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President urges Ghanaians to remain resolute to defeat Covid-19

 President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo Saturday rallied Ghanaians to remain resolute in the face of Covid-19, and with unity, optimism and determination work to ensure that the country comes out of the pandemic speedily and favorably.

Noting the country’s recent covid-19 case count increase, he urged every Ghanaian to help ensure its decline, saying: “We did that before, and we can do it again.”

“Yes, the first vaccines have arrived in the country and are being deployed and I appeal passionately to each one of you to take the vaccine when it is your turn. But, however, we cannot afford to let go of the enhanced hygiene and mask-wearing protocols, which have defined our way of living.”

“If we are to be successful in building a resilient Ghana capable of withstanding in future external shocks such as covid-19, then we must all put our shoulders to the wheel.”

President Akufo-Addo made the call when he delivered an address to mark the 64th Independence Day Anniversary held at the forecourt of the Jubilee House, Accra.

The annual national event, usually held at the Independence Square with a traditional march past of security services and selected schools, was this year scaled down as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic and the restrictions on large gatherings.

This year’s event was simplified and modified with a special parade of only eight officers and 29 men and women, involving personnel drawn from the Ghana Armed Forces and other security services. No school participated.

The President, before his address, lighted a perpetual flame mounted at the precincts of the Jubilee House and reviewed a drill display by the special contingent on parade.

There was a flying past of the Ghana flag by a Ghana Air force helicopter, and a 21 gun salute by the Ghana Navy.

Telecasted live nationally, the event was attended by the Vice President, the Speaker of Parliament, the Chef Justice, Chairman of the Council of State, ministers of state and some members of Parliament, security service chiefs and their commanders, members of the diplomatic community and senior officials of the Presidency.

President Akufo-Addo told the gathering that Ghana, being the first to attain independence in Sub-saharan Africa, much was expected of her.

He noted that over the course of time; “We have sought to express a deep consciousness of love for our country and the importance of ensuring that we realise our potential as the Black Star of Africa”.

“Year after year, we commit ourselves to ensuring that we work to live the standard of living of the Ghanaian and help construct an economy that is capable of creating a society of opportunities for all. It’s taken quite some time for us to get there, but I believe there is far more self confidence among us Ghanaians today than there has been since the very early days of self-government, that we can make it if we work at it.”

“Today freedom and the cultivation of democratic values are strengthening our determination to bring into being a new Ghana that is neither pawn nor victim of the world order. Attachment of the rule of law, respect for individual liberties, human rights, the principles of democratic accountability and the dictates of social justice have deepened for our common benefit,” he said.

The President said though the biggest challenge confronting the nation was putting it on the path of sustained progress and prosperity, and enhancing the well-being of every Ghanaian, his Administration, since 2017, had put in a considerable amount of work to achieve that objective.

He said for three consecutive years, since 2017, Ghana had one of the fastest growing economies in the world and became the largest destination of foreign direct investment in West Africa, with global automobile giants setting up plants in Ghana, and others committing to do so.

“The basic tenets of social justice; that is access to education and health care, are being guaranteed for all our people. We have become self-sufficient in food production and, for the first time in a long while, exported our surpluses to our neighbours,” President Akufo-Addo said.

“Sustained efforts through digitisation are being made to formalise our economy and we have hastened our critical journey of industrialisation and value addition activities, whose result would be to create jobs for the teeming masses of Ghanaians”.

The President said government was taking the required steps to revitalise and transform the economy, assuring that the benefits of the country’s economic recovery would begin to show a year from now and move Ghana to a situation beyond aid.

“We should begin to take our pride of place as one of the fastest growing economies, not only in Africa, but also in the world. Yes, from now we should be processing more and more of our raw materials to help create jobs for the millions of Ghanaians.”

“A year from now, more and more children should be having access to education. A year from now every district and region should have a hospital while residents will be able to have decent affordable health care.”

“Fellow Ghanaians, this is not beyond us if we put our hearts and minds to it. We can make it and protect our heritage and environment. Let us not allow our energies to be sapped by either the failures of the past or the challenges of today.”

“Let us embrace today’s challenges as opportunities for a brighter future. Let us redefine our sense of national responsibility and remove any doubt some may continue to have about our ability to manage our own Affairs.”

“Let us devote ourselves to the freedom and welfare of mother Ghana. Albeit it an arduous task, I am confident that with dedication, hard work, honesty and integrity we can fulfill the dreams and aspirations of the founding fathers of our nation, who envisaged us to be a dynamic, progressive, prosperous and united nation.”

“We must all step up and play significant roles in the development of Ghana our motherland,” the President said.

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Nana Agradaa arrested; two TV stations showing ‘money-doubling rituals’ shut down

Money doubler and spiritualist, Patience Asiedua, popularly known as Nana Agradaa, has been arrested.

Nana Agradaa, known for her moneymaking ritual, ‘sika gari’, was arrested by a joint team of Police and National Security Intelligence Operatives, in collaboration with the National Communications Authority on Tuesday night.

Two TV channels – Thunder TV and Ice1 TV – that allegedly broadcast money doubling content at Kasoa in the Central Region, were also shut down for operating without licenses.

The team seized two pieces of equipment each used in the alleged illegal transmission from both premises.

This was announced by the Minister for Communications and Digitalisation, Ursula Owusu-Ekuful on her social media page on Wednesday, April 21, 2021.

Information available suggests the TV channels owned by the self-styled traditional priestess have been operating without authorization for years leading to their closure.

The state’s action follows recent concerns about the broadcasting of inappropriate content in the media space by persons parading themselves as spiritualists

It is on the heels of the gruesome killing of an 11-year-old boy allegedly by two teenagers for money ritual purposes.


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Akuapem Poloo granted GHS80,000 bail

Social media sensation, Rosemond Brown, known in showbiz as Akuapem Poloo, has been granted bail by the Criminal Division of the High Court pending an appeal filed by her lawyer against her 90-day jail sentence.

She was granted bail in the sum of GHS80,000 with two sureties.

In addition to the bail, she is to report to the case investigator every two weeks and is to deposit her passport with the registrar of the court.

Akuapem Poloo was handed a 90-day jail term for publishing obscene material and violating the dignity and integrity of her 7-year-old son in a nude photo she posted social media.

Since the ruling was made, some people, especially showbiz personalities, have condemned the punishment meted out to her. They also signed a petition in a bid to have her freed.

Rosemond Brown, who was given the 90-day jail term following her conviction on charges of publication of obscene material and domestic violence after pleaded guilty to all three charges last Wednesday and was convicted on her own plea by the court.

Her lawyer, Andrew Vortia had made a mitigation plea to ask for a more lenient punishment.

Mr. Vortia maintained that the custodial sentence handed out was harsh.

“The mitigating factors in her favour are greater than the aggravating factors. When you consider this offence, it is not rape. It is not murder. It is a misdemeanour in which she could have been dealt with lightly,” he said.

The lawyer also questioned the lack of concern for Rosemond Brown’s seven-year-old son.

“Social welfare should have been bought in. We are protecting the child. The mother is gone, so who takes care of the child? Absolutely nothing was done to that effect,” Mr. Andrew said.

The judge, Christina Cann, bemoaned the spate of nudity on the Ghanaian social media space when she handed the sentence on Friday.

According to her, the punishment meted out to Rosemond Brown must serve as a deterrent to others.


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‘Pokuase BSP tie-in to transmission line will result in power cuts in Accra’

The Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) will, from May 10, 2021, begin the tie-in of the 330 kilovolt Aboadze-Volta Transmission Line to the Pokuase Bulk Supply Point (BSP) to allow the inflow of power to the GRIDCo transformers.

The power will then be stepped down by GRIDCo transformers and subsequently reduced to reasonable voltage by the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) for onward distribution to consumers.

The tie-in process will last for a week, which would compel the ECG to cut power supply to some communities in the northern parts of Accra to enable the engineers do the break-in.

The GRIDCo has, therefore, collaborated with the ECG and other stakeholders to plan a load shedding time table for communities in Accra to be affected during the period.

Mr William Amuna, the Technical Controller of the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA), made the disclosure in a media interview when Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, the Minister of Energy, led a delegation to inspect the progress of work at the Pokuase BSP.

The Minister was accompanied by Mr Kojo Oppong Nkrumah, the Information Minister, Mr Jonathan Amoako Baah, the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of GRIDCo, Mr Eson Benjamin, the CEO of MiDA, Mr Munesu Dizamuhupe, the Project Manager of SMEC, Mr Ebenezer Amankwaah, Corporate Communications Officer of GRIDCo, and some officials of the ECG and Volta River Authority.

The Pokuase BSP can hold 580 MVA, which is the largest in West Africa and is over 95 per cent done.

It is expected to be completed by the end of July or August, this year, and would distribute power to about 350,000 existing ECG customers, especially residents of Kwabenya, Ofankor, Legon, Nsawam, and Anyaah.

Mr Amuna said the project’s completion would ensure sufficient power supply for domestic purposes and boost business operations, while minimising the intermittent power outages.

The US$60 million project is being funded by the United States Government through its Agency; the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), and being implemented by MiDA on behalf of the Government of Ghana.

Works on the project started in April 2019 under the MCC Power Compact, of which Ghana received US$308 million.

Elecnor SA Ghana is the contractors for the project while SMEC, a member of Surbana Jurong Group, is the supervising engineers.

Mr Amoako Baah said the Pokuase BSP was fifth in Accra and when completed would reduce the power load on the existing power substations and ensure efficient supply of electricity.

He said the Greater Accra Region required an excess of 800 megawatts of power due to population growth and consumed about 25 per cent of the entire power generated in Ghana.

Mr Amoako Baah said the COVID-19 pandemic had affected the May 31 deadline for completion because the equipment and other essential items needed for the project delayed.

The Pokuase BSP comprises the Control Buildings for GRIDCo and ECG, drainage systems, installation of four transformers, fencing, gantries, Switchgears and storage yards.

Currently cables were being laid and some equipment would be commissioned soon, Mr Amoako Baah said.

The project would also lead to a significant reduction in technical losses in the GRIDCo transmission system while the ECG’s power distribution would contribute towards improving the financial viability of the company, he said.


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