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Rainbow Radio - Items filtered by date: Thursday, 04 October 2018
A Deputy Minister for Agriculture in charge of cocoa, Kennedy Osei Nyarko has assured underscored the need for Ghanaians to commend President Nana Akufo-Addo for protecting the interest cocoa farmers and also protecting the public purse. The Deputy Minister at a press conference on Thursday said, government has slashed the salary of the CEO of COCOBOD by 30 per cent, a situation that has saved the state firm money to invest in other areas. He reiterated government’s commitment to transforming the lives of farmers in the country, especially cocoa farmers. According to him, for past three years, the salaries of workers at COCOBOD have not been increased. He was reacting to claims by the Minority MPs that administrative cost at COCOBOD has been increased. But the Minister refuted the claims and asked Ghanaians to treat the Minority’s allegations with contempt. He said, the administrative cost is predicated by variables including warehousing, trucking, commission to LBC's, fumigation, casual and contract workers which are all volume related. The Minority has accused government of cheating farmers after it was announced that the price of cocoa has been maintained. This means Ghana COCOBOD will buy the beans at GH¢7,600 per ton, the same as it did for the just ended crop season. At a press conference in Goaso in the Brong Ahafo Region on Wednesday, Ranking Member for the Parliamentary Committee on Food, Agriculture and Cocoa Affairs, Eric Opoku, slammed the government for being “insensitive” to the plights of cocoa farmers, saying “while the cost of living is rising, the real incomes of farmers are dwindling.” He said the real producer price diminished by 24% from 2016, after accounting for inflation, which declined by 16% in 2017 and further down by 8% in 2018. He also blamed the government for ignoring the stabilization levy to the detriment of the farmers. “Therefore, by the insensitive decision to maintain cocoa prices in these hard times, the cocoa farmer is far worse off today, than he was in 2016,” the former Brong Ahafo Regional Minister said as he accused that COCOBOD used a doctored exchange rate of 4.54% to determine the cocoa price instead of using the Bank of Ghana's rate of 4.8%. But the Deputy Agric minister denied such claims and likened it to political mischief. He further explained that, the price on the world market sunk as low as $2,080 and at an exchange rate of ghc4.4 and the tonne sold for ghc 9,152 "and yet the Akufo-Addo govenet is keeping faith with farmers maintained the price of ghc 475. This translated into the government consistently of ensuring that the universal formula of paying a minimum of 70 percent is preserved, he added. He admonished Ghanaians to measure the performance of both governments and would see the one having the cocoa farmer at heart. ‘’In the current year for which they are making these outrageous statements, the World Market Price is $2,200 which translate into GHc10,560 at the exchange rate of GHc4.8. This means paying the farmer the same GHc7,600MT or GHc475/bag which translate into 72 percent of the FOB price. The NPP government maintain the cocoa price at GHc7,600/MT show the government commitment to the welfare of Ghanaian Cocoa Farmer.’’
Published in General News
A man has allegedly stoned his wife to death at Amuzukope, a suburb of Kasoa in the Central region. The husband threatened the woman, 32, Gloria Akorley, according to the daughter, several times. Bernice Akorley revealed her father always threatened to kill the mother and use her for ritual purposes. Bernice Akorley said her parents’ marriage had grown sour as the two have for a while not the best of friends. According to her, she only recollects that her mother had a phone call early Thursday morning and went out. The man has been arrested and assisting the police in their investigation.
Published in Crime
The board chairman of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), Dr. Charles Mensa has jabbed persons describing her wife, Mrs Jean Mensa, the new EC Chair as a political figure. Defending the wife on Accra based Joy Fm, Dr. Mensa described as unjustifiable allegations that her wife was appointed to favour the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 2020. “I ask people when they tell me she is a member of NPP or opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) ‘and so what?’ Because the question is not whether she is NPP or NDC but can she be independent and be fair to all the political parties? “I think that is the issue, Afari Gyan, Charlotte Osei as well as the Chief Justice all vote during the general elections, but question is can one be fair? That is Jean’s trademark,” he said. The opposition NDC has attacked the new EC boss. They have expressed their displeasure at her appointment but the husband in jumping to her defence said, ‘’ the wife exhibited that as Director of IEA “to the point where the NDC hierarchy felt very comfortable with her. She worked with them and sometimes she upset them. The same thing with the NPP, sometimes they love her other times they don’t”.
Published in General News
Government will incur an additional debt of GHc 1.5 billion in subsiding the price of cocoa, the Ministry of Agriculture has announced. Deputy Minister of Agriculture in charge of Perennial Crops, Mr Kennedy Osei Nyarko said at a press conference on Thursday, government had to incur ghc 2 billion in subsiding the price of cocoa in 2017. He was reacting to the allegations by the Minority in parliament that, government was fleecing cocoa farmers by refusing to increase the price of cocoa. He refuted the allegations and insisted that, government maintained the price despite the reduction of price on the world market. He said government should be commended for maintaining the price because the real market price would have been ghc 6,000. He further explained that, the price on the world market sunk as low as $2,080 and at an exchange rate of ghc4.4 and the tonne sold for ghc 9,152 "and yet the Akufo-Addo govenet is keeping faith with farmers maintained the price of ghc 475. This translated into the government consistently of ensuring that the universal formula of paying a minimum of 70 percent is preserved, he added. On the issue of rising administrative cost, he rubbished claims by the Minority that government has increased it's administrative cost. He said, the administrative cost is predicated by variables including warehousing, trucking, commission to LBC's, fumigation, casual and contract workers which are all volume related. Government he stressed deserves commendation for reducing the salary of COCOBOD CEO by 30 percent. In concluding his address, he said, as part of productivity improvement program, and in anticipation of world market price volatility, COCOBOD has put in place schemes aimed at improving the current 450kg/ha to minimum of 1500kg/ha. These schemes include spraying, fertilization, subsidy and hand pollination. Government has maintained the price of cocoa at GHc7,600 per tonne for the 2018/19 main crop harvest. Agric Minister, Dr Afriyie Akoto made the announcement whiles addressing cocoa farmers and other stakeholders in the cocoa industry at the 2018 Cocoa Day event. “The 2018/19 cocoa season which starts on Friday, October 5, has been officially announced. The government in consultation with stakeholders has decided to maintain the producer price for cocoa at GH₵7,600 per tonne or GH₵475 per bag of 64 Kilograms (KG),” he stated.
Published in General News
Public Relations Officer (PRO) for the Aayalolo Bus Rapid Transport system, Fred Chidi has justified why drivers are fined for using the lane meant for the buses operating under the system. He was reacting to growing concerns by drivers who have been fined between GHc100-GHc250 for using the bus lane. He told Kwame Tutu on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm that, law regulates the fine and the money collected goes to the various District Assemblies where the buses operate. Fred Chidi admonished drivers to abide by the regulations so they are not fined. He further explained the bus lane was not only developed for Ayalolo buses but other similar buses like that of Metro Mass Transit Buses, STC Buses among others. Ambulances, Fire Service Tenders and Police vehicles are also allowed to use the lane. The $95 million dollar project which started in 2007 is finally taking off in September with dedicated routes in Accra. For those driving their own cars, they can only benefit if they are willing to park their cars and join the bus. To ensure the safety of passengers, managers of the 85 buses for the first phase of the project have fitted wi-fi and USB cables in them to encourage patronage. Aayalolo buses currently run three services on the Nsawam Road corridor. The three services are as follows: Amasaman to Tudu, Ofankor to Tudu and Achimota to Tudu. These services are respectively run by:Ghana cooperative bus rapid transit association, Accra GPRTU rapid bus transit company limited and Amalgamated bus transit services limited. Mr Chidi said before the implementation of the bus system conducted massive education to inform the public on the operations of the system. The taskforce clamping on cars are legally mandated enterprise and mandated by law.
Published in General News
The Greater Accra regional secretary of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC), Theophilus Tetteh Chaie, has taken a swipe at the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), for failing to react to the specific issues raised by the umbrella family over the use of $6.8 million for an audit report. He told host of Frontline on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm, Kwame Tutu, he [Chaie] was disappointed in the NPP for reacting the allegations levelled against the government in a shoddy manner. The NPP has refuted allegations that government paid private firms to conduct forensic audit into activities of some former appointees under the previous NDC government. Communications Director of the NPP, Buaben Asamoa, told the press on Wednesday the NDC lied to divert attention from their corruption and rot they left. “It appears Mr. Asiedu is on a mission to make noise and hopefully boost his flagging campaign for re-election. Otherwise, no logical explanation comes easily to mind for his antics exhibited in a full blown press conference and further more on other media. We want to say that most of what he delivered were lies, speculating half truths and deliberate lies concocted in the pot of his imagination…” “Perhaps, we suspect there is a real reason why the NDC is attempting to misinform the public. Is the NDC seeking to preempt the results of the ongoing forensic audits? It beats my imagination why the NDC is rushing to discredit investigations which are yet to feed into potential prosecutions. This is the same party which challenged the whole world to prosecute them if they were found to be corrupt. What has changed? The technical support from the UNDP is part of their anti-corruption support and governance project which cost less than a $100,000. The mention, we believe of 6.8 million dollars is a total red herring aimed at diverting attention from the substantive findings of the forensic audits… It will serve the public well if Mr. Nketia will be humble enough to apologize for bringing the name of the UNDP in disrepute..” But Mr Chaie said, ‘’The issues we raised were not the issues there were addressing. The Auditor-General has said he never sanctioned the audit and yet the NPP failed to respond to the issue. They also failed to respond to the interference in the work of the Auditor-General by the Audit Service Board chair, Prof. Dua Agyeman.’’ Mr Chaie said, the Communications Director failed to react to the issues because he never understood what Mr Nketiah, the general secretary of the party said. ‘’This government is misruling this country. They have exhibited high level of incompetence. They have failed to resource the Special Prosecutor,’’ he added. Meanwhile, he has insisted that the helicopter used by Dr. Bawumia the Vice President for his donation exercise forms part of the helicopters the NPP claims are missing.
Published in General News
Chattered Economist, Mr Emmanuel Amoah-Darkwa is predicting the collapse of more banks before December 2018. He is arguing that, ''Ghana is currently not out the woods'' yet and some banks will go under receiverships before the year ends, he predicted on Frontline on Rainbow Radio 87.5Fm. Currently, some customers of some local banks have resorted to panic withdrawals following the collapse of some local banks in the country. The situation has forced business mogul and Chairman of Groupe Nduom, Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom, to lead a campaign against panic withdrawals in some selected communities where GN bank is located. Commenting on the panic withdrawals, Mr Amoah-Darkwa, was worried the situation if not checked may collapse the banks involved. In his view, there is no bank in the world that would be able to pay depositors all their deposits when they all rush to it for their deposits. ‘’We will see a lot of banks go under receivership before the year goes to an end.’’ The challenges confronting the banking sector he suggested are also ongoing in the savings and loans, micro-finance and rural banks. He stated that these financial firms are not adhering to corporate governance, breach regulations and ‘’the day the Bank of Ghana will decide to deal with them will be shocking.’’ The state he lamented has incurred GHc8 billion debt as a result of consolidating some five local banks. He was sure authorities might soon act to prevent any unforeseen circumstances. The Central Bank has hinted it will soon shut down, savings and loans company that are insolvent. Governor of the Bank of Ghana (BoG), Dr Ernest Addison made the revelation during a meeting with Journalists after meeting to review the health of the Economy few weeks ago. According to the Governor of the Bank actions taken so far to stabilise the banking sector would not be different from the Savings and Loan Companies. He added that it is critical to allow Savings and Loans Companies that are in good standing are allowed to operate. Some of the savings and loans companies are said to be in a “sorry financial state” as a result of the panic withdrawals that has hit most of them. The Association of Savings Companies recently petitioned the Bank of Ghana to support some of their members said to be in financial distress. The Executive Secretary of the Association, Tweneboa Kodua Boakye, had explained that the petition to support the troubled firms was to prevent most of them from going down.
Published in Business
The New Patriotic Party (NPP) has commended government for showing leadership in the fight against corruption. The party is touting the achievement of government in gathering the needed evidence to deal with corrupt former officials of the previous NDC administration. Communications Director of the party, Buaben Asamoa at a press conference on Wednesday said: ‘’ As a party in Government, we hold the view that having come this far on the path of constitutional governance, it is not enough to shout corruption. Hard evidence must be found and adduced through due process if we are to tackle the menace of corruption with sincerity.’’ He was responding to allegations by the General Secretary of the NDC, Johnson Asiedu Nketiah that government used $6.8 million to conduct ‘’bogus audits’’ in an attempt to denigrate former appointees of Mr John Dramani Mahama. He used the opportunity to admonish appointees not be corrupt since such an act would affect the gains of the party. ‘’In the same vein, we do not expect self-respecting servants of any Government, to resort to polemic stunts aimed at diligent interrogation of their tenures of office since such actions will not and cannot stop appropriate accountability measures.’’ He slammed Asiedu Nketiah for being allegic to facts. ‘’We hope Mr. Asiedu Nketiah is not allergic to facts. In any case, who is he trying to shield from the flames of accountability? Is it the entire Mahama Administration or characters thick in the purported plots to create, loot and share? Schemes to create, loot and share have been allegedly so well executed that many contracts inherited by the current administration appear lawful but in effect are bloated well beyond value for money limits. In conclusion, we wish to state our revulsion at the personal attacks on the person of Professor Edward Dua Agyeman. Nearly half of the NDC’s press conference was devoted to casting aspersions on Dua Agyemang. Further appearances on various media by Asiedu Nketiah followed the same trend. We can only hope that the gentleman resorts to the appropriate quarters in defence of his name but we are also constrained to urge him fervently not to relent in his service to the nation. We do not intend to go down the path of contestation about the role of the Auditor General, an invitation unnecessarily flagged. It is unnecessary because neither the constitution nor the Audit Service Act, 2000 (Act 584) is a barrier to the conduct of forensic investigations by agencies clothed with investigatory and or prosecutorial powers. ‘’As to the assertion recognising the existence of cognate institutions of state with investigative powers, we say thanks but no thanks. You had your chance and you chose to misgovern in supreme and blissful incompetence. Please allow us to fulfil our compact with the Ghanaian people with serious diligence, using the best means at our disposal to serve the interests of Ghanaians in ensuring accountability and responsiveness to the duty of upholding the public trust.’’
Published in General News
The Coalition of Allied Health Professionals have planned to boycotts their various health institutions if their outstanding arrears are not paid. According to the president of the group, Bright Bell, the trainee nurses have not been paid their allowances for the past six months. Our junior colleagues who are also in school and those who are currently doing rotation have also not been paid for over six months now. They are also agitating that by the close of this month if they do not receive the allowances, they will be forced to vacate all the Ministry of Health-sponsored schools and go back home because once their seniors even have challenges in getting jobs, there is no guarantee of job placement for them and there is no need to even keep training,” Bright Bell said. The ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) in 2016 promised to restore the nursing allowance after the previous government scrapped it. In September 2017, the president at event to re-launch the allowance said, he action brought untold hardships to the thousands of nurses and midwives in the country, who depended on it for their studies and for their welfare. The cancellation, according to the President, left many trainee nurses demotivated and demoralised. Fifty- Eight Thousand Health training nurses, comprising nurses and midwives were earmarked to be paid be paid their allowance of four hundred Ghana cedis (GH¢400.00) per person, for each of the ten months of the academic year. “This means government will be spending a total of GH¢232,000,000 for this academic year. The E-Zwich platform will be used to effect payment, as it will ensure convenience, prompt payment, and accountability,” he said. President Akufo-Addo who made this known, at the Sunyani Nursing and Midwifery College said, “to the professional cynics and skeptics, those who have made an industry out of constantly asking ‘is this policy sustainable?’ I wish to assure them that, with the proper management of our public finances, the nation’s budget can accommodate such an amount.” But the trainee nurses are lamenting delays in their allowances.
Published in General News
President Nana Akufo-Addo has expressed his displeasure over lenient sentences handed to persons found to be involved in illegal mining. The president believes such culprits must be severely punished to deter others from engaging in the act. Speaking at the swearing-in of some 4 new Supreme Court Judges, at Jubilee House in Accra on Wednesday, the president said “It continues to be a source of worry, that persons caught in the act of destroying our environment and polluting our water bodies, the inheritance of our future generations because of the phenomenon of illegal mining, popularly referred to as galamsey, get away with lenient sentences. As it is at certain places, the discretion must be exercised for the upper end, for the maximum. The concept of deterrence must be an important art of sentencing policy, especially in areas of great social concern such as the fight against galamsey and vigilantism,” He used the occasion to also admonish the judges to consider the highest form of punishment whenever they are to exercise their discretion in handing sentences to suspects in any of such crimes. The four Justices who were sworn in are; Justice Samuel Marful-Sau, Justice Agnes Dordzie, Justice Nene A. O. Amegatcher and an academic, Justice Prof Nii AshieKotey. They were appointed in July 2018 to replace some long-serving justices who are retiring.
Published in General News
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