The Director-General for the Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), Dr. Akuffo Annor-Ntow has been asked to proceed on leave with immediate effect.
The director was given by the governing board of GBC.
Board Chairman, Reverend Professor Emmanuel Addo-Obeng, said the decision was agreed upon on Monday, January 15, 2018.
According to him, the decision follows the Director-General’s handling of the TV license issue.
In an interview with Radio Ghana, the Board Chairman said the National Media Commission, has been duly notified of the directive.
Presidential hopeful, Dr. Ekwow Spio-Garbrah, has said there cannot be only one candidate for a political party when the party is preparing to elect a flagbearer to represent it in an election.
In an exclusive interview with Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, the former Trade and Industry Minister described as an interesting argument that, former president John Dramani Mahama is the only viable candidate for the party.
He also indicated that, it will also be an interesting argument to say that, Mr. Mahama underperformed hence his decision to contest him.
He said, ‘’that is an interesting argument. If you went by that argument, then we will have only one president for the next 20 years because as long as somebody has been president before, nobody else should have the interest or the opportunity to also present himself or herself for consideration. I see presidential elections and flagbeareship elections within parties as a competitive process. Competition is good for us as Ghanaians.’’
He added, competition abounds everywhere and so ‘’I see nothing wrong with competition.’’
The diplomat, banker, renowned marketer and politician said it will be a good suggestion for people to deprive others from contesting a candidate who may have had the opportunity to be president in the past.
He also expressed his readiness for any campaign or candidate who will also show interest in running for the presidential slot.
When asked if he will be threatened by the decision of Mr. Mahama to contest, Dr. Spio-Garbrah said he does go into a race worrying about who else wants to contest or not.
In his view, it is a free and a democratic society we are building and so when you express interest in running for a public office, you should assume that, other people will also express interest in the same position.
‘’I am ready for any kind of competition otherwise I would not have been in this race[...] They may have their experiences but I also have my experiences,'' he emphasized.
Asked what made him a better candidate than the others who had also declared their intentions to contest the primary, Dr. Spio-Garbrah stated that he had been tried and tested in the world of academia, religion, agriculture among other areas.
Ghana’s economy increased from 3.7% in 2016 to an estimated 7.9% in 2017, Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, has stated.
According to the Vice President, this is the best annual real GDP growth for the first year of any new government since 1992.
Speaking at the opening of the 69th annual New Year School and Conference in Accra, Vice President Bawumia said the future looks bright, despite inheriting a gloomy economy.
“At the end of 2016: Real GDP growth was down to 3.7% in 2016 from 9.1% in 2008, declining growth in agriculture and industry, rising Unemployment, High Fiscal Deficits, Rising Public Debts, High interest rates, Accumulating Arrears on government obligations – The arrears validated as outstanding at the end of 2016 was GH¢3.1 billion, Weakening of the Banking system, Cancellation of teacher and nursing training allowances, Return to cash and Carry under NHIS, freeze on the hiring of Extension Officers in agriculture, High and pervasive taxes, and Corruption,” he outlined.
Against this background, the Vice President said, the President and the NPP government fulfilled key campaign promises such as the launch of the flagship Free SHS education programme, lowering of taxes, restoration of teacher and nursing training allowances, NHIS resuscitation, and creating jobs among others.
“At the same time the government committed in the 2017 budget to reduce the fiscal deficit from 9.3% to 6.3% of GDP,” he stated.
Dr Bawumia acknowledged the challenges the NPP government faced in its first year including revenue generation challenges, however, it has proven its critics wrong. “This was a challenge to the government,” he said.
Vice president Bawumia outlined a litany of achievements under the Akufo-Addo administration after a year in office.
“Economic growth has increased from 3.7% in 2016 to an estimated 7.9% in 2017. This is the best annual real GDP growth for the first year of any new government since 1992.
“Agriculture growth increased from 3.0% in 2016 to a projected 4.3% in 2017.
“Industry growth increased from -0.5% in 2016 to 17.7% at the end of September 2017 underpinned by increased petroleum production.”
Inflation, the Vice President added, declined from 15.4% in 2016 to 11.8% in 2017, while the Bank of Ghana Monetary Policy Rate saw a year-on-year reduction from 25.5 percent by end-2016 to 20 percent by end-2017.
“This is the largest single year reduction in the monetary policy rate since 2001and since the onset of the Bank of Ghana’s inflation targeting regime.
In addition, “Ghana’s external payments position has strengthened. The trade account recorded a surplus of $646 million (1.4% of GDP) as at September 2017 compared to a deficit of $2.0 billion (4.7% of GDP) for the same period in 2016.
“Our gross international reserves increased from $6.2 billion in December 2016 (3.5 months of imports) to $7.4 billion as at 24th November 2017 (4.1 months of imports).
“Ghana’s sovereign credit rating has improved with Fitch ratings changing Ghana’s B rating outlook from “Negative” to “Stable” while S&P changed Ghana’s outlook from Stable to Positive. The primary balance also posted a surplus for 2017 compared to the deficit recorded in 2017.
Touching on the thorny issue of debts, the former deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana signaled a major improvement.
“Ghana’s debt to GDP ratio declined for the first time since 2007 from 73% of GDP in 2016 to some 70% in 2017. The rate of accumulation of Ghana’s debt stock has also declined significantly. The annual average rate of debt accumulation of 36% over the last four years declined to 13.58% in the first four months of 2017.
Crucially, “Fiscal discipline has been restored and fiscal consolidation has taken hold. For the first time since 2006, the government of Ghana has been able to meet its fiscal deficit target notwithstanding some revenue shortfalls. The fiscal deficit target was to reduce the deficit from 9.3% of GDP in 2016 to 6.3% of GDP for 2017. The preliminary data for end December 2017 indicates that the fiscal deficit was some 5.6% of GDP in 2017. Many doubted the ability of government to achieve the target in light of revenue challenges.
“The question that we should ask is how can you inherit a budget deficit of 9.3% of GDP, proceed to reduce taxes, bring down inflation, bring down interest rates, increase economic growth, increase your international reserves, maintain relative exchange rate stability, reduce the debt to GDP ratio and the rate of debt accumulation, pay almost half of arrears inherited, stay current on obligations to statutory funds, restore teacher and nursing training allowances, double the capitation grant, implement free senior high school education and yet still be able to reduce the fiscal deficit from 9.3% to an estimated 5.6% of GDP? Quite simple, this is a remarkable achievement and this is what we mean by competent economic management” Vice President Bawumia declared.
Dr. Bawumia gave the assurance that 2018 will be far better judging from what government was able to achieve in its first year.
The New Year School is under the aegis of the School of Continuing and Distance Education under the College of Education. The 69th Annual New Year School and Conference is under the theme: “Job Creation for Accelerated National Development: The Role of the Private Sector” from Monday, 15th January 2018 to Friday 19th January 2018.
The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has announced that, as from January this year, non-residential users of electricity in the country would enjoy an average of 14% reduction in electricity tariffs.
According to President Akufo-Addo, not only has Government succeeded in normalising the power situation in the country, “we now want to boost private business in our country.”
Thus, the President indicated that “from January this year, the non-residential tariff rate, which is the rate which includes all of you here, is being reduced by an average of 14%. For barbers, it is being reduced by 18%; for hairdressers and beauticians, 15.7%, and for tailors, 9.8%.”
President Akufo-Addo continued, “An average bill last year was GH¢562 a month. With this reduction from January, it is coming down to GH¢473 a month, which means GH¢88 has been taken from the electricity tariff that you pay. We want to encourage private business, and make business stand on its feet.”
The President made this known on Monday, 15th January, 2017, at the opening of the 8th Salon Academy of the National Association of Beauticians and Hairdressers, held at the Mensah Sarbah Hall, University of Ghana, Legon.
Expressing his appreciation to the Association for their support of his candidature in the run-up to the 2016 elections, President Akufo-Addo noted that one of the pledges he made to them, the implementation of the Free Senior High School policy, is now a reality.
“By the grace of God, Free SHS, which some said was not possible or would be possible only after 20 years, is now a reality in our country. Free SHS has come to stay. It is going to be a central feature of the education architecture of our country. We are not going to go back on it. By 2020, all students in form 1, form 2 and form 3, would enjoy the free SHS policy,” he said.
This statement was met with a rapturous round of approval from the hundreds and hundreds of beauticians and hair dressers at the packed Mensah Sarbah Hall.
In response to the request by the President of the Association, Mrs Joyce Lamptey, for tax exemptions for start-up businesses, the President stated that in the 2018 budget, there is a provision which ensures that young entrepreneurs, up to the age of 35, will enjoy a tax holiday for the first five years of operation, before being taxed in the subsequent years.
Touching on the provision of skills training, he revealed that, up until now, all the institutions responsible for Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) in the country, were under so many organisations.
“My government has made the decision to centralise all of them (TVET) under the Ministry of Education, so we can scale up TVET training, and make it better and more robust for you. The demand for an industrial park in every region is part of the NPP manifesto, and you know that all the pledges I have made to the Ghanaian people, I am going to fulfil each and every one of them,” he said.
In conclusion, President Akufo-Addo appealed for the continued support of the Association, stressing that “this government is your government; it is the government of the private sector. Whatever we can do to strengthen the private sector, we will do it. We have come to do a job to raise Ghana up, and, with your support, we will raise Ghana up. The Black Star is going to shine and shine and shine again.”
There was a stand-off at the Electoral Commission (EC) between embattled Georgina Opoku Amankwah and officials from the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO).
The Deputy Commissioner in charge of Corporate Affairs was at the office on the premise that, she has resumed official duties after being on her annual leave for six months.
However, the Director, ACP K.K. Amoah, today [Monday], in the company of armed police men, stormed the offices of the Electoral Commission to forcefully remove her.
But defiant Amankwah refused to move out of her office insisting that the Chairperson; Mrs. Charlotte Osei had no capacity to write a letter informing her of her interdiction.
According to her, the appointing authority, the president was the only one who could write to interdict her.
Officials from EOCO held a meeting with Opoku Amankwah and after the meeting, a resolution was reached and she [Amankwah] has been informed to stay at home for a period of fourteen (14) days to allow EOCO to conclude its probe.
Georgina Opoku Amakwah together with Kwaku Owusu Agyei-Larbi, Chief Accountant and Joseph Asamoah, a Finance Officer, have been asked to proceed on leave over a missing GH¢480,000 belonging to the workers.
A letter from the Economic and Organized Crime Office (EOCO) signed by ACP K.K. Amoah (rtd.), acting Executive Director of EOCO, says it had taken over the case, explaining that “the suspects are assisting in investigations.”
In the letter dated July 4, 2017, addressed to the Chairperson of the Electoral Commission, EOCO said it was investigating “the loss of about GH¢480,000 from the Endowment Fund at the Electoral Commission.
“The office would be grateful if you would direct the officers listed above to proceed on leave whilst investigation proceeds,” the EOCO letter requested from the EC Chairman, Charlotte Osei.
“As you are aware, EOCO is investigating the loss of about GH¢480,000 from the Staff Endowment Fund. Pursuant to the said investigation, EOCO has requested that I direct you to proceed on leave while the investigation proceeds,” the EC chair said in the letter.
Ms Osei said, “This is to ensure the integrity of the investigation,” adding, “During the period of your leave, please, be advised that you are not to undertake any business on behalf of the commission or access any information from the commission until the investigations are concluded.”
Information gathered by rainbowradioonline.com has it that, some three individuals have arrested by the Odorkor Police Command for possessing grenades.
One of the suspects is believed to be a member of the dreadful terrorist group ISIS, police sources revealed. They are currently in custody while investigations are ongoing. The Military is said to be part of the investigations.
Formal Security advisor under the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Brigadier General Nunoo-Mensah says Ghana is likely to explode due to unemployment in the country
He made this statement on Rainbow Radio 87.5 this morning clearly stating that, the country has all it takes to make it a better and welcoming place.
He made mention of the country having rich minerals such as gold, bauxite and others but still lacks the power and zeal to become one of the recognised countries when it comes to the creation of jobs for the youth and the nation as a whole
He also stated that Ghana lacks nothing and therefore can make a great change.
He further noted that the government should create jobs before the youth graduate from their various institutions.
By: Osei Richard Darlington (Intern, Rainbow Radio)
Chairman for the Millennium Excellence Foundation, organizers of the 2017 Ghana Expatriates Business Awards (GEBA), Ambassador Victor Gbehor, has said, his firm sought and received partnership from the Ministry of Trade and Industry for the 2017 event.
Appearing before the five-member ad-hoc committee investigating the matter, Mr. Gbeho said, the partnership clearly spelt out responsibilities on the part of organizers and the Ministry.
The foundation he insisted did not coerce or levy any person, institution, to come out with sums of money to enable them sit next to the head of state.
He said the awards scheme found voluntary sponsors to support the first class event that was held.
‘’It did not sell seats for cash nor was nay expatriate firm excluded from the attendance of the event because it did not sponsor,’’ he stressed.
He said ‘’indeed it is a fact that, most of the VIPs seated on the presidential table did not pay sponsorship on the alleged $100,000 before the gala event.’’
He further stressed, ‘’the foundation did not participate nor encouraged any stratagem to steal money from any businessman or government, adding, ‘’on the other hand; the foundation appreciated the purposes or the scheme that we developed together with the Ministry of Trade and Industry including the procedure to open an account with the Ministry for purposes of accountability and setting up of a large committee, to ensure the participation of as many stakeholders as possible, and the leaving of fund raising in the hands of the Millennium Excellence Foundation,’’ he added.
The foundation he said was a corporate one and the decisions adopted are realized not by one person.
President of the Musicians Union of Ghana (MUSIGA), Brice Osei Kufour popularly called Obour has outlined some major projects the union would be embarking on in the year 2018.
Addressing the media at a press soiree over the weekend, the president announced that, MUSIGA will be announcing standard wages for the music industry.
In explaining how the wages will work, he said, musicians would be categorized under A, B, and lists.
Obour in his speech indicated that, the system will allow them prescribe how much musicians who are members of the union should be paid whenever their services are sought for performances or shows.
“This year, we’ll be announcing standard wages for the music industry – and so we’ll have A list artistes, B list artistes, C list artistes and MUSIGA is going to propose standard minimum wages that these artistes must be paid when you engage them for their services,” he said.
He further announced that, MUSIGA will in collaboration with with the Ghana Music Rights Organisation (GHAMRO), launch a pension scheme for musicians and an App for the union.
Aside these projects, Obour added, MUSIGA will also be embarking on the future where it will help budding or upcoming musicians to excel in their field.
“We’ve seen the need to help up and coming artistes because for a long time MUSIGA has been a professionals’ club but for some time now we’ve made a conscious decision to expand our wings to take in unsung artistes; people who have the potential but are not there yet.”
“We have put these artistes together in an artiste incubation project, giving them all the needed support that MUSIGA can afford,” he stated
According to him, there are about 64 artistes in the Future project who have been supported to have international experiences and collaborations with established artistes.
Meanwhile, he has charged the media to support MUSIGA’s ‘Play More GH’ campaign.
The campaign he noted ‘’is a major one’’ that the union is collaborating with other musicians, media personalities and government officials to drive home patriotism in Ghana.
The campaign is to support steps being taken by the Ministry of Communications to pass an appropriate Broadcasting Bill that seeks to ensure over 70% of programming on our airwaves is Ghanaian content.
Former Chief of Defense Staff, Brigadier General Nunoo Mensah, says President Donald Trump was spot on with his description of Africa as a shithole country.
Speaking with Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, the former military capo said the language was uncouth, filthy but he [Trump] spoke the truth about Africa.
In his view, Ghana is retrogressing whereas a country like India is progressing steadily.
He said, when I look back at the past and how far we have come, I feel like weeping for the country.
Mr. Nunoo-Mensah said, ‘’this man told us what we should have been told in a plain language.’’
He slammed our leaders for allowing foreign embassies to fleece Ghanaian citizens in the name of visa acquisition.
He indicated, when you look at what is happening at the American Embassy and other foreign embassies, you just wonder whether we are human beings or animals.
In his view, it makes no sense for the embassy to charge in dollars yet do not get what we pay for.
‘’You pay dollars to acquire a visa but they don’t give you. They take the money; and it’s gone on for so long and government doesn’t have the courage and balls to tell them that it is wrong. We have all accepted this thievery,’’ he said.
He also expressed his worry over the treatment meted out to Ghanaians who apply for visas.
He stressed, Donald Trump’s comment was uncouth but he called a spade and a spade and so I am not mad at him.
Trump told us in the face that, they [foreigners] don’t respect us although his language was undiplomatic.