| Africatime
Thursday 30 March 2017
(Ghana Web 03/24/17)
Net debt owed banks and fuel suppliers alone under the energy sector debt hit 1.2 billion cedis at the end of 2016. According to documents cited by Citi Business News as at 31st December, 2016 Government’s net debt in the Energy sector was 2.3 billion dollars. A breakdown of the debt shows that the banks are owed 782 million dollars, while fuel suppliers are owed 440 million dollars. The 782 million is debt owed the banks by state owned power producer Volta River Authority (VRA). VRA also contributed 278 million dollars to the 440 million dollars owed fuel suppliers, while TOR contributed 162 million dollars. Other entities owed Other entities owed include GRIDCo, NEDCo, Asogli, CENIT, Bui, Ghana Gas, BOST,...
(Bloomberg 03/24/17)
After overseeing sub-Saharan Africa’s fastest-growing economy and six years of relative peace, Ivory Coast President Alassane Ouattara is in the midst of a year from hell. First soldiers staged a mutiny, then public workers went on strike and now cocoa prices have fallen. All told, the West African nation is facing the worst social unrest since Ouattara, 75, assumed power in 2011. With cocoa prices in London dropping more than 30 percent from July, the government in the world’s top producer may have to take a decision that could overshadow the achievements of Ouattara’s first term: cut payments paid to cocoa farmers as soon as next week. That will affect about 6 million people -- a quarter of the population...
(Citifmonline 03/24/17)
Ghana’s unemployment rate stood at 11.9 percent in 2015. This is according to the latest Ghana Labour Force Survey Report by the Ghana Statistical Service. This is about twice the figure recorded in 2012/2013 (5.8%) based on the Statistical services strict definition of unemployment – where “one was not working, actively looking for a job and available for work.” However, the definition has changed for the 2015 studies, was based on a relaxed definition where “one was available for work and not working within the last seven days before an interview.” The report which is the first of its kind and most detailed is to guide the government’s plan in solving the alarming rate of unemployment in the country. Speaking...
(Ghana Web 03/24/17)
The Chief Executive Officer of Strategic Security Systems International Limited (3SiL) the parent company of Strategic Power Solutions (SPS), the only solar panel manufacturing plant in West Africa, Mr. Ofori Boateng has lauded plans outlined by government in the 2017 budget statement towards the development of renewable energy. Government has initiated plans to increase access to lighting in deprived off-grid homes by increasing solar lanterns in rural non-electrified households to two million. It has also promised to scale up the Renewable Energy Programme. Mr. Boateng said these are initiatives that can easily be attained with the right private sector partnership. “As the preferred developers for the 50 Megawatt solar hybrid Bui Power Authority project, SPS is willing to work with...
(Myjoyonline 03/24/17)
The Ghana Water Company says chiefs hold the key to ending the destruction of critical water sources through illegal mining activities. As the world marked World Water Day on Wednesday, the destruction of Ghana’s water bodies due to pollution through illegal mining activities fell under the spotlight. The Ghana Water Company revealed that almost every major source of water has either dropped low or is heavily polluted to the point where the company currently uses high quantities of chemicals to purify the water before pumping to homes. This has translated into high water tariffs. In some instances, however, especially water sources close to gold-rich areas, the level of pollution has destroyed aquatic life and the ecosystem. During a discussion on...
(Xinhuanet 03/24/17)
A group of non-government organizations (NGOs) on Friday called on African leaders to find practical solutions to protect and assist Somali refugees and asylum seekers facing ongoing conflict and a humanitarian crisis in Somalia. In a joint statement issued on the eve of the regional summit on refugees, members of the Regional Durable Solutions Secretariat (ReDSS), Somalia NGO Consortium and the Inter-agency Working Group (IAWG) expressed hope that the leaders will take practical steps towards the development and implementation of a comprehensive regional approach. "It is hoped that such an approach, developed in the spirit of the New York Declaration, will support countries and communities that host Somali refugees in improving asylum space, integrated access to services, inclusive economic opportunities...
(Graphic Online 03/23/17)
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has announced the establishment of an integrated bauxite and aluminium development authority tasked with mobilising the relevant resources towards the development of an integrated industry right from the extraction of bauxite to the production of aluminium. He said the country had enormous natural resources such as bauxite and iron ore that remained untapped and under-developed. “We have taken the decision that, come what may, we are going to bring those resources into play. The integrated bauxite and aluminium authority will be established in the next three months,” the President announced.
(Bloomberg 03/23/17)
Slumping cocoa prices are testing to the limit top producer Ivory Coast’s efforts to ensure stability for farmers, heightening risks for the domestic economy and world markets. Authorities have warned they’ll have to cut payments to growers. That follows a wave of defaults by local exporters who’d bet on higher prices, costing the government more than $300 million and pushing cocoa futures even lower. The more than 30 percent drop in London benchmark prices from a six-year high in July has parallels with a 1980s crisis that saw farmers’ payments shrink by half and bankrupted the marketing system. Like then, they’ll see sharp cuts, with a reduction for the smaller of two annual harvests starting next month from the current...
(Graphic Online 03/23/17)
As Ghana joined the international community to mark World Water Day yesterday, the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) and its stakeholders have warned of a possible scarcity of potable water nationwide in the near future if the pollution of water bodies is not addressed Painting a picture of a possible bleak future, the GWCL explained that although all the treatment plants in Ghana drew raw water from the various water bodies, the spate of water pollution was approaching alarming levels. According to the company, currently some of the water bodies had been polluted beyond treatment and the GWCL feared that soon Ghana would not be able to produce drinking water. “Water crisis looms,” it said. It attributed the development to...
(AfricaNews 03/23/17)
The mission is part of the department’s week-long trade and investment mission to Ghana and its neighbour, Nigeria. South African business people who participated in a trade and investment mission to Ghana have expressed confidence that they will soon see tangible results from the trip, the department of trade and industry (dti) said on Wednesday. The mission is part of the department’s week-long trade and investment mission to Ghana and its neighbour, Nigeria, which runs until Saturday, March 25. The two-day Ghanaian leg included a trade and investment seminar, business to business meetings and site visits to the Ghana Ports and Harbour Authority, Group Five and the Ghana Energy Commission. One delegate, Christopher Moonien, said his company, Conlog Solutions for...
(Graphic Online 03/23/17)
Six vehicles and operational equipment valued at $185,000 have been presented to the Ghana Police Service to help combat child trafficking in the country. The vehicles and equipment that were presented by the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) in Ghana, included three pickup trucks, three buses, computers and accessories and cameras. The items are to be used by the Anti-Human Trafficking Unit of the Ghana Police Service to conduct investigations and rescue operations of trafficked children in the Volta, Central and Greater Accra regions where child trafficking is high in the country. These were aquired with funding from the United States Office to Monitor and Combat Trafficking in Persons. The five-year project forms part of a $5 million child protection...
(Reuters (Eng) 03/23/17)
N'DJAMENA French far-right presidential candidate Marine Le Pen pledged on Wednesday to break with her country's decades-old relationship with Africa known as "Francafrique" and abolish the CFA franc currency policy that binds Paris and its former colonies. Francafrique describes an informal web of relationships Paris has maintained with its former African colonies and its support, sometimes in the form of military backing, for politicians who favor French business interests. Le Pen, one of the frontrunners in the presidential election, spoke at the end of a two-day visit to Chad where she sought to outline her policies regarding the continent, which has long held an important place in French foreign policy. "It was only in coming here and explaining that I...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/17)
Frank Adansi-Bonnah sat on his bed Monday in the Kintampo Municipal Hospital in central Ghana, his lips covered in bruises and cuts, and his arm in a sling. He was swimming with his friends on Sunday afternoon at the popular tourist destination of Kintampo Falls, when a massive tree crashed into the water, crushing everyone around him. Eighteen students died at the picturesque spot in the Brong-Ahafo region, some 450 kilometres (281 miles) by road from the capital, Accra. Two others died later in hospital. At least 22 were injured. "What I remember was I was struggling with the tree," said the 21-year-old Adansi-Bonnah, who is a student at University of Energy and Natural Resources in the regional capital, Sunyani...
(Graphic Online 03/21/17)
Ghana’s headline inflation eased for the 5th consecutive month as it settled at 13.20 per cent in February 2017. This represents a 0.1 percentage point reduction from January’s figure of 13.30 per cent. The downtrend emanated from lower rate at the non-food component of the CPI as it trimmed 0.2 percentage point as against the food component which added 0.1 percentage point. Inflation at the food and beverages component of the CPI settled at 7.10 per cent whereas the non-food component recorded a rate of 16.40 per cent. Cedi performance The local currency stood strong in the week under review against its major trading partners. The Ghana cedi recorded its first week-on-week gain against the dollar by 1.28 per cent...
(Graphic Online 03/21/17)
The Executive Director of the Kumasi Institute of Technology and Environment (KITE), Mr Ishmael Edjekumhene, has said the current Renewable Energy Act, 2011 needs no amendment. Instead, he said, all the incentive-based provisions in the law should be allowed to work. The law in its current state, he explained, makes provisions for feed-in tariffs, purchase obligation, establishment of renewable energy fund, but as always, implementation of the provisions continues to be a challenge for Ghana. At a national round-table forum on the 2017 budget, with emphasis on the power and petroleum sector, Mr Edjekumhene said: “the Renewable Energy Act has all the incentives-based mechanism. The only problem is that after putting them in the Act, we haven’t actually implemented them.”...
(Graphic Online 03/21/17)
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has assured the private sector of the resolve of the government to engage it to transform the ailing economy. He said the government will also depend on the players in the sector to create the needed jobs for the people while creating wealth for all. Using industry and agriculture, the President who sounded optimistic about his plans, said the two sectors had been identified by the government as the two critical sectors of the economy that could bring the needed transformation many so much yearned for, noting that all efforts would be put in place to actualise the set objective using players in the private sector as the drivers of that agenda. “They are the...
(BBC News Africa 03/21/17)
A footballer whose post-match interview went viral after he thanked his wife and girlfriend has denied being unfaithful. Ghanaian Mohammed Anas, of South Africa's Free State Stars, told the BBC he was referring to his daughter. "My family knows that I call my daughter my girlfriend. That's what I was talking about. I don't have a girlfriend," he said. Anas said he was not worried about his wife's reaction. He said he was surprised how many people had watched the video. "I'm famous now - people around the world know me," the footballer said. He added he has been with his wife, who is South African, for seven years. "I love her so much. She's given me two beautiful children...
(AFP (eng) 03/21/17)
Under a cloudless sky in South Africa's northwestern farming region, donkeys still amble along muddy paths, pausing to nibble on grass, oblivious to the threat from a demand for Chinese medicine. The gelatin found in the animals' skin has made them a target, leading to a growing wave of donkey slaughtering in several African countries, as gangs seek to fuel a lucrative, and in South Africa illegal, trade. Animal rights groups say the docile beasts of burden are often cruelly bludgeoned to death before being skinned in backyards and clandestine slaughterhouses. Around Mogosani village, in South Africa's North West province, residents say syndicates catch the animals in grazing fields and pens. Soon after, skinned carcasses with hooves chopped off are...
(Citifmonline 03/20/17)
Ghana’s wish to have a new Parliamentary Chamber to accommodate more people could soon materialise, following the decision of the Indian government to extend its assistance in that regard. The 400-seater capacity new chamber will replace the present 275-seater capacity chamber which was configured in 2013 to accommodate more Members of Parliament (MPs). The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Mike Aaron Oquaye, told the Daily Graphic in an interview in India on the sidelines of the just-ended 12th Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) Exim Bank Conclave on India-Africa Partnership in India that an Indian construction firm, Shapoorji Pallonji, which built the Flagstaff House from 2006 to 2008
(AFP (eng) 03/20/17)
Ghanaian referee Joseph Odartei Lamptey was on Monday banned for life by world football's governing body FIFA for match fixing. The Confederation of African Football (CAF) had already slapped a three-month ban on Lamptey after he awarded South Africa a controversial penalty in their 2-1 victory over Senegal in a 2018 World Cup qualifier on November 12, 2016. "The official was found guilty of unlawfully influencing match results," FIFA said in a statement. Zurich-based FIFA said it was dismissing charges against another Ghanaian match official David Lionheart Nii Lartey Laryea, who had also been under investigation. "Further information concerning the South Africa v. Senegal match in question will be provided once the decision becomes final and binding," FIFA said. "FIFA...

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