President Nana Akufo-Addo has hinted that government is adopting measures to find the required funds needed to clear the huge debt the Energy Sector is saddled with.
The president gave the hint in Zambia, during his interaction with the Ghanaian community.
According to him, the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, is championing this process adding, “The debt of some 2.4 billion dollars in our Energy Sector is making it difficult to attract investment into the Energy sector. This is not allowing us to retool and recapitalize our facilities and therefore once again, solving this financial problem is a very acute problem for us.” “I have a very imaginative and excellent Finance Minister. He has a problem and I have a problem. He is also my cousin and a lot of people say I have made my cousin the Finance Minister, but I say to myself that if I find someone who has the capability and the ability because he is my cousin I should deny myself the opportunity to work. I will not think of it that way. He is one of the best Finance Ministers our country will ever have. He is already beginning to show it.’’
The first President of independent Zambia, Dr. Kenneth David Kaunda, has urged the President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to continue to shine the torch of Africa, and help deliver the progress and prosperity for the longsuffering masses of Africans.
According to Dr. Kaunda, “your contribution as President can make a huge difference not only for Ghana, but for Africa and the world as a whole. Your becoming President of Ghana has come at a very remarkable time for Ghana and Africa.”
Dr. Kaunda made this known on Tuesday, 27th June, 2017, when President Akufo-Addo paid a courtesy call on him at his residence in the outskirts of Lusaka, as part of his 3-day official State Visit to Zambia.
Recollecting the role Ghana played through its first leader, Dr. Kwame Nkrumah, in helping Zambia gain independence from colonial rule, Dr. Kaunda urged all African leaders emulate this example and be each other’s keeper.
“The Bible tells us to love your neighbour as yourself. That neighbour could come from another colour, origin or religion. They may even be from a different political party, but we are all brothers and sisters. We work together to do our part in God’s work. With love, we can overcome great challenges,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo’s visit to Zambia, he added, “nourishes the deep relationship that has been between us for a long time. We have collaborated in various fields of human relations. This visit can enable the governments and peoples of Ghana and Zambia expand and deepen co-operation in various areas of human endeavour.”
On his part, President Akufo-Addo explained his presence in Zambia necessitated him coming to pay his respects to and visit Dr. Kaunda, because he represents the symbol of the relationship between Zambia and Ghana.
“It was you and Dr. Nkrumah who forged that relationship between our two countries, and also worked to ensure the freedom of our continent. You are the icons of our proud generation – those who fought for our independence and freedom,” he said.
The President continued, “So long as you are alive, and somebody like me comes to Zambia, I have to come and pay my respects, see how you are doing and thank God for your life and for the contribution you have made for the independence and development of our continent.”
President Akufo-Addo underscored the importance of African leaders working together to achieve the common goal of development and improvement in the living standards of the African peoples.
“Our circumstances are the same, and we have to continue to work together, across these colonial boundaries, to ensure that the welfare and progress of our people across the continent are the guiding considerations for those of us who have been blessed with the privilege of political leadership,” he added.
President Akufo-Addo assured Dr. Kaunda that “we will continue to walk along the path of solidarity that you fashioned so many years ago. There is a lot that we can gain in the exchanges between our two countries, and I believe that, in the time of President Lungu and myself, we will work closely and assiduously to make sure that our peoples benefit from the relationship.”
The goals set by Dr. Kenneth Kaunda, the President added, have not changed – “the need for all of us to work together and defend our interests and make sure that, within the comity of the world, our voice can be heard loud and clear, defending and promoting the interests of our people.”
COMMUNIQUÉ ISSUED AT THE NATIONAL POLICE COMMAND
CONFERENCE (NAPOCC) HELD AT THE BANQUET HALL OF THE SUNSET HOTEL, KUMASI ON FRIDAY 23RD JUNE, 2017
1. The 2017 National Police Command Conference of the Ghana Police Service was held at the Sunset Hotel, Kumasi from June 22, 2017 to June 23, 2017 under the theme “TRANSFORMING GHANA POLICE SERVICE INTO A WORLD CLASS POLICE-THE ROLE OF REGIONAL COMMANDERS”.
2. This year’s Conference and the first ever to be organized outside Accra had an overarching objective of highlighting the key strategic objectives of the ongoing transformation agenda of the Service. It was also to enable the leadership review the performance of the Service and re-strategise to address emerging challenges in law enforcement within the country.
3. During the two-day period, the Conference discussed the overall security in the country, including the concerns of the public and innovative policing approaches to maintain law and order; the ongoing transformation process within the Service, which is anchored on the 13- strategic policing objectives of the government; police professionalism; and welfare of police personnel.
4. At the end of deliberations, the leadership of the Police resolved as follows:
a. The on-going Transformation Process:
i. Commanders and their personnel will act as change agents in the Transformation Process to deliver planned, democratic, protective and peaceful policing services to the public in accordance with the vision of the Police Service.
b. Maintenance of Public Order:
ii. Commanders to ensure strict enforcement of the laws to check impunity, including mob justice and vigilantism, without fear or favour, whilst at the same time collaborating with the Judiciary and the Attorney General’s Department to ensure speedy prosecution of cases.
iii. Commanders to embark on extensive public education on Police role in the Criminal Justice System as well as the need for the public to respect the rights of all persons, including suspects.
c. ‘Galamsey’ Menace:
iv. Commanders to intensify efforts in the fight against ‘galamsey’. They are to further collaborate with relevant agencies to sustain the efforts and nib illegal mining in the bud and out of the country.
d. Armed Robbery and Other Crimes:
v. Commanders, at all levels to implement all the operational strategies agreed upon to deal with highway, residential, workplace and street robberies in the country.
vi. That the fight against crime must be done in a coordinated and unified fashion, using cooperation and sharing of information among Regional Commanders. They must also use innovative ICT-driven strategies of communication, to create the needed synergies for success.
e. Police Professionalism:
vii. Commanders must ensure police professionalism through effective close supervision of personnel and strict enforcement of the Police Service Regulations to check all forms of misconduct by personnel as well as any act that undermines the quality of service to the public.
f. Welfare of Police Personnel:
viii. The welfare of Police personnel is paramount, and the Police Administration is taking additional steps to improve the conditions of service of the personnel, including those who die or sustain injury in line of duty. Commanders, at all levels, must ensure issues affecting the welfare of personnel are promptly addressed.
g. Stakeholder Cooperation:
ix. At the conference, the Police leadership recognised and appreciated the public and other stakeholders for their cooperation and constructive criticisms and called for their continued support as the Service goes through the transformation process, to become a world-class Police Service within the next four years.
This communiqué was issued in Kumasi on June 23, 2017.
[MR. DAVID S. EKLU]
ASSISTANT COMMISSIONER OF POLICE
At Adukrom a town in Juaboso, a 4 year old child fell into a hole which was covered up by water as result of the heavy down pour of rain.
Family members of the child and some people in the community came together as a group to search for the child in all the waterways for two hours after the rains had stopped.
According to our reporter, Christopher Anto, the mother of the child was not around, as she had travelled out of the town and could not be reached upon several calls being made to reach her.
Traditional rites have been performed in the water where the child fell, in order for the body of the child to appear.
By: Otoo Jonathan Ardday (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
The Minority in Parliament is calling for the interdiction of the Managing Director of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation (BOST)Company, Alfred Obeng Boateng, over the sale of 5 million litres of contaminated fuel.
This was contained in a statement issued today [Tuesday] by the Minority caucus.
Minority Spokesperson on Mines and Energy, Armah Kofi Buah, argued that “the justification by BOST that the contaminated products were sold for use by manufacturing companies is untenable.”
“The norm and practice is that, when such contamination occur, corrective treatment of these products are undertaken by the Tema Oil Refinery through blending. Why did BOST not arrange with TOR for the treatment of this particular fuel? Available information indicates that BOST failed to exhaust all means to ensure TOR blends this contaminated fuel.”
He added: “The argument by BOST that the blending couldn’t be done at TOR because the CDU is down is most untenable.’’
The Minority has called for a full scale investigation by the regulatory authorities; The immediate withdrawal of the contaminated product from the market to protect consumers and assurances that this will not recur; and That the financial loss estimated at GHS 14.25 million be retrieved by surcharging the offending officials at BOST in line with the recent Supreme Court decision.
The President of the Republic of Zambia, His Excellency Edgar Chagwa Lungu, has reiterated his and the commitment of the Zambian people to developing strong bilateral ties and exploring areas of co-operation with Ghana, under the leadership of its President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, to the mutual benefit of the two countries.
According to President Lungu, the margin of victory chalked by President Akufo-Addo in the 2016 election “was a true reflection of the confidence the people of Ghana have in your vision, and for that reason, we look forward to working closely with you during your tenure of office.”
The Zambian President noted further that “there are a lot of things you (Ghana) are doing in mining, agriculture, infrastructure development, amongst others, which can benefit Zambia, by being emulated. It is about common, good practices, Mr. President, and what you do better, we should not hesitate to emulate.”
President Edgar Lungu made this known on Tuesday, July 27, 2017, when he held bilateral talks with the Ghanaian President and his delegation, at the commencement of the 3-day official State Visit by President Akufo-Addo to Zambia.
With the two countries having signed an agreement for the establishment of a Permanent Joint Commission on Co-operation (PJCC) to serve as the legal framework to address their trade and investment concerns, President Lungu bemoaned the non-implementation of this commission.
He, however, indicated that the PJCC will be given a new lease of life under his and the tenure of office of President Akufo-Addo, so as to ensure that “our Ministers will begin co-operating, and, henceforth, make the PJCC a living document.”
On the Ezulwini consensus, a position on international relations and reform of the United Nations agreed by the African Union in 2005, President Lungu was confident that the pioneering role played by President Akufo-Addo, then Foreign Minister of Ghana, in the fashioning of the document will be of invaluable to the cause of the AU.
“You were a pioneer, you were there. So as we go to the UN General Assembly in September, I am sure that Africa can count on you as an anchor,” he added.
President Lungu stressed that, “We want a prosperous Africa, which is integrated, united, peaceful and secured, and influential, not only in Africa but in the UN family.
“Regional integration is one aspect which will lead us to the Africa we want. Zambia is proud to be a member of SADC, and we are equally proud of the role that you (President Akufo-Addo) are playing in ECOWAS, in terms of peace keeping in the region, and trying to find common ground in improving co-operation and development of the African people we are privileged to look after.”
Strong relations between Zambia and Ghana
On his part, President Akufo-Addo thanked President Lungu for inviting him to visit Zambia, and thanked him for attending his inauguration on 7th January, regardless of the political upheavals that existed in Zambia at the time, as a result of a closely fought election.
With Ghana-Zambia relations spanning nearly six decades, President Akufo-Addo stated that “in our time we must continue to build on it”. The coming into full effect of the PJCC, he said, will be the means to strengthening the areas of co-operation in trade, agriculture, mining, investments, amongst others, between the two countries.
On the Ezulwuni consensus, President Akufo-Addo noted that “it is not right that we (Africa) continue to be marginalised on the Councils of the world. If, today, we make the decision to bring UN reforms back to the centre of the global agenda, I think it is an important thing to do. The G4 countries (Japan, Brazil, Germany and India) are ready to support the African position on UN reforms – the consensus that was fashioned in Ezulwini, some 12 years ago.”
To the Zambian President, President Akufo-Addo assured that his visit is to reciprocate the hand of friendship that you extended to Ghana, “and to be able to say that we are ready to go side-by-side with you in developing this new paradigm for our continent – democratic accountability, more rapid economic growth, focus on stimulating and empowering our various private sectors.”
This, in the view of President Akufo-Addo, “is the way forward for us to generate prosperity for our peoples in our time. That has to be the overriding concern – what we need to do to banish poverty on our continent. It continues to be an anomaly that we, who sit on the wealthiest resources, continue to be the poorest people in the world. That anomaly cannot continue.”
The co-operation and collaboration of African countries with each other, President Akufo-Addo, said is the way to overcoming Africa’s developmental hurdles and, thereby, bettering the lives of the African peoples.
The Minority caucus in Parliament has called for a full scale investigation into what it described as ‘’blatant corruption’’ at BOST.
In a statement issued by the Minority described the sale of the contaminated petroleum as one that lacks transparency and integrity.
The statement said: ‘’ The question to ask is what led to the contamination of these products in the first instance. Why was the particular tank in question not properly discharged and cleaned before the intake of the fresh fuel which led to the contamination? Was it due to negligence, lack of supervision or a deliberate plot by some self-seeking individuals to enrich themselves at the expense of the state and the Ghanaian tax payer?’’
According to the Minority, ‘’…checks reveal that, BOST has never sold any contaminated products before. They always blend the products to correct it to meet industry specifications as outlined by NPA and Ghana Standard Authority. What BOST has sold in the past is slop and not contaminated products. As we speak BOST imported a full cargo declared by NPA as off Spec. The Company that brought in the product is called Morco Energy. That product is currently being blended at TOR to correct it. We wonder why the 5million litres didn't go through the same process to correct it.’’
Below is the full statement
MINORITY IN PARLIAMENT CALLS FOR FULL SCALE INVESTIGATION INTO BLATANT CORRUPTION AT BOST LTD.
The minority in Parliament has noted with grave concern the sale of contaminated fuel product to the tune of five million litres to a company known as Movenpiina by the MD of the Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Limited under very dubious and bizarre circumstances in another clear example of escalating corruption in the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia Government.
Even more disturbing is the explanation offered by BOST to justify the sale of this contaminated product as well as the circumstances surrounding the sale which clearly lacks transparency and integrity.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the press, it must be mentioned that under proper regulatory and supervisory protocols, under no circumstance should the BOST Co. Ltd experience such high levels of contamination as we are witnessing.
The question to ask is what led to the contamination of these products in the first instance. Why was the particular tank in question not properly discharged and cleaned before the intake of the fresh fuel which led to the contamination? Was it due to negligence, lack of supervision or a deliberate plot by some self-seeking individuals to enrich themselves at the expense of the state and the Ghanaian tax payer?
The justification by BOST that the contaminated products were sold for use by manufacturing companies is untenable. The norm and practice is that when such contamination occur, corrective treatment of these products are undertaken by the Tema Oil Refinery through blending. Why did BOST not arrange with TOR for the treatment of this particular fuel? Available information indicates that BOST failed to exhaust all means to ensure TOR blends this contaminated fuel. The argument by BOST that the blending couldn’t be done at TOR because the CDU is down is most untenable.
These so called off-spec products are not the slops that are usually sold by BOST, we also wish to state that SLOPS are usually in small quantities. SLOPS are sediments of fuels in a Tank and are usually in small quantities and cannot be compared with 5 million liters of contaminated fuel.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press, the claim by BOST that this contaminated product was sold at a competitive ex-depot price is false and cannot be justified.
When was the competitive bidding process initiated and who were the companies that participated? Incontrovertible evidence available confirms that Movenpiina Company was the only company BOST dealt with in the sale of this contaminated product in a sole sourced transaction. It is therefore erroneous to suggest that the sale was done under a competitive process.
Further information available to us indicates that Movenpiina Co. Lt. put in a proposal to purchase the fuel on the 19th of May 2017. Interestingly, checks from the Registrar Generals Department suggest the company was incorporated to trade and transport fuel on the 29th of May 2017. This clearly suggest collusion on the part of the actors. Information available before us indicates the Managing Director took a decision to grant to Movenpiina Co. an Open-Credit sales arrangement against all the advice from his own staff. This means that the company bought the products without paying for it and in turn sold the products to a third-party Company Zupoil at 30% higher. This smacks of high level corruption.
We further wish to know what culminated in the interdiction of General Manager of Terminals, Mr. Fred Adarkwa and the Trading Department Manager Mr. Nana Obeng all of BOST. Was it because they strongly kicked against the clandestine process of selling these products. Ladies and Gentlemen, we have received information that these contaminated fuels which were originally meant for industrial usage by the steel, garment, petrol chemical as claimed by BOST by companies to run their machinery and certainly not for the running of vehicle engines has ended up in the open market against the NPA’s directive not to do so. The resultant effect will mean damage to vehicle engines and its accompanying side effects to the innocent Ghanaian consumer. Furthermore, our checks reveal that the contact number on Movenpiina is the same number of the BOST MD's private office in Airport Residential Area.
The Gentleman who registered the Company, one Nana Poku Agyemang a generator dealer with a Company General Power is a close associate of the MD and they have been doing business together before the MD was appointed to BOST.
The Minority has also noted with trepidation the revelation that the said Movenpiina Company is currently a Bulk Oil Transporter at BOST carrying huge petroleum products across the Country when they are not registered. This is not only illegal, it is also extremely risky because when those products are lost, it will be at the cost of the tax payer as there's no insurance covering the said contract.
The Minority will want to place on record that further checks reveal that, BOST has never sold any contaminated products before. They always blend the products to correct it to meet industry specifications as outlined by NPA and Ghana Standard Authority. What BOST has sold in the past is slop and not contaminated products. As we speak BOST imported a full cargo declared by NPA as off Spec. The Company that brought in the product is called Morco Energy. That product is currently being blended at TOR to correct it. We wonder why the 5million litres didn't go through the same process to correct it.
Ladies and gentlemen, the blatant corruption by the Akufo-Addo/Bawumia government cannot be allowed to continue.
We demand the following:
1) The immediate interdiction of the BOST MD – Mr. Alfred Obeng Boateng
2) Full scale investigation by the regulatory authorities
3) The immediate withdrawal of the contaminated product from the market to protect consumers and assurances that this will not recur.
4) That the financial loss estimated at GHS 14.25 million be retrieved by surcharging the offending officials at BOST in line with the recent Supreme Court decision.
We thank you for your attention.
[Issued in Parliament on 27/06/2017]
The Chief of Assin Dansame in the Assin North District of the Central region has refuted media reports that he ordered for the exhumation of the body of a young man a day after his burial.
It was widely reported that the Chief, Nana Twum Barima V ordered for the body of the deceased, Kofi Emmanuel to be exhumed from the cemetery on Monday 26th June , a day after his burial , on the grounds that the deceased flouted community’s rule by abstaining from communal labour when he was alive .
But speaking in an interview with Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, he described the story as a fabricated one and has called on the public to disregard the story.
The deceased he revealed never stayed in the area for years but returned to his hometown only to die a day after adding, ‘’how can someone who never stayed in the area partake in a communal labour? The story is false, I never gave such an order. The story was cooked,’’ he said.
Explaining to the host, he said, there are laid down procedures for burying the dead in the community and as part of the processes, one is expected to pay an amount of GHc50 before someone is buried in the community.
However, family of the deceased, failed to pay and sneaked out to bury the deceased and so the youth in the area reported the case to us.
The family later reported to the police and when the police came around, we explained to them that it was part of our tradition. The police agreed with us and advised that we allow peace to prevail. We did not order an exhumation of the body but because the family failed to obey our rules, they absconded when they saw us coming.’’
He stressed that, the body was not exhumed because of failing to partake in a communal labour.