Showing posts from March, 2012

Okaikoi North sub Metro in perspective: Fear grips Alogboshie as rainy season approaches, Monday April 2, 2012, pg 28

A family is trapped in a slapdash wooden shack with corrugated tin roofs perched precariously on legs above the marshy edge of the open storm drain  as the rain continued unabated.

 A group of bare-chested young men trudge through a flowing flood carrying a dead boar as the rains stream down.

Broken walls, uprooted trees, flooded or marshy compounds, two dead bodies,a mother and five year-old child, removed under a broken wall.

Life serves a menu of tragedies when the blue sky gives way to clouds and subsequently, the rains. For some residents of Alogboshie a neighbourhood in  Achimota in the Okai Koi North sub-Metro, the rainy season is a period to plot either an exit plan or simply play into the hands of nature.

“When the clouds begin to gather at night, we begin to think of where to send our mattresses, pillows and bags. Two things happen when the rains arrive; it’s either the compounds of our homes get flooded or our rooms are filled to the knee level.”

“Because there are no prop…

Need an Auto Loan? Monday, April 2, 2012, pg 20

KOJO  wakes up at 3 a.m. everyday to avoid being caught up in the long queue at the lorry park and he wished this could be over soon.

Ama is always late for work. Her excuse? Besides having to take care of her family’s needs every morning, she lives too far away from her work place and its hellish getting a car to the office.

Michael has tons of bills to pay monthly, yet he is tired of boarding trotros and taxis to the office.. He has lost several important documents and even money on some occasions in the unreliable public transport.
In all the above scenarios, the characters will certainly welcome their own cars; if they can afford one.

But what if the costs of the cars are beyond them?  Well! That is why the banks and other financial institutions are available to help. But it is not that simple. As the demand for cars increase, some banks have developed loans mainly for the purchase of cars. So bingo! Auto loans are the answer.

But who qualifies for an auto loan? Everyone who has the ab…

Osu residents benefit from health screening, Wednesday, April 4, 2012, pg 20

ABOUT 500 residents of Osu and its environs have benefited from a health screening exercise organised by the Prince Emmanuel Seventh-Day Adventist Church at the Ringway Estates in Accra.

People who benefited from the three-day exercise were screened for high blood pressure, cardiovascular check, Body Mass Index (BMI), fasting and random blood sugar test. The programme also involved a nutrition seminar.

The event formed part of the church’s evangelism tool to strengthen its relationship with the community.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, Dr N.L Thompson, the Director of Youth of the Ghana Union of the Seventh-Day Adventist Church, observed that many people were living and dying slowly as a result of unhealthy diets.

“In a community where people live a sedentary lifestyle, the health screening programme is to help people get out of basic health challenges which have the potential to affect them in the future.”

Dr Thompson, who is also the Pastor in charge of the church, advised the public to…

9,000 trained under YESDEC, Tuesday, April 10, 2012, Back page

THE Youth Enterprise and Skills Development Centre (YESDEC), a subsidiary of Zoomlion Ghana Limited  has trained 9,000 unemployed Ghanaians.

Out of the number, 8,578 have received support to commence their own businesses in trades including catering, plumbing, beads-making and sewing.

Mr. Elorm  Attipoe made this known in Accra at the passing-out of 172 caterers in the Greater Accra Region. Some 2,500 people have benefited from the programme in the Greater Accra Region.

The trainees have undergone three week training in food hygiene, fire safety and financial management.

Each of the trainees received GH¢1,000 set-up equipment which came in the form of a cylinder, a cooking stove, an ice chest, cooking utensils and a waste bin.

The beneficiaries are expected to pay back the cost of the equipment in 18 months.

The main aim of the YESDEC programme is facilitating the acquisition of entrepreneurial, technical and specialized skills by the youth to enable them to set up an…

5000 Graduates undergo apprenticeship traning, Wednesday, April, 11, 2012. pg 19

­About 5,000 junior high school (JHS) graduates who could not proceed to senior high school are undergoing apprenticeship under the National Apprenticeship Programme.

An additional 8,000 beneficiaries are expected to receive assistance this year from the programme, which is aimed at reducing youth unemployment in the country.

Beneficiaries of the initiative are receiving training in mechanics, garment-making, hairdressing and electronics under the supervision of 1,200 master craftsmen at 78 centres across the country.

 The Co-ordinator of the Council for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (COTVET), Mr K.A. Amaniampong, made this known at the launch of a proficiency training programme for mechanics in the automobile industry.

The proficiency training, the brainchild of Cart Alternative Development Foundation (CADEF), a non-governmental organisation, is to help upgrade the skills and knowledge base of the master craftsmen.

The first training, which will benefit more than 100 mec…

Private estate developer to build 10,000 affordable houses, Saturday, March 31, 2012, Back page

Agu Resources Ghana Limited, a local estate development firm, and Top International Construction, a Chinese construction company, have entered into an agreement to build 10,000 affordable houses in the country.
The first phase of the project, which is a public-private partnership facilitated by the Ministry of Water Resources, Works and Housing, will begin on a 74-acre plot of land at Nsakina and Odumase in the Ga West District of the Greater Accra Region.
Known as ‘Agu Palm Condos’, the project, which will see the construction of 2,650 two- and three-bedroom houses under the first phase, is expected to be completed in two years.
The remaining 7,350 houses, targeted at public and civil servants, will be spread to other parts of the country.
Agu Resources is assuming the financial, technical and operational risk, while the government will make land available and provide other facilitative services.
The Chief Executive Officer of Agu Resources, Mr Ben K. Agumeh, signed the do…

Stop using pulpit to debase political office, Friday, March 30, 2012, pg 19

CHURCH LEADERS have been urged to stop using the pulpit to discourage their members from seeking political office.

A former Vice-President of the Zambia, Rev. Dr Nevers Mumba, who made the call at a National Prayer Breakfast in Accra, noted that it was in politics that decisions that shape the future of a nation were taken hence the need for Christians to play an active role in the country’s politics.

He observed that painting politics as a dirty game, that Christians should be far from it, only hands over the country’s affairs to people who only cared about themselves.

Rev. Dr Mumba, the guest speaker for the event said “We have become commentators on our pulpits and allowing unbelievers to take over our countries.”

The National Prayer Breakfast is designed to be a forum where religious, political, business and security leaders will come together and deepen their spiritual lives.
The programme was on the theme: “Breaking barriers, Building Bridges.”

Among the notable people who patronised …

'Avoid provocations as country prepares for elecions', Friday, March 23, 2012, pg 17

The Global Evangelical Church is appealing to all political parties to avoid provocative language as the country girds its loins for electioneering.

“We are also calling on political parties to condemn wrong actions of their supporters so that we will be able to have a peaceful election,” the Moderator of the Church, Rt. Rev. Dr. Edem Tettey, told the Daily Graphic.

The moderator, who spoke on the sidelines of an induction ceremony of directors of the church, stated that it was important for all Ghanaians to exercise self control before, during and after the elections to protect the peace of the country.

“Tolerance is very necessary as the campaign season sometimes gets heated up and people become too passionate,” he stated.

He, however, said freedom of expression was not a license to spew out things that had the possibility of damaging the reputation of others.
While commending the media for playing its watch dog role, Rt. Rev Dr. Tettey also noted with concern the partisan r…

Estate development builds police post for Oshuiman, Saturday, March 24, 2012, Back page

A GH¢40,000 police post has been inaugurated at Oshiuman in the Ga West District in the Greater Accra Region.

The project, which was initiated by the Land Line Properties Limited, a real estate company, has an office and a cell.

The company also donated a parcel of land to transform the police post into a permanent police station with a two-storey building, which is expected to be completed in two years.

Additionally, the company donated a pick-up valued at $25,000 to support the operations of the police post.

Oshiuman is noted for skirmishes, particularly those involving land guards, sometimes ending in bloody clashes.

Speaking at the inauguration ceremony, DCOP Frank Adu-Poku, the Director of General of Services of the Ghana Police Service, noted that the new post would help reduce crime in the area.

He noted that as bad elements in the society found means of committing crime, the police needed to adopt strategies to reduce crime.

He said one of the strategies was to ensure that the police…

Mangoase SHS gets board of governors, Wednesdat, March 21, 2012, Spread

THE Board of Governors for the Mangoase Senior High School has been inaugurated after the school had operated for two years without a board.

The 11-member board, sworn in by Rev Francis Tipong the head pastor of Mangoase Presbyterian Church, is led by Mr Ransford Tetteh, Editor of the Daily Graphic and President of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA).

The board is expected, among other things, to serve as an advisory body to the headmaster.
The body will control the general policy of the institution subject to further directives from the Minister of Education through the Ghana Education Service (GES) Council and also form procurement committees to ensure effective  teaching and learning.

Addressing the new board members, Ms Adriana Kandilinge, the Eastern Regional Director of Education, said the board had been appointed at a time when SHSs in the country were facing numerous challenges including accommodation, infrastructure and poor academic performance.

She, therefore, urged the boar…

NLC Chairman advised to step down, Tuesday, March 20, 2012,pg 20

­THE Industrial and Labour Fast Track High Court has advised the Chairman of the National Labour Commission (NLC) to step aside in a case involving the SG-SSB Bank and the Industrial and Commercial Workers Union (ICU) because of alleged conflict of interest.

The court, presided over by Justice Kwabena Asuman-Adu, ruled that even though Mr Joseph Aryitey is one out of five panellists who were handling the case and could not influence the outcome, it would be in his own interest to step aside, since an objection had been raised.

The court also held that although the ICU provided some evidence that Mr Aryitey had acted as solicitor for the bank at a point, it was not enough ground for which he could be said to be bias.

Consequently, it dismissed an application for an injunction to restrain the NLC boss from sitting on the current case and any other case involving the SG-SSB Bank and the ICU.

The court maintained that although Mr Aryitey was the chairman of the NLC, he was just a facilitator…

Adolescents lack knowledge on sexual reproductive health---Nogouchi study

A STUDY conducted by the Nogouchi Memorial Institute for Medical Research (NMIMR) has indicated majority of Ghanaian adolescents have no knowledge of sexual and reproductive health issues.

The research also established that adolescent pregnancy was prevalent in Accra, especially in Ashiedu-Kete, La and Okai Koi Sub-metros with some 15 per cent of adolescents likely to be pregnant or become mothers before age 19.

A Senior Research Fellow of the NMIMR, Dr Collins S. Ahorlu, however assured that a number of the adolescents, who got pregnant, showed resilience and returned to school while others who could not return to school found solace in apprenticeship.

 Dr Ahorlu stated this when he gave excerpts of the research at the launch of ‘Youth for Youth,’ Magazine, which is dedicated to addressing sexual and reproductive health among adolescents in Ghana.

The study of teenage girls to early pregnancy and reproductive health in Ghana and Tanzania under the Research Project 7 (RP-7) was starte…

Free Cash As Crowd Charges On Accident Bullion Van, Saturday, March 17, 2012, Front

It was a scramble as passers-by and second hand phone dealers struggled for access to large sums of money that had dropped from a Totyota bullion van which had been involved in an accident at the Kwame Nkrumah Circle in Accra Friday.

The speeding bullion van with registration number GW 1847 S ans travelling from Accra New Town towards the Kwame Nkrumah Circle, collided with a VIP bus at an intersection near the Vodafone Head Office.

With the occupants of the vehicl trapped inside, the army of second hand phone dealers and passers-by who rushed to the accident scene took to looting the wads of cash that spilled from the vehicle.

According to an eye-witness, two boxes containing GH50, GH20 and GH10 notes dropped from the van and many people rushed to the scene to take their share of the 'booty'.

"I saw one guy who picked about four bundles of GH50 notes, tied it in his shirt and ran in the direction of the Odo Rice Restaurant," he said.

When g…

Headmaster shares Bungalow ...with female students, Friday, March 16, 2012, Front page

Accommodation challenges facing the Mangoase Senior High School (MASS) have compelled the headmaster of the school to cede part of his two-bedroom bungalow to female students of the school.

Close to 50 students are occupying the headmaster’s kitchen and sitting room, with some sleeping on the about 20 beds available, while others sleep on mattresses on the floor.

To enter his room, the Headmaster, Mr Albert K. Wofa, passes through the garage, while cooking is done in the open.

There is a blockade that prevents the students from interfering with the headmaster’s space and privacy, and vice versa.

The school has a boarding population of 420, with 270 being girls and 150 being boys.

On a hot day, life becomes very uncomfortable. Ceiling fans spin furiously in vain to blow away the steamy hot air flooding in from the compound.

One student sums up the problem: “The room feels like an oven. Sleeping here with our bags as pillows is very difficult.”

The only bath house for the 270 girls is…

Security hassles at KIA, Thursday, March 15, 2012, Front

Angry aviation security personnel at the Kotoka International Airport yesterday brought operations at the Domestic Flight Terminal of the airport to a temporary halt when they locked up the entrance of the terminal from the tarmac.

The action was in solidarity with the Commander of Aviation Security, Ben Henaku, who is in the grip of the National Security for allegedly breaching security procedure during the arrival of President Mills on Tuesday.

To protest the alleged violence visited on their boss, the security personnel locked up part of the domestic terminal.
Subsequently, passengers of a Starbow flight who had arrived from Sunyani were forced to confront the security personnel to get the gates open.
An eyewitness told the Daily Graphic that in the ensuing melee, a glass door was shattered by the stranded passengers.

The source said the situation calmed down when some senior officials of the Ghana Airport Company Limited went to talk to the workers.

The source, who spoke to the Da…

Legon to introduce new PhD structure, Thursday, March 15, 2012, pg 48

The University of Ghana, Legon, is to introduce a new structure for its PhD programmes beginning from the 2012/ 2013 academic year.

Key among the changes to the existing programme include the admission of first degree holders into the MPhil/ PhD programmes and the introduction of comprehensive examinations for the candidates before they embark on their researches.

Additionally, students will now have to do a compulsory course work and formal defense of research proposals.

The Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Legon Professor Ernest Aryeetey announced the changes at the 2012 congregation of the university.

He said the changes were to make “our doctoral students more analytical, ensure that they were familiar with current and relevant literature in their fields and also ensure that our doctoral programmes conform to best practice.”

While the ceremony had 3810 students graduating at various levels with 417 students obtaining first class honours, 17 of the post grad…

11 Corporate bodies awarded for tax payment, Monday, March 12, 2012, pg 32

ELEVEN corporate bodies and 14 employees of Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) have been honoured for distinguishing themselves in the payment and collection of taxes in the country.

While the award was, among other objectives, to motivate corporate taxpayers and encourage other taxpayers to emulate their example, it was to encourage members of staff of the GRA who had excelled not to rest on their oars.

Out of the 10 companies who were awarded on Friday night, Newmont Gold Ghana Limited and GHACEM emerged the top winners, scooping the Best Taxpayers prizes.

While the Most Improved Taxpayer’s award went to Plant Medical, Diamond Cement received the Best Taxpayer in the Customs Division with GCNet and GIZ winning the Taxpayers/Stakeholder awards.
Other award winners were Olam Ghana Limited, Guinness Ghana Breweries, Nestle Ghana Limited, Vodafone Ghana Limited and Scancom Ghana Limited.

Speaking at the ceremony, a Deputy Minister of Finance and Economic Planning, Mr Fiifi Kwetey, commended …

'GNAT to withdraw services, take legal action, Friday, March 9, 2012, pg 11

The Ghana National Association of Teachers (GNAT) has threatened to withdraw its services from communities where its members are harassed and molested. 

Further, the association said it would pursue legal action against people who, without any provocation from its members, take the law into their own hands and assault teachers.

"The Ghana National Association of Teachers will not take kindly to any further attacks on its members and will not hesitate to take whatever measures to seek redress for members who become victims of harassment and molestation," Mrs Irene Duncan Adanusah, the General Secretary of the association, said at a press conference in Accra.

The decision of the teachers' umbrella body follows acts of intimidation and harassment in the hands of two communities in the Dangme West District in the Greater Accra Region.

On January 16, this year, irate youth of Duffor in the Dangme West District invaded the Methodist Basic School, the only scho…

Labour Commission holds crisis talks with NHIA union, Thursday, March 8, 2012, pg 33

The National Labour Commission has directed unionized staff of the National Health Insurance Authority to return to work as their strike is illegal. 

The commission’s directive is to ensure that the union and management complete ongoing negotiations and report back to it by March 4, 2012.

Demands being made by the workers include agreeing on a Collective Bargaining Agreement and a salary structure. Workers of some of the schemes across the country declared a sit-down strike last Monday demanding improved conditions of service.

But management of the authority went to the Labour Commission seeking reliefs including declaration of the strike as illegal, the return of the workers to the negotiating table and the declaration of the strike as an unfair labour practice.

Workers of some of the schemes in parts of the Western, Eastern, Upper West and Ashanti regions declared the strike on Monday, to protest poor conditions of service. Reports indicate that some workers of the NHIA…

Leaders want President to back words with action, Wednesday, March 7, 2012 pg 17

Leaders of some political parties have welcomed President J.E.A. Mills’ assurance to maintain peace in the run-up to this year’s election but asked the President to back his word with action.

They said the President’s affirmation of peace was timely because it was only in an atmosphere of peace that the country could come out united after the election.

However, they said, the President should move beyond the words and create the enabling environment for peace to prevail before, during and after the election.

They were reacting to President Mills’ independence speech during which he rededicated his commitment to ensuring peace before, during and after this year’s election.

Speaking to the Daily Graphic on the fringes of the Independence day celebrations at the Independence Square in Accra Tuesday, Samia Nkrumah, the Chairperson of the Convention Peoples Party, Hassan Ayariga, the presidential candidate of the Peoples National Convention and Dr Henry Lartey, the leader of …

Ghanaian taste for vehicles since independence, Tuesday, March 6, 2012

FROM rickety, smoke-blowing Bedford trucks to luxurious 4X4s and saloons, Ghana’s automobile and road transport sectors have seen it all from years preceding independence in March 1957 till today.

Vehicles made their appearance in the Gold Coast at the turn of the 19th century, not so very long after they took to the road in Europe in the 1890's.

From some hundreds, the number of cars has increased over the years, with the country’s roads are now responsible for well over a one million cars, according to statistics from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority.

Lorries, especially the untiring good old Bedford trucks became common in the late 1930's. They were extensively used for transporting cocoa, salt and foodstuff to the railways even before properly tarred roads became common.

The diesel engines and steel frames had good reputations, were strong as tractors, and reliable. The owners, often wealthy traders, men and women, would contract carpenters to build the box, seat…

Collaborate with EC on voter education-Ablakwa, Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Religious bodies in Ghana have been asked to engage officials of the Electoral Commission (EC) to increase the level of awareness about the biometric voter registration process.

“The biometric voter registration is a very sensitive exercise which we need to get our people well informed about. Our religious bodies have a very important role to play by serving as a platform to educate the populace.”

A Deputy Minister of Information, Mr Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, who made the call in an interview with the Graphic said this would go a long way towards reducing the myth surrounding the biometric voter registration exercise.

He was speaking on the fringes of the launch of the 50th anniversary celebrations of the Accra New Town Bethel Evangelical Presbyterian Church in Accra.

“The various churches for instance can have their leaders engage with resource persons from the EC where they could get an understanding of the biometric registration and then relay it to the larger congrega…