The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has received letters of credence from envoys from China, Philippines, Uganda, Bangladesh and Myanmar, at a brief ceremony, on Tuesday, 20th July, 2018, at Jubilee House.
Presenting his credentials to President Akufo-Addo, the new Chinese Ambassador, Mr. Shi-Tang Wang, stated that “under the strong leadership of President Akufo-Addo, the economy of Ghana has enjoyed faster growth, which has resulted in better living standards for the people.”
He explained that “Your efforts to promote regional peace and stability has made a greater contribution to the integration and development of this region, and I am convinced that, under your leadership, the Ghana government and its people will deliver great achievements in the development of Ghana”.
Ambassador Shi-Tang Wang stressed that, since the days of Ghana’s first President, Kwame Nkrumah, and Chairman Mao, “China and Ghana have forged a deep bond of friendship and cooperation, and this relationship has stood the test of the changing environment, and it’s getting stronger.”
He, thus, pledged to exert his utmost efforts to deepen the traditional friendship, and expand the co-operation between the two countries.
President Akufo-Addo, on his part, congratulated the Chinese Ambassador on his appointment, stressing that Ghana would deepen the ties of co-operation and friendship that exists between the two countries.
With China being Ghana’s largest trading partner, and with Chinese contribution to the construction of many projects in the country, such as the Bui Dam, President Akufo-Addo stated that “all these are strong indications of China’s commitment to the interest of our country.”
Mr. U Myint Swe, from the Republic of the Union on Myanmar, who is Resident in Pretoria, South Africa, also presented his letters of credence.
With calls for closer cooperation in the areas of agriculture, and the advancement of efforts towards the full implementation of the Continental Free Trade Agreement, Mr. Nelson Ocherger from the Republic of Uganda, also presented his credentials to President Akufo-Addo.
Ms. Shirley Ho Vicario, of the Republic of Philippines, and H.E. Ms. Sultana Laila Hossain, of the People’s Republic of Bangladesh also presented their letters of credence to President Akufo-Addo.
Congratulating them on their appointments, President Akufo-Addo offered Ghana’s assistance towards the establishment of a permanent mission in Ghana to the Ambassadors from Uganda, Philippines, Bangladesh and Myanmar.
National Chairman for the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr Kofi Portuphy, has served notice the umbrella family will deal with the machinations that led to the dismissal of Mrs Charlotte Osei as chairperson for the Electoral Commission (EC) by President Nana Akufo-Addo based on the recommendations by the Chief Justice’s committee.
A statement issued by the leader of the party called for calm among party members and promised that, the NDC will deal the president and his machinations after the funeral rites of the late vice president Paa Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur.
The statement said: ‘’We wish to assure all party members and the entire nation that the NDC remains committed to safeguarding our democracy, which we have all toiled for and nurtured.
The NDC will therefore resist the deliberate attempt by the Akufo-Addo Government to abuse constitutional processes with the sole objective of manipulating the electoral process.’’
Read Below the full statement:
NDC APPEALS FOR CALM AND ASSURES OF MASSIVE RESISTANCE TO PROTECT OUR DEMOCRACY AFTER THE FUNERAL RITES OF H.E. KWESI BEKOE AMISSAH-ARTHUR
The leadership of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has noted the widespread condemnation, outrage and general agitation over the government's machinations at the Electoral Commission.
We wish to assure all party members and the entire nation that the NDC remains committed to safeguarding our democracy, which we have all toiled for and nurtured.
The NDC will therefore resist the deliberate attempt by the Akufo-Addo Government to abuse constitutional processes with the sole objective of manipulating the electoral process.
While acknowledging the legitimacy of the enormous pressure from the rank and file to exercise our inalienable constitutional right by demonstrating against this blatant assault on our democracy, we wish to renew our earlier appeal for all to remain calm until after the funeral of our fallen hero, the former Vice President of Ghana, H.E. Kwesi Bekoe Amissah-Arthur.
We wish to affirm our strong resolve that, the NDC and our democratic allies in fulfilment of our constitutional obligations will surely take decisive steps to register our revulsion in the strongest possible terms against this flagrant abuse of the legal process after we have accorded our Comrade a befitting send off on 27th July, 2018.
The leadership understands the restlessness among party members and the good people of Ghana in general. Please be assured that President Akufo-Addo and his collaborators will not be allowed to get away with the premeditated, cynical and shameful subterfuge to subvert the electoral process and undermine the growth of our democracy.
The Member of Parliament for Odododiodoo constituency, Mr Nii Lante Vanderpuye, has threatened to led fishermen in his constituency and the regional capital, to the Jubilee House should government enforce the ban on fishing activities as planned.
He told Afia Kwarteng, Rainbow Radio’s parliamentary correspondent that, the timing for the ban would be a major threat to the livelihood of fishermen in his constituency.
In an exclusive interview after the Minority’s press conference on the call on government to rescind its decision, he described the planned ban as a ‘’lazy approach’’ to solving the problem.
‘’We will embark on a massive demonstration in the capital if government does not reverse the decision. I will lead fishermen in the Greater Accra region to the Jubilee House with our bowls and demand from the president to feed us for the next one month. Banning fishing at this time will not be beneficial to fishermen,’’ he said.
Government has announced a closed season for the month of August, during which no fishing activity will be permitted in Ghana’s marine waters – with the tuna fleet excepted.
The directive, which affects all other fleets including artisanal fisheries, is in response to a dwindling fish stock that has reached unsustainable levels for small pelagics, popularly called ‘poor man’s fish’.
The Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mrs Elizabeth Naa Afoley Quaye at a press conference to announce the ban said: “The government of His Excellency, President Nana Addo Danquah Akufo-Addo of the Republic of Ghana, has noted with concern the grievous and precarious situation and circumstances around the fisheries of Ghana and intends to implement policies and enforcement mechanisms that will restore fisheries to its former glory. To this end, the president has directed that fishing for all fleets – with the exception of the tuna fleet – should be closed for one month beginning August 2018.”
Some fishermen in the Jamestown fishing community and others in Sekondi have however expressed their displeasure over the move, saying it will have devastating effects on their livelihoods.
But the Minister says government will ensure strict compliance with the one-month ban, adding that defaulters will be fined between $500,000 and $2 million.
She said in addition to the fine, the equipment of the offenders will also be confiscated by government.
“A person who engages in fishing during a closed season declared, commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than $500,000 and not more than $2 million in respect of a local industrial or semi industrial vessel or 100 penalty units and not more than 500 penalty units in any other case and in addition, any catch, fishing gear or vessel or any combination of them used in the commission of the offence maybe forfeited to the state,” Mrs. Afoley Quaye explained.
But Nii Lante Vanderpuye has slammed government for using an illogical approach and believes the ban could be placed another time and not the bumper season for the fishermen.
He further argued that, the ban would be harsh because fishermen are peasant people who live from hand to mouth and in ‘’August, the fishing season picks up and this is the period the fishermen are able to raise money to pay their debt and save some for the upkeep of their families and the future,’’ so you cannot enforce the ban.
The Parliament of Ghana has approved a loan facility of $90 million loan facility for the construction of a satellite campus of the University of Environment and Sustainable Development (UESD) at Bunso in the Eastern Region.
The loan, acquired from the Export and Import Bank of Korea will be used for the construction of a modern university campus whose headquarters is located in Somanya.
The University would offer degree programmes in environmental studies, climate change, urban development, Water Resources Development, Energy Sustainability, Energy Economics and Agriculture.
It is to have four undergraduate Schools – the School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, the School of Sustainable Development, the School of Agriculture and Agriculture Entrepreneurship and the School of the Built Environment.
The Minority in Parliament had raised issues regarding the loan facility. According to North Tongu MP, Mr Okudjeto Ablakwa, the decision by government was breach of the constitution.
There will also be one graduate school, comprising three research centres made up of the Centre for Agra Entrepreneurship, the Centre for Agriculture and Bio-Technology and the Centre for Sustainable Resource Development.
Our parliamentary correspondent, Afia Kwarteng said the Speaker, Prof Mike Oquaye was forced to do a head count after Minority leader Haruna Iddrisu challenged as earlier voting held on the floor.
After the headcount, however, 125 MPs voted in favour of the approval of the loan while 75 voted against it.
The loan has therefore been approved.
A gang of armed robbers have killed five passengers onboard a bus at Bekwai in the Ashanti region.
The incident occurred Tuesday afternoon on the Kumasi Bekwai road.
Radio’s Anokye in a report said the bus was travelling from Manso to Kumasi.
According to him, the robbers may have monitored some gold miners who were onboard the bus before carrying out their robbery attack.
Meanwhile, the police in the area managed to gun down seven (7) of the armed men.
Narrating the incident, Anokye indicated that the police managed to arrive at the robbery scene on time because of the police barrier close to the robbery scene.
The police are yet to officially comment on the matter, he added.
He said, ‘’the robbers attacked the bus which was on its way from Manso, a mining community to Kumasi. They killed five passengers onboard the bus. The police managed to kill seven of the armed robbers because they arrived at the scene on time. They have cordoned off the crime scene at the moment.’’
The Minority in parliament has with immediate effect asked government to not to place the ban on fishing as announced by the Fisheries and Aquaculture Ministry.
Addressing a press conference to register their displeasure with regards to the intended ban, Ranking Member on the Food and Agriculture Committee, Mr Eric Opoku noted that, the month with which the ministry has placed the ban is a bumper harvest for the fisher folks and that they (Minority ) see it as unfair treatment on the side of government.
The Minority further indicated that Ghana through research is one of the countries that export tuna and that the ban will disallow the fishermen from making profit as this is their harvest period.
The Minister of Fisheries, Mrs Elizabeth Afoley Quaye has warned fishermen who will disobey the ban that, they will be made to pay $500,000 and $2 million.
She said: “It is needful that people are sanctioned when they don’t comply with the law but that is not the interest of government, our duty is to make people comply voluntarily to the closed season.”
“A person who engages in fishing during a closed season declared, commits an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine of not less than $500,000 and not more than $2million in respect of a local industrial or semi-industrial vessel; or 100 penalty units and not more than 500 penalty units in any other case and in addition, any catch, fishing gear or vessel or any combination of them used in the commission of the offence, maybe forfeited to the state.”
‘’We have realized the Ministry has planned to place a ban on fishing from 7 August to 4 September 2018. They have said that, the ban forms part of measures to ensure stock recovery to curtail the depletion of Ghana's fish stock. But we [Minority] disagree with the Ministry. The ban will have adverse effects on the fisher folks. The period for the ban is the bumper harvest for fishermen and so, we will not support the ban. The period will afford the fishermen an opportunity to make profits and also persons in the coastal areas who depend on fish to celebrate their festivals would also be affected.’’
Former Public Relations Officer (PRO) of the Film Producers Association of Ghana, Ola Michael has said on Rainbow Radio’s GH Entertainment show that nudity in music videos sells.
The entertainment critic responded to a question been asked by Sokoo Hemaa (sit-in for Mr Handsome) on why some ladies go naked in music videos.
Even though the question was not directed to him, he responded “because it sells”
In his opinion, that is what most music video lovers like.
Meanwhile, popular Ghanaian music video director and filmmaker Xbills Ebenezer who was also present said “it depends on the music genre and the needed costumes.”
He went ahead to state clearly that music genre like Dancehall demands a tweak because that is the culture of it.
But he as a director does not allow those acts due to the terms and conditions of some social media platforms, for instance, YouTube.
He would rather prefer bikini or a dress that will not show off the whole body.
The show delved deep into the affairs of music videos, and as such hosted some models and dancers in the industry. They shared their views on the topic.
They stressed on how some music video directors and music artist alike takes their act for granted; and sometimes regard their profession as though offering them a favour than considering them as professionals.
By: Michael Kumordzi Tetteh (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
The Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) on Tuesday expressed dislike on how foreign retailers have been allowed to invade the local market space to torture the peace of the Ghanaian trader.
It indicates there are international trade laws that allow foreigners the freedom to do business but not when one tries to flout those laid down regulations.
Addressing the media and a section of its membership, Dr. Joseph Obeng who is the association's president said, GUTA is not against any business person from wherever to trade in Ghana.
It is instead calling for government to as a matter of urgency address their concerns before things get out of hands.
It says, since the enactment of the Ghana Investment Promotion Centre law in 1994 (Act 478) that debars foreigners from engaging in retail trade until they satisfy certain requirement clearly stated in section 27 (1a) of the act, state authorities have failed to supervise and monitor the activities of non-Ghanaians operating in the retail sector, thereby making the law to lose its relevance and now causing great harm to the citizenry and the economy at large.
No amount of protest or taskforce would yield result and GUTA is on calling for the attention of non-Ghanaians to abide by the obligations as started in the law, (Act 865) and asked Ghanaians trading outside the shore of Ghana to respect same
The association has seen the immeasurable importance of the ongoing National Identification exercise (Ghana Card) by the National Identification Authority and declared its support for it.
It sees amongst many things security, proper data collation social and economic development in the national ID. With this system, dealing with this issue of foreign retailers’ invasion will be enhanced so it appeals with its members and all nationals to help make the project a success.
Container Tracking Note (CTN):
Dr. Obeng on behalf of the group noted the business community keeps complaining bitterly about high cost of doing business in the country, yet all forms of system are being introduced and experimented onnthem. The latest is what it called Container Tracking Note (NTC) beside tax stamp, fumigation, UNIPASS, Easy pass and CET, all of which is not favouring the importer.
He says the union's take is not factored by authorities when enacting such laws. It also seeks reduction of duty rates to make it affordable and give meaning to the concept in the interest of the nation.
To this end, members are of the view that the tax net be widened to cover majority of workers for its flexibility as against the captured few that had to pay huge amount of tax every time.
By: Daniel Asuku