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Ghanaweb News from May 2012 - July 2012

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Ghana Web News - 06.07.2012 - Friday

Daily Ghanaweb News


- Foreign firms to cede part of their business

  to Ghanaians
- Single Spine is a mess, NAGRAT declares
- Betty Orders $35m For Rockshell
- Fight Over Kufuor's Estate Rages On
- District Assemblies have lost focus – Dr

  Abu Sakara
- Galloper Price Bloated
- Top NDC/NPP officials cited for indecent

- How The Statesman Exposed Kufuor’s

  $100m Payment
- Nana Addo Runs Away From .......Why

  Kufuor Was A Bad President
- Statement: NPP condemns teachers advert
- Hypocrite Pratt at it again! -PPP
- Mills’ hard work and character will see

  the NDC through -Koku
- Upper West Akim District inaugurated
- Fritz Baffuor Kick-Starts Journey
- Farmer remanded for strangling 92-year-

  old colleague
- Man drowns at Sofoline Interchange

  project site
- Truck runs over cyclist on Kasoa road


Foreign firms to cede part of their business to Ghanaians
* Source: JoyOnline

JOYBUSINESS has learnt foreign businesses coming into the country could soon be required to cede 30 percent of their enterprise to Ghanaians.

Existing ones would also be required to give up part of their interest to locals over a period of time.

These form part of proposals in the revised Investment Act currently being considered by cabinet.

The laws is part of a broad indigenization policy been worked on by managers of the economy.

It also part of efforts to ensure that indigenes can share in the profits foreign firms generate from their local operations.


Single Spine is a mess, NAGRAT declares
* Source: JoyOnline

The National Association of Graduate Teachers (NAGRAT) have issued a two-week ultimatum to government to upgrade them to the new pay policy.

Meanwhile, the Civil and Local Government workers are also demanding immediate resumption of negotiations on their market premium to prevent a similar action.

On Wednesday, the Pharmaceutical Society of Ghana also issued a statement cautioning government of growing anger among Government and Hospital pharmacists over the undue delay in concluding discussions on their new pay.

General Secretary of NAGRAT, Stanislaus Nabome who addressed a news conference Thursday accused the Fair Wages and Salaries Commission of being selective in addressing workers’ demands

According to him, NAGRAT has written four letters to the FWSC urging them to call a stakeholders meeting without receiving any response.

According to Mr. Naboame, since the FWSC implemented the Single Spine Salary Structure, they have failed to decompress the structure so as to remove overlaps.

“The entire pay structure is a mess and its implementers must come again. This buttresses the fact that the FWSC has lost control of the pay structure. It is a deliberately orchestrated agenda to shortchange the teachers of this nation,” Mr. Naboame stated.

“We have used all the legitimate means in pursuit of this concern, but since they are determine to ignore us, we are giving government up to two weeks to respond to issues of market premium, and categories 2 and 3 of teacher allowances else NAGRAT would step up effort beyond the ordinary,” Mr. Naboame concluded.

In a related development, the Ashanti and Bono Ahafo branches of the Civil and Local Government Staff Association of Ghana, CLOGSAG, are also threatening an indefinite strike if negotiation on their market premium does not resume.

Leaders of the group at a news conference say it is becoming increasingly difficult to restrain their members.

At the news conference, Secretary of Bono Ahafo CLOGSAG, Yakubu Dramani said negotiation for a market premium stalled six months ago and it appears there’s no immediate end in sight, hence they are calling on the Minister for Employment and Social Welfare to step in to resolve the situation.

He said if the problem persists, the association would be left with no other choice than to use other means to seek redress of their concerns.


Betty Orders $35m For Rockshell
* Source: Daily Graphic

FORMER ATTORNEY-GENERAL Betty Mould-Iddrisu is in the news again for another judgment debt scandal as she is said to have negotiated for the payment of $35 million to Rockshell Construction Limited in 2010.

The payment of the colossal amount was at the center of controversy at the sittings of the Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament yesterday, with members of the parliamentary committee clashing with the solicitor of Rockshell, Lawyer Philip Addison.

Tempers flared when the ranking member of PAC, Amadu Seidu, asked Mr. Addison about the basis of the payment because it sounded ridiculous to the committee.

Mr. Addison indicated that the PAC could not present itself as a review committee of court judgment, infuriating some members of the committee.

It took the intervention of the PAC chairman, Albert Kan-Dapaah, to reduce tension between Mr. Addison and members of the committee on the issue.

The PAC is currently probing circumstances that led to the liability incurred by the state, which have been captured in the Auditor-General’s Report on Public Accounts for the year 2010.

Mr. Addison told the PAC that the state defaulted in paying Rockshell for the construction of the Keta Sea Defence Wall in 1986, and this, according to him, led to the company suing the government in 2006.

A court judgment, he indicated, was delivered in November 2006, during which the state was to pay Rockshell a total amount of ¢535,086,000, now GH¢53,506.00.

He however indicated that the interest on the aforementioned amount was calculated at the commercial bank rate from 1986, which was the time the contract was executed.

Mr. Addison said based on the calculation, the amount rose from GH¢53,506.00 to $69 million and later to $120 million in 2010.

According to him, it was based on $120 million claim that the then Attorney-General, Betty Mould-Iddrisu, negotiated and committed the state to pay Rockshell $35 million.

But PAC members were at a loss as to why a contract that was cedi denominated should be negotiated and paid in dollars.

They also questioned the calculated figure, wondering why an amount of GH¢53,506.00 should shoot up to $120 million.

Answering, Mr. Addison indicated that the amount was calculated in cedis but negotiated in dollars.

Even that, Amadu Seidu questioned the authenticity of the claim, challenging Mr. Addison to mention the ministry that awarded the contract to Rockshell.

According to him, two construction companies from Germany and United States undertook the project around the time mentioned by Mr. Addison.

Responding however, Mr. Addison flared up, saying he was not under any obligation to mention the awarding ministry.

He insinuated that the PAC was not an inquisitorial body that should compel him to produce evidence of the award of the contract to Rockshell, directing the committee to go for the court’s judgment.

According to him, his client took the state to court in which government was duly represented by the Attorney-General and judgment was delivered based on documents presented.

But members of PAC took strong exception to Mr. Addison’s stiff posture, confronting him with the committee’s legal powers to summon anybody to appear before it to give information.

A member of the committee, Isaac Asiamah, quoted Article 103 (6) which gives the parliamentary committee the power to summon and compel any witness to provide documents or information relevant to its work.

Eventually, the PAC demanded a copy of the judgment to apprise itself of the components in it that awarded the judgment debt against the state.

African Automobile Limited, another company in over GH¢8.3 million judgment debt debacle, was told to appear before the PAC today because its lawyer was rejected yesterday.

Lawyer Addo Atuah was at the PAC to explain how and why his client, African Automobile, had received an amount of GH¢8.3 million from government in 2010 as judgment debt.

He said the managing director of the company had been flown to Lebanon for medical treatment and they could not appear before the PAC to answer queries.

But the committee insisted it would not hear from anybody except the MD or an executive director of the company.

Consequently, the PAC directed that the son of African Automobile MD should appear before the committee today.


Fight Over Kufuor's Estate Rages On
* Source: The Chronicle

A Kumasi High Court has adjourned a contempt case in which Peter Agyei Kufuor and Bernard Asamoah Kufuor, two sons of the late business magnate and former chief of Nkawie in the Ashanti Region, Bernard Mensah Kufuor, have filed an application for committal for contempt of Ben Kufuor, also a son.

The presiding judge, Mr. Justice Eric Baah, was compelled to adjourn the case to July 9, 2012 at the instance of the two counsels, Mr. Kwame Boafo Akufo for plaintiffs and Sam M. Codjoe for the defence.

Sam M. Codjoe of Law Trust Company of Accra had complained of indisposition.

In an affidavit in support of the application for committal for contempt filed on March 19, 2012, Bernard Asamoah Kufuor stated that the defendant, Ben Kufuor, was in effective control of Ghana Primewood Products Limited, (GAP), which company forms part of the estates of B. M. Kufuor, which is the subject matter of a case pending before court.

In the substantive case, 15 sons of the late chief of Nkawie are challenging how the numerous properties and huge foreign currency accounts in Ghana and abroad of the deceased were vested in his niece, Mrs. Comfort Joyce Wereko-Brobbey, and Ben Kufuor, one of the sons of the deceased.

They claim that Mrs. Comfort Joyce Wereko-Brobbey, the niece, and Ben used fraudulent means to take custody of the estates of the deceased, who was also the uncle of former President John Agyekum Kufuor.

Consequently, they have filed a writ at the Kumasi High Court, seeking a declaration that all properties of the late Bernard Mensah Kufuor should be vested in the estate of the deceased.

Among the numerous properties the deceased acquired in his lifetime are Ghana Primewood Products Limited in Takoradi, Bibiani Logging and Lumber Company Limited in Kumasi, Kufuor and Sons Furniture Limited in Kumasi, Atwima Timbers, Kumasi, Dormaa Sawmills, several tracts of lands in Accra, Kumasi and other parts of Ghana, and two landed properties in England.

He also left behind a number of foreign accounts in the UK and the US. But the plaintiff in the contempt case indicated that it had come to his notice that the defendant iwas feverishly preparing to sell the assets of Ghana Primewood Products Limited, for which purpose he had engaged the services of Deloitte to put in place an information memorandum to enable him dispose of the assets of Ghana Primewood Products Limited.

The intended sale has duly been confirmed by Deloitte, which has assessed the total size of the land under consideration.

According to the plaintiff, since respondent was a co-defendant, the attempt to dissipate the assets of the company was purported to make the orders of the trial court of the substantive matter useless.

The plaintiff noted that Ben Kufuor was very much aware of the pendency of a legal suit challenging the distribution of the estate of the late Bernard Mensah Kufuor, and that the intention to sell out Ghana Primewood Products Limited amounted to gross disrespect for the administration of justice, which conduct, was also described as a gross disrespect for the dignity of a court of competent jurisdiction.

The plaintiff emphasised that the conduct of the respondent also amounted to a blatant, as well as rude interference in the administration of justice, and prayed the court to punish the respondent for contempt.

But, Ben Kufuor, in an affidavit in opposition to the application of contempt, said GAP was a limited liability company which is a totally different legal entity, and therefore, had no connection whatsoever with the suit.

He explained that GAP was indebted to numerous credit institutions, including Barclays Bank of Ghana, Standard Chartered, Zenith Bank, Ghana Commercial Bank and Amalgamated among others, with a total debt portfolio of over US$12,000,000.

The respondent stated that besides the credit institutions, GAP was also indebted to other institutions, including the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT) in bills and workers contributions, and because they were attracting huge interests, it became obvious for GAP to be reorganised to save it from collapse.

The defendant described the action as misconceived and a deliberate attempt by the plaintiffs to scare away potential investors, adding that he (Ben Kufuor) had not done any contemptuous act against the judicial process to warrant his committal for contempt of court, and prayed the court to dismiss the action with punitive cost against the plaintiffs.

Reacting to the affidavit in opposition, the plaintiff stated that it did not remove the stain of contempt, and that respondent's conduct ought to be sanctioned for his efforts to undermine the administration of justice.

It said the respondent's connection to GAP was because he was a beneficiary of Bernard Mensah Kufuor's estate, which fell into intestacy upon his death.


District Assemblies have lost focus – Dr Abu Sakara
* Source: GBC

The Convention Peoples Party, CPP, says the district assemblies have long lost the focus for which they were created and that there is no reason adding new ones.

The flagbearer of the party, Dr. Abu Sakara, told GBC’s Bubu Klinogo, that his administration will consider reviewing downwards, the number of the assemblies to make for effective administration.


Galloper Price Bloated
* Source: Daily Guide

Customs, Excise and Preventive Service (CEPS) documents available to Daily Guide show that the total cost of the controversial Hyundai Galloper cross-country vehicles has been inflated by the National Democratic Congress (NDC) government.

In the documents, the total cost of the entire Gallopers II vehicle barely exceeds $1million, contrasting sharply with the $17million figure being quoted by government officials.

The documents are part of inventories taken by CEPS in October 2004 on the Gallopers parked in its bonded warehouse number A/035 by African Automobile Limited (AAL).

In the documents, the total number of the Gallopers was originally 70 units, but one was taken out for unknown reasons.

“On 1st October, 2004, inventory was carried out in the Bonded Warehouse number A/035 and it was established that there were seventy (70) Hyundai Galloper II vehicles in the Bond. Out of the seventy (70) vehicles found in the bonded warehouse as at 1st October 2004, one more vehicle was ex-warehoused on 24th February, 2005,” stated the report attached to the inventory.

This figure contrasts with the 86 Gallopers announced to have been in contention by a Deputy Minister of Information, Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa.

Also, the Cost, Insurance and Freight (CIF) of each unit were valued in March 2010 at $15,154 per unit. Collectively, the Gallopers (in 2010) were valued at approximately $1.05million or GH¢21.76 million as against $17million.

At the time, the US dollar was exchanging for GH¢1.44 on the interbank rates. This figure also widely contradicts the US $17million figure stated by Mr. Ablakwa.

Last week, the deputy minister announced in a state-run newspaper, Daily Graphic, that Ghana might incur a whopping $1.5billion judgment debt for an alleged negligence blamed on the previous New Patriotic Party (NPP) government.

According to him, even though the Gallopers were imported by the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC), when the NPP government assumed in 2001, it ignored outstanding contractual agreements between the government and AAL; hence incurring a one percent interest charge, monthly, on the vehicles, with accompanying demurrages.


While the Mills government estimates the outstanding cost at around $1.5billion, nobody has seen the contract between the Ghana government and the African Automobile Limited.

It appears that government spokespersons are rather acting for AAL instead of parroting the interest of the state since none of them including the deputy minister has been able to make the contract documents available, confirming speculations that the contract to supply the vehicles was a mere gentleman’s agreement.

Indeed, the CEPS documents gave a warning regarding the potential costs, but not close to the cost being announced by the NDC government. “Please note that the duty and taxes are subject to minor changes due to the weekly changes in the exchange rate provided by the Bank of Ghana,” it warned.

DAILY GUIDE sources at CEPS explained that from a total cost of GH¢21.76 million CIF value in 2010, there was no way the costs could have astronomically shot up to $17 million and consequently attracting a possible judgment debt of $1.5billion as being bandied about by officials in the Mills government.

DAILY GUIDE gathered that the vehicles were imported in the name of African Automobile Limited (AAL) and not in the name of Ghana government.

Sources at the CEPS said they found the situation strange; usually, vehicles ordered by the government were consigned to the government and not the companies importing them.

This implies that if there were any costs to be incurred on demurrage, AAL would have to bear the full responsibility of settling them, and not the government of Ghana

In any case, due to specific contractual disagreements between AAL and the Kufuor-led NPP government at the time, the vehicles were confined to various warehouses, accruing demurrages and other charges.

Barton-Odro’s Negotiation

In 2009, a committee headed by Ebo Barton-Odro, Deputy Attorney-General, was constituted to investigate the vehicles. The committee subsequently made certain recommendations, including the relocation of the Gallopers from the warehouses to the open air at the Institute of Local Government Studies (ILGS) when there was no plan to take delivery of them.

When contacted for details by Daily Guide yesterday, Mr Barton-Odro retorted about how journalists always tried to gatecrash sources when accessing information.

He said, “We were only trying to settle the case, but we were not able to settle it.”

Officials from the previous government strongly dismissed the claims, saying that the Mills government was plotting to use the Gallopers as one of its “trademark” judgment debt claims to siphon money from the national coffers.

According to former Local Government Minister under the Kufuor administration, Kwadwo Adjei-Darko, there was no contract between AAL and the government of Ghana necessitating government to negotiate such huge claims on the Gallopers.

On Wednesday, former Minister of Local Government in the previous NDC regime, Kwamena Ahwoi, issued a statement on the matter.

According to him, there was a binding contract between the Government of Ghana in 1999 to supply about 110 Gallopers valued at $3.322 million.

He claimed the unit price worked out to $30,200 each. “Hon Adjei-Darko’s statement that there was no documentation on the subject in the Ministry was clearly made out of ignorance,” he noted.

African Automobile Limited Silence

Amidst this back and forth exchanges, AAL has remained silent since the news broke last week.

A close look at the company shows that AAL is currently comatose.

Daily Guide gathered that the company had stopped its key dealership in Mitsubishi vehicles. It currently piggybacks on its sister company, Auto Plaza Limited, dealers in Hyundai cars.

The AAL had some brushes with the law in 2011. Mohammed Hajizi, the Chief Executive Officer of AAL, and two directors of the company, were put before an Accra Circuit Court for illegally connecting electricity for their company without paying bills.

They pleaded not guilty and were granted a GH¢80,000 bail.

The outcome of the case is so far unknown.


Top NDC/NPP officials cited for indecent expression`s
* Source: GNA

The Media Foundation for West Africa on Thursday cited some top officials of National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) for engaging in usage of indecent expressions on radio.

The high-ranking NDC officials were Mr. Elvis Afriyie Ankrah, Deputy Minister for Local Government and Rural Development and Mr. David Annan, a member of the party’s legal team.

The NPP’s officials cited were the General Secretary, Mr. Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie (Sir John) and Mr. Kennedy Ohene Agyapong, NPP Member of Parliament for Assin North Constituency.

The Foundation’s week 13 monitoring report copied to the Ghana News Agency, indicates that 12 indecent expressions were captured from June 24th to 30th.

According to the report, Mr. Agyapong was captured to have made a provocative statement on Adom FM’s “Dwaso Nsem” programme of June 25, whilst Mr. Afriyie Ankrah, was captured on Kessben FM’s “Maakye” programme of June 26.

Mr. Kojo Twum Boafo, a Member of the NDC’s Communications Team, was captured on Radio Gold’s Newspaper Review segment of the Morning Drive on June 27. Mr. David Annan, was captured during Radio Gold’s Alhaji and Alhaji programme of June 30.

On use of insulting and offensive comments, Mr. Adomako Baafi, a member of NPP Communications Team was captured during Oman FM’s Boiling Point programme of June 26.

Mr. Owusu Afriyie was captured on Adom FM’s Evening News of June 27, whilst Peace FM replayed an offensive remark by Odeneho Kwaku Appiah, Kwabre West Constituency Chairman of the NPP during its Mid-day News of June 27.

According to the MFWA’s report, the NPP officials and supporters made seven of the indecorous expressions, whilst the NDC officials and supporters made four.

Three of the indecent expressions were made on Radio Gold and two on Oman FM.

According to the report, incidence of indecent expressions on radio moved up from five in the 12th week of monitoring (June 17 – 23, 2012) to 12 in the 13th week (June 24 – 30, 2012).

The weekly reports are the outcomes of the monitoring of indecent expressions on radio stations under the project, “Promoting Issues-based and Decent Language Campaigning for a Peaceful, Free and Fair Elections in Ghana in 2012,” being funded by STAR-Ghana.

The project is aimed at promoting issues-based and decent language campaigning in Ghana’s December 2012 polls.

It involves daily monitoring of language expressions by politicians and activists on specific programmes on 31 selected radio stations across the country.

The weekly reports are aimed at sensitising the public to know the individuals who make indecent expressions, their political party affiliation, and the radio stations on which such expressions are used.

According to the MFWA, most of the indecent remarks were made during political discussion programmes.

The main subject of discussion around which half of the indecent expressions were made was President John Evans Atta Mill’s health.

The MFWA has been urging radio stations to desist from the replay of indecent expressions on their networks since they tend to amplify such expressions and their potentially negative ramifications.

The MFWA is once again commending the moderators of the various programmes on the 31 radio stations being monitored, who continue to insist on issues-based discussions devoid of indecent expressions on their respective airwaves.

The MFWA urged producers and moderators to desist from the replay of indecent expressions since such acts amplify the expressions and their potentially negative consequences.


How The Statesman Exposed Kufuor’s $100m Payment
* Source: The Informer

To Avoid Judgement Debt

Research Desk Report

Against the scenery of media reports and unsavoury comments from New Patriotic Party (NPP) apologists in the matter of the Construction Pioneers (CP) judgment debt, in which they ignorantly sought to call the professional competence of former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Mrs. Betty Mould-Iddrisu to question, as regards amicable settlement of judgment debts, credible investigations conducted by The Informer reveals that ex-President John Agyekum Kufuor did same.

Per this paper’s in-depth research and a publication by the then Statesman newspaper in 2006, indications are that in order to avoid judgment debt the Kufuor-led-NPP government agreed to pay a whopping $100milliom to Telekom Malaysia and its minority Ghanaian partners in G-Com after haggard long battle at the International Court of Arbitration in the Netherlands. The Statesman publication with the screaming headline “GT pays off Malaysians $100m” at the time, pointed out that, the decision by the Kufuor government to pay Telekom Malaysia the aforementioned amount was agreed upon after an arbitration settlement; failure for which could have landed the nation into gargantuan judgement debt; and one wonders whether Madam Betty was wrong in doing same in the CP case to save Ghana from paying €135million as a result of the NPP’s mess.

“After an arbitration settlement, Government agreed to pay $100 million to Telekom Malaysia and its minority Ghanaian partners in G-Com, to buy back their 30 percent stake in GT, which they paid $38 million for, in November 1996. More than half of the amount has already been paid by Government, with the remainder expected to be settled in time for next year’s privatisation”, The Statesman reported on 12/12/2006.

It is also a statement of fact that when Ghana Telecom was privatised in 1997, Telekom Malaysia (TM) through its subsidiary G-Com consortium paid U$38million for a 30% stake in Ghana Telecom, with the remainder 70% held by the government of Ghana. Telecom Malaysia was given a five -year management contract to run the company.

At the beginning of 2002 Telekom Malaysia also paid U$50million, half of a pledged $100million to purchase a further 15% stake in GT. Upon termination of the contract, the new NPP Government declined to renew TM's deal and put the management of Ghana Telecom out to tender.

Relations between the NPP government and Telekom Malaysia began to deteriorate, and the Malaysian company attempted to sell its stake in GT back the then NPP government.

Following a period of negotiations, in September 2002, Telekom Malaysia commenced arbitration proceedings at the International Court of Arbitration at the Hague in the Netherlands under the Malaysia-Ghana bilateral investment treaty, alleging that it had been dispossessed and had lost control of its investments in Ghana.

The Malaysian company claimed a sum of US$174 million. More than two years into the proceedings, and in early May of 2005, the then Attorney-General, Mr. Ayikoi Otoo, announced that the Government of Ghana had reached an amicable settlement of their international arbitration dispute.

The NPP government agreed to pay Telekom Malaysia U$100 million over a period of two years, after which the Government of Ghana would acquire Telekom Malaysia's minority stake in Ghana Telecom.

By the facts presented above, The Informer is hoping that Mr. Albert Kan Dapaah and his Public Accounts Committee (PAC) will take note that Mrs. Betty Mould Iddrisu was not the first top government official to have negotiated for an out-of-court settlement.


Nana Addo Runs Away From .......Why Kufuor Was A Bad President
* Source: The Herald

The Campaign Team of Nana Akufo-Addo appears to have forgotten ex-President John Kufuor ‘s seven cardinal sins which, according to Mustapha Hamid, led to their candidate’s defeat in 2008, by making the ex-president the center of the New Patriotic Party’s (NPP’s) 2012 plan of rendering President John Mills a historic one term president.

Addressing NPP supporters at the campaign launch of Sara Adjoa Safo, the party’s Parliamentary Aspirant for Dome/Kwabenya at Taifa-Accra, the NPP flagbearer claimed Mr. Kufuor, was the best thing that ever happened to Ghana.

He said Kufuor, whilst in government, created jobs for the youth through the National Youth Employment Programme (NYEP) and also implemented programmes such as the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) and Free Health Care for pregnant women.

Nana Addo insisted that the NPP is the only party which could improve the standards of living of Ghanaians, and called on the people to vote massively for the party on December 7 to save Ghana from the payment of judgment debts, instead of paying better salary to teachers, adding his policy for free education up to the secondary level is achievable.

This appears contrary to the verdict passed by Mr. Mustapha Hamid, one of the numerous spokespersons of Nana Addo, who days after Nana Addo’s defeat in 2009 wrote about ex-President Kufuor, saying “For me therefore, one of the important qualities a person must possess in order to be President is judgment.

And when I say judgment, I mean that he or she must judge correctly most of the time if not all of the time. Otherwise he or she destroys the aspirations and hopes of the people that he or she leads. In the course of former President Kufuor’s tenure, he was hit by certain controversies which in the future will be central to the verdict that the jurors give on his tenure as President.

Judgment Number 1

“President Kufuor judged wrongly in allowing his son to buy that hotel. Yes, as a young enterprising Ghanaian, there was nothing wrong with him putting together a consortium of banks to buy a hotel. But this was no ordinary Ghanaian. He is the President’s son. And nobody is deceived that his relationship with the President did not play any part in him obtaining that facility from the banks.

At the time that Chief Kufuor bought the hotel, there were a number of more enterprising NPP activists who were striding the stairways of banks looking for ridiculously lower amounts of money to start street corner businesses who did not get a hearing.

As for the President’s public declaration that his son worked with PriceWaterHouseCoopers, the least said about it the better. Until the President said that I did not know that place of work is accepted as collateral for anything. It attracted for him and the NPP a lot of opprobrium. What impression did it leave in the minds of Ghanaians? ‘The President and his family are a cheating, looting lot’. It was bad judgment”, Mr. Hamid wrote.

Judgment Number 2 “President Kufuor judged wrongly in not sacking Anane. Again let me state that Anane did not engage in corrupt practice. Indeed the courts said so. But whether or not we like it Ghanaians had come to the conclusion that somehow or the other Anane had used his office in ways that were unethical. And at a time when Ghana’s ranking on the World Corruption Index was low, President Kufuor needed one tough action to signal his commitment to fighting corruption.

The Anane case was his opportunity to do so. He lost it and left a rather wrong impression on the minds of Ghanaians that he condoned or indeed supported corruption. Ghana’s ranking on the World Corruption Index further plummeted. His decision not to sack Anane was bad judgment”, Mr. Hamid said about Mr. Kufuor.

Judgment Number 3 “President Kufuor judged wrongly in buying two Presidential Jets in an election year. There is still a pervasive poverty mentality in Ghana. Not just the mentality, but indeed there is pervasive poverty. And in an election year when world oil prices had been unkind to our fragile economy and when a desperate opposition was capitalising on the situation to incite hatred against the government, it was simply bad judgment to order not one, but two Executive Jets”, Mr. Hamid, an ex-editor at Nana Addo’s Statesman Newspaper wrote..

Judgment Number 4 “President Kufuor’s decision to confer an award, the nation’s highest award on himself was bad judgment. It is simply not done. All the time former presidents wait for their successors to come after them to give them awards for their services to the nation. Indeed no one ever marks his own script. But not President Kufuor. He determined that he had done well and proceeded to confer an award on himself. The majority of Ghanaians were appalled. It left only one impression on the minds of Ghanaians: ‘President Kufuor is a self-serving, self-aggrandising president’. It was bad judgment, “Mr. Hamid an ex-NPP Youth Organizer noted.

Judgment Number 5 “President Kufuor’s decision to appoint his own advisor to determine his ex-gratia together with others known as article 71 office holders was bad judgment. The public simply saw it as a ‘scratch my back, I scratch your back’ kind of deal. Was it surprising therefore that the product of that process outraged Ghanaians? It is simply not done. I am sure if some other person had chaired that committee other than Chinery Hesse but came out with the same result, the response from the public would have been different. It was bad judgment.

Judgment Number 6 “When Kufuor was President of Ghana, he deserved all the protection that Ghana could muster. Indeed the constitution decrees that the President of the nation takes precedent over every other citizen. So the President bought three BMW cars with one armoured plated for his protection. This was not just good judgment, but it was absolutely necessary and crucial. But it was bad judgment to have gone home with the cars. There can only be one President at a time. Today, the President is Atta Mills. It is only common- sensical a car meant for the protection of a President is used for the protection of Atta Mills and Atta Mills only. Logically, the state security apparatus had to go after him to collect them for the President of Ghana. Period!

Judgment Number 7 “President Kufuor’s decision not to wait for the new NDC administration to implement his ex-gratia and his decision to appropriate a government bungalow to himself which he has started using as his office is bad judgment. Then we are told that he wrote to the government asking to be allowed to use the facility as his office. But to have gone ahead to start using the office without waiting for the government’s response was bad judgment.

“Considering the fact that the Kufuor administration had attracted a lot of opprobrium for itself for selling government bungalows to its functionaries, it was bad enough that the president himself is seen to have appropriated one for himself. At least the former president could have found space in his wife’s Mother and Child Foundation office in the mean time or better still rented some temporary place. Perhaps President Mills could have later decided that the house should reimburse him with the cost of the rented office”, It was bad judgment.

“The point I have been trying to make by these illustrations is that ‘there is a way that seems right unto men, but the thereof is bad’. In all these cases that I have illustrated, former President Kufuor did nothing wrong, at least in legal terms. But the fact that all these judgments attracted a lot of opprobrium shows how bad those decisions were, judgmentally. It is part of presidential character to have good judgment. Unfortunately former President Kufuor did not have a lot of it”.

He said “former President Kufuor’s government was building a six-classroom block at 70,000 Ghana Cedis, but now it is 250,000 Ghana Cedis and a bag of cement is being bought for 25 Ghana Cedis. Where are we going?”

On his part, former President Kufuor said jobs which were created under his Government had all collapsed under the National Democratic Congress (NDC) Government led by President John Evans Atta Mills and asked the youth to vote for Nana Akufo-Addo for jobs and development.

He said the first year of his government was difficult, but hard decisions were taken by his Cabinet to manage the ‘broke economy’ which was left behind by the NDC.


Statement: NPP condemns teachers advert
* Source: JoyOnline

A key NDC political advertisement running on television, features men described as teachers, extolling the virtues of the “better Ghana” as far as teachers’ welfare is concerned.

The claims made in the advertising have been discounted and denied by GNAT and NAGRAT, the mother unions of teachers in the country. The have described the advert as embarrassing, containing factual inaccuracies, mischievous representation, diabolic intentions and obnoxious.


The NDC government, if it has any sense of shame left, must be deeply embarrassed at this rebuff of their propaganda advertising so early in the political advertising season.

Ghanaians are indeed embarrassed at the daily barrage of propaganda, lies, false claims and spin from the NDC government. The propaganda from the NDC government is endless. They claim their achievements in agriculture are unprecedented, yet in 2011, the growth rate of agriculture was less than in 2008.

They claim their achievements in industry are unprecedented. Yet the growth rate in industry in 2011 was less than in 2008, whilst the cedi’s calamitous fall show how fast we are becoming a nation of shopkeepers.

They claim their achievements in the roads sector have been unprecedented, yet on the busiest highway in this country, travellers spend hours just on the 30km stretch between Nsawam and Apedwa.

They claim their achievement on inflation (single digit) is unprecedented, yet prices or any goods or services over the last 3 years have gone up by triple digits.

They claim their achievements in macroeconomic stability are unprecedented. Yet Treasury bill rates, interest rates etc are all today going through the roof and the cedi has deteriorated by more than 77% in value to the dollar in just 3 years.

They claim their achievement in education as unprecedented. Yet BECE pass rates have fallen from 62% in 2008 to 40% in 2011. The list goes on.

When the NDC government is not engaged in propaganda, then they are engaged in blame game.

In the last 3 years alone, the NDC government has blamed the NPP for earthquake hoax, gas shortages, petrol shortages, electricity blackouts, the fall of the cedi, Woyome pay outs, NDC party divisions (such as FONKAR and Communication team), rumours of President Mills death. The list goes on. This strategy of governance by propaganda lies and blame game is taking governance to a new low in the 4th Republic.

The good people of Ghana must condemn it. They certainly deserve better.

Signed: Nana Akomea


Hypocrite Pratt at it again! -PPP
* Source: PPP

Time was when Mr. Kwesi Pratt Jnr., the Managing Editor of the Insight Newspaper, was assiduously developing the penchant for putting up a holier-than-thou attitude. Yet the most critical minds were able to read in between the lines and pick out of his exertions the key components therein – his hypocrisy in dealing with issues and personal hatred for people who he disagrees with, especially, on political matters.

On Peace FM's Kokrokoo programme on Tuesday, Kwesi Pratt, the political chameleon and permanent "against authority man" was at his hypocritical best. It appears that this so-called Senior Journalist cannot help himself whenever he hears anyone say something good about Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom.

Unfortunately when he launches unprovoked attacks against his perceived enemies, like he did against Dr. Nduom on Peace FM on Tuesday, Radio and TV hosts give him free reign. When his curiously thin skin is pricked, Pratt lashes out, acts all hurt and demands correction, which strangely he gets.

Tuesday was a perfect illustration of the typical Pratt behaviour. PPP's Samuel Amoako after his submission on the Galloper/African Automobile judgment debt offered that a PPP administration led by Dr. Papa Kwesi Nduom would offer competent leadership that will prevent such cases from occurring. That was all.

Kwesi Pratt pushed his submission on the topic aside, and lashed out at Dr. Nduom calling him unprincipled. He claimed that Dr. Nduom was the advisor who helped the NDC sold several state-owned enterprises. He then faulted Dr. Nduom for serving in the Kufuor administration. Dr. Nduom was not a topic for discussion on the programme.

On the other hand, when Sammy asked Pratt why he was defending African Automobile, he called a halt to the programme and demanded Sammy to withdraw his comment. Pratt was supported by the host! Double Standard?

We wish however to tell Kwesi Pratt that he can no longer continue misleading Ghanaians with his mastery forte of skewing lies and using sophistry to make them seem truths. The PPP is not the least bothered about the brazen lies Pratt continues to churn out against particularly, Dr Nduom. We nevertheless need to set some issues right.

Dr. Nduom never advised any NDC Administration leading to the sale of several state enterprises. Dr. Nduom rather through the introduction of strategic planning and performance contracts and awards scheme for state enterprises helped strengthen companies such as Ghana Telecom, GPHA, Civil Aviation Authority, GOIL etc.

Indeed the First State Enterprise Awards gathering was held during the administration of former president J. J. Rawlings where the best performing enterprises were recognised at a ceremony at the Osu Castle. Dr. Nduom was the brain behind this. Pratt should rather be praising Dr. Nduom for achieving positive results and showing competence. His is the kind of leadership Ghana needs.

As a journalist and one who rolled with the big guns in Ghana politics even before the AFRC days and through the PNDC era to the current dispensation, Pratt knows too well that Dr Nduom was on contract in the work he did for the State which the NDC was only administering on behalf of the Ghanaian people.

Dr Nduom was made consultant because of his expertise in public sector reforms and not that he was a member or supporter of the NDC. So why this blatant lies, Mr. Pratt? But the unkindest cut of all Pratt’s wicked lies is his suggestion that Dr Nduom virtually worked his way into the Kufuor administration. Pratt himself knows that is palpable falsehood.

It was based on Dr Nduom’s expertise in public sector work that then President Kufuor created the Ministry of Public Sector Reform (MPSR) and placed it under his care. We want to tell Kwesi Pratt that Dr Nduom did not go sleeping at the MPSR. We are proud that the PPP candidate left a great legacy in establishing the Single Spine Salary Structure (SSSS) which Kwesi Pratt’s NDC national administration cannot implement properly and yet goes about claiming it one of its achievements.

Dr Nduom was also bold enough to deal with the perennial canker of congestion at the Ministries Estate by removing all unauthorized structures scattered around the area. Those structures included lotto kiosks and stalls which owners openly sold lotto coupons and other food items; and put all of them in specific areas where workers could go and get any services and products they needed.

And he achieved that in the face of protests from top officials of the Kufuor administration who argued that the action could cost the NPP politically. Dr Nduom stood his ground and completed the exercise, because he believed such worthy exercise should not be sacrificed on the altar of political expediency.

Pratt can go verify for himself the innovations that Dr Nduom brought to public sector agencies, such as the Driver Vehicular Licensing Authority (DVLA), Passport Office, Births and Deaths Registry and many others. To mention just one innovation, it was Dr. Nduom who insisted and ensured that all the above-named agencies computerized their operations.

Dr. Nduom is equally proud of the contributions that he made when he served in other ministries under the Kufuor administration. The MCA projects, National Identification System and many other positives are there as testimony to Dr. Nduom's competence and the value Ghanaians gain when inclusiveness is practiced.

Pratt cannot claim to be against alliances!

Kwesi Pratt was an active member of the CPP at the time the party entered into an alliance with the NPP for the second round of the 2000 elections. Pratt indeed agreed to the alliance proposition and that explains how Pratt and other CPP stalwarts mounted political platform to campaign with then Candidate Kufuor for the presidential run-off of the 2000 elections.

Is Kwesi Pratt telling us today that he has forgotten that the alliance, which helped Kufuor become president in 2001, is what made it incumbent on the NPP to request the leadership of the CPP at the time to release some of its members to serve in the Kufuor administration? Based on that request, the Central Committee of the CPP released Dr Nduom, Prof. George Payin Hagan, Mr. Freddy Blay, Mr. Kojo Armah and others to serve in various capacities in the Kufuor administration. How can Pratt claim he has forgotten these facts so soon?

We are aware of how Pratt kept calling and calling and calling the eyes of key players in the Kufuor administration with the prospect of being offered an appointment, and because he was not considered for one he turned against Kufuor and his administration and, indeed, the entire NPP.

We do not need to remind the claiming-to-be-principled Pratt that he was very active during the days of the Great Alliance when the People’s Convention Party (PCP,) an amalgam of the then splintered Nkrumaist party, made an electoral pact with the NPP to compete in the 1996 elections as a single entity.

Indeed Pratt was the Great Alliance candidate for the Ayawaso Central Constituency where he lost heavily to Shiekh I. C. Quaye who refused to budge to Great Alliance pressure to step down for Pratt to have the candidature; I.C. Quaye eventually run for the Ayawaso Central seat and won.

No political party in Ghana can claim to have all the men and women needed to run the machine of state efficiently. It is for this reason that Dr. Kwabena Duffuor who is not known to be an NDC member was invited by President Mills to become his Minister of Finance & Economic Planning. Nothing wrong with that? Does Pratt have any objections to that appointment?
Dr. Nduom's commitment to inclusiveness and using the best Ghanaians to achieve positive results is not in doubt. It is time we all condemn those who seek to divide us and drive us continuously on a path to mediocrity and poverty in all its forms.

Clearly it shows that Pratt cannot play the ignoramus in Ghanaian politics. He has worked with the NPP in many instances, and so we are compelled to ask him whether that makes him an unprincipled politician.

In his addicted manner, Pratt might go to the ends of the earth to rationalize every fact we have posted here, but truth will always stand and triumph over the wicked lies of people of Pratt’s ilk. Besides, we are very much aware of how Pratt worked himself into the presumption of lead spokesperson of the NDC administration, and particularly of Prof. Mills. Again we are aware of all the trappings that have come to him in that presumption. We are not oblivious to how the entire livelihood of Pratt has improved since he worked himself into that “by-force” post.

If we are to believe Pratt’s word that he is a staunch CPP person, we are left to wonder how a principled Pratt would be projecting the NDC at the expense of his own political party; that is, if he is sincere about it..

We’ve kept our cool on the obvious u-turn of Pratt because we are not in the capacity to pass judgment on an adult who decides where his political affiliation should lay at any particular time. We however, do have a problem when such characters posit themselves as if they are the proto-type of the paragon of political virtues and start judging others who are his betters in all respects. We hope Pratt the Betrayer is listening. Indeed, we are waiting for him to do so.
Richmond Keelson
(Communication Director, PPP)


Mills’ hard work and character will see the NDC through -Koku
* Source: Samuel Ablordeppey

The Communication Director at the presidency Koku Anyidoho has said that the achievements under the president Mills led government in three and a half years, combined with the president’s persona will move the National Democratic Congress (NDC) over the 2012 bridge.

He said President Mills did not need to mount a campaign platform and shout to the high heavens because his achievements and his character are key to retaining power in 2012.

The communications director at the seat of government indicated that the party has a potpourri of strategies which would be rolled up in August after the NDC officially launches its campaign for the December polls.

When queried by the sit in morning show host of Radio Gold Obuobia Darko Opoku of what had happened to the president’s surprise visits, Mr. Anyidoho said, ‘’campaign has always been in motion and the first man of the land will continue with that project soon.’’

He said, ‘’ I am very confident of a second term for the party for the reason that, the current government has been able to deliver majority of the manifesto pledge in three and a half years as compared to the then New Patriotic Party (NPP) under President Kufuor.

A lot has been done, we haven’t achieved everything and for that matter the president is first to admit that not everything has been done but a lot has been achieved,’’ Koku said.

He mentioned the road construction and rehabilitation across the country, the massive infrastructural developments, construction of schools and health posts as some of the strides that the government had made.

‘’The people of Ghana will look strongly at the visible achievements of President Mills and renew his mandate.’’

He recounted some of the achievements chalked under the NDC regime three and half years down the line, the establishment of the two Universities one in the Volta Region for Health and Allied Science and the other in the Brong Ahafo region for Natural resources which starts admission this September in earnest, he mentioned the elimination of schools under trees, investment in the health sector, construction of poly clinics across the regions and health assistant training schools.

Midwifery health training centers using I C T as part of training process, provision of electricity, drastic reduction in crime rate, strengthening of institutions like the Fire Service and the Security agencies are investments and achievements of the President Mills led government in three and half years, ‘’it did not happen under Kuffuor.’’

Most importantly is the bold decision by the president to implement the single spine salary structure.

These are some of the achievements which will speak on behalf of the NDC in the 2012 general elections, and they shan’t lie.


Upper West Akim District inaugurated
* Source: GNA

Minister of the Interior, Mr. William Kwasi Aboah, on behalf of President John Evans Atta Mills inaugurated the Upper West Akim District at Adeiso, the new district capital.

He said that the government was providing more than 9,000 motor bikes to all assembly members in the country.

Mr. Aboah said the assemblies would also receive GH?42 million seed capital in the 2012 budget approved by Parliament.

“Additionally, they have been factored into the 2012 Common Fund allocation formula and will also be factored into the District Development Fund (DDF) formula”, he said.

Mr. Aboah said that each new district would witness the building of a minimum of two Senior High Schools, a district hospital and provision of potable water and electricity for the district capital, and second class access road to the district capital.

Mr. George Mensah Akpalu, West Akim Municipal Chief Executive is the Acting District Chief Executive for the Upper West Akim District.

He advised the chiefs and people and officials of the new district to work as a team to ensure the development of the area.

Mr. Akpalu urged the people to be part of the decision making process “so as to assume ownership of every public venture that the assembly would undertake”.

Mr. Eric Ansah Awuah, a District Magistrate, ushered assembly members for the 36 electoral areas with Mr. Kenni Tei as the first Presiding Member, into office, when they swore the oath of office and secrecy.

Mr. Salas Mensah, former Member of Parliament (MP) for Upper West Akim, said that creating a new district was not a joke, but serious business.

He donated a pick-up vehicle and two motor bikes to the district assembly.

The assembly also took delivery of two brands of “YSS6 - Sinotruk” refuse trucks.

Chiefs, representatives of political parties, head of departments, workers, traders, farmers and people of the newly created district participated in the inauguration.


Fritz Baffu

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