The Government of President Nana Akufo-Addo is reviewing a number of regulations governing the Information Communication Technology (ICT) sector in order to free up the innovative talent and capabilities of already existing and start-up companies.
The review would, among other objectives, also aim to make it easier to enter and invest in the sector in order to support the government’s desire to increase the use of ICT to solve peculiar Ghanaian challenges, while ensuring the appropriate security assurances for users and investors.
“We are trying to build a new, efficient Ghana. The world is continually evolving, and this evolution is led by cutting edge technology. We know there are many talented young men and women in the ICT space, and government is looking at ways to make innovating and actualising promising ideas easier,” the Vice President of the Republic, H.E. Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, declared at separate meetings with leading lights in Silicon Valley when he paid a five day working visit to the Valley from April 10, 2018.
The Vice President, together with some government officials and the leadership of 15 leading local ICT firms, is on a visit to the technology hub of Silicon Valley, California, USA during which he will hold discussions with the Valley’s thought and technology leaders to explore the possibilities of developing strategic insight, decisions and partnerships with the view of helping to enhance the digitisation of the Ghanaian economy to move Ghana Beyond Aid.
Some of the companies visited include General Electric, IBM, GreyLock Partners, AirBnB, SalesForce, Stanford SEED, and Linked IN.
Touting the Akufo-Addo Government’s determination to make Ghana the most business-friendly country in Africa, Vice President Bawumia urged tech investors and innovators to take advantage of the many competitive advantages Ghana has including location, a stable macro-economic environment and a large pool of talent to set up shop.
“We as a government want to set the framework, the environment, then move out of the way so that you guys can do what you do best. Whether it is in health, education, agriculture, utility service provision or wherever, you can come in and invest and help us with the sort of innovations that you can come up with.”
The Vice President also called for partnerships between Ghanaian ICT firms and their Silicon valley compatriots, insisting that Ghanaian talent was as good as any found anywhere in the world, if not better.
“The indigenous ICT firms are as good as any you can find anywhere in the world. Government is convinced about that and we want to encourage our local ICT firms as much as possible to be very competitive,” he stated, adding “a collaboration between you is likely to be of mutual benefit to all parties.”
The ICT leads accompanying the Vice President include representatives from GHIPSS, Hubtel, BlueSpace Africa, DreamOval, Rancard, Nsano, ExpressPay, IBM, and Bsystems.
The rest are from IT Consortium, Trotro Tractor, General Electric, Callens Solution, Edel Technology Consult and the SoftTribe.
Also on the team was Deputy Minister of Communications and MP for Awutu Senya East, Hon George Nenyi Andah; Hon Mohammad Tijanni Habibu, Deputy Foreign Minister; Hon. Alex Tetteh Djornobuah, MP for Sefwi Akontonbra and member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education; and Hon Halidu Ali Maiga, Member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Food, Agriculture and Cocoa Affairs.
The Vice President returned to Accra on Saturday April 14, 2018.
Ghana is on a path of major recovery in all spheres after a year of prudent policy implementation by the Nana Akufo-Addo government, and it is time for Ghanaians domiciled outside the country to turn their attention back home.
The Vice President of the Republic, H.E. Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, who gave the advice when he met the Ghanaian community in the Bay area of San Francisco, USA on Thursday April 12, 2018, also urged the Ghanaian community abroad to make their skills and expertise available to their compatriots back home to speed up the pace of development.
The Vice President met the Ghanaian community as part of a 5-day working visit to the technology hub of Silicon Valley, California, USA. Accompanied by some government officials and the leadership of 15 leading local ICT firms, H.E. Dr Bawumia held discussions with the Valley’s thought and technology leaders to explore the possibilities of developing strategic insight, decisions and partnerships with the view of helping to enhance the digitisation of the Ghanaian economy to move Ghana Beyond Aid.
“We inherited a very challenging economic situation, but due to prudent measures that we continue to implement, in 2017 we recorded remarkable economic growth and fulfilled a number of major promises we made to the good people of Ghana,” Dr Bawumia indicated.
Explaining the rationale for the implementation of policies such as Free Senior High School Education and the restoration of Teacher and Nursing Training allowances despite enormous fiscal challenges, Vice President Bawumia said any nation that seeks to achieve holistic development must necessarily invest in its human capital, “and the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, is very committed to the education of every young person in Ghana, because an educated population is a prerequisite for growth.”
The curriculum is also being reviewed to focus more on maths and the sciences, H.E. Bawumia disclosed.
Structural economic reforms are also beginning to yield positive results, Dr Bawumia continued, with Inflation down to 10.4%, Interest and Treasury Bill rates on the decline, and business confidence growing.
“We have maintained exchange rate stability, and last year, for the first time since 2006, a Ghanaian government met and surpassed the deficit target. All of this reflected in a real GDP growth of 8.5% in 2017, from an inherited 3.7%. Indeed, that was the fastest growth rate in the world”, the Vice President announced to loud applause.
Government has also embarked on an ambitious Digitisation drive geared towards leveraging the use of technology for the transformation agenda, with the roll-out of the National Digital Property Addressing System, the soon-to-be-issued national ID card, the land records digitisation agenda and efforts to increase financial inclusion via interoperability in the payment systems, and the visit to Silicon Valley was further evidence of this commitment.
“We are trying to build a new, efficient Ghana. The world is continually evolving, and this evolution is led by cutting edge technology. We know there are many talented young men and women in the ICT space, and government is looking at ways to make innovating and actualising promising ideas easier.”
He urged the diasporans to actively support the Akufo-Addo government to take Ghana to the next stage of her development, assuring, “This is a listening Government. We are committed to the fight against corruption, and will implement policies to create jobs. We are ready to take on board your suggestions and expertise to move Ghana forward, beyond aid.”
The Vice President was accompanied by Hon Mohammad Tijanni Habibu, deputy Foreign Minister; Deputy Minister for Communications Hon George Nenyi Andah; Hon. Alex Tetteh Djornobuah, MP for Sefwi Akontonbra and member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Education; and Hon Halidu Ali Maiga, Member of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Food, Agriculture and Cocoa Affairs.
The Vice President returned to Accra on Saturday April 14, 2018.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has left Ghana for the 25th Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM) taking place from Monday, 16th April 2018 to Friday, 20th April 2018.
The theme “Towards a Common Future” will afford Heads of Government in the Commonwealth the opportunity to address the shared global challenges we face and agree actions on how to create a better future for all.
A statement issued and signed by Eugene Arhin, Director of Communications at the presidency said , President Akufo-Addo is expected to hold meetings with British Foreign Secretary, Rt. Hon. Boris Johnson; leader of the Labour Party and leader of the Opposition, Jeremy Corbyn; Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan; and the Duke of Cambridge. Prince William.
The President will also deliver a keynote address at the UK-Ghana Chamber of Commerce Investment Summit, speak at the Malaria Summit hosted by Bill Gates, attend the Commonwealth Enterprise and Investment Council Business Forum and on Saturday, 21st April 2018, deliver the keynote speech at the London School of Economics’ Africa Summit on the theme “Africa at Work: Educated, Employed and Empowered”.
He was accompanied by the First Lady, Rebecca Akufo-Addo; Foreign Affairs Minister, Shirley Ayorkor Botchway; Trade Minister, Alan Kyerematen; Gender Minister, Otiko Afisa Djaba; Business Development Minister, Awal Mohammed and some officials from the Presidency and Foreign Ministry.
According to the statement, President Akufo-Addo and his delegation will return to Ghana on Sunday, 22nd April 2018 and in his absence, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia will in accordance with Article 60(8) of the constitution act in his stead.
Eighteen people died in two separate accidents that occurred on the Tamale - Buipe and Tamale-Bolgatanga highway in the Northern Region in the early hours of Sunday and Saturday morning.
The accident that occurred in the early hours of Sunday at Yapei-Yipala on the Tamale-Buipe highway killed 16 people dying on the spot including the drivers of the two vehicles that were involved in the accident; while two people died on the spot in another accident that occurred on Saturday at Savelugu between Diare and Gushie on the Tamale-Bolgatanta highway.
The Yapei-Yipala accident involved a Neoplan bus with registration number GW 2669 T carrying 70 passengers travelling from Nalerigu in the East Mamprusi Municipality in the Northern Region to Ejura in the Ashanti region.
The Northern Regional Police Public Relations Officer (PRO) Assistant Superintendent of Police (ASP), Mr. Mohammed Yusif Tanko who confirmed the accident said the Neoplan bus on reaching a bend in the section of the road at Yapei-Yipala attempted to overtake a cargo truck ahead of it and in the process crashed into an oncoming bus with registration number GM 5383-12.
The head on collision resulted in the death of 16 people on the spot including the drivers of both vehicles while a number of injured persons were rushed to the Tamale Teaching Hospital (TTH) for treatment.
The bodies of the deceased have been deposited at the mortuary of the same hospital.
ASP Tanko also confirmed that two people lost their lives in the accident that occurred at Savelugu on the Tamale -Bolgatanga highway on Saturday morning.
He said the accident involved a tricycle loaded with firewood from Diara and a cargo truck also loaded with lumber from Savelugu.
ASP Tanko said preliminary investigations revealed that the rope tying the firewood got torn and the rider lost his balance and rode into the lane of the oncoming cargo truck.
He said one of the accident victims was totally dismembered and could not be picked to the morgue, thus, a medical officer performed the autopsy on the spot.
The other victim also on the motor king who was being transported to the TTH was also pronounced dead on arrival.
Mr Stephen Ashitey Adjei, an Executive member of the Tema East Branch of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has called on former President Mahama to officially apologise to members of the NDC and former President Rawlings.
“President Mahama suffered the heaviest loss as a sitting President in the fourth Republic of Ghana and instead of officially apologising to NDC members for that embarrassment and reconciling with party elders, he is rather putting up divisive measures through the Regional Unity walks, which is not helping the party.”
Mr Ashitey who was speaking in a news conference on a range of internal issues said for the former President Mahama to enjoy the forthcoming political campaigns, there was the need for him to first apologise for his abysmal performance in the 2016 and reconcile with all the leaders especially former President Rawlings.
The NDC executive member who is popularly known as Moshake accused former President Mahama of using his unity walks to vilify his internal opponents in order to gain an upper-hand in the Presidential primaries.
“Look, we know that the recent invitation of Hon. Alban Bagbin along with others by the CID (Police) over the so called double salary was a set up by some people in his camp. They intentionally leaked the name of Hon Bagbin, who was really the target, to the CID and then added a few other names to give it legitimacy.”
He said the call of former President Mahama in Wa for supporters to respect the Founder of the Party was cosmetic as his unity walks were rather skewed for him and his faithful to find their way back to power.
“Obviously that admonishment is not enough. Rawlings is hurt and deserves unqualified apology from former President Mahama and it is only such apologies that can unite the NDC for 2020.”
The NDC has begun executive elections to set in place structures for campaigns towards the reclamation of power from the ruling NPP as branch elections kicked off on Saturday.
With the flagbearership election expected much later in the year, the party’s elders have instructed that hurt feelings over unprecedented defeat that NDC suffered in 2016, be slowly healed through reconciliation.
Former President Mahama’s camp has taken it upon itself to organise unity walks across the country to re-unite the members, which Moshake claimed that had not been sanctioned by the party.
Mr Ashitey said so far the Unity Walks had only disunited the party the more because it had become clear that they revolved around former President Mahama alone leaving other aspirants like; Mr Sylvester Mensah, Prof. Joshua Alabi, and Dr. Ekwow Spio Gabrah.
Moshake who last week called on the hierarchy of the NDC to ban the Mahama Unity Walks said it was only an apology for many things that he had done against his peers that would invigorate their resolve to fight tooth and nail for the success of NDC in 2020.
The firebrand NDC man lists said the leakage of Mr Alban Bagbin’s name to the CID for allegedly taking double salaries and the arrest of Mr Sylvester Mensah some time ago were things that could breed discontent among the aspirants and called on the party leadership to move swiftly to patch them up before it deteriorated.
Founder and Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of the Autism Ambassadors Of Ghana (AAG), Alice Mamaga Akosua Amoako, has been adjudged the 2018 Continental level of the mYouth Challenge, a competition for Digital Social Entrepreneurs across the world.
The Digital Social Entrepreneur with the passion to make a change in the lives of Autism kids toppled other competitors from across the globe to win the award for Ghana.
In a Facebook post to express her excitement, Alice Mamaga Akosua Amoako wrote: ‘’A moment to thank God for HIS goodness and mercies.
I'm humbled to say that I emerged the ove all winner for Ghana at the 2018 Continental level of the mYouth Challenge, a competition for Digital Social Entrepreneurs across the world.
‘’It gives me so much joy to know that the Autism Aid App is now at a Global Level and will be making impact in the lives of children living with Autism across the world.
My appreciation to iSpace Foundation, mlandiinfo and the European Union. It has indeed been a great experience.
To every individual and organization who has been encouraging me and supporting me with resources for my project, I say thank you. To my amazing team and volunteers, I appreciate you all. For God and Country I Serve. Hard work pays,’’the post concluded.
Alice Mamaga Akosua Amoako, developed and recently launched the Austsm App.
The Autism Aid App provides a helpline service for families of children living with Autism to get information from professionals on how to care for their children.
It also provides a Picture Exchange Communication System for children living with Autism including an awareness platform for the society to learn more about Autism.
The new advanced features of the Autism Aid App Version 2.0 includes a USSD Code *800*24# which provides a Helpline Service for families of children living with Autism.
The code can also be accessed on any phone and is available on Google Play Store for downloads.
Established in April 2016, the Autism Aid App operates in Ghana and its social impact is currently in Ghana, London, and Tanzania. Partners for the autism aid app project are AirtelTigo, Reach For Change, National Council of Persons with Disability (NCPD) and Wigal Solutions.
It also includes Edern Security, Soronko Academy, Inclusion Ghana and Eko Productions. The rest are Brich Ghana, Ispace and Ghana Volunteer Program.
In January 2016, representatives from 10 countries which partnered this project united in Salzburg, Austria, and held the first Kick-Off meeting to launch the project activities.
Representatives from Austria, Poland, Spain, Italy, Bulgaria, Macedonia, Hong Kong, Singapore, Ghana and Senegal, discussed the crucial aspects of building a strong digital community, and how such community can provide youths with opportunities to share their knowledge, harvest new skills and how to get them be more active and aware for their needs within their local communities.
Each country hosted a power-up national coding camp, by which hundreds of youths have directly benefited in polishing their digital skills and super-powers.
The late female dancehall artiste, Ebony Reigns, has posthumously been crowned the top most award at the 2018 Vodafone Ghana Music Awards (VGMAs).
The late 'Maame Hwe' hit maker toppled 2017 Artiste of the Year Joe Mettle, and Zylofon Music’s signees, Shatta Wale and Stonebwoy, to win the top most award.
Ebony Reigns’ ‘Sponsor’ won the Afroppo Song of Year while her manager, Bullet, won the Best Song Writer with ‘Maame Hwe’.
Her parents and management received the awards on herbehalf.
The category definition for the VGMA Artiste of the Year states that: “Artiste of the Year is the Artiste(s) adjudged by the Academy, Board and the General Public as the Artiste(s) with the highest audience appeal and popularity. The Artiste(s) must have released a hit single/album during the year under review.”
The SM Boss also won Best Collaboration on the night.
Highlife Artiste of the Year’ and New Artiste of the year went to Kuami Eugene
Hiplife/Hiphop Artiste of the Year and best Rapper went to Sarkodie.
Joe Mettle won both the Gospel song, Gospel Artiste of the year and Male Vocalist of the Year respectively.
The Female Vocalist of the Year was grabbed by Adina.
Kidi’s ‘Odo’ was adjudged Highlife Song of the Year.
Hiplife Song of the Year’ went to ‘Total Cheat’ by Fancy Gadam featuring Sarkodie
‘Reggae/Dancehall Song of the Year’ was won by Samini with his song, ‘My Own’.
Mary Naa Amanua Doodo of Wulomei received the Lifetime Achievement Award.
Stonebwoy won the Reggae/Dancehall Artiste of Year.
The award scheme is organised by Charterhouse to reward deserving Ghanaian artistes for their hard work, dedication and contribution towards the growth of Ghana’s music industry.