Monday, January 31, 2011

KMA to demolish 70 houses (PAGE 18, JAN 29, 2011)

Story: Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi

THE Kumasi Metropolitan Assembly (KMA) has set February 2011 for its biggest ever demolition exercise that would affect 70 houses in the Atafoa Extension and Aboahia Planning Area of the city.
According to the KMA, the affected houses some of which have been completed were located in areas earmarked for roads, schools, police stations, post offices and fire service stations among others.
About six months ago, the KMA embarked on a major exercise, which saw 50 houses being destroyed because they were illegally located.
Property owners involved in the impending exercise had already refuted the KMA claim that they were illegal developers, arguing that they had genuine permits relating to the lands in question.
However at a news conference in Kumasi, the Public Relations Officer of the KMA, Mr Clement Kegeri, said none of the developers had the legal documents to build.
He pointed out that the planning scheme of Kumasi took into account locations.
“It is on the basis of this that every developer must first of all obtain building permit from the city authorities before putting up any structure,” Kegeri said.
Giving the genesis of the planned exercise, the spokesman said about four months ago it came to the attention of the KMA that some people had started putting up buildings haphazardly at Atafoa and Aboahia.
Mr Kegeri stated that the illegal constructions had even affected the major road linking the Barekese road to the Offinso road.
“KMA took a bold decision to demolish all those houses to pave the way for the construction of the road.”
Mr Kegeri said few months later the KMA’s attention was drawn to the illegal developments going on at Atafoa and Aboahia through a letter written by the Akyempimhene of Kumasi, Oheneba Adusei Poku.
He continued that upon the information the KMA Development Control Unit went to survey the sites and realised that the structures were located in areas earmarked for public places.
It decided to take action to demolish them.
“It is important to know that the decision to demolish the houses is to serve the interest of these same people who are building in the area.
“KMA is the same institution that will be blamed if we allow a community to spring up without public amenities,” he stressed.

KNUST bans party politics (LEAD STORY, NSEMPA, JAN 31, 2011)

By: Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi

POLITICAL party activities on the campus of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) have been banned.
The Vice Chancellor (VC) of the university, Prof. W.O Ellis, stated categorically that the university would not allow its campus to be used to advance the course of any political party.
“This is an academic institution and it should remain so,” the VC said at a media encounter he organised in Kumasi, last Thursday.
Answering a question posed by a journalist, Prof. Ellis said much as students have the right to join the political party of their choice, they could only organise political activities outside the campus.
He said the university had set out guidelines for political activities on campus and would not deviate from them.
The occasion enabled the VC to share his vision and aspirations with the media and also discuss ways of partnering the media to advance his vision for the KNUST.
Prof. Ellis, the youngest ever VC of the KNUST, has set out a journey to position the university as a global centre of excellence in science and technology education.
He noted the role of the media in advancing the development of education and said, “We are today opening a new chapter with the media and I am hopeful that the future will be positive.”
Prof. Ellis urged the media to crosscheck information about the university to avoid the publication of negative stories that could tarnish the university’s reputation.
The Vice Chancellor said in the competitive world of today, one single negative story could have adverse effects on the university’s reputation.
Notwithstanding, he noted that as a big institution with thousands of students, the university was bound to encounter disturbing events but stressed that what was important was how to manage them when they happened.
Prof. Ellis challenged managers of radio stations to endeavour to invite people with requisite knowledge and qualifications to discuss specific issues.
“It is irritating to hear all manner of people discussing issues they have no knowledge about.”
This, he noted, defeated the professional role of the media to inform, entertain and educate.
He maintained that KNUST was the best university in the country today, a situation that placed a responsibility on the administration to work at building on the standards achieved.
On the proposed opening of the Accra campus of the KNUST, Prof. Ellis said it was on course.

Aduana must consider playing WAC in Kumasi’ (NSEMPA BACK PAGE, JAN 31, 2011)

‘By Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi

SOME football fans in Kumasi have called on the management of Aduana Stars FC to consider playing the second leg of their Orange CAF Champions League preliminary match against Wydad Athletic Club (WAC) of Casablanca at the Baba Yara Stadium.
Already Aduana have chosen the Sunyani Coronation Park for the second leg but some fans in Kumasi believes it will be good for the champion club to shift venue to Kumasi.
Speaking to Graphic Nsempa in separate interviews in Kumasi, the fans said Aduana would receive massive support in Kumasi despite the perception of antagonism between the Dormaa based side and Kumasi Asante Kotoko.
“This is an international affair and local football politics will not come to play, “ one of the fans said.
Yesterday, Aduana Stars made history as the first football club from the Brong Ahafo Region to participate in the prestigious Africa Champions League.
No matter the score line, Aduana have made Brong Ahafo and Ghana proud at this period of the national game when even an established club like Accra Hearts of Oak failed to participate in Africa last year due to financial difficulties.
To gather the necessary finances to travel to far away Morocco is no joke.
The club had shown that with the necessary planning everything was possible in football.
But no one can dispute the enormous support the club had received from the owner and bankroller of the club, Dormaahene Osagyefo Oseadeeyo Agyeman Badu II.
This was a young man who ascended the Dormaa stool full of hope and today is proving his mettle as a chief of excellence.
Nana knows what football can do to his area and is therefore ready to invest in it.
If anything at all, the exploits of Aduana have added to the image of the Dormaa State.

Thursday, January 27, 2011


About 1,500 people took to the streets of Kumasi yesterday in a demonstration to back their demand for investigations into how the TOR Debt Recovery Fund was utilised under the erstwhile NPP government.
Organised by the Movement for Better Ghana Agenda in Kumasi, the demonstration, dubbed “Hwe hwe mu”, to wit, “Investigate it”, was also used to show support for the government for the able manner it has handled the affairs of the nation.
At about 6.30 a.m., busloads of people, mostly the youth, had started arriving at the Centre for National Culture where the event took off.
The demonstrators began to move out to the streets at about 9 a.m., accompanied by brass band music.
They went through Pampaso, the Central Police Station, the Prempeh II Street, the Asafo Interchange and ended at the Jubilee Park where the leaders addressed the gathering.
Wearing red armbands, the demonstrators carried placards, some of which read, “TOR cash for cocaine”, “Prez, hwe hwe mu yie”, “AFAG is bogus”, “Petrol price — who cause am?” and “Prez, apply the law”.
The organisers said the demonstration was not to counter the AFAG demonstration in Accra but show to the good people of the country the hypocrisy of the AFAG members.
About 20 policemen were detailed to provide security for the demonstrators and everything went on peacefully.
Speaking to the Daily Graphic, the Communications Director of the Movement for Better Ghana, Mr Francis Dodovi, described the NPP government as the worst government Ghana had ever had.
“If any demonstration should go on against high fuel prices today, it should rather be against the NPP which mismanaged the economy and the funds meant to energise the oil industry,” he said.
He attributed the challenges in the energy sector today to the corrupt practices that engulfed the sector during the NPP administration.
He, therefore, appealed to the government to do everything possible to bring all those who mismanaged funds from the TOR Recovery Levy to book.
Mr Dodovi stated that there was every indication of corruption in the manner in which the money transferred from the Petroleum Debt Recovery Account to the Ministry of Information was used.


THE High Court in Kumasi has dismissed an application for an order to compel the National House of Chiefs (NHC) to delete the name of Osagyefo Kwamena Enimil VI from the national register of chiefs as Omanhene of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area in the Western Region.
The ex-Omanhene of the area, Odeneho Akrofa Krukoko II, who filed the application for mandamus also lost in his bid to get the court to order the NHC to reinstate his name in the national register of chiefs instead of Osagyefo Enimil.
In its ruling last Monday, the court, presided over by Mr Justice George Kingsley Koomson, said the applicant was not clothed with the right to compel the NHC to perform its statutory duty by way of mandamus.
It noted the long journey that the matter had travelled, adding that “the parties and the people of Wassa Fiase Traditional Area would like to see an end to this long-standing litigation, which, in my view, they deserve.”
According to the court, it might be true that the enstoolment of Osagyefo Enimil as Omanhene was void but unless his enstoolment was declared a nullity, it would be a difficult task for the NHC to alter the register without an order from a court of competent jurisdiction.
“In my view the applicant took the right step by challenging his (applicant) destoolment and the enstoolment of the interested party (Osagyefo Enimil) before the Judicial Committee of the Western Regional House of Chiefs.
“In my considered opinion it is only when the destoolment of the applicant and the enstoolment of the interested party have been set aside as being void and nullity by a court of competent jurisdiction that the applicant would be clothed with the right to compel the respondent its statutory duty by way of mandamus,” the judge said.
“On the whole the affidavit evidence adduced in the case, and on the preponderance of the probabilities, I am convinced that the application for mandamus to issue against respondent should fail,” the court added.
The court pointed out that for mandamus to succeed, it must be established among other things that the duty was of public nature and that there had been a demand and a refusal to perform that public duty enjoined by statute.
A brief facts of the case are that Odeneho Akrofa, then Omanhene of the area, was convicted of contempt by the High Court in Sekondi and sentenced to 14 days’ imprisonment.
As a result of his conviction and incarceration, the kingmakers of the area destooled him and in his place Osagyefo Enimil was enstooled on April 23, 2002.
Dissatisfied with the conviction, Odeneho Akrofa appealed against the sentence, which was set aside by the Court of Appeal on April 17, 2003.
As a result of the Court of Appeal decision, Odeneho Akrofa mounted various actions at the Western Regional House of Chiefs challenging the enstoolment of Osagyefo Enimil but all the attempts to have his name reinstated in the national register of chiefs failed.
The court awarded cost of GH¢20,000 in favour of the NHC and GH¢30,000 to Osagyefo Enimil.

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


THE Good News Co-operative Credit Union in Kumasi has presented a number of items worth GH¢2,000 to the King Jesus Charity Home at Boadi, near Kumasi.
The items included five bags of gari, assorted biscuits, cooking oil, pepsodent toothpaste, beans, sachet water, second hand clothing and footwear.
Making the presentation, the Managress of the union, Ms Regina Asmah, said the donation was part of her outfit’s social responsibility to the needy in society.
She stated that last year, the union made a similar donation to the Kumasi Children’s Home, adding “this is aimed at making life a bit comfortable for the unfortunate children”.
Ms Asmah stated that it was not the fault of the children to find themselves in their current situation.
She was, however, confident that with the needed support from the general public and God’s blessings, they would grow up to become useful citizens to the nation.
Ms Asmah stressed the need for people to cultivate the habit of savings as there were many benefits to be derived from it.
The Director of the Home, Rev. Kofi Owusu, who received the gift, was grateful to the donors for the gesture and called on other institutions to help them address some of their challenges.
He stated that the gesture came a few days after President Mills had made a donation to the home.
Rev. Owusu said the home, which was established in 1995, now had a population of 192.
He said the management of the home provided good education for the children.
According to him, three of the children had been able to complete the university, while three are in polytechnic and four in the teacher training colleges.

Monday, January 24, 2011


THE Kumasi Metropolitan Chief Executive (MCE), Mr Samuel Sarpong, has advised newly elected assembly members to avoid partisan politics in the assembly when the next assembly is inaugurated.
He said the main agenda of the assembly was to see to the development of Kumasi and not partisan politics.
Mr Sarpong stated this when the new assembly members within the Asokwa Constituency paid a courtesy call on him at his office in Kumasi to introduce themselves to him ahead of the inauguration of the new assembly.
He indicated that he received co-operation from the last assembly members and expressed the hope that the incoming ones would continue with it.
Mr Sarpong noted that the past two years had witnessed improved physical development in Kumasi, adding that “this is what we are all hoping for in the coming years.”
He noted the difficulties one had to go through in winning elections and congratulated the new members on their victory.
“Your election shows the confidence your people have in you and you can, therefore, not disappoint them,” he said.
A spokesman of the new assembly members, Nana Yaw Wiredu, hailed Mr Sarpong for his qualitative leadership that had brought unity to the assembly and accelerated development to Kumasi.
Describing the mayor as a unifier who believes in team play, he said the past two years had been one of the most fruitful in the history of the metropolis.
He noted that only a united front could bring the needed development to Kumasi and, therefore, assured the MCE of their fullest support.


TRAGEDY struck Ala Bar, a suburb of Kumasi, on Saturday night when a dilapidated wall which had remained a death trap for some time collapsed, killing a 32-year-old mother of two and injuring two others.
The loud noise from the collapsing wall echoed in the neighbourhood, attracting a crowd to the scene, but before rescuers could bring out the victims trapped under the rubble, one of them, Alimatu Illiasu, was already dead.
Two other people were rushed to the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital (KATH) for medical attention.
The body of the deceased, who was said to have travelled from Northern Ghana to work in Kumasi not long ago, has been deposited at the KATH morgue.
An eyewitness told the Daily Graphic that the incident happened at about 7.15 p.m. when the three victims were cooking close to the wall.
“I tell you, it would have been more disastrous if many people were around the wall at the time it collapsed,” the witness said.
Ala Bar, one of the oldest suburbs of Kumasi, is very close to the famous Manhyia Palace, the residence of the Asantehene, and is a predominantly Muslim community.
It is predominantly inhabited by people from northern Ghana, as well as people from countries such as Burkina Faso, Mali and Nigeria.
Quite disturbingly, most of the buildings in the community are in a state of dilapidation.
Indeed, the state of the wall before it collapsed depicted the extent to which many of the structures in the area needed serious attention.
According to the eyewitness, the old wall had developed cracks for some time and had become a death trap, but nothing was done to fix it.
That was in spite of pieces of advice given by some concerned residents to the landlord to do something about it.
The Kumasi Metropolitan Chief Executive, Mr Samuel Sarpong, who visited the scene of the accident yesterday morning, shook his head in disbelief on seeing the rubble.
The newly elected Assembly Member for the Afia Kobi Electoral Area in Ala Bar, Mr Mohammed Kamal Deen, who also expressed deep concern over the nature of buildings in the area, said it was time something was done about the situation.
“There are serious death traps in this community and anything can happen any time,” he told the Daily Graphic.

Friday, January 21, 2011


THERE are contrasting fortunes for Ghana’s two most dominant powers. While Kumasi Asante Kotoko find contentment, discontent reigns in Accra Hearts of Oak.
Beating B.A Stars 3-1 in Kumasi, the second victory in the second round, Asante Kotoko appear to be heading for winning ways.
But tumbling 1-0 to AshGold at Obuasi, Hearts’ second defeat in the three-week old second round, and their ninth in the season, the one-time fearsome side are no doubt in tatters.
The loss to AshGold has placed the club in the relation zone. Disillusioned supporters of the Phobians who witnessed the team’s ignominious defeat to AshGold could not but call for a major shake-up in the team right from the board to the playing body.
For Asante Kotoko, last Wednesday’s victory was a testimony to the strategic mid-season recruitment made by management and hailed Executive Chairman, Dr K.K. Sarpong, for working to inject some life into the team.
The Porcupine Warriors would however, admit the team did not play to expectation and on several occasions in the second half the ten-man B.A Stars team overcrowded them.
The good number of home fans at the Baba Yara Stadium watched unbelievably as B.A Stars arrowhead, Prince Atakora Gyimah, caught Kotoko with a rasping shot after just two minutes.
Kotoko took the fight to their opponents and the reaction was quick. Samad Oppong ripped the B.A. Stars defence and fired into the near post on the fourth minute.
That never broke down the visitors who paraded former Kotoko forward, Michael Osei, and 2007 best local footballer, Kweku Essien.
On the 17th minute, Mawuli Tuglo rocked the Kotoko post with a great effort as they kept the Kotoko area busy.
While the two sides probed for the leader, referee Vincent Otoo came up with a controversial decision when he awarded a penalty to Kotoko on the 33rd minute, which Michael Akuffo converted, after he judged defender Emmanuel Okine to have fouled Nathaniel Asamoah in the area.
The referee surprisingly went ahead to send off the B.A. Stars defender who had remained the hard-tackling fulcrum at the back.
Nathaniel Asamoah who wasted glorious opportunities on the night shot wide after coming face-to-face with the B.A. Stars keeper.
Kotoko’s workmanlike performance in defence was typified by Awal Mohammed who fetched the third goal in the 49th minute, heading home from a corner kick.


THE Chief of Asokwa in Kumasi, Nana Fe-Baamoah II, is to launch a Youth Endowment Fund this year, in line with his vision to help develop the potentials of the youth in the community.
The launching of the project, which would be known as the Asokwa Youth Endowment Fund (AYEP), will coincide with the fifth anniversary of his enstoolment.
Disclosing this at a party he hosted at Asokwa for children in the area, Nana Fe Baamoah said modalities for the disbursement of the fund was almost completed.
He indicated that he would provide seed money for the fund and other funds would be solicited from companies operating in the area, organisations and individuals.
Asokwa is a major industrial area in Kumasi.
Nana Fe-Baamoah expressed concern about the high rate of unemployment among the youth in his area.
“That is why as a chief I am doing everything to complement the efforts of the government to address this problem,” he said.
The chief said the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, was doing his best to help change the face of education in Ashanti Region and it behoved all the people to assist him to deliver.
“One of such supports is the AYEP, which Nananom are going to launch this year,” he added.
Nana Fe-Baamoah asked parents to take keen interest in the education of their children because the future of the area and the nation depended on how the children of today were brought up.


THE Chinese contractors working on the Sunyani road project in Kumasi, which includes the Sofoline Flyover, China Gio Limited, have appealed to residents of the city to exercise patience as it awaits funds from the Government of Ghana to enable it continue work on the project.
The government’s delay in releasing funds for the project had led to the suspension of the work, seen as one of the biggest development projects in the Garden City in recent times.
Breaking their silence on the suspension of the project, a statement by the company said it was not it’s intention to delay the project so work would resume anytime funds were released by the government.
In recent times, there has been public outcry in the metropolis over the suspension of the project. Many people have lost hope in the completion of the project, while others have called on the government to save the situation without any further delay.
The delay is seriously affecting the smooth movement of people and traffic and creating a lot of inconvenience.
According to the consultants to the project, ABP Consult Limited, between 2009 and March 2010, work on the Sofoline Flyover was ongoing.
A number of public and high-ranking people, including the former regional minister and the Transportation Minister, as well as the Asantehene, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, have visited the site.
However, since July last year, work on the flyover has slackened and been suspended now, due to lack of funds from the Government of Ghana.


THE Multimedia Group has opened a new plush office complex to house its Kumasi unit which comprises Luv FM, Nhyira FM and Multi TV.
The unit has moved to Ayigya near the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology on the main Accra-Kumasi Road, after 12 years of operation at Amakom, also in Kumasi.
A special dedication service was held on Friday afternoon for the unit to start work on the premises.
The ultra modern offices of Luv and Nhyira FM is located at Block 10P, Top High Ayigya Residential Area.
The Chief Operating Officer of the Adom Division, Klaus Von Backustein, says the relocation is to strategically position Multimedia to offer improved services to its internal and external publics.
The Business Manager of Luv and Nhyira FM, Jim Aglah, assured discerning listeners that the station would continue to broadcast top quality programmes and deliver social change to the community.

Monday, January 17, 2011


By Kwame Asare Boadu, Kumasi

FEAR and panic appear to have gripped some District Chief Executives (DCEs) in the Ashanti Region following last week’s dismissal of four of their colleagues by President John Evans Atta Mills.
Graphic Nsempa has learnt that some of those who survived are seriously lobbying insiders at the Castle to help them hold on to their positions.
What perhaps might have driven the DCEs to be terrified are reports albeit unconfirmed that the President would draw the sword again.
Since the announcement was made, some of the DCEs have hardly been seen or heard in public.
Those sacked in the Ashanti Region included Mr Kwadwo Adae, Sekyere East, Mr Victor Amponsah, Offinso South, Jacob Kofi Dankwa, Sekyere Afram Plains, and Mohammed Boakye Agyemang, Ejisu-Juaben.
No reasons were given for the action leaving room for speculations.
While some attribute it to agitations from NDC foot soldiers others linked it to incompetence.
However, for Mr Amponsah, the action against him is widely believed to have a link to his recent trip to the United States of America after defying directives from then Regional Minister, Mr Kofi Opoku-Manu to shelve the decision to travel.
He wrote to the former Regional Minister of his decision to travel with some of his colleague Graduate Students of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology to the US but he advised him against the journey but the man ignored his boss only to return to receive suspension and eventual sack.
The other three also had one form of showdown or the other with their party foot soldiers but again it is not known whether the President acted on the concerns of the foot soldiers.
Mr Adae for instance, survived several attacks by enraged Zongo youth of the NDC at Asokore somewhere last year.
Meanwhile various reactions continue to emerge from party circles over the President’s decision.
The few people who have been calling in to radio stations expressing regret at the decision to sack the four chief executives, accused the foot soldiers of masterminding wicked plans to get rid of appointees who failed to meet their demands.
However, many believed that the DCEs simply failed to live up to expectation and deserved the sack.


A GROUP of NDC supporters going by the name NDC Supporters Forum in the Ashanti Region have appealed to President Mills to consider appointing a northerner to “one of the key positions in the region.”
It said although northerners constituted about 90 percent of the NDC support base in the region and in addition have lot of competent and committed persons who qualify for key appointments in the region, they had been relegated to the background.
“We feel cheated and neglected after being the main targets of various brutalities and intimidation by the NPP during the 2008 general elections,” spokesperson of the group, Mr Raymond B. Po-eriba, said.
At a news conference in Kumasi, Mr Po-eriba said: “Statistics available to us give the indication that majority of votes marshalled by the NDC in the Ashanti Region are settlers comprising mainly of people from the three northern regions.”
However, he said, they had not received their fair share of appointments within the region since the NDC took over the administration from the NPP.
Mr Po-eriba said the northerners in the region were very disciplined and hardworking, adding that the Asantehene continued to invite their leaders to sit in state with him at public functions.
He stated that northerners in the region had been involved in “difficult works in politics but they are always relegated to the background when it comes to appointments to key positions.
“A clear example of the difficult works was in the previous voter registration exercise when the NPP then in government made several attempts to prevent northerners whom they considered non-Ghanaians from taking part because they saw us as sympathetic to the NDC.
“Their attempts were resisted by opinion leaders of northerners based in the region,” Mr Po-eriba pointed out.
He cautioned that potential voter apathy among northern NDC supporters was imminent in the region in 2012 if the right thing was not done.

Thursday, January 13, 2011


STRIKER Nathaniel Asamoah was for the second time the toast of Asante Kotoko fans as he kept the club’s revival mission alive by fetching the only goal in their Glo Premier League match against Ebusua Dwarfs at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi yesterday.
The former Wa All Stars player, who now has three goals in two outings for his new club, was heavily policed in the match but anytime he disentangled himself, he was a threat to the visitors.
But it was not a vintage performance from the Porcupine Warriors as they struggled in the second half to hold the visitors.
Coach Bogdan Korak kept faith with the team that beat All Stars 2-0 last Sunday, save returnee Ivorian Ahmed Toure who formed the twinstrike force with Nathaniel Asamoah.
The game was cagey in the early part and it was not until the ninth minute when Dwarfs’ George Appiah made the first serious attempt at goal, missing closely.
Kotoko appeared strong at the back with Yaw Frimpong, Umar Gariba, Ohene Brenya and Awal Mohammed providing a tall barrier for the Dwarfs attack.
Toure kept the stadium alive with a superb volley from 25 metres on the 23rd minute which brought the best out of Dwarfs keeper, Adade Foli, as he stretched to his elastic limit to direct the ball over the bar.
steel play resulting in Referee Yaw Ametepe booking Kofi Mawuli on
the 25th minute.
With just a minute left on the clock to end the first half, Nathaniel
Asamoah set the impressive home crowd roaring when he found a pace on the
left to deliver a left-footed shot which deflected off an opponent
past keeper Adade. And what a way to celebrate the goal as he ran to the touch line to receive cheers from the roaring crowd.
Both sides made changes in the second half in a bid to strengthen
their game but they both failed to score. Following the replacement of Toure, Asamoah became the lone ranger upfront and the fight became tough for the striker who still showed promise.

Wednesday, January 12, 2011


A GROUP in Kumasi calling itself the Movement for a Better Ghana (MBG), has called on the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and the Alliance For Accountable Governance (AFAG) to stop “their hypocrisy” and join forces with the NDC government to create a ‘Better Ghana’ for all.
It said “the noise and threats” being made by the NPP and AFAG about the recent price increases in petroleum products were anti-development and threatened to embark on a counter demonstration
against AFAG if it went ahead with its intended threat to embark on a demonstration.
At a news conference in Kumasi to react to some comments by the NPP, AFAG and other followers of the main opposition party, the leader of MBG, Mr Aubrey Mends, observed that the NPP’s inability to deal realistically with oil prices had resulted in the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR in curring) huge debts , which almost collapsed the Ghana Commercial Bank.
He said within two years, the NDC government had been able to clear a good part of the debt but with the price of crude oil on the international market hitting $93 per barrel, the MBG believed every person who wanted to live a meaningful life must learn how to live with the current increases.
He said the argument that the NDC in opposition promised a drastic reduction of petroleum prices only to do the opposite when it won power must be put in its right perspective.
“In August 2008, when prices of crude soared on the international market to $140 per barrel, the then government was actually buying crude at $114 per barrel and sold petrol at GH¢5.3p per gallon.
“By November 2008, the price of crude had come down below $59 per barrel on the international market so the then candidate Mills and NDC’s argument was that given the prevailing market conditions at the time, “we were going to reduce prices of petroleum products,” Mr Mends said.
He said it was therefore unfortunate that the NPP and its appendages such as AFAG would want to take the situation out of context to suit their cheap political aspirations.
According to him, President Mills and his government had shown so much commitment by subsidising kerosene and pre-mix fuel, adding that this underlined the social democratic credentials of the NDC government.
He noted that had the government subsidised all petroleum products, development of key areas of the nation would suffer greatly.
“The government has got to complete the roads that are ongoing, continue to provide quality educational infrastructure, eliminate schools under trees and pay rewarding wages and salaries,” he said and therefore called on Ghanaians to bear with the government on the hike in petroleum prices.

Tuesday, January 11, 2011


THE Amantin and Kasei Community Bank in the Brong Ahafo Region is supporting a number of communities in the four districts in which it operates with development projects and programmes to better the lot of the people.
The support is in the areas of educational infrastructure, water and sanitation, and scholarships, among others.
Disclosing this at the annual general meeting of the bank at Amantin, the Chairman of the Board of Directors of the bank, Dr John Oduro Boateng, said in pursuit of the development of education, the bank had awarded bursaries to students, donated 40 double-decker beds and 20 mono desks worth GHҐ3,000 to the Yeji Senior High School, and 140 mono desks to the Kwame Danso SHS.
He said the bank had also spent GHҐ11,000 on the provision of portable water for Amantin, Kasei, Nkwanta and Hiawoanwu and was currently constructing a kitchen for the Amantin SHS at a cost of GHҐ10,300.
Dr Boateng mentioned areas that were supported with loans totalling GHҐ1,986,589 as agriculture, cottage industry, transport, trading and workers advances, among others.
He stated that the bank made significant strides in its operation in 2009, raking a profit of GHҐ211,553, an increase of 73 per cent over the previous year’s figure of GHҐ122,514.
The board chairman stressed that the achievements of the Amantin and Kasei Community Bank had resulted in its selection for all government and non-governmental poverty reduction interventions in its operational communities.
The interventions included Community-Based Rural Development Programme, Rural Enterprises Project, Millennium Development Authority, MASLOC, Root and Tuber Improvement and Marketing Project, Technoserve Rural Poverty Reduction Project and the Ghana Energy Development and Access Project.
Dr Boateng said 14 years into the bank’s operation, it had established branches in four districts — Atebubu-Amantin, Ejura-Sekyedumase, Sene and Pru.
He said the share capital of the bank stood at GHҐ182,340, but stressed the need for it to be increased to enable the bank to meet the Bank of Ghana’s requirements.
Dr Boateng stated that the bank made significant strides in its core business of mobilising funds and channelling them into credit, despite the challenges the banking industry faced.
He said deposits, which stood at GHҐ2,289,862 in 2008, increased to GHҐ2,581,786 in 2009 while advances and investments also jumped from GHҐ1,663,155 to GHҐ1,997,158, and GHҐ776,590 to GHҐ1,176,590 within the same period.
The board chairman gave the assurance that the bank would continue to be alive with its social responsibility to its operational communities.
The President of Ashanti Regional Chapter of the Association of Rural Banks, Mr K. Dapaah-Siakwan, challenged the shareholders and other people to purchase shares in the bank.
He said t he performance of the bank was worthy of commendation.

Monday, January 10, 2011


A RADIO presenter with Kumasi-based Angel FM, Mr Collins Amo-Poku, aka D.J. Tofiakwa, has presented a number of food items and drinks valued at GH¢3,000 to the Cherubs Orphanage Home at Santasi-Apre in Kumasi to mark the 10th anniversary of his marriage.
Mr Amo-Poku made the presentation with the support of his wife, Linda, and sister, Ms Ama Gyamfua, who is the current best farmer in the Berekum Municipality in the Brong Ahafo Region.
The items presented to the orphanage included a truck load of plantain, quantities of rice, cooking oil and confectioneries.
Making the presentation, Mr Amo-Poku, 36, said God had showered His blessings upon their marriage in the past 10 years.
“It is therefore important that as a couple we show gratitude to Him by giving part of the little we have to the needy,” he said.
Mr Amo-Poku said as a radio presenter, he had appreciated the situation of the needy in the society and expressed the hope that the donation would help make life move comfortable for inmates of the home.
The Director of the home, Mr Nicholas Osei Bonsu, said the orphanage, which started in 2005, had 40 inmates.
He commended the donors for the gesture and appealed to other individuals and organisations to come to the aid of the inmates.
Mr Osei Bonsu advised families not to neglect orphans but to take care of them so that they could grow to become useful citizens.

DR MAHAMA CAN'T CONTEST FIFTH TIME...PNC Regional Chairmen (PAGE 12, JAN 10, 2011)

ANY intention of four-time People’s National Convention (PNC) presidential candidate, Dr Edward Nasigri Mahama, to lead the party again, in the 2012 presidential election, is bound to receive the stiffest opposition yet in his political career.
Last Saturday, Regional Chairmen of the party resolved to use all legitimate means to stop him from contesting the party’s flag bearer position again, accusing him of being the cause of the party’s non performance and inactivity.
They pointed out that Dr Mahama, backed by “some moribund party executive members,” was making all moves to lead the party in the 2012 elections against the letter and spirit of the party’s constitution.
At an emergency meeting in Kumasi, the Chairman of the committee of regional chairmen, Mr Thomas Akum-Yong, accused Dr Mahama of being the brain behind the wrangling in the party, and said, “His cup is full”.
Mr Akum-Yong, who is also the Ashanti Regional Chairman of the PNC, said per the constitution of the party, Dr Mahama was barred from re-contesting the flag bearer position, explaining that the PNC constitution was clear that one could be the party’s flag bearer only twice.
However, Dr Mahama had managed to circumvent the constitution to lead the party four times.
He, therefore, called on all true party members to join hands to put the party in shape to enable it to take part in the 2012 elections with all seriousness.
The Kumasi meeting, which was attended by some regional executive members across the country, deliberated on recent developments in the party and how to resolve them to enable the party prepare adequately for the next elections.
The Regional Chairmen, in a communiqué, proposed a meeting of the Council of Elders and the Regional Chairmen to constitute an interim management committee to run the affairs of the party and prepare it for congress.
They also called on the Council of Elders to take immediate steps to get a member of the party, Ahmed Agadi alias Jato, who was arrested in connection with the rumpus in the party, released from custody.
Again, the Regional Chairmen called on the affected national officers to submit themselves to the Council of Elders for the resolution of the crisis.
Giving a breakdown of the party’s output since the fourth Republic, he said in 1992 when Dr Hilla Limann contested the presidential elections, the PNC won 6.7 per cent of the total votes cast nation-wide.
However, when Dr Mahama took over the flag bearer position, the party receiving 3.0 per cent of the votes in 1996, 2.9 per cent in 2000, 1.9 per cent in 2004 and 0.87 per cent in 2008.
The Regional Chairmen accused some of the “former” national executive, led by the National Chairman of inactivity saying, “They are only interested in pursuing the agenda of the NDC and NPP”.


MOTHERS of Ghana (MOG), a pressure group in Kumasi, which leans towards the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), has called on the General Secretary of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) to render an apology to Ghanaian women for the remarks he made about the former Minister of Tourism, Mrs Zita Okaikoi while sharing his thoughts on the recent ministerial reshuffle.
It said the statement by Mr Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, alias Sir John, smacked of disrespect for women and warned that failure to apologise would result in a demonstration by the group against him.
A press statement signed by the chairperson of the group, Ms Ama Sarpomaah, said: “We are concerned about what Mr Owusu Afriyie said on Citi FM, concerning the former minister, that instead of concentrating on tourism, she went to be delivered of a baby”.
“This statement is seriously against mothers and indeed all women in the country,” the statement said.
It pointed out that delivery of babies was a natural burden given to women by God and Mr Owusu Afriyie should have respected this.
“We believe he is a family man and will not hesitate in sending his wife to give birth outside the country if he can afford.”
“MOG knows that the family of Sir John, including his wife, lives in the United Kingdom and conventional wisdom indicates that most of his children were delivered in the UK,” it said.
The statement emphasised that Mrs Okaikoi only went on maternity leave and the question of where she spent it was immaterial.
“Mothers working within almost all sectors of the economy are legally entitled to maternity leave, as such Zita cannot be an exception,” it pointed out.
The statement appealed to President Mills to consider Zita as well as other women of substance in his next reshuffle.

Friday, January 7, 2011


AN international preacher and founder of Liberty Global Christian Church, Bishop Prince Hampel, has called on the country’s politicians to place the interest of the nation above their political parties and personal interests.
He said too much attention seemed to be focused on the work of the political parties at the neglect of the various sectors of national development.
In a New Year message, Bishop Hampel said, “Our leaders must think about the nation first before their political parties and their pockets.”
He expressed regret about the over-politicisation of every issue in the country, pointing out that the practice was counter-productive because it did not allow for objective analysis of events.
Bishop Hampel emphasised that Ghana needed faithful leaders to make the oil find benefit the entire nation.
“Ghana should therefore pray for faithful leaders to be able to convert the oil find into real development,” he said.
The Bishop, however, indicated that the oil itself should not be seen as panacea for resolving the economic challenges of the nation.
“Only God can move this nation forward so it is important that we all give our everything to Him,” he stressed.
Bishop Hampel noted that if Ghanaians depended on God, more economic resources could be discovered for the benefit of the nation.
He was confident that Ghana could enjoy a better 2011 if all did the right things.


GHANA’S immediate past Chief of Defence Staff, Lt. Gen. J.B. Danquah, has stressed the need for the presidential claimant in Cote d’Ivoire, Mr Alassane Ouattara to assure forces loyal to Mr Laurent Gbagbo of their safety and job security, should power change hands in that country.
He said negotiations to resolve the Ivorian political crisis can hardly materialise without a firm and an open assurance by Mr Ouattara, to guarantee the personal and job security of members of the conventional armed forces aligned to embattled President, Laurent Gbagbo.
“Keeping mute over this important issue has been a major contributor to the stalemate in convincing Gbagbo to leave,” Lt. Gen. Danquah said in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Kumasi.
He said ECOWAS and the rest of the international community might be doing their best to negotiate the peaceful exit of Gbagbo but no one should run away from the fact that soldiers supporting the incumbent
feared for their job security and as a result were poised to protect the man in power even to the point of death.
The Cote d’Ivoire situation, he noted, was not just political, but military as well.
Ivory Coast currently has two forces – the Conventional Forces and the New Forces.
While the Conventional Forces control the south where Gbagbo’s authority holds sway, the New Forces made up of elements of the regular military and rebels operate in the Ouattara- controlled north.
Lt. Gen. Danquah, who was the commander of the Ghanaian battalion (Ghanbatt 2) during the Liberia war, cautioned against attempts to use force to remove Gbagbo saying that would result in serious civilian casualties.
“In Liberia, many civilians lost their lives and looking at the Ivory Coast situation, it could be very disastrous if the military option is considered.
“Dialogue is, therefore, the answer but even then, the right things must be done,” the retired general said.
He noted that Ouattara would have to go all out to integrate the two forces and this would demand training and retraining of the forces, if he assumed office.
He expressed regret at the journey Cote d”Ivoire had travelled politically and called on African governments to respect the mandate of the people no matter the circumstances.
Lt. Gen. Danquah said in Ghana when the people decided marginally, the incumbent government accepted the decision and left quietly and called on other African governments to learn from Ghana’s example.


GHANA’S immediate past Chief of Defence Staff, Lt. Gen. J.B. Danquah, has stressed the need for the presidential claimant in Cote d’Ivoire, Mr Alassane Ouattara to assure forces loyal to Mr Laurent Gbagbo of their safety and job security, should power change hands in that country.
He said negotiations to resolve the Ivorian political crisis can hardly materialise without a firm and an open assurance by Mr Ouattara, to guarantee the personal and job security of members of the conventional armed forces aligned to embattled President, Laurent Gbagbo.
“Keeping mute over this important issue has been a major contributor to the stalemate in convincing Gbagbo to leave,” Lt. Gen. Danquah said in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Kumasi.
He said ECOWAS and the rest of the international community might be doing their best to negotiate the peaceful exit of Gbagbo but no one should run away from the fact that soldiers supporting the incumbent
feared for their job security and as a result were poised to protect the man in power even to the point of death.
The Cote d’Ivoire situation, he noted, was not just political, but military as well.
Ivory Coast currently has two forces – the Conventional Forces and the New Forces.
While the Conventional Forces control the south where Gbagbo’s authority holds sway, the New Forces made up of elements of the regular military and rebels operate in the Ouattara- controlled north.
Lt. Gen. Danquah, who was the commander of the Ghanaian battalion (Ghanbatt 2) during the Liberia war, cautioned against attempts to use force to remove Gbagbo saying that would result in serious civilian casualties.
“In Liberia, many civilians lost their lives and looking at the Ivory Coast situation, it could be very disastrous if the military option is considered.
“Dialogue is, therefore, the answer but even then, the right things must be done,” the retired general said.
He noted that Ouattara would have to go all out to integrate the two forces and this would demand training and retraining of the forces, if he assumed office.
He expressed regret at the journey Cote d”Ivoire had travelled politically and called on African governments to respect the mandate of the people no matter the circumstances.
Lt. Gen. Danquah said in Ghana when the people decided marginally, the incumbent government accepted the decision and left quietly and called on other African governments to learn from Ghana’s example.

Thursday, January 6, 2011


By Kwame Asare Boadu

Now Daddy Lumba is free. The celebrated musician can walk the sreets of Kumasi without fear of being physically or verbally attacked by aggrieved fans following his stupendous performance in a re-scheduled homecoming live concert in Kumasi on New Year’s Day.
Only a few days earlier the Asante-born musician had to escape the wrath of hundreds of disappointed home-grown fans in Kumasi after he failed to perform due to what he complained of as faulty equipment.
This time, it was different. He was in full swing, treating the fans to some of his best hits at the Royal Lamerta Hotel.
For the first time, Lumba spent about two hours on stage and even though there were few technical hiccups, the atmosphere and the aftermath comments pointed to a good measure of satisfaction from the fans. As he dished out one song after the other, yells of “more, more” resounded through the arena and he responded positively.
Backed by Accra-based band, Perfect Melodies, Lumba kept the good number of patrons off their seats to dance to melodious tunes. Some of the songs that kept the show alive were Woho Kyere, Biribi Gyegye Wo, Aben Woha, Menya Mpo and Akoma Da Akoma So.
Angel FM’s Kwame Adinkra who was the MC for the night, was at his performing best, keeping the show alive with a delivery of breathtaking quality.
Fans who were able to produce the tickets purchased for the first show were given free entry but those who went to the gates without the old tickets were made to pay. But there were no complaints. The road to the Royal Lamerta Hotel was barricaded at the Atinga Junction to ensure that tight security was maintained.
Ghanaian hiplife/hiphop group, Bradez, supported the show with a superb performance.
Last week, Daddy Lumba had to escape under security protection after his planned live show was called off. He complained of faulty technical equipment but the fans who had paid between GH¢30 and GH¢50 for the show would not take his explanation. They attempted to attack him but the musician was able to sneak out. The fans then turned their attention at the hotel where they destroyed property.
Some disappointed patrons threatened legal action against the musician and organisers of the event. Some 100 of the angry fans accused Home Proud Entertainment; organisers of the event, of breaching their part of the contract and decided to take the matter to court.
The concert organisers apologised to patrons for the no-show incident and said that they take full responsibility for the unfortunate incident, absolving the artiste and the hotel of any wrong doing. They promised that Daddy Lumba was committed to resolving the impasse by re-staging the concert. He did.
Still some fans appear not happy. Francis Dodovi, a spokesman of the disappointed fans told Graphic Showbiz last Tuesday that, even though the musician honoured his promise by re-staging the show their decision to go to court was still pending as, among other issues, patrons who lost their tickets for the first show were made to pay again.


A former Chief of the Defence Staff (CDS), Lt Gen. J.B. Danquah (retd), has called for a second look to be taken at what has become a convention in the country where new governments replace service commanders on assumption of power.
He explained that the practice tended to politicise the military and undermine its professionalism.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with the Daily Graphic in Kumasi, Lt Gen. Danquah said, “unless a new government has reason to doubt the loyalty of a service commander or the person has misconducted himself or herself in a way, that person must be allowed to complete his tenure”.
The retired General noted that in Ghana and other parts of Africa, a lot of commanders had gone home prematurely when new governments came into office.
“This does not happen in advanced countries and as a result, commanders in those countries are bold to take decisions that help their governments and country,” he said.
He cautioned against the introduction of tribal and political sentiments into the military, saying it had the tendency to polarise the military.
“The practice that someone does not come from here or there and therefore, must not be appointed to a certain position must be discarded,” he stressed.
That notwithstanding, the former CDS emphasised the need for commanders to be bold in their duties and not allow anybody to use them to further their own interests and aspirations.
“We should be able to resign if politicians want to use us for their parochial political interests. That will make us stand out,” he added.
He called for hard work from Ghanaians to improve their lot rather than always look up to the government to address all their problems.
“We should not think that the government descended from Heaven to solve all our problems for us,” the retired general said.
Lt Gen. Danquah said today, many workers were thinking about increased salaries. “We have to work hard to get what we want”.
He called on the media to play a leading role in shaping the democratic process.
Lt Gen. Danquah also called on the government to widen the tax net to bring in many small businesses that did not pay taxes.

Wednesday, January 5, 2011


THE Anglican Bishop of Kumasi, Rt. Revd Dr Daniel Yinkah Sarfo, has called on Ghanaians to rise above partisan politics and ethnicity, and explore ways of changing the nation’s development agenda for the better in 2011.
Expressing concern about the manner some politicians were using politics and the ethnic cards to play some tribes against each other, he warned that the situation could spell trouble for the nation if the situation is not nabbed.
Delivering the sermon at the Saint Cyprian’s Anglican Cathedral in Kumasi, the bishop said politics was serious business, which could turn nations round if well-managed but it could also be dirty if the players played it rough.
Consequently, he called on Ghanaians to desist from ethnocentric effusions and concentrate on issues that could build a better Ghana for all.
Referring to the theme for his New Year message, “Let us rise up and build and the God of Heaven will grant us success” (Nehemiah 2:17, 20), Rt. Revd Dr Yinkah Sarfo stressed that with perseverance and the help of God, the nation could push strongly its development efforts.
Today, he said, marriages were breaking up leading to increases in the number of street children and admonished Christians, “Let us rise and build our broken homes.”
He also mentioned the oil find and said Ghanaians must come together and with the commonness of purpose, use the resource to develop the nation.
In another development, the leader of Ebenezer Miracle Prayer Centre, Rev. Ebenezer Adarkwa-Yiadom, had predicted many positive things for the nation if people gave themselves to Christ.
Preaching the sermon at the watch-night service to welcome the New Year, he said the power of God reigned over the world and those who believed Him would surely reap benefits.

Monday, January 3, 2011


ARMAJARO Ghana Limited, a licensed cocoa buying company, has donated 15 packets of roofing sheets valued at GH¢3,000 to assist in the completion of ongoing projects at the Health Assistants Training School at Tepa in the Ahafo-Ano North District.
The donation, which was in line with the company’s social responsibility programme, was in response to an appeal made by the Omanhene of the area, Nana Adusei Atwenewa Ampem, to corporate institutions operating in the area to assist in the development of the school.
Making the presentation, the Manager of Armajaro/Ghana Cocoa Board Traceable Cocoa Foundation, Mr Abraham Appiah-Kubi, said the company believed in supporting communities where it operated with various development projects.
He said that was the reason why the Cocoa Traceable Project was instituted. He added that the company had provided about 60 boreholes, a number of school buildings and equipment for health institutions in many communities in the country.
He disclosed that about 20 boreholes would be constructed for selected communities in the Tepa area next year.
The omanhene, who received the items on behalf of the school, thanked the company for the gesture and said the items would be put to good use.
He urged cocoa buying companies to ensure transparency in their activities and avoid adjusting their weighing scales to cheat farmers.
Nana Ampem touched on the steps the traditional council was taking to complement the efforts of the government and the district assembly to raise standards at the school, and called on other institutions and individuals to assist them.
The District Chief Executive for the area, Mr David Addai Amankwah, said the government had shown much commitment to ensuring the best for the nation and added that any form of support that would help the dream materialise was always welcome.
He called on Armajaro to confer with the district assembly when undertaking development projects to avoid duplication.


FOOTBALL lovers and holidaymakers in Kumasi will have something sumptuous to feed on tomorrow when the new-look Asante Kotoko outdoor their fresh players in a friendly match against New Edubiase United at the Baba Yara Stadium.
Kotoko had gone on expensive shopping during the mid-season, bringing on board some young talented players who are expected to change the fortunes of the team in the second round scheduled to begin on January 9.
Mr Jarvis Peprah, Public Affairs Manager of Asante Kotoko, told the Daily Graphic yesterday that the match would paint a picture of what the players have in store for the loyal fans of the club who have unfortunately been subjected to pain and agony as a result of dismal showing by the team.
Among the players who will feature for Kotoko are the former Wa All Stars duo of Nathaniel Asamoah and Mohammed Yahaya Sabato. Others are Awal Mohammed, Michael Akuffo, Yaw Frimpong and Iddrissu Nafiu all former players of ASEC Mimosas and Gomoa Fetteh Feyenoord.
Also to feature are Joseph Tachie-Mensah, a former player of Hearts of Oak and Israeli side, Hapoel Beer Sheva, Seidu Traore from Mali, and Ahmed Toure who is making a return to the club.
Mr Peprah said New Edubiase was chosen for the trial match in view of the current form of the Bekwai-based side.
Edubiase, who have a crop of enterprising players, beat Kotoko 2-1 in the first round Premier League match in Kumasi.
Moderate fees will be charged at the gates. Kick-off time is 3p.m.