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Rainbow Radio - Items filtered by date: Monday, 09 October 2017
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says the country cannot afford anymore gas explosions, following the incident that took place at the Atomic Junction on Saturday, October 7, 2017, when seven people lost their lives and several injuries were recorded, as a result of the gas explosion at Atomic Junction. According to President Akufo-Addo, “It is time these incidents came to a stop in Ghana. We cannot continue with them.” It is for this reason that the President told the congregation that “I have asked the Vice President to go back to Accra to see with his own eyes, and that of the Minister for Interior, what has taken place. We are going to have to come out with a clear policy on how to prevent such incidents in the future.” President Akufo-Addo made this known on Sunday, 8th October, 2017, the 3rd day of his tour of the Northern Region, when he worshipped with congregants at the Tishigu Anglican Church, in Tamale. Fortunately, President Akufo-Addo stated that “Cabinet will be meeting on Thursday, [12th October, 2017] and, I believe, out of that meeting, the country will know what our programme is, the comprehensive programme we intend to have to bring such incidents to a stop.” The President stressed that the gas explosion at Atomic Junction “is one too many. We cannot afford anymore.” He, thus, appealed to “everybody involved in the industry to recognise that we all have to make adjustments to be able to guarantee the safety and security of our people, so these things do not happen again. “I need your support, and the co-operation of the people of Ghana to make sure that the policies that we will be bringing out succeed, so that such incidents become a thing of the past and not of our future.” President Akufo-Addo urged the Priests and congregation of the Tishigu Anglican Church “to pray for all those who were caught up in the tragedy in Accra yesterday – the dead and the injured people. We pray for their souls, and we pray for their families, that the Almighty will give them comfort and strength in these trying times.” I need your prayers Again, to the congregation, President Akufo-Addo stated that “I needed your prayers to get there, and I need even more your prayers to stay there and do a good job for all of us.” He urged them to pray for him and his government so “that we will look up and look at the Almighty and give off our heart and energy, and give our country a good government that will help lift the people of Ghana up.” Touching on the partnership between faith-based schools and Government, President Akufo-Addo stressed that “nobody can forget the role faith based schools have played in the development of our educational structure, and, if ever there was a time when the partnership between the State and the faith-based should be strong, this is the time for that.” In fulfilment of the New Patriotic Party’s 2016 Manifesto, President Akufo-Addo stated that “we will strengthen the relationship between Government and the faith based schools. It is our hope that, in the period of our mandate, we will give more and more responsibilities to the faith-based schools to guide their products, so that the moralities and values associated with Christianity, religious worship, belief in God, integrity and honesty, are inculcated in our young people, when they are needed. We are going to reverse the paradigm shift and go back to the old arrangement.”
Published in General News
It has been established that the man who fell from the Atomic Junction overpass during last Saturday’s gas explosion was an employee with Net2 TV. The deceased Mohammed Ashalley was identified by family members at the Police Hospital morgue today [Monday]. The circumstances surrounding the death of the cameraman is unclear but there are claims that he jumped to his death during the rush hour. He was also a member of the presidential press corps and according an account given by a colleague at the Flagstaff House, he left on his motor to take coverage of the explosion on Saturday. He will be buried tomorrow [Tuesday] according Islamic tradition. Meanwhile, President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has promised to foot the bills for his burial ceremoby.
Published in General News
The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers-Ghana has concluded investigations into the Madina Zongo junction gas explosion which occurred Saturday evening. Findings according to them were that a bulk vehicles (tanker) arrived at the manso gas station around 6PM Saturday to discharge liquefied petroleum gas (LPG) to the said gas station. At around 6:52pm the driver and his mate in the course of discharging the fuel realizes there was a leakage on the valves of the BRV and so decided to abandon the discharging process and flee from site knowing the product was travelling around and could catch fire with naked spark or flame it comes into contact. The statement signed by Duncan Amoah COPEC-Ghana Secretary said, the driver and mate went ahead to alert other persons to flee for their lives. The findings according to COPEC-Ghana established that the leakage got a naked flame or ignition source from a commercial meat grilling point or a kebab seller across the street, ‘’blows up into a ball of fire and eventually returns to the source of the highly dense space of the leakage and explosion occurred which later sent the main pressure bullet tank flying into adjoining Total Filling Station across the street known as BENAB. Conclusions by COPEC-Ghana were that: CONCLUSIONS (I). The spate of recent disasters across the fuel and gas stations are clearly avoidable accidents that could be curtailed if not completely eliminated to avoid the continuous derailment of the good progress so far made in the downstream so as to restore the confidence of the public in the systems in place at the various outlets. (II) We believe the Regulatory Authorities especially the National Petroleum Authority, The Environmental Protection Agency and the Ghana Standards Authority will need to tighten their regulatory and monitoring functions to avert such needless disasters and accidents (III) We further believe these Regulatory Authorities will need the absolute support of both the state and players downstream to fight this creeping menace by way of stringent enforcement of existing statutes. (IV) We also understand there is a huge gap and need for training and retraining of all personnel in the chain of the handling and sale of hydro carbon products as well as ensuring every outlet across the country is equipped with an independent but permanent Safety Officer at the outlets whose main job it will be to see to safer operations and should be given the powers to halt operations if the very minimum standards are not met at the outlet he or she works from. (V). Monthly reports from these safety officers at the outlets could form a very strong basis of assessment by both the omc or lpmc and the regulators to track and know which outlets need specific attention with regards to general safety and compliance. (VI) We also call on the Government and the Energy Ministry to really speed up the gas recirculation programme to move the country from the current system where cylinders are refilled across hundreds of outlets in the country. Failure to get down to the root of these avoidable explosions as well as the actual causes or negligence at the various fuel and gas outlets could only lead to an eventual predictable outcome, another unexpected explosion only for the cycle of pledges and promises to continue in perpetuity. Below is the full statement from CPOEC-GHANA CHAMBER OF PETROLEUM CONSUMERS-GHANA GAS EXPLOSIONS FAR FROM OVER 09/10/17 Ghanaians are gradually becoming scared of hydro carbon facilities and structures across the country especially the gas stations as these stations or outlets continue to invest in aesthetics rather than standards and safety. Recent past incidents seem not to have taught all of us any real lessons nor the various committees set up to investigate such incidents whose findings and reports have often been kept under lock and key, brought any real change to some of the dangerous practices precipitating these incidences, the unacceptable negative practices and conditions that leads to these explosions continue to be rife at a lot of the fuel and gas station outlets across the country today. The usual lengthy workshops, talks and discussions have also done very little to contribute to the safety Ghanaians yearn for at the various gas and fuel stations across the country. Previous attempts by the Minister of Environment, Science and Technology to close down some gas and fuel stations believed to have been cited in public places seem to have not done much either to curtail these explosions and disasters. Our statutes continue to have virtually all the laws man can find anywhere towards getting a safer better downstream but implementation and enforcement have often been a murky issue. Owners and operators of the various gas and fuel stations continue to make excuses for not putting in place the needed investments towards greater safety for their investments, human lives and other properties. BACKGROUND The People around the Madina enclave have been rocked with a very deadly explosion at a gas filling station a day ago with over 6 fatalities so far and huge loss of property and investments together with several other persons sustainining various degrees of injuries. Vehicular movement has had to be rerouted from the main Haatso road to other routes due to this incident, fire and other security officers have had to be moved on site at the gas station as they currently work around the clock to prevent any further explosions of the leaking Bulk Road Vehicle whose content dislodge led to the leakage that eventually caused the disaster yesterday. Several Ministers of State, Government Appointees and Agencies of state including the Regulatory Bodies have been in and out of the scene of the incident conducting their own probes and investigations one way or the other. Public confidence in the safety of our gas and fuel stations have further been weakened by this disaster as there's a huge public outcry currently even about the citing of these stations and how safe they are around the areas they operate from. MADINA EXPLOSION OUR FINDINGS SO FAR A Bulk Road Vehicle or what is known in everyday parlance as gas tanker arrives at the mansco gas station around 6pm on Saturday, the 7th of October 2017 to discharge liquefied petroleum gas (lpg) to the said gas station adjacent the TOTAL service station. 6:30pm, driver and his mate starts discharging products using rather mechanical means instead of the standard approved suction pumps designed for such operations. 6:52pm driver and mate realize there's leakage on the valves of the BRV and so decide to abandon the discharging process and flee from site knowing the product is travelling around and could catch fire with any naked spark or flame it comes into contact with. They go on to alert other people in and around the premises to also flee knowing the leakage had travelled a bit far and could explode in no time 7:05pm, the now leaked lpg finally gets a naked flame or ignition source from a commercial meat grilling point or a kebab seller across the street, blows up into a ball of fire and eventually returns to the source or the highly dense space of the leakage and an explosion occurs which now sends the main pressure bullet tank flying into the adjoining TOTAL filling station and another fuel station across the street known as BENAB. Several shops and properties are eventually burnt down in a completely avoidable disaster. The fire service and other security agencies are currently on site cooling off the BRV and protecting the scene from any further sparks as the leakage continues from the valve, products from the adjoining TOTAL service station continue to remain underground and intact. POSSIBLE CAUSES OF EXPLOSION PER OUR INVESTIGATION SO FAR 1). The absence of a proper dislodge device or the suction pumps to help dislodge the liquefied petroleum gas from the BRV into the pressure bullet at the station compelled the driver and his mate to employ a rather dangerous mechanical process of dislodging the products using manual valves on the engine of the BRV. 2). The eventual leakage from the mechanical process adopted makes valid the suspicion that the particular station just like several others operating like it without the suction pump have very little regard for standard operating procedures in discharging products of such nature. 3). Contrary to belief that nothing could have been done even at the point of the start of leakage, we believe the two persons on the BRV, ie the driver and his mate had enough time at the start of the leakage to shut the valves completely from any further leakage but chose to rather abandon and run alerting other persons around of the danger so fore created. 4). Our findings so far point to absolute negligence on the part of the operator and by extension refusal of the various regulatory authorities to conduct the mandatory routine checks and inspections of such plants and facilities across the country, thereby leaving a huge number of them operating under such unsafe environments which poses a great deal of danger to both human lives and properties. 5). It is our understanding further, following from a recent independent audit carried out by the chamber on some gas stations across the captial indicates that a lot more of the lpgmcs in the capital do not have the suction pumps in place for their operations whiles many more dotted across the country are currently engaged in same unsafe practice of dislodging products from the BRV to their pressure bullets at the various outlets and must be urgently audited to bring to compliance. 6). It is also our understanding, that many of the Bulk Road Vehicles especially the lpg bullets will require some servicing of the valves after many years of usage. CONCLUSIONS (I). The spate of recent disasters across the fuel and gas stations are clearly avoidable accidents that could be curtailed if not completely eliminated to avoid the continuous derailment of the good progress so far made in the downstream so as to restore the confidence of the public in the systems in place at the various outlets. (II) We believe the Regulatory Authorities especially the National Petroleum Authority, The Environmental Protection Agency and the Ghana Standards Authority will need to tighten their regulatory and monitoring functions to avert such needless disasters and accidents (III) We further believe these Regulatory Authorities will need the absolute support of both the state and players downstream to fight this creeping menace by way of stringent enforcement of existing statutes. (IV) We also understand there is a huge gap and need for training and retraining of all personnel in the chain of the handling and sale of hydro carbon products as well as ensuring every outlet across the country is equipped with an independent but permanent Safety Officer at the outlets whose main job it will be to see to safer operations and should be given the powers to halt operations if the very minimum standards are not met at the outlet he or she works from. (V). Monthly reports from these safety officers at the outlets could form a very strong basis of assessment by both the omc or lpmc and the regulators to track and know which outlets need specific attention with regards to general safety and compliance. (VI) We also call on the Government and the Energy Ministry to really speed up the gas recirculation programme to move the country from the current system where cylinders are refilled across hundreds of outlets in the country. Failure to get down to the root of these avoidable explosions as well as the actual causes or negligence at the various fuel and gas outlets could only lead to an eventual predictable outcome, another unexpected explosion only for the cycle of pledges and promises to continue in perpetuity. Signed Duncan Amoah Executive Secretary. Copec-Ghana
Published in General News
The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for the Microfinance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC), Mr. Stephen Amoah aka Sticker has said under no circumstance will he allow the 350 vehicles purchased for the Ghana Private Road and Transport Union (GPRTU) to go waste. MASLOC in 2016 purchased the vehicles, comprising 100 33-seater buses and 250 saloon cars, and were to be used for commercial operations. However, after the vehicles were officially commissioned by former President John Dramani Mahama, the vehicles have been abandoned at the Accra International Conference Centre. Rainbowradioonline.com recently investigated and published the current condition of the vehicles with some having deflated tyres and a rusty body. The GPRTU has refused to take custody of the vehicles because of the price. Mr. Stephen Amoah had told Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that the price for one saloon car was GHc84, 000 and members of the GPRTU said they were unable to pay. Speaking to Accra based Asempa FM Stephen Amoah was asked the way forward for the vehicles and in his answer he said, MASLOC will exhaust all avenues to ensure that the vehicles does not go waste. He told the host that MASLOC may consider confronting the State Transport Corporation (STC) to see if they would be able to take custody of the 100 33-seater buses.
Published in General News
Chief Executive Officer (CEO) for Oxy FM Mr. Alfred Kwame Larbi, has taken a swipe at the Minority in Parliament for their position on the sanctions against some 131 radio stations by the National Communications Authority (NCA). The NCA over a recent exercise sanctioned a total of 131 radio stations for violating a certain aspects of the Electronic Communications Act 2009, Act 775. As part of the sanctions, some of them were fined and others had their licenses revoked. The Minority in a statement issued by the spokesperson on Communications Hon. AB.A Fuseini said, the action by the NCA appears to be ‘’monetizing the right to free expression’’. The Minority believes regulatory enforcement ought to be undertaken in a reasonable manner in that factors in the fragilities inherent in the operations of many radio stations. However, Mr. Alfred Kwame Larbi popularly called DJ Oxy says, the statement issued by the Minority was much I do about nothing. He was of the opinion that the NCA's action was premised on law hence the attacks on the institution should be commended. He said, some people see the sanction as politics but that is false because the action is something that bothers on law. He said, the NDC knew they were going to go out of office and so they gave out licenses to their party folks. The Minority’s call will not work; nobody has breached any freedom of expression. The NCA acted on the premise on law, he said.
Published in General News
Entertainment critic and owner of Oxy FM, Mr. Alfred Kwame Larbi aka DJ Oxy, has thrown salvos at the National Communications Authority (NCA). Speaking on GH Entertainment Saturday, DJ Oxy said, although the NCA acted by law in sanctioning some 131 radio stations for violation of the electronic act, they have also ignored other laws that people have violated. According to him, a license that is not transferable, a former Finance Minister Dr. Kwabena Dufour, under the previous NDC administration bought a license from another owner. He was emphatic that by law, a license is not transferable however, the NCA has ignored it and people are violating that law. He went ahead to allege that some officials at the NCA are contractors for people who sell and buy radio stations from others. He added, the current administration has decided to apply the law and because of that, some individuals are in serious trouble. He challenged the NCA to dare him and he will mention the names of those he described as contractors for such activities. He gave out the names of some politicians who own radio stations including Okudzeto Ablakwa, MP for North Tongu, Dzifa Attivor former Transport Minister under former President Mahama. Former Chief of Staff under Mahama, Mr. Julius Debrah is owning a number of radio stations he said. Accra based-Radio Gold, Atlantis Radio and Radio XYZ, are among the 131 radio stations sanctioned by the NCA following the completion of a nationwide FM spectrum audit. The sanctions ranged from fines to the total of revocation of licenses. 34 of the stations had their licenses revoked; others affected stations were asked to settle their indebtedness in 30 days or submit the relevant documentation as indicted in the letters sent them by the NCA. Radio XYZ was fined GHc 4,090,00, Atinka Fm was fined GHc14,800,000 whiles Radio Gold and Atlantis Radio were bought find GHc61,330,000 and GHc60,350,000 respectively. DJ Oxy further explained, the requirements for the renewal of a license under the NCA are: Five years Auditor General’s report, Five years tax clearance, SSNIT Tax clearance, adding we are unable to do it because some radio owners are not serious.
Published in Entertainment
Public Relations Officer for the Ghana National Service (GNFS), Prince Billy Anaglatey has described as ‘’misinformation’’ the theory by people that the Saturday Madina Zongo junction’s gas explosion was caused by a kebab seller. A khebab seller is being fingered as the one whose activities caused the explosion that led to the death of some seven persons with 134 others stating serious injuries. But responding to the claims, Mr. Anaglatey said, it was unfortunate for people to draw such conclusions. He explained it is those with the technical ability to draw a conclusion and stressed that although they cannot rule that out, the claim is misinformation. ‘’With the khebab radio theory it is just unfortunate that we should be having misinformation on social media. Fire investigation is a technical job and it is only the technical trained people that would be able to determine the cause of the fire. As much as it is possible for fire from a kebab seller’s place to cause that fire, there are several possible causes to that fire. You need to determine the indicators before you are able to ascertain the causes.’’ According to him, the person who put out that information didn’t do well at all because that was misinformation on the fire situation. Investigators are still investigating the cause of fire and so we will pray that we are allowed to investigate and come out with what the cause of explosion was , he concluded.
Published in General News
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says the best Christmas gift he can give the people of Yendi and Ghana, this year, will be the enskinment of a new Ya Naa, ahead of the celebration of the Damba Festival. This, according to President Akufo-Addo, will be the “crowning achievement of my first year as President of the Republic”, adding that “I am going to do everything that a President can do to make sure that we get there.” President Akufo-Addo made this known on Saturday, 7th October, 2017, when he paid separate courtesy calls on the Regent of Dagbon, the Kampakuya Naa, Yakubu Abdulai Andani; and the Bolin Lana, Mahamadu Abdulai, at Yendi, on day 2 of his 3-day tour of the Northern Region. Addressing the issue of the 15-year long impasse in Dagbon, the President noted that the issue at play is “how to apply the customs of Dagbon, with the relevant compromises, to resolve the issue.” It is for this reason, President Akufo-Addo recounted the role played by the former President of the Republic, “the wise statesman”, His Excellency John Agyekum Kufuor, in setting up the Committee of Eminent Chiefs, who are “responsible for fashioning out an acceptable formula for the resolution of the crisis.” The Eminent Chiefs selected by former President Kufuor, in the view of President Akufo-Addo, “are amongst the greatest Chiefs in our country”. They are the overlord of Mamprugu, the Nayiri, Naa Bohagu Abdulai Mahami Sheriga; the overlord of Gonjaland, the Yagbonwura, Tuntumba Boresa I; and the Chairman of the Committee, who, according to President Akufo-Addo, has been doing a yeoman’s job, and is no less a person than the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II. “Whatever formula, whatever understanding they come to, amongst the parties to the Dagbon conflict, will have the full, unequivocal support of my government. I want to reassure you that I don’t have an interest in the outcome of the accommodation,” the President said. He continued, “I want to repeat, I am not an Andani, and I am not an Abudu. Not only am I not an Abudu, nor an Andani, I am not even a Dagomba. I have no interest, other than the peace and security of Dagbon.” To the Kampakuya Naa, President Akufo-Addo assured that “any officials of mine who are seen to be impeding the resolution of the matter, according to custom, will have me to play with.” He assured further, in response to a request made by the Imam, who offered the opening prayer at the Kampakuya Naa’s palace, that “the Regent has nothing to fear from me. He will be very well looked after in the process. His father was my friend, and it will not be right that I do not treat his son right. He [the late Ya Naa] will not forgive me.” By the same token, President Akufo-Addo pleaded with the Andanis and Abudus to accommodate whatever missteps that occur, in the process to find a lasting solution to the problem, stressing that “if we are committed to the end of the journey, and there are missteps along the way, we should find a way to accommodate it, so that we do not jeopardize it.” The President, thus, appealed to all involved in the Dagbon matter to “work together, and ensure the necessary accommodation and compromises to bring this 15 year old crisis to a conclusion. The people of Ghana will see Dagbon for what it is – a historic state of our nation – and we want to see it rise again.” Yendi Water Treatment Plant With the Yendi water supply system seeing no upgrades since 1973, President Akufo-Addo stated that “I am happy to inform you that my government has secured a credit facility of $30 million from the EXIM Bank of India to be able to establish a Water Treatment Plant from the Oti River, to supply Yendi and all the surrounding towns.” He indicated that the beginning of the next quarter of 2018 will witness the completion of the requisite paper work, and the commencement of the project. “In the same way the strengthening of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) also requires that we expand and strengthen the infrastructure of our healthcare delivery system. The message you (Kampakuya Naa) have given me, on the need to expand and strengthen the Yendi hospital, that message, I am taking it straight with me to Accra to the Minister for Health,” President Akufo-Addo added. He also commended the Kampakuya Naa for supporting the fight against galamsey, adding that “the fight against galamsey is a fight for our future survival.
Published in General News
A former Environment Minister under former President John Dramani Mahama has revealed on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that, when he decided to close down gas and fuel stations without permits under his tenure, he came under intention pressure from within his own party and prominent people to stop. The MP for Bawku Central told Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio said, many fuel and gas filling stations in the country don’t have permits to operate. He was responding the gas explosion that occurred at Madina Zongo junction on Saturday and the measures that his office rolled out in curbing explosions when the NDC was in power. Mr. Ayariga said he personally took steps to shutdown such facilities however, the pressure that came forced him to stall that process. ‘’Many fuel and gas filling stations in the country don’t have permits. When I decided to close down gas and fuel filling stations without permits, I came under enormous pressure. Colleague politicians, chiefs, religious leaders, family members called me to intervene asking me to stop,’’ he said. He added there would be enormous pressure when you decide to do the right thing, he stressed. He told the host that in Kumasi there was one fuel station he caused its closure however, they have managed to re-open after the NDC left office. He bemoaned the number of fuel stations with other facilities including restaurants, cafes, supermarkets, churches among others. He also recounted how he shutdown one facility in Accra with these facilities and the number of calls I received from top church leaders were enormous, he complained. ‘’We have this problem of you trying to enforce the law and all sort of social forces mitigating against the enforcement of the law,’’ he stated.
Published in General News
A teacher at the Asuom Senior High School where fire razed down the boys dormitory Sunday has called for assistance. Mr. Abrefa Busia speaking to Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm appealed to individuals, philanthropists and corporate organizations to come to their aid as students have been left stranded after the fire incident. The teacher who is also the Assembly man for the Adansi Electoral Area told the host that the fire destroyed the boys dormitory and belongings of students. According to him, the he saw a smoke coming out from the boys dormitory and so he and one other student jumped the school wall only to realize that the dormitory was on fire. The students were at a church service when the fire stated, he added. He indicated that plastering on the wall has started falling. Meanwhile a student and an old student have been arrested in connection to the fire. The police he said are investigating the matter.
Published in General News
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