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Showing posts from January, 2014

Supreme Court Dismisses Former GHAPOHA Workers' Case

The Supreme Court yesterday dashed the hopes of more than 4,000 former casual workers of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GHAPOHA) of getting extra compensation for a redundancy exercise carried out by the authority in 2002 The court, by a unanimous decision, dismissed the case on the grounds that the legal team of the retrenched casual workers failed to, among other things, do due diligence on the case. It, therefore, upheld a 2007 Court of Appeal ruling which declined to affirm a Tema High Court decision that ordered GHAPOHA to pay severance awards to its former casual employees. Court speaks Reading the judgement on behalf of the five- member panel, presided over by Mrs Justice Georgina Wood, the Chief Justice, Mrs Justice Rose Comfort Owusu, described the decision as a painful loss for the workers. "I say 'painfully' because it is not that the appellants did not have a case to pursue but they have lost because their case was not well- handled with due diligenc…

Telcos increase tarrifs, Thursday, January 16, 2014

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Tariffs of telecom service providers in Ghana have been adjusted upwards, despite their customers grumbling over poor service. However, the industry’s players maintain that a number of factors have conspired to push telecom companies to increase call rates. While MTN call rates are now GHp10.50 for on-net tariff per minute, up from GHp10, data is going for GHp10 per megabite, up from GHp9.5 per megabite.  SMS, on the other hand, is GHp5.5 and GHp4.5 for national off-net and on-net, respectively; an increase of GHp5 and GHp4 respectively. From GHp 0.0840, Airtel call rates have moved up to GHp 0.0920 per minute. On-net calls are calls within the same network,while off-net calls are calls from one network to another. Although Vodafone, Tigo and Glo officials did not respond to Daily Graphic’s enquiries, checks indicate that call rates for the three companies have gone up. MTN With their cost of business going up due to increase in taxes, the telecos are now passing on Value Added Tax, C…

Accra runs out of petrol, Tuesday, January 28, 2014

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There were unusually long queues of vehicles at most fuel stations in Accra yesterday as the metropolis was hit by  petrol shortage. On a day transportation fares had gone up by 20 per cent, diesel vehicle owners were the lucky ones to have fuel at almost all fuel stations in the national capital. At the Accra Sports Stadium Shell filling station, impatient drivers, eager to get their share of the now scarce commodity, were in a long winding queue that stretched as far as the Freedom Monument, near the Independence Square. “I used the little fuel I had in my car to drive from Teshie to this place. I have been looking for fuel since morning,” a not-too-excited Mr John Aidoo told the Daily Graphic. The Supervisor of the station, Mr Desmond Darko, said it had earlier reserved some of its stock for its customers but had to give in as more and more people drove there to queue for fuel. “We placed the order, but the supply is not coming in. We place orders for fuel every three days but the…

Project to promote transparency in public procurement unveiled, Friday, January 24, 2014

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• Dr Oboeh-Ocansey (left), the Chairman of Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), Major Daniel Sowa Ablorh-Quarcoo (Rtd) and Mrs Florence Dennis (3rd left), Ghana Anti-Corruption Coalition (GACC), jointly launching the Open Contracting Guide report in Accra.Pictures: SAMUEL TEI ADANO  The Public Procurement Authority (PPA) is adopting new strategies to promote transparency and accountability in the award of government contracts, an official of the PPA has said. A key component of the strategies is the listing of all tenders online. The process is part of a pilot e-procurement project which provides a common platform for use by public institutions in public procurement and public financial management, and enhances competition by facilitating increased participation of service providers for government contracts. Other approaches that have been adopted to reduce corruption include publication of tenders of contracts above a certain threshold in newspapers and websites and p…

Saharawi Arab Republic grateful to Ghana for support, Saturday,January 25,2014

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The Saharawi Arab Republic Ambassador to Ghana has commended Ghana for its support for his country in its fight against Moroccan colonial rule. Ambassador Mahayub Buyema acknowledged Ghana’s position which supported Saharawi Republic’s right to exist as an independent state in line with the United Nations (UN) resolutions. Currently, there are Ghanaian troops in that country on a peacekeeping mission. Speaking during a courtesy call on the Editor of the Daily Graphic, Mr Ransford Tetteh, the ambassador recounted Ghana’s continuous diplomatic support for the western Saharan country that had been under Moroccan rule since 1976, in spite of a bloody war that ended in 1991. Making a case for an independent Saharawi, he said: “The problem of Saharawi is a problem of colonisation. The resolutions are clear that we want a referendum. If the people of Saharawi want to be independent, that is their right, and it should be their prerogative as well if they want to be part of Morocco; it should…

Oterbleku basic school pupils cramed into 3 classrooms

Inadequate classrooms at the Oterbleku D/A Primary School in the newly created Ningo-Prampram District in the Greater Accra Region have compelled authorities of the school to cram six classes into three classrooms. While about 100 pupils are sharing three plywood-partitioned classrooms, another group of primary one pupils sweat under a shed. They are easily distracted by activities in the immediate surroundings. Problems Currently, the nursery, kindergarten and primary two pupils share one classroom. Though they are separated by plywood, access to the nursery is through the primary two classroom. The school started in 1987, in a pavilion which was later demarcated into three classrooms in the hope that extra classrooms would be built as the school’s population increased. Until three years ago, the school was operating a multi-grade system, the Assistant Headmaster of the school, Mr Augustine Senyo, told the Daily Graphic. He said two grades of pupils shared a classroom, explaining tha…

Newmont involved in galamsey? Front

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The Chairman of the  Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy,Dr Kwabena Donkor, has accused Newmont Ghana Limited of operating the biggest galamsey at its Akyem concession.

According to him, the company’s operations in the Akyem area had no legal leg to stand on.

But in an interview with the Daily Graphic, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Alhaji Inusah Fuseini, while conceding that the company’s  mining agreement was yet to be ratified by Parliament as required by law, stated that the company had a licence from the Minerals Commission.

Newmont Ghana has been accused of operating its Akyem concession illegally but the minister explained that in line with the 1992 Constitution, any investment for the exploitation of natural resources had to go through Parliament and the Minerals Commission.

Processes 

The first, he said, was the signing of a mining contract by the President in whom mineral resources were vested and then the agreement was sent to Pa…

Trade Ministry misinformed Presidency — (TEGLEU) pg 49

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The Textile Garment and Leather Employees Union (TEGLEU) of the Ghana Federation of Labour (GFL) has accused the Ministry of Trade and Industry (MoTI) of misinforming the Presidency about the work of the task force established to curb textile piracy in the country.

“The complicity of government is very clear in this issue. The Ministry of Trade is condoning the illegal activities of people pirating local textiles at the expense of the local industry,” Mr Abraham Koomson, the Secretary-General of Ghana Federation of Labour, said at a news conference in Accra yesterday.

At his maiden media encounter on January 7,  2014, President John Dramani Mahama justified the decision of MoTI to suspend the activities of the Anti-Piracy Task Force which had been monitoring the movement of textiles smuggled into Ghana.

President Mahama’s recommendations

The President had, among other things, suggested the use of tax stickers on textile prints to easily detect the smuggled ones, the need t…

Education in Nzulezo: Counting the cost (Monday, January 13, 2014, page 43)

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“TE..LE...VI...SION!  It is too big. I can’t spell it. Let me open the book, I can see the letters and spell it,” Derrick  said in Twi, as he  struggled, trying to pull Boakyewaa Glover’s latest novel, The Justice, which was firmly in my grip.

At 13 years and in primary five, he couldn’t complete a five-minute conversation in English, neither could he find the word television from the page I opened for him after his pleas.

Like many children in Nzulezo—the stilt community in the heart of the Amanzuri wetland and lake — quality education is like a needle lost in a bundle of  hay.

Although the concerns of the people of Nzulezo are too numerous to recount, education remains a priority. That, however, does not translate into the teaching and learning facilities available in the stilt community.

Manned by one trained teacher who also doubles as the headmaster, the school—Old Nzulezo D/A Primary School — also has four pupil teachers, all paid by the community.

“Wit…

Nzulezo — A village built on water and superstition (Saturday, January 4, 2014) Pg 15

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“Nobody with an evil intention can cross this lake and come here to harm us.  We are protected against evil plans,” Francis Erzoah says before launching into another rendition of melodious whistles while his fingers are wrapped around a sharp knife chipping away what is gradually transforming into a miniature canoe from a piece of wood.
Occasionally, he wipes beads of sweat from his brow with the back of his palm and continues sculpting what would put bread and butter on the table for him and his family.  Like many inhabitants of Nzulezo, the stilt village in the heart of the Amanzuri wetlands in the Jomoro District in the Western Region, Francis believes that the location of their home is divine.

The superstition is so deep that the people believe if anyone with evil intention attempts to cross the vast lake to attack, steal or cause any mischief in Nzulezo, the person will not survive.

Asked whether that would not amount to leaving people involved in genuine accidents on…

Pools of water at departure, arrival halls of KIA (Spread)

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Travellers who used the Kotoka International Airport (KIA) on December 30, 2013 had to cautiously avoid pools of water that had collected at the arrival and departure halls of the country’s only international airport.

The pools of water was the result of a leaking roof which gave way after it rained that day.
Water dripped from the ceiling and covered almost half of the departure hall.

Cleaners had to mop the water that had collected at the two halls of the airport while airlines and passengers conducted pre-departure formalities, including luggage check-in and issuing of boarding passes.

An eyewitness, Ms Maame Ama Sanne Otoo, told the Daily Graphic that it took more than an hour to mop the slippery, tiled floor.

“I was very disappointed. The thought of a whole Kotoka International Airport flooded was absurd. It wasn’t the best. Luckily, it happened when most of the check-ins had been done,” Ms Otoo said.
She said some of the travellers took pictur…

Mad rush for 2014 registration numbers (Saturday, Jannuary 4, 2014) Spread

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Some people at the offices of DVLA trying to register their vehicles.Picture: Emmanuel Quaye


The unusually large number of vehicles at the DVLA office was as a result of the desire of most people who bought their vehicles mostly in the last quarter of 2013 to lincence their vehicles in 2014.
The situation got so chaotic that police officers had to stand in to control traffic flow at the usually quiet street leading to the DVLA offices.
On the first working day of the year on Thurday and Friday, the cars massed up on the car parks of the police barracks nearby as DVLA authorities hustled for space to accomodate the large turn out.
To control the situation, officials of the DVLA closed their gates and allowed 50 vehicles into their premises at a time. Additionally, 250 vehicles have been scheduled for registration each day to reduce the stress that comes with the exercise.
During this time of the year, many new car owners prefer unique car numbers or car licence plates with numbers tha…