By John Elliot HAGAN, Accra
PRESSURE group, Alliance for Accountable Governance (AFAG) says it is in support of government’s decision to fund its free Senior High School programme using the Heritage Fund. However, AFAG is of the opinion that any amount of money taken from the Heritage Fund to support the Free SHS should be considered as a loan payable at an interest rate commensurate to the returns the Heritage Fund would have made if the fund had been invested in the open market.
The Heritage Fund is a strategic endowment reserve to establish to support the development for future generations when Ghana’s petroleum reserves have been depleted.Criticisms from certain quarters have been levelled against the government for deciding to fund the programme with monies that have been set aside for the country’s unborn generation after Senior Minister Yaw Osafo Maafo indicated at a forum in that the Heritage Fund, into which is paid nine per cent of the country’s annual petroleum revenue, will be used to sustain the programme.
VICE-PRESIDENT Alhaji Dr Mahamudu Bawumia yesterday inspected the ongoing construction of the national mosque to familiarise himself with progress of work. The Vice-President, who was accompanied by the National Chief Imam, Sheikh Dr Osman Nuhu Sharubutu and other Muslim clerics, expressed satisfaction with the progress of work and hoped the building would be completed by the end of the year.
Admiral Mohammed M Tahiru, a Member of the Mosque Development Committee, took the vice-president and his entourage round the building. He said apart from the main auditorium with an estimated 15,000 seater-capacity, there would be other ancillary facilities for training Muslim youth in Islamic scholarship.
BRITAIN’S Foreign Secretary, Boris Johnson, is expected to visit Ghana today, February 15, 2017. He will meet President Nana Akufo-Addo during his visit to discuss key opportunities and challenges facing the country.
He is also expected to visit the award-winning Blue Skies company, meet business leaders and young entrepreneurs supported by the Department for International Development’s ENGINE project, and meet with ‘Rising Black Stars’, highlighting both countries’ extensive cultural ties.
PRESIDENT Nana Akufo-Addo has congratulated Frank-Walter Steinmeier on his election as the President of the Federal Republic of Germany. Frank-Walter Steinmeier, Germany's former Foreign Minister, was elected as the country's new president, the 12th person to hold that largely ceremonial position.
Steinmeier on Sunday won 931 out of 1,260 valid votes cast by the members of the Federal Assembly, which is made up of 630 federal members of parliament and an equal number of delegates from 16 states.
By Daniel NONOR, Flagstaff House
WITH just 21 days to the commencement of the year-long ‘Ghana 60 Years On’ anniversary celebrations, the planning committee has since received just a single donation of GH¢300,000 from Unibank. “So far, we have only one contribution from Unibank“, Chairman of the Planning Committee, Mr Ken Amankwah, revealed at a press briefing at the Flagstaff House in Accra on Monday.
From Zambaga Rufai SAMINU, Prestea
A GROUP calling itself Prestea Communicators for Development (PCD) has appealed to President Akufo-Addo to appoint Mrs. Barbara Oteng Gyasi, Member of Parliament for Prestea Huni-Valley Constituency in the Western Region, as a Deputy Minister in his administration.
The law maker, who is also the wife of Dr. Oteng Gyasi, former President of Association of Ghana Industries (AGI) has been described as a competent material capable of contributing to the government of President Akuffo Addo as a Deputy Minister if offered the opportunity.
PRESIDENT Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has sworn into office the third batch of 11 ministerial nominees approved by Parliament, charging them to render service in humility and with integrity and to expeditiously declare their assets.
“You must see the opportunity of ministerial appointment as an avenue for service to our people and nation…service which should be discharged with humility. You are here to advance the public interest so you must, therefore, comply to file your asset declaration," he told his appointees at a short ceremony at the Flagstaff House in Accra on Friday night.
FORMER President John Mahama says plans by the Nana Addo administration to appoint a Special Prosecutor is another step in the right direction to fighting corruption.
According to him, the move would come to support the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP 2015 – 2024); as a non-partisan document for fighting corruption in the country. As part of his election 2016 campaign promises, President Akufo-Addo hinted his administration will set up an office of an independent Special Prosecutor to deal with corruption cases in the country.
THE Member of Parliament (MP) for Effutu on Friday notified the Speaker of ECOWAS Parliament of his decision to step down from Ghana’s delegation to the regional parliament. Alexander Afenyo-Markin's action was to save Ghana more embarrassment after a disagreement on the number of MPs that should make up the delegation. Earlier the leader of Ghana’s delegation, Kwasi Ameyaw-Cheremeh wrote to inform the Speaker of Mr Afenyo-Markin’s decision explaining it was to make room for another room the MP for Suhum, Fred Opare Ansah.
THE Minister-nominee for Information, Mr Mustapha Hamid, has told the Appointments Committee of Parliament of plans to sanitise the political atmosphere and creating an environment devoid of insults and invectives at political opponents.
He expressed regret at comments attributed to him for some derogatory remarks against former President John Mahama, saying the then politically charged atmosphere gave room for the invectives, something he said both sides of the political divide were guilty of His promise was in response to a query from the Member of Parliament (MP) for Tamale North, Suhuyini Alhassan, for describing the former President Mahama as an unrepentant bigot.
By Raju J.R. PARWANI, ACCRA
SOME 20 globally-competitive companies are expected to be in operation in Ghana within the next four years. Minister-nominee for Business Development, Mr Ibrahim Mohammed Awal, who disclosed this, said it would be private-sector led initiative with a strong government backing.
“By the end of our 4-year tenure, we will build 20 big businesses that can compete beyond the shores of Ghana like the Dangotes of Nigeria. This is possible because our development partners are willing to partner local businesses,” the Minister-nominee said. The accomplished businessman was answering questions when he appeared before the Appointments Committee of Parliament yesterday.