The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Friday, 5th August 2022, commissioned the €37.6 million Upper East Region Water Supply Project, as part of his tour of the Upper East Region.
According to President Akufo-Addo, “the Upper East Region Water Supply System will provide the people of Bolgatanga, Navrongo, Paga and its environs with twenty thousand, five hundred (20,500) cubic metres of water per day, which is approximately four and half million gallons (4.5 million) of water per day, a three-fold increase from the 1.5 million gallons a day originally available to the Region.
It will be recalled that in January 2018, Government, through the Ministry of Finance (MoF), secured funding to the tune of €37,683,266, consisting of a €12,341,308 grant from the Netherlands Government, and a €25 million facility from ING Bank, also from the Netherlands, to implement the Upper East Region Water Supply Project.
The Ministry of Sanitation and Water Resources, together with the construction firm, DENYS NV, structured the project into two phases, with the aim of increasing the design horizon from 2030 to 2040, to make adequate provision for future demand in line with our policy to construct water projects taking into consideration future population growth.
“Apart from Bolgatanga, Navrongo and Paga, communities such as Zuarungu, Zarre, Sumbrungu, Kalbeo, Gambibigo, Winkogo, Bongo, Yorogo, Pungu and Akomkongu are also set to benefit from the project. Three hundred and forty-seven thousand, four hundred and forty-six people, in total, will be served with safe, potable water,” the President said.
He told the gathering that the execution and completion of the Upper East Water Supply Project falls in line with the programme of Government to achieve the target, set under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 6, of ensuring the availability and sustainable management of water and sanitation for all.
President Akufo-Addo reiterated Government’s commitment to creating an enabling environment, through the provision of social infrastructure, that will attract businesses to communities.
“Accordingly, I expect that, with the availability of potable water in this area, investors will take advantage of Government’s Flagship Programmes, such as “One- District, One-Factory”, to establish small and medium scale enterprises to create employment for young people, so as to stimulate the growth and development of the domestic economy,” he added.
He told the gathering that Government is working diligently to provide funds to improve the water supply situation in other parts of the country, with the objective of ensuring equity and an improved quality of life to all communities in the country.
“It is, thus, worthy to mention that works have commenced on the Keta Water Supply Expansion Project in the Volta Region, the Wenchi Water Supply Project in the Bono Region, and the Greater Kumasi Metropolitan Area Sanitation and Water Project in the Ashanti Region. Works will commence, by the end of the year, on the Sekondi-Takoradi Water Supply Expansion Project in the Western Region, the Tamale and Yendi Water Supply Projects, both in the Northern Region, and Damongo Water Supply Project in the Savannah Region,” he said.
President Akufo-Addo also revealed that processes have started to develop Phase Two of the Kpong Water Supply Expansion Project, which will augment the supply of water to the people of Greater Accra.
“The Fanteakwa-Begoro Water Supply Project in the Eastern Region, the Tarkwa Water Supply Project in the Western Region, the Techiman Water Supply Project in the Bono East Region, the Assin Fosu Water Supply Project in the Central Region, the Western North Region Water Supply Project, the Hohoe Water Supply Project in the Volta Region, and the Kumasi Water Supply Project in the Ashanti Region are all in the pipeline, to help respond to the growing demand for water,” the President said.
He urged inhabitants of the beneficiary communities in the Upper East Region to help to maintain the water infrastructure, “so we can continue to have access to potable water and, through that, ensure the general well-being and health of all the respective communities.”
President Akufo-Addo thanked the Netherlands Government for the considerable financial support for the project, through its ORIO funding, and also acknowledged the great contribution this project will have in the urban water supply delivery to the people of the Upper East Region.
Alhaji the CEO of Divine Media Network on The HotSpot Show, Hosted by Solomon Kwabena Nana-Ansah on M-Love radio suggested that the governments, both current and incoming in budgeting for every project that would be undertaken should allocate funds for Operation of the facility (OPEX) as much as they allocate for Capital expenditure ( CAPEX).
Firstly, he stated many government project have been completed but cannot be commissioned due to lack of funds to run the facility. Operational expenditure is not factored in as part of the planning phase of the project so has rendered many completed project in the bush deteriorating.
He added, the government should prioritize its projects in other to meet the demands of the citizenry, thus proper feasibility studies should be conducted to know what the country needs not what would only win electoral votes from a particular region.
Furthermore at the construction phase of every government project quality assurance should be adhered to enable national assets last longer for public good and not to cause financial loss to the State. Especially in construction of facilities like roads, Bridges, Education and Health facilities. He also stated that equipping the human resource of the country would go a long way to revamp the countries economy and also bring about economic stability.
Ghana will be better of if we practice inclusiveness governance this help tap the expertise of people in the opposition parties but the current mindset of our political leaders is winner take all.
The country’s Asset don’t last long because of bad maintenance culture. A lot of the countries Asset is deteriorating overtime due to poor maintenance of these facilities, during the construction stage of most Government project a Preops team is not included and this poses challenges to the maintenance team of the facility at the operation stages. He urge government to invest more in the maintenance of the facilities for better reliability and availability of state Assets.
Alhaji the CEO of Devine Media Network in his submission on The HotSpot Show, hosted by Solomon Kwabena Nana-Ansah on M-Love radio Accra, Ghana.
He firstly stated, the citizens should directly blame the MMDCE’s for neglecting their duties. We always focus on the President who have other responsibilities to look at which is the reason he has appointed MCE’s who receives reports daily from the assembly, knows whatever goes on in the district and a financier . They set by laws for proper conduct of the citizens and knows the needs of the people.
Secondly he emphasized on the fact that MCE’s can set avenues to raise funds for community building and create channel for investors to come into the community.
He added the Ghanaians can vote to choose a MMDCE but the time is not ripe yet , because elections entails much and the country is not well set for that.
He further, spoke about the government should make sure networks that boost the economic growth of the country is highly focus on as a priority. Such as the planting for food and Jobs, the one Village one dam, the one district one factory and the need for a low imports.
The e-levy is good, as taxation tool but the charge is too high. The government should reduce the percentage on transactions in other to ease the burden on the people.
Dr. Ibrahim Anyars addressing participants at the Consultative Breakfast Meeting on Harmonizing Policies and Programmes on Youth Development in Ghana
The CEO of NABCO, Dr. Ibrahim Anyars, has hinted that the entrepreneurship initiative under the YouStart programme will provide about 66,648 trainees from the NABCO Scheme with an immediate and ready resource o start their own business.
“This is in the light of their exit arrangements, but even more imperative is the quantum of investment that has been made already in these tertiary graduates.”
He indicated that the 3-year NABCO Scheme bridges the gap between academia and industry by providing opportunities for young people after tertiary education to add value to themselves and become attractive to the demand side of the industry which indicates that young people from school did not adequately have the required skills and values for industry.
Dr. Anyars made his remarks on a panel discussion at a consultative breakfast meeting on ‘Harmonizing Policies and Programmes on Youth Development in Ghana’ organized by The National Youth Authority (NYA) in Accra.
According to him, the youth-focused agencies agreed on the need for convergence, harmonisation, and the coordination of their respective mandates for greater impact.
The meeting brought together The Nation Builder’s Corps (NABCO), The National Entrepreneurship and Innovation Plan (NEIP), The Youth Employment Agency (YEA), National Service Scheme (NSS), Ghana Enterprise Agency (GEA), National Alternative Employment and Livelihood Programme (NAELP), The Ghana Scholarship Secretariat (SCHOLSEC) among others who discussed the core objectives of their agencies and how to synergize to create greater impact.
The Minister of Finance, Ken Ofori-Atta who was the special guest of honor reemphasized that entrepreneurship must be at the centre of job creation for Ghana’s youth and the YouStart under the Ghana CARES Programme will be the platform to provide the needed capacity; Technology, required Skills Set and Capital.
The Minister for Public Enterprises and MP for EFFIA, Joseph Cudjoe in his closing remarks stated that entrepreneurship creates jobs and not the other way round, and therefore youth programmes in harmonizing should prioritize entrepreneurship.
Dr. Kodjo Esseim Mensah-Abrampa, Director General of the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) chaired the meeting and was very clear that the older generation must stop encouraging the youth to go look for public sector jobs but go into entrepreneurship and drive value from the private sector which has a much larger potential.
Representatives of The United Nations (UN) Systems in Ghana, Development Partners, Civil Society Organizations, and other youth development organs were part of this meeting.
Ukrainian forces “continue to maintain circular defense” in the besieged Ukrainian city of Mariupol, the Ukrainian general staff said early Tuesday, even as Russian forces consolidated control around the southeastern port city.On Monday, the mayor of Mariupol said that evacuation corridors had come largely under the control of Russian forces, after weeks of bombardment left the city in pieces, killed an unknown number of civilians and forced hundreds of thousands of residents from their homes.”Not everything is in our power,” said Mayor Vadym Boichenko, in a live television interview. “Unfortunately, we are in the hands of the occupiers today.”
Russian forces fire at an apartment building in Mariupol, Ukraine on March 11, 2022. Boichenko called for a complete evacuation of the remaining population of Mariupol, which was home to more than 400,000 people before Russia launched its invasion of Ukraine on February 24.
“According to our estimates, about 160,000 people are in the besieged city of Mariupol today, where it is impossible to live because there is no water, no electricity, no heat, no connection,” he said. “And it’s really scary.”
It was unclear if there was still active fighting inside the city.
A pro-Russian separatist leader said on Sunday that about 1,700 Mariupol residents were being “evacuated” daily from the city and its surroundings. Ukrainian officials, however, say thousands were being forcibly “deported” to Russia.”We need a complete evacuation from Mariupol,” Boichenko said. “Our most important mission today is to save every life … And there are hopes that we will succeed. For example, there are 26 buses that have to go to Mariupol to evacuate, but unfortunately, they haven’t received permission to move,” he said.”And this game is played every day. A cynical game like, ‘Yes, we are ready. You can drive there,’ but in fact it does not work,” he said. “Our heroic drivers under the fire are trying to reach the places where Mariupol residents can be picked up, and they are waiting with the hope that they will have such an opportunity. But the Russian Federation has been playing with us since day one.”Statistics released by Ukrainian officials on Sunday paint a grim picture of what has come from weeks of shelling and urban combat in Mariupol.Some 90% of residential buildings in the city were damaged, the data shows. Of those, 60% were hit directly and 40% were destroyed.Local resident Valentina Demura, 70, next to the building where her apartment was destroyed in Mariupol, on March 27.Seven of the city’s hospitals — 90% of the city’s hospital capacity — were damaged, of which three were destroyed. Also damaged were three maternity hospitals (one destroyed), seven institutes of higher education (three destroyed), and 57 schools and 70 kindergartens, with 23 and 28 destroyed, respectively.
A number of factories were damaged and the city’s port sustained damage.According to those official statistics, up to 140,000 people left the city before it was surrounded, and around 150,000 managed to leave during the blockade. Ukrainian officials claim 30,000 people from Mariupol were deported to Russia
Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia has responded to critics who have, in recent times, asked about his whereabouts at a time when the country’s economy appears to be taking a nosedive.
Dr Bawumia has, for some time now, focused on the administration’s digitization agenda in a bid to prevent wastage, improve efficiency, and eliminate corruption within the public sector, with little talk about Ghana’s economic outlook.
Some, including his political opponents, have accused him of intentionally shying away from commenting on economy during these difficult times and conveniently addressing issues in the digitalization and ICT space.
But addressing participants of an Agric students’ boot camp at the Jubilee House on Monday, Dr. Bawumia responded to the critics, describing the intervention he is leading in the digitalization drive as a big deal.
“Coming into government and heading the Economic Management Team, the President gave me that mandate and opportunity to focus on how best we can transform and modernize Ghana to make sure that some of the challenges, some of the risks that, you know, people just want to operate in our economy are facing, how we mitigate those risks, how we make this economy an efficient economy and this is why I have focused on digitalization,” Dr. Bawumia said.
He added, “sometimes people say, well, we thought you were an economist, but you’re doing so much in IT space. Have you left economics behind? No, no, not at all. In fact, it is because of the economy that I’m focusing on digitising because without building those pillars, our economy will just not be able to stand on its own feet.
We need to build those pillars to allow all our sectors in the economy to be able to compete and so we decided to address some of the major bottlenecks that businesses face in the Agric sector through digitalisation.”
Meanwhile, Dr. Bawumia is billed to deliver what is expected to be a comprehensive statement about the country’s economy next month; a speech expected to highlight the true state of the economy and the intervention the administration intends to deploy to salvage an economy that other economists have predicted to be going down a slippery slope.
Biden says he was ‘expressing my outrage’ but not making a policy change when he said Putin ‘cannot remain in power‘
President Joe Biden reiterated on Monday that he was not announcing a change in US policy when he had said that Russian President Vladimir Putin “cannot remain in power” — a remark that caught American and international officials off-guard, sending the White House into clean-up mode over the weekend.”I just was expressing my outrage. He shouldn’t remain in power, just like, you know, bad people shouldn’t continue to do bad things,” Biden said in response to a question from CNN’s Kaitlan Collins at the White House. “But it doesn’t mean we have a fundamental policy to do anything to take Putin down in any way.”Two days after Biden’s return from Europe, the improvised comment made at the end of an address in Warsaw about Putin — “For God’s sake, this man cannot remain in power” — has hovered over the White House.
The White House and Biden have repeatedly tried to downplay the remark. The administration and allies say Biden wasn’t calling for regime change to remove Putin from power. Rather, they argue that Biden was saying Putin cannot be allowed to exercise power over neighboring nations.
“I was talking to the Russian people,” Biden said on Monday at the White House when asked by Collins why he ad-libbed the line.
“The last part of the speech was talking to Russian people,” he said. “I was communicating this to, not only the Russian people but the whole world. This is … just stating a simple fact that this kind of behavior is totally unacceptable. Totally unacceptable. And the way to deal with it is to strengthen and keep NATO completely united and help Ukraine where we can.”Biden emphasized that he was speaking from the heart following a meeting with Ukrainian refugees in Warsaw.
“I’d just come from being with those families,” he said, adding, “I make no apologies for it.”The President also dismissed the suggestion that his remarks might escalate the conflict in Ukraine. Biden said the suggestion that other leaders may take issue with his unscripted remarks during his address in Poland has not weakened NATO.”NATO has never ever, ever, ever, ever, ever been as strong as it is today,” Biden said.The improvised comment about Putin wasn’t planned and surprised aides who were watching Biden’s speech on television or at the event site. And the words hadn’t been something Biden raised as potentially including in his speech — previously, US officials were adamant that changing the government in Moscow wasn’t one of their objectives. In closed-door meetings earlier in the week, Biden told fellow leaders at NATO that he did not want to escalate the West’s confrontation with Russia.Yet his off-the-cuff line did more to pit him directly against Putin than anything so far in the conflict.
Lawyers for Assin North MP, James Gyakye Quayson, on Wednesday successfully blocked the hearing of a case to determine if he can continue performing Parliamentary duties.
On March 8, the Supreme Court ordered the legislator to file his defence in the case after it had ruled that the MP has been sufficiently given notice of the case.
Before that, the Apex Court had on February 22, directed that court processes be brought to the attention of the MP through a publication in the Daily Graphic newspaper and posting on the wall of the Supreme Court in Accra, the High Court in Cape Coast and the residence of the legislator.
This was after the private citizen who filed the case against the MP, Michael Ankomah Nimfah, through his lawyers told the Court that all attempts to give the MP court documents have proved unsuccessful.
A Cape Coast High Court in July, 2021 annulled the Assin North Parliamentary elections when it ruled that Mr Quayson owed allegiance to another country other than Ghana when filing his nomination forms to contest the polls.
The MP has since been fighting to set this aside at the Court of Appeal.
Lawyers for Mr Nimfah want the MP restrained from performing Parliamentary duties while they await the decision of the Court of Appeal.
In Court on Tuesday, March 8, lawyers for the lawmaker led by Tsatsu Tsikata informed the Court that its order for substituted service had not been fully complied with.
He said the publication in the Daily Graphic did not contain all court processes but simply had the order of the Court and date for hearing.
“Another notice appeared in the Daily Graphic of March 1, and again my Lord, it had only the order of substituted service and hearing notice to the parties. The hearing notice served on us flies in the face of the order that your Lordship made,” Mr Tsikata said.
Lawyer for Mr Nimfah, Frank Davies, told the Court a misunderstanding of its order regarding the Daily Graphic publication does not mean the MP is not aware of court processes.
He explained that the order modes of service had been complied with.
The Court then noticed that court processes had been given to Mr Tsikata’s co-counsel, Justin Teriwajah.
The Registrar informed the Court that it provided the necessary documents because of a letter it received from Mr Teriwajah informing the registry of his appointment as the lawyer for the legislator.
Attorney General Godfred Yeboah Dame told the Court that the said letter written by the lawyers and subsequent receipt of documents meant sufficient case had been given.
By a unanimous decision, the Court dismissed the objection raised by Mr Tsikata.
“The essence of substituted service is to bring to the attention of a party of the pendency of the suit. This Court does not expect all processes to be published. Again the letter by Mr Teriwajah speaks for itself. We, therefore, dismiss the preliminary objection.
“On the issue of whether this case is ripe for hearing this Court in a majority decision of 6-1 with Justice Kulendi dissenting holds that the first accused was duly served as at 28 February 2022.
“The case is adjourned to March 16, 2022, for a hearing. The First defendant is to file all processes on or before March 16,” President of the Panel Justice Dotse ruled.
On Wednesday, Mr Tsikata informed the Court that he had filed two applications.
One seeks to urge the Court to halt proceedings while another asks that it review its March 8 ruling.
The Court, therefore, adjourned proceedings to deal with these applications on March 29.
The case was heard by Justices Jones Dotse, Agnes Dordzie, Nene Amegatcher, Mariama Owusu, Gertrude Torkonoo, Prof. Mensah Bonsu and Emmanuel Yonny Kulendi.
The Health and Safety Committee, which was established to study Ghana’s mining sector’s health and safety regime, is urging the Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources to empower the Minerals Commission to punish mining corporations that break the law.
Speaking at a handing over ceremony at the Ministry of Lands, Committee Chair, Professor Richard Amankwa said this follows the Committee’s discovery that many mining companies invited to provide their health and safety plans failed to do so.
The Committee was formed in the aftermath of the explosion at Appiatse, which killed 13 people and injured several others.
According to Committee Chair, Professor Richard Amankwa, the study will be an important document that helps guide issues of health and safety in Ghana’s mining sector.
“Managing the health and safety of this very dynamic mining industry that we had initial discussions with the chief executive officer, they are 14 measures that have already taken some of the issues, he indicated that he’s observed them and some action is already going on in those directions, including some issues that I don’t want to go into details here. I believe that as we present this report today with the action already going on you let them continue with the work that they are doing in the industry on behalf of the Committee.
Again, the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources, Samuel Abu Jinapor, lauded the Committee members for their hard work and involvement.
“The Chairman of the Committee stated that substantial work has been done on this topic, and the overview they’re providing us shows that this will be a highly valuable study that will lead matters concerning the health and safety of our country’s mining sector.
Given the expertise, we couldn’t have put together a better team than we did when I formed a Committee. The recommendation and findings of this study will be taken seriously by the government, and we will pursue them.”
In addition, the Ministry will examine the report and arrive at our own judgments or viewpoints on its contents, however, it is unlikely that all of the findings and recommendations will be adopted.
After all, the goal in Ghana is to create a mining business that is fit for purpose, serves the people that is safe and beneficial to the national economy.Source: Loise Asare