house.’’ But Murtala Mohammed believes the Minority is engaging in a minor political issue and stressed the law was accented by the MPs hence the caucus on the side of the Minority, makes no sense. He challenged them to provide one major reason why the NDC boycotted the issue since in his view, the problems they raised have solutions. ‘’Then we wake up one morning and they said they have boycotted the registration. We [PPP] think that it is unacceptable and the reason given is untenable. It will be a political suicide for the NDC if they fail to rescind the decision to boycott the registration,’’ he posited. ''All they are trying to do is to appeal to a certain category of people in our society. They know that what they are doing is hypocritical but they are trying to score cheap political point. They will soon register. Members on the side of the Minority will soon register. The NDC is playing on the emotion of some group of people so that they people will be agitated.''
The Progressive People’s Party (PPP) has called on the National Identification Authority (NIA) to put in all the needed measures to ensure the successful process of the registration and issuance of Ghana card. According to the PPP, this process must not suffer the hitch like the hitch we encountered in 2008, a situation that led to the suspension of the 2008 process. General Secretary of the PPP, Murtala Mohammed told Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that, ‘’the registration suffered a hitch and was suspended but we want to appeal to the NIA, to do its best and start the process and complete it in time so it will not be like that of the 2008 one, which led to waste of public resources.’’ He also took a swipe at the Minority in Parliament for the boycott of the registration process because it amounts to hypocrisy. The PPP he said is of the view that, the Minority sat in parliament, approved of the new Act that allows the NIA register citizens and unanimously accepted the process. ‘’Then we wake up one morning and they said they have boycotted the registration. We [PPP] think that it is unacceptable and the reason given is untenable. It will be a political suicide for the NDC if they fail to rescind the decision to boycott the registration,’’ he posited. The Minority has boycotted the registration exercise for the legislative house on grounds that, the demand for passport and birth certificate will denationalize citizens. They have suggested the use of Voter’s ID card as part of the criteria for the registration.
Parents in three communities namely Abdulai, Kwamedu and Gyingyini in the Sekyere Afram Plains in the Central Region have expressed their fear and panic to send their wards to the only school called Abdulai D/A Primary School. The only 3 classroom block they said, was built this year by their MP, Hon. Adomako Mensah but they have expressed fear because the facility was poorly constructed. “When the rains come, the children cannot use the school”, one parent told the Nyankonton Mu Nsem. Other issues of concern raised by these parents are bad roads, no portable water for their wards in the school and no means of transport. “We have to walk on foot in the rains to the school and even to the hospital”, they lamented. The Assistant Teacher of the school, Mr. Jacob Moses expressed worries in the bad state of the only school nearby (Abdulai D/A Primary school) and added that, teachers are compelled to close classes during heavy downpours because of the leakages in the building. He also said there are inadequate learning materials for the children and the teachers as well. “We the teachers do not even have tables on which we can mark assignments. Fortunately, in the absence of both teachers and students, a strong wind blew one night which collapsed some parts of the building. We were only lucky it happened at night, Ghana would have lost both the teachers and all the students”, he complained bitterly. Mr. Jacob Moses further pleaded with Government to come to their aid to renovate the school for these communities. The District Officer in charge of operations of National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO), has confirmed the collapse of some parts of the building. “Along with my district director, we have been to the scene and confirmed that the building is in a bad state. We have further written a petition to the District Director of Education. We have also gained the assurance of District Chief Executive of NADMO, Mr. Joseph Owusu to ensure the renovation of building”, he assured the media. By: Priscilla Obeng Asantewaa (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
The Head of Policy for Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP), Miss. Pauline Anaman, has said Ghana has no leverage with reference to a seismic data to incite competitiveness of oil blacks. She said this at a Stakeholders Engagement on Petroleum Contracting and Revenue organized by ACEP yesterday [Tuesday] in Accra, Reconnaissance license grants a company the permit to survey our resources namely lands and seas to identify probable sources of oil. Without the seismic data at the reconnaissance license stage, we cannot gather any information and assurance of oil black traces. We cannot go into any agreement with any company, she explained. Companies, profit-oriented as they are, must gain assurance of oil traces. It is therefore necessary for the seismic data which would help us know whether or not there are oil traces, she stressed. The Chief Executive Officer of ACEP, Mr. ACEP also said some procedures and laws have also been laid to regulate the extension of our oil revenues, awards of petroleum contracts to foreign companies since the Ghana’s discovery of oil. The greater challenge, to understand these laws and regulations have been written like a manual understandable enough to outline all the laws regarding for instance how foreign investors can gain petroleum contracts and the methodology with which they work in Ghana, he elaborated. These laws and regulations have been well explained. This he said would allow people to monitor Petroleum contracts in Ghana. By: Priscilla Obeng Asantewaa (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
It has been revealed that the issue of child marriage is still high in the Northern Region with most parents giving their children out for money, mostly females. Report indicates that parents give out their female wards in exchange of money for housekeeping and catering for the rest of the family when there is no source of income. The Communications Manager for Christian Children’s Fund of Canada, William Anim Dankwa said this in a speech during the International Day for the African child at Tamale. He explained saying most families give out their female wards for marriage silently when they realize she is off age or a little matured. Some also engage in this activity after the demise of the head of the family (mostly fathers) to earn some money for housekeeping, he noted. They normally engage in this act to serve as source of income for the rest of the family when the siblings are many, include a lot of females and cannot be catered for. This mostly affects their education and end up as drop outs because they quit schooling. The act he stated is well known as illegal and against the rules of the Social Welfare and DOVVSU but it is practiced silently with the excuse of poverty. He advised the Children Protection Agencies to take steps to educate and create awareness to these acts to ensure the eradication of these practices. By: Nicholas Nii Nai Afful (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) has taken a swipe at former President John Dramani Mahama over his ‘’incorruptible’’ claim. The NPP in a statement signed by Acting General Secretary, John Boadu, described Mr Mahama as someone who ate and drank corruption when he was in power. The statement was in response to a statement issued by special aide to Mr Mahama refuting the allegations leveled against the former leader of diverting an amount of $13 million meant for development project into his personal account. But Joyce Mogtari described as false the allegations and described Mr Mahama as an incorruptible person. But the NPP has laughed off the claims insisting Mahama was a corrupt person considering the number of allegations including SADA, GYEEDA, SUBAH among others. “The NPP is utterly shocked at these claims being made by the Former President, who for all intents and purposes, ought to have risen above such pettiness and recklessness, having had the rare opportunity to occupy the highest political office in the country,” the party stated. The statement further added, “On their second claim about Mahama, rather than Akufo-Addo, being incorruptible, we find this as perhaps, the biggest joke of the century that will see every Ghanaian laughing. Need we remind them of how synonymous the name, John Mahama had become with corruption? Need we remind them that John Mahama superintended over the worst corrupt regime in the history of this country, where on daily basis, Ghanaians were greeted with one form of corruption scandal or another?” The statement added, "need we remind them of the GYEEDAs, the SADAs, the SUBAs, the Amajaros, the Smarttys, the Brazil World Cup scandals, the Woyomes, the Isofotons, the Watervilles, the Fortives, the Kanazoes [where Mahama accepted a "bride" of a Ford Expedition from a Burkinabe contractor]? Need we remind John Mahama of the uncountable corruption scandals, most of which he personally supervised during his tenure? Need we remind John Mahama that one of the reasons for his unprecedented electoral humiliation at the 2016 polls was because of his personal involvement in a lot of these corruption scandals?" Read Below the full statement: NPP REPLIES FORMER PRESIDENT JOHN MAHAMA OVER HIS CLAIM OF INCORRUPTIBILITY AND UNPROVOKED ATTACK ON THE PERSON OF HIS EXCELLENCY PRESIDENT AKUFO-ADDO The attention of the NPP has been drawn to a statement purportedly emanating from the Office of Former President John Mahama and said to be a response to a petition filed by some four citizens of Ghana at the Office of the Special Prosecutor to investigate the Former President for alleged diversion of $13 million meant for the development of the Western Region by the E.O group of company as part of their corporate social responsibilities. In the former President's response to this petition, as contained in a Press Statement signed by his Special Aide, Joyce Bawah Mogtari, it was claimed that "the said petition is another orchestrated but failed attempt by the NPP government to divert attention from the numerous corruption scandals suffocating it". Their Statement further alleges that "Former President John Mahama, unlike President Nana Akufo-Addo, is incorruptible". The NPP is utterly shocked at these claims being made by the Former President, who for all intents and purposes, ought to have risen above such pettiness and recklessness, having had the rare opportunity to occupy the highest political office in the country. Even though the party would ordinarily not respond to such pettiness, we are nonetheless minded to do so because of the reverence we accord the office of a Former President. First of all, the party has absolutely no knowledge about the said petition nor has it instructed anyone to file same on its behalf. But, as a party that believes in good governance and holds unwavering commitment to the fight against corruption, we would, on any day, encourage citizens to, in exercise of their civic rights, report cases of wrongdoing and alleged corruption to the appropriate statutory bodies for proper investigations. This is what President Akufo-Addo and the NPP have always stood for and we have no apologies. On their second claim about Mahama, rather than Akufo-Addo, being incorruptible, we find this as perhaps, the biggest joke of the century that will see every Ghanaian laughing. Need we remind them of how synonymous the name, John Mahama had become with corruption? Need we remind them that John Mahama superintended over the worst corrupt regime in the history of this country, where on daily basis, Ghanaians were greeted with one form of corruption scandal or another? Need we remind them of the GYEEDAs, the SADAs, the SUBAs, the Amajaros, the Smarttys, the Brazil World Cup scandals, the Woyomes, the Isofotons, the Watervilles, the Fortives, the Kanazoes [where Mahama accepted a "bride" of a Ford Expedition from a Burkinabe contractor]? Need we remind John Mahama of the uncountable corruption scandals, most of which he personally supervised during his tenure? Need we remind John Mahama that one of the reasons for his unprecedented electoral humiliation at the 2016 polls was because of his personal involvement in a lot of these corruption scandals? It is pretty obvious from the foregoing that, Joyce Bawah Mogtari only sought to ridicule Former President Mahama by suggesting in the statement that he is incorruptible. How can somebody who eats and drinks corruption be said to be incorruptible? Certainly, this, cannot even be told the marines. We encourage the Office of the Former President to rather respond directly to the serious allegations made against him in the said petition and not engage in these red-herrings and unprovoked attacks. President Akufo-Addo, on the other hand, has, all his life, both in private and in public service, never been accused or alleged to have been involved in any act of corruption. He is by far, the only politician in our recent history to have boldly said that, "I, Nana Akufo-Addo, am not corrupt; I have never been corrupt and I shall demand same of all my appointees". And indeed, for all the corruption allegations levelled against his appointees by surrogates of the NDC, President Akufo-Addo had ensured that they were all thoroughly investigated notwithstanding their frivolity. That is a mark of an incorruptible leader which we never saw in John Mahama, who would rather offer promotion to such appointees to reassigning them to the Office of the President to help advance their corrupt enterprises. Ghana has certainly moved on and we cannot afford to go through the corrupt Mahama experience any more. Forward, we move. Thank you. JOHN BOADU General Secretary (Ag)
An OccupyGhana member, Nana Sarpong Agyemang-Badu has called on the government to make a wakeup call on the emergency response services of the country by suggesting a command center. He said the command center will pick data of every hospital in the country on the number of beds every hospital have, either occupied or not occupied on regular basis 3 times daily. This will help hospitals alert citizens on the availability of beds in hospitals before visiting them and taking emergency cases he added. This will save time, energy and most importantly, save lives of citizens from the “no bed syndrome” after the death of the 70year old man who was rejected by six hospitals over lack of beds two weeks ago. He also suggested the introduction of new emergency numbers or codes which should be short and simple to call as compared to lengthy landline and phone numbers given by the police. These numbers should be able to reach all emergency services such as the police, fire services and ambulance services. He suggested some hospitals should be assigned only for emergency cases so as to know where emergency cases should be sent for early treatment. These hospitals should have well trained educative health care professionals that will handle basic emergency cases and healthcare. “Laws should also be enacted to prevent doctors and nurses from turning away patients with emergency cases with the excuses of no beds available. It is only the administrators who have the authority to do so” he quoted. He also called on government to strengthen the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) to be able to cover emergency cases. He concluded by appealing to government to purchase more ambulances for emergency cases. He was speaking on Nyankonton Mu Nsem on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm. By: Nicholas Nii Nai Ollenu (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
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