WA POLYTECHNIC CONGREGATION: 240 GRADUATES AWARDED HND CERTIFICATES

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The Wa Polytechnic on Saturday, September 28, 2019, held its 7th Congregation for the 2017/2018 academic year with a total of two hundred and forty (240) students receiving certificates in Higher National Diploma (HND) after successfully meeting their course requirements. The certificates awarded were in Engineering, Applied Science, Applied Art and Business Studies.

The chairman for the Wa Polytechnic Council, Professor Daniel Baga in his address said that, the institution is faced with numerous challenges, but that its major challenge is the non-conversion of the polytechnic into a technical university. ‘Our main challenge is our conversion. As governing Council, we have and still do our bid by way of giving the needed support to guarantee smooth administration and academic work’. He said.

In his report on the state of the Polytechnic, the acting Vice Rector, Idrisu Mwinimpuo Mohammed bemoaned the challenges the polytechnic is facing due to the limited number of staff they have. He however thanked the staff for their hard work and dedication to duty.

He went further to suggest that the staffing challenge could also be hinged on the polytechnic not being converted into a technical university. He stressed that, ‘the continues delay in the conversion of the Wa and Bolgatanga polytechnics into technical universities is further driving down enrolment and also forcing faculty and staff to begin moving to the other side where they feel the grasses are greener and indeed the grasses are greener’.

Mr. Idrisu Mwinimpuo Mohammed also attributed the dwindling enrolment to the polytechnic on the institution not having residential facilities. ‘Wa Polytechnic is the only public tertiary institution in the country without students’ hostel. I’m using this opportunity to appeal to government and GETFUND [secretariat] to do us a favor by allocating funds specifically for the project,’ the Ag. Vice Rector stated.

Special Guest of Honour at the Congregation, the Upper West Regional Minister, Dr. Hafiz Bin Salih reiterated government’s commitment to enhancing the quality of education in the country.

The congregation saw several stakeholders including representatives of professional bodies, alumni of the polytechnic, and the general public in attendance.

GTA CAUTIONS ILLEGAL FOOD AND BEVERAGE VENDORS TO REGULARIZE THEIR OPERATIONS

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The Head of Corporate Affairs at the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr. Jonnes Aruna Nelson has appealed to food and beverage vendors operating without authorization to immediately regularize their activities with the Ghana Tourism Authority and its partner regulatory bodies.
According to Mr Aruna, this will enable the Ghana Tourism Authority to monitor the activities of these vendors to ensure best practice and quality service delivery as well as provide technical advice where necessary. Mr Aruna further warned that recalcitrant vendors would face sanctions including a possible shutdown and or prosecution. He also encouraged industry players to pay the 1% tourism levy as stipulated in “LI 2185 of the tourism act 817.
Mr Aruna gave the caution during a nationwide training and sensitization programme for the informal food and beverage sector in Wa. The programme brought together 80 participants from the informal food and beverage vendors sector in Wa.

Dr. Patricia

Dr. Patricia Darko, a senior food science lecturer at the Kumasi Technical University, took participants through food hygiene, food contamination among others.
According to Dr Darko, the informal food and beverage sector constitute about 70% of the Ghanaian food source hence the need to give such training to them.
Participants were also taken through book keeping and basic accounting to help inculcate the habit of saving and effective management of proceeds.

Participants

The Upper West regional chairperson of the Bar Owners Association Mr. James Suntaa, applauded the Ghana Tourisms Authority for the initiative and called on other stakeholders like the Municipal and District assemblies to emulate the good example of the Ghana Tourism Authority by organizing similar forums.

EPA EDUCATES PUBLIC ON SAFE HANDLING OF PESTICIDES

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The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in the Upper West Region has launched a campaign aimed at sensitizing residents of the region especially farmers and dealers on the best ways of handling pesticides. The public education programme which involves radio talk shows was initiated to protect the lives of residents, the environment and other useful organisms.

Speaking to W93.5FM, Programmes Officer at the Upper West Regional office of the EPA, Anastasia Comfort Blankson said pesticides especially the inorganic ones can cause great damage to the environment and human lives if they are used indiscriminately. She therefore advised users to take precautions before, during and after applying pesticides in order to prevent any associated danger.

Among the pre-spraying precautions, the EPA officer warned farmers against using unregistered or unidentified products in their homes or farms, and to not smell a chemical to determine what it is. She further advised that, instructions on the container should be carefully read to find out the type of pesticide, application rate and the time of the day it should be applied. As she urged farmers to acquire training on the application techniques, she also advised users to always wear protective clothing while applying pesticide, and never to stir the chemical with the hand even when wearing rubber gloves.

On precautions to take during spraying, Madam Anastasia Comfort Blankson said users should avoid talking as much as possible when spraying. Eating, drinking or smoking should as well be avoided. She further advised that the chemical should not be sprayed in the air when there is light wind or breeze, and that spraying should be done in the morning or evening while also ensuring that poultry, diary or meat animals are not grazing the fields or men working there at the time of spraying.

After spraying, the Programmes Officer advised users to dig a hole and spray any remaining particles of the pesticide into it. Protective clothing should be removed and washed immediately after thoroughly cleaning the spray tank and the nozzle. While advising farmers to take their bath or wash their hands with soap after use, Madam Anastasia urged farmers to avoid washing their bodies or clothes into water bodies as aquatic life will also be in danger.

In line with the Pesticides Control and Management Act 1996 (Act 528) which mandates the Environmental Protection Agency to ensure the effective registration of pesticides to avoid indiscriminate handling of the chemical substances, Madam Anastasia Comfort called on the public especially dealers in pesticides in the region to ensure that they are registered to carry out the business of engaging in the sale and distribution of the chemicals.

On his part, Assistant Programmes Officer, Abdul-Rashid Zakaria said pesticide should be bought only when it is needed. He said it is not advisable to keep these chemicals at home, office or close to children. He further advised pesticides sellers to ensure their stores are well ventilated. Mr. Zakaria also cautioned the general public against using empty pesticide containers for storing water or any useful thing and called on farmers to create a disposal pit where unneeded or expired materials can be disposed of.  The pit according to him “should be fenced and labeled DANGER, and gate locked to prevent unauthorized people and animals from entering it”.

Mr. Zakaria also mentioned some of the dangers associated with poor handling and indiscriminate use of pesticide to include the risk of death or health conditions resulting from acute or chronic poisoning of the human system, skin rashes and itchy eyes, infertility in men, risk of losing pregnancy, risk of fire outbreak or explosion, pollution of water bodies and the destruction of microorganisms which enhance soil fertility.

TEENAGE PREGNANCY IN WA WEST IS A CULTURAL PROBLEM- DISTRICT HEALTH DIRECTOR

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The Wa West district director of health service, Mr Clifford Veng has attributed the high spate of teenage pregnancy in the Wa West district to the cultural orientation of the people.

According to Mr Veng, most of the teenage mothers in the district are fully married, thereby making it difficult to bring the situation under control. He further revealed that, it was common in the district to see girls as young as 12 years become pregnant. “Girls in their early teens are given out for marriage, so we must change this cultural behavior in order to reduce teenage pregnancy in the district”, he stated.

Mr Clifford Veng

Per the statistics from the Wa West district health director, about 18.2% of pregnant cases recorded between January and June 2019 were teenagers; with Eggu sub-district on top of the chart.

Mr Clifford Veng made these revelations during a “Meet the Press” session organized by the Wa West district assembly on 13th September, 2019.

Some assembly members who participated in the programme confirmed that teenage pregnancy, child marriages and elopement are part of the cultural practices of some communities within the district.

Although the Department of Gender, Children and Social Protection in collaboration with the Ghana Health Service, Ghana Education Service, Traditional rulers and some NGOs continue to carry out sensitization across the district, many believe little can be achieved until the cultural orientation of the people is changed.

Meanwhile, the Wa West district has chalked a mammoth success in the area of maternal mortality. The district has recorded “zero” maternal mortality from November 2018 to date. This the district health director attributes to the creation of an “emergency response system” which enables pregnant women across the district to be transported to the district hospital free of charge for comprehensive health care service.

FIX OUR ROADS OR FORFEIT OUR VOTES – JONGA RESIDENTS TO GOVERNMENT

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Residents of the Jonga Electoral Area in the Wa Municipality have vowed not to vote in next year’s general elections if the deplorable roads in the area are left unattended.

The main road which links the electoral area to the municipal and regional capital, Wa, and the rest of the Upper West region has been in poor shape for some time now. The situation has left many residents who are farmers reeling with post-harvest losses as they find it difficult to transport their farm produce, especially the perishable goods, to major market centers in the region. This according to some of the residents is bringing untold hardships to them.

Some residents told W93.5fm that successive governments including the erstwhile National Democratic Congress (NDC) government and the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) government have promised to fix the road in the run up to the 2012 and 2016 general elections. The road however has seen no facelift after the NDC completed four years with the NPP also in its third year of governance. The development has thus made the people bitter; thereby forcing them to take a decision not to vote should the situation remain unchanged until the next general elections.

Meanwhile, Hajia Humu Awudu, an aspiring parliamentary candidate of the NPP in the Wa Central Constituency has received a lot of praise from the people as she filled some potholes that have developed in parts of the road with gravel. The residents and other users of the road expressed their desire to see Hajia Humu succeed in her quest to lead the NPP party and called on delegates of the party to vote for her in the primaries as she is development oriented. They also urged other aspirants to do same if they want the support of members of the community.

Responding to the development on W93.5FM’s “Tiyiriyela” programme, the assembly member of the area, Ibrahim Daubile bemoaned the plight of his electorates, and joined in the call on the Wa Municipal Assembly and the government to give a facelift to the roads in the area.

Generally, roads in the Upper West region are in bad shape. This has made travelling and transporting goods from one part to the other very difficult, which consequently is affecting the socio-economic growth of the people and the region.

YOU DON’T NEED TEXTBOOKS TO BE EFFECTIVE – GES DIRECTOR TELLS TEACHERS

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The Upper West Regional Director for Education, Mr. Duncan Nsoh has waded into the controversy surrounding the introduction of new curriculum for basic schools without the corresponding syllabus.

Speaking in an exclusive interview with Wa based W93.5FM, he insisted that teachers ought to be able to carry out their duties without difficulty in spite of the absence of the requisite textbooks.

According to Mr. Nsoh, teachers should be effective in the discharge of their duties irrespective of the availability or otherwise of textbooks. “No teacher is supposed to be replaced by a simple book. You are a teacher and you should be able to carry out your work with or without anything” he stated.

The regional director said he is still committed to his vision of teacher rationalisation in order to decongest schools with excess teachers which is predominant in the Wa municipality. Mr. Nsoh indicated that he has already conferred with various stakeholders in the region over the intended rationalisation. He expressed optimism that he would be able to implement the teacher rationalisation policy within the impending academic year.

Mr. Duncan Nsoh took over as the Upper West Regional Education director from then acting regional director for education Mr. Evans Kpebah earlier this year with a vision to improving education in the Upper West Region.

YIELEH CHIREH HUMILATED; BUT RASHID PELPUO GOT MASSIVE ENDORSEMENT IN NDC PRIMARIES

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Peter Lanchene Toobu – PC elect for Wa West Constituency

Incumbent Member of Parliament for the Wa West constituency, Hon Joseph Yieleh Chireh, has been shamefully defeated by a retired police officer, Peter Lanchene Toobu in a contest where many predicted victory for the only MP who has occupied the Wa West seat since its creation in 2004.

Supt (rtd) Peter Lanchene who resigned as Secretary to the Inspector General of Police to contest the National Democratic Congress (NDC) primaries won with 755 votes of the valid votes cast against Yieleh Chireh who got 317 votes. The result means that the Wa West constituency will send a new representative to parliament in 2021 with Hon Chireh’s 16 years parliamentary career effectively ending in 2020.

The result has left many surprised as they never expected Peter Lanchene to beat Yieleh Chireh with such a vote margin.

Hon Chireh, a seasoned politician and first Secretary of the Upper West Region, after casting his vote during the election boasted that he will win, and that there was nothing that would stop him from victory. He confidently told press men that allegations levelled against him that he is non-performing are from the media and not his constituents who always and will vote for him.

Many people expressed excitement to learn that Mr. Chireh, who boycotted the media in the region, has been kicked out of Parliament. The former health minister has for some time decided not to speak to the media with reason being that it will not affect his electoral fortunes considering that most of his constituents do not have access to the media.

Until his defeat, Hon Chireh who served as Minister for Local Government and Rural Development has always been cited as one of the underperforming MPs in the Upper West Region. Many have argued that he did little to none in developing the district which is perceived as the poorest in Ghana.

Victory for Pelpuo

Meanwhile, Dr. Hassan Rashid Pelpuo who went to parliament together with Hon Joseph Yieleh Chireh in 2005 beat three other candidates to win the NDC primaries in the Wa Central constituency with 693 votes of the valid votes cast. His closest contender, Hon Yakubu Duogu polled 287 votes. Other candidates in the Wa Central constituency contest were Dr. Sharif Mahmoud Khalid and Lawyer Wahid Iddrissu Bampuori who polled 172 and 121 votes respectively.

 

Hon Rashid Pelpuo, prior to this election, has also seen accusations of underperformance as Member of Parliament for the Wa Central even though many predicted a win for him in the primaries. The victory means that Dr. Rashid Pelpuo will be searching for a fifth term in parliament in the December, 2020 general elections.

Other winners in the Upper West Region

  1. Nadowli/Kaleo – Anthony Sumah
  2. Wa East – Dr. Godfred Seidu Jasaw
  3. Lawra – Lawyer Bede A. Ziedeng
  4. Jirapa – Hon Cletus Seidu Dapila
  5. Lambussie/Karni – Hon Edward K. Dery
  6. Sissala East – Mohammed Issah Bataglia
  7. Sissala West – Mohammed Sukparu
  8. Daffiama-Bussie-Issa – Dr. Sebastian Saandaare (unopposed)
  9. Nandom – Dr. Richard Kuu-ire (unopposed)

The NDC conducted its Parliamentary Primaries on Saturday, August 24, 2019 across the country where they chose parliamentary candidates to represent the party in the 2020 general elections.

NDC PC ASPIRANT, CLETUS DAPILAH’S BOY BEAT UP W93.5FM PRESENTER AND THREATENED TO BURN DOWN STATION

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A young man believed to be a supporter of Cletus Dapilah, an aspiring parliamentary candidate of the NDC in the Jirapa Constituency, has this evening around 7:05pm attacked and assaulted a presenter with W93.5FM for comments he deemed to be insults on his aspirant.

The incident happened at the premises of the radio station, few minutes after the presenter, Joseph Oswald Ali, had shared his opinion on the chances of NDC aspirants in the Jirapa Constituency on W93.5FM’s political talk show “Angara Parliament”.

The unknown assailant who came with a lady believed to be a sister to Mr. Cletus Dapilah after beating and pushing Oswald down from his motorbike said that the victim is “too small to sit on radio and insult Cletus”, adding that “the foot of Cletus is better than you”. The intruder further warned that, if care is not taken they will one day come and burn down the radio station.

The lady known to Oswald Ali, the victim, and identified as Fatimata furiously poured invectives on the reporter and called him “useless”. She said they know Oswald so well for him to come and sit on radio and degrade Cletus to the public.

When questioned what exactly the presenter said that constitutes the insults, both Fatimata and the gentleman could not say anything.

After assaulting the reporter, the attackers threatened to visit him at home on the same issue. The mother of the victim in a telephone conversation also confirmed that the attackers were at the house and told her that her son insulted their aspirant.

The case has since been reported to the Upper West Regional Command of the Ghana Police Service where a Police Medical form was issued the reporter to undertake medical checkup.

Management of W93.5FM has vowed to ensure that the perpetrators of this dastardly act are made to face the full rigours of the law.

ALBAN BAGBIN DEFENDS JOHN MAHAMA’S STATEMENT ON CUBAN DOCTORS

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Contrary to the response from the Director General of the Ghana Health Service, a former minister of health and current Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Alban S.K Bagbin, on Sunday, August 18, 2019, strongly defended former President John Dramani Mahama’s statement that the NDC administration consciously and strategically selected girls from Muslim communities to be trained as Gynecologists in 2012.

Speaking on the topic; “NDC and Youth Development: the past, the present and lessons for the future” at a youth conference in Wa, the former Minister of Health highlighted the training of 221 medical officers in Cuba as one of the many things that the NDC did to develop the youth. He said out of the 221 Cuban trainees, two of them were non-practitioners.

Wondering why the Director General of the Ghana Health Service said what he said, Hon. Bagbin explained that H.E President John Dramani Mahama took the bold strategic decision to focus on training the Muslim ladies when he was vice President of the republic, because of the uneasiness Muslim women go through when they face gynecological problems and have to be attended to by just anybody, including male gynecologists. He said the decision was taken at a time he and Hon. Joseph Yiele Chireh were ministers of health.

The defense by the Second Deputy Speaker was acknowledged, applauded and supported by Hon. Joseph Yiele Chireh who himself was a panalist at the programme.

It would be recallrecalled that, Hon. Joseph Yiele Chireh handed over to Hon. Alban S.K Bagbin as Minister of Health in January 2012. At the time, the government of Ghana sent 221 students to Cuba to be first trained as medical practitioners before specializing as gynecologists. As reports indicate, many of these young beneficiaries are ladies who were deliberately and strategically sourced from Muslim communities from across the country. These beneficiaries have returned to the country and a controversy has since ignited over the issue as the Director General of the Ghana Health Service sought to contradict the former President’s recount of the policy at this year’s Ahlu Sunnah Eidul Adha prayers.

WACCU WOMEN TRAINED IN BUSINESS MANAGEMENT; MORE TO BE TRAINED IN COMING YEARS

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Beneficiaries and organisers in group picture

The Wa Cooperative Credit Union (WACCU) in collaboration with the Wa Polytechnic Entrepreneurship Directorate and the Business Advisory Centre of the National Board for Small Scale Businesses (NBSSI) has successfully trained and graduated twelve women who are members of the cooperative on how to manage and sustain their businesses.

The training which focused on entrepreneurship and basic record keeping awarded the women certificates on Wednesday, August 21, 2019 at the Wa Polytechnic. As part of the training which spanned three months (from June to August), the women entrepreneurs were taught how to start a business, How to source funding for the business and the management of cash of the business.

Addressing participants at the graduation ceremony, the Supervising Manager of WACCU, Abraham A. Dakurah said “the plan is to train forty (40) women every year, for five years. So we would have trained about 200 women and certify them in five years.” He explained that for a person to qualify for a certificate, she would have to undergo all three training modules, the reason twelve women were certified after 32 picked forms when the idea of the training was announced this year. He noted that subsequent editions will start early in the year so that the beneficiaries can gain and utilize the knowledge early enough.

WACCU Supervising Manger, Mr Abraham A. Dakurah

Mr. Dakurah expressed satisfaction at the success of the project and charged the beneficiaries to make use of the knowledge gained to improve their businesses. He further added that “we expect that, in the coming years we should be able to expand this project beyond just the training, but to be able to facilitate access to startup funds or support funds that will be interest-free in the beginning to help them to be able to move. And as they move they then will need extra support, then they can come back to take credit either from the union or elsewhere”. He underscored the need to support women in entrepreneurship as they are better in running businesses, but always find it more difficult in accessing funds.

Regional Minister
On his part, the Regional Minister through the Regional Coordinating Director, Madam Fati Koreh, congratulated the participants of the programme and urged them to make good use of the opportunity granted them. He advised them to take advantage of available funding sources like MASLOC to support their businesses. He said “starting a business is not the most difficult thing to do but sustaining the business” and therefore called on the organizers to continue to do a lot of advocacy to help enhance private sector development.

Business Record Book
Meanwhile, the partners on the project have designed a yearly record keeping booklet for business men and women in any kind of trade. The book is designed to take records of cash sales, credit sales, cash purchases, credit purchases, expenditures and other necessary transactions of the business. The Business Record Book which was given to all beneficiaries is also in the market for sale to interested business people.


Testimonies
The beneficiaries at the event expressed excitement for being a part of the training and thanked the organisers for the project. They also called on the general public to take advantage of subsequent ones as it has taught them so much on managing a business.

Ormoh Christiana, a seamstress and beneficiary said “this training will help me a lot. The training has given me education on how to take care of my customers. It also made me aware what constitutes cost in running my activities as a seamstress. So I will propagate this good initiative by WACCU, Wa Poly and NBSSI to the general public especially my fellow women to partake in this training so as to improve their businesses. I also hope that WACCU will increase the number beyond the intended 200 that they want to train”.

Another beneficiary, Cecilia, a trader said she is “very happy to be part of this training. It is very helpful. As we attended it, we have been taken through how to run our business without running at a loss. The trainers have done so well to initiate such a project. I am really grateful. As we leave here, we will propagate to other women to also seize the opportunity and benefit from such training.”

MP FOR JIRAPA LAUNCHES FUND FOR AGRICULTURE

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The Member of Parliament for the Jirapa Constituency of the Upper West Region, Dr Francis Dakura Bawaana, on Sunday, 18th August, 2019 launched a new policy dubbed “Jirapa Enterprise Fund for Agriculture” (JEFFA).

The Member of Parliament explained that the policy seeks to among other things, empower youth and women to venture into agriculture and agribusiness in an attempt to reduce the increasing rate of unemployment in the Jirapa Municipality.

Explaining the intent of the policy which was launched with a seed capital of one hundred thousand cedis (GH¢100,000.00), the philanthropic Member of Parliament mentioned that the youth and women will be supported to get credit/loan facilities, farm inputs, technical support and transport services to enable them create jobs for themselves through agriculture and its related businesses.

The program, according to the legislator, will be managed independently by Board of Directors and Zonal Coordinators constituted by the people themselves. This is to ensure transparency, better supervision, inclusiveness and bringing the program to the doorsteps of the people.

Dr. Bawaana reiterated his commitment to creating jobs in the Jirapa Constituency to improve and transform lives for development. He however admonished the people not to politicise the JEFFA program since it is a non partisan approach of propelling sustainable development in the Municipality.

Nine tricycles were distributed to the nine zones in the Jirapa Municipality. The tricycles are supposed to be used to assist the transport of farm inputs and products and also to help the zones make some small savings to help finance their activities.

Hon Francis Dakura later commissioned an office which will serve as a Secretariat for the program.

Speaking to some of the beneficiaries, they were very excited that they are being supported by their Member of Parliament to create jobs. “This is the first time of getting such support and I am happy that it is a reality. If we work very hard with this level of support, we can eradicate poverty in our area” a beneficiary indicated.

The euphoria at the program launch gave a signal that the policy is being endorsed by the youth, women and opinion leaders across the political divide in the constituency.

YOUTH OF JIRAPA DEMAND A RADIO STATION

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The secretary of the Jirapa Municipal Youth Association, Mr. Gerald Kansoh, has bemoaned the lack of a radio station in the Municipality, describing the situation as worrisome.

Addressing the public in Jirapa during the launch of the Jirapa Enterprise Fund for Agriculture by the Member of Parliament (MP) for the area, Mr. Kansoh appealed to the MP, Dr Francis Dakura Bawaana, and other stakeholders to help in ensuring that the Municipality has a radio station. This, he said, will enhance effective and timely dissemination of information to the people which will go a long way to improving the development of the area.

The Youth Secretary however was appreciative of the agricultural intervention policy instituted by the Member of Parliament and urged all to take advantage of the policy to propel growth and development in the Municipality.

The new policy initiated and launched by the Member of Parliament, Dr. Francis Bawaana, seeks to among other things, empower the youth and women in agriculture and the agriculture value chain so as to ameliorate the increasing rate of unemployment in the Jirapa Municipality. The policy, with a seed capital of ¢GH 100,000.00, will provide beneficiaries with credit facilities, farming inputs and transport facilities like tricycles.

Responding to the demand by the youth, Hon Francis Dakura Bawaana disclosed that he had already started the process of getting a commercial radio for the Jirapa Municipality. He assured the youth that the process may delay but that he remains resolute to set up a commercial radio that will enhance the cultural, social and economic lives of the constituents and the entire Upper West Region.

Workers desert Wa Islamic hospital over Salah

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Health care providers at the Wa Islamic hospital has allegedly deserted the facility ahead of tomorrow’s Eid celebration. W93.5FM’s visit to the facility on Saturday 10th August, 2019 confirmed that, there was only one nurse at post.
The situation has left patients stranded, with some seeking alternative health care services from the regional hospital and even pharmacy shops. One of such patients is Mr. Ike, who claim he visited the facility at about 4:00pm same day but was verbally referred to the regional hospital with the excuse that; health workers at the facility were on “Salah break”. “I met only one nurse who asked me to rather go to the regional hospital because he could not give me any prescription”. Another stranded patient who spoke under anonymity bemoaned the recent “poor services” at the Islamic hospital. “I think the hospital is gradually dying, I was told by a nurse that they are not working because of the Salah”, she lamented.


Our checks further revealed that, there was only one patient on admission at the facility during the time of our visit. It is also alleged that patients on admission at the hospital were untimely discharged because of the impending Eid celebrations.

Our source indicates that normal services including “outpatient” services would be available after 12th August, 2019.
In a private telephone conversation, Upper West regional health director, Dr. Osei Kuffour Afreh admitted the hospital has some “service challenges” but said he could do little about the situation because the facility is not a government hospital. “Islamic hospital is not a government hospital and tomorrow is Salah, so what they decide to do I can’t force them to be there”.
The public is however concerned about the implications of the decision and wish management of the hospital could rescind the decision.

SUSPENSION ON NPP FORMER CHAIRMAN FOR WA WEST CONSTITUENCY, ALHAJI MAJOR, LIFTED

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The governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the Upper West Region has cleared its former Wa West constituency chairman, Alhaji Abdulai Seidu (Major), to partake in all Party’s activities after he was suspended in November, 2015.

A letter signed by the NPP’s Regional Chairman, S.B Kangbere, and addressed to the former constituency chairman stated that the Regional Executive Committee “are pleased to inform you that you are cleared to henceforth actively participate in all NPP activities as a member in good standing.”

The clearance was necessitated after the Party’s hierarchy in the region observed that Alhaji Major conducted himself well ever since he was suspended four years ago, the letter noted. The Regional Executive Committee through the July 28, 2019 letter also charged Chairman Major to “work with the current constituency executives and Party supporters to improve the electoral fortunes of the Party in 2020 and beyond in Wa West and Upper West as a whole”.


Suspension:

It will be recalled that Alhaji Abdulai Seidu (Major) was suspended on November 12, 2015 by the then Regional Executive Committee led by Alhaji Abubakari Short, following a complaint by one Adams Mahamood Mumuni. The complainant who was not a member of the party in the Wa West constituency had alleged that Chairman Major “mobilised, as well as led, some people from the region to demonstrate against the decision of both the National Executive Committee (NEC) and the National Council regarding the suspension of Mr Paul Afoko from his position as national chairman of the NPP”. The petitioner further argued that the alleged action of Alhaji Major was in breach of the Party’s constitution, thus disqualified him from being a member of good standing to occupy an office as the constituency chairman.

Meanwhile, Alhaji Abdulai Seidu in January 2018 wrote to the Party’s general secretary, John Boadu, seeking clarification on his status as a member of the NPP after the Party had announced roadmap for its constituency executives’ elections. In the letter, Mr. Seidu suggested that he was not fairly treated after the Disciplinary Committee and the Executive Committee of the Party in the region both failed to give a verdict after he sought for redress following the suspension.

The lifting of the suspension on the NPP stalwart in the Wa West constituency comes at a time the NPP are eager to wrestle power from the opposition National Democratic Congress who are occupying the seat since the creation of the constituency in 2004.

Rt. HON. ALBAN S.K BAGBIN RECEIVES LIFETIME ACHIEVEMENTS AWARD AT G.O.D., SWITZERLAND.

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The Member of Parliament for the Nadowli/Kaleo Constituency and Second Deputy Speaker of Ghana’s Parliament, the Rt. Hon. Alban S.K Bagbin, on Friday 12th July, 2019, joined other award winning dignitories at the 7th Global Order of Dignitaries and Philanthropists (G.O.D) Awards in Geneva Switzerland. Dr Bagbin received the well deserved and unanimously conferred *Lifetime Achievement Award as Legislator of Africa*.

Dr. Bagbin shared the noble platform with other highly distinguished personalities across the globe such as H.R.H. Prince Mohammed BIN Fahad Bin Abdulaziz AL Saud of Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, His Majesty Otumfuo Nana Osei TUTU II, King of Ashanti, the 3rd President of Republic of Croatia HH.E.Ivo Josipovic, the Former President of Ecuador, H.E. Rosalia Arteaga, H.H. Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed ALNEYAHAN, Top Fortune 500 Company CEOs, among others.

The citation for Dr Bagbin reads:
“Honorable Bagbin, you are no stranger in creating opportunities and helping
the forgotten and underprivileged. As the Second Deputy Speaker of the Parliament
Of Ghana, your compassion and humility reverberates as the voice of those that are
weary and hopeful. You made sure the less fortunate children and youth were not
alone in their fight. There is no accolade in this world worthy of giving to such an altruistic person. Your tireless work that you have made thus far in Africa is an example that all humans must follow, for the sake of humanity and continuity.”
Shortly after the Nadowli/Kaleo legislator received the award his constituents could not hide their joy.
“Congratulations, Rt. Hon. Alban S.K Bagbin. We the constituents of Nadowli/Kaleo are very proud of you. You have always sent our humble constituency far. You have successfully built a great legacy for us to defend”, a constituency executive remarked.
The right Honourable 2nd deputy speaker has since returned to Ghana.

DR CAMYNTA BAEZIE TO SET UP ENTERPRISE FUND FOR NDC GRASSROOTS IN NADOWLI/KALEO CONSTITUENCY

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Aspiring parliamentary candidate for the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the Nadowli/Kaleo constituency, Dr. Camynta Baezie, has pledged to empower grassroot members of the NDC to be financially stable and sustainable if he becomes Member of Parliament (MP) for the area.
Addressing teeming supporters after submitting his nomination forms in Nadowli, Dr Baezie expressed dissatisfaction at how the grassroots who are the “real owners” of the party are suffering over the years. To this, he said “if we [NDC] come to power with me as MP, the suffering we are experiencing all this while will be over. We cannot continue to suffer like that. Just as some people are perceived to be enjoying, I will work to ensure that everyone in the party including the branch and polling stations members get their share of the joy”.
Dr Camynta Baezie, a lecturer at the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, further disclosed that he will roll out two programmes to aid the ordinary party people gain financial stability should he get the nod to represent the constituency in Parliament. He therefore called on delegates to choose him as the NDC’s parliamentary candidate for the 2020 general elections.
According to him, the grassroots will be energized through programmes he calls Branch-level Enterprise Development and Branch-level Enterprise Fund Mobilization. These programmes when implemented will enhance business development, education and agriculture among party members in the constituency, he said.
Explaining the rationale behind the programmes, the former boss at the State Enterprises Commission (SEC) noted that “the branches are going to become business units in themselves where they can establish their own enterprises and work for themselves. So they are not waiting for handouts from party bigwigs or from anybody. They are going to have a self sustainable enterprise development where they create their own economic activities, job activities that they will employ local level personnel.


Dr Baezie also pledged to implement these programmes in his first term in parliament when given the nod. Leveraging on his experience in managing state-owned enterprises in the past and in consultation with other MPs and experts, he declared that “we are going to use less than one term to start implementing some of these things. We don’t even need two years. As soon as the whistle is blown, we are in parliament, we are going to start the Branch-level Enterprise

UPPER WEST POORLY REPRESENTED IN 7TH PARLIAMENT – CDA BOSS

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Executive Director of the Community Development Alliance (CDA), Mr Issifu Kanton, has expressed worry over how the Upper West Region has been represented in Ghana’s parliament by the eleven Members of Parliament (MPs) from the Upper West region.
In his view all the parliamentarians from both the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the New Patriotic Party (NPP) have shown little in representing their constituents. “Upper West is severely under-represented. In fact, all our legislators didn’t show any clout. They didn’t represent us. They didn’t give us that feeling of representation” Mr Kanton opined, adding that “this current parliament, I don’t see the vibe from the eleven MPs from Upper West. They seem to have been lost in both NDC side and NPP side.”
Mr. issifu Kanton made these comments on W93.5fm’s Saturday evening socio-political talk show, Hot Spot, when he was responding to the decision of Dr. Alban S.K Bagbin not to contest the 2020 parliamentary elections after representing the Nadowli/Kaleo constituency in parliament since 1992.
Making a case for his opinion, Mr. Kanton said “by way of their contributions on the floor of parliament, their engagements in various things, I didn’t get the sense. Those days you hear [Dr. Benjamin] Kunbuor talk in parliament, you hear that one talk in parliament, you hear that one talk in parliament, and the ideas they articulated made you feel proud when you move to other regions.” He said the way MPs contribute in parliament have the ability to make government pay attention to their areas “than those mumu MPs who sit and do nothing”. He cited Hon Isaac Adong, MP for Bolgatanga Central, as making the people of the Upper East proud by his continues activism in the legislative house even if he brings nothing to the region.
“Parliament is not a place for action. It’s an avenue where people ventilate ideas that will build our nation. Parliament is built on the principle of idealism, [and] not materialism. The ideas underpin the substance of the tangibility.” The CDA boss stated, advancing that “my honest view is that most of them [the MPs] were going to be replaced and we get fresh blood, people with ideas that will revitalize and reinvigorate the whole atmosphere. Upper West needed to have some radical movements where people with fresh ideas, people that have that advocacy attitude, people that are able to communicate a certain debate that resonates as Upper West.”
Mr. Issifu Kanton called on the old MPs to give way for new people to represent the region. Particular mention was the Wa West and Wa Central constituencies currently represented by Hon Joseph Yelle Chireh and Dr. Hassan Rashid Pelpuo respectively. He said one needs to realize when their “energy level is dwindling. You may still have the experience, but nothing stops you [from] being at the backstage and using your experience to build up the young ones to give you a legacy.”

 

Re: GES FULL OF FAKE CERTIFICATES; LAZY TEACHERS

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GNAT Upper West has sighted a news item on upperwestmedia.net platform emanating from one Mr Bombason, who in the issue is alleging that Teachers in the Upper West Region have fake certificates and are lazy. For the record I want to state emphatically that this is a misinformation and a total misrepresentation of the status of teachers in the region.

2. The Upper West region is noted for its sincerity and hence such misrepresentation can only be considered uncharacteristic and slap from behind. GNAT Upper west wishes to call on all concern to disregard this disdained spews of subversion and a frustration of the effort of the hardworking teachers in the Upper west region.

3. It should be noted that the said personality who is referred to as a former circuit supervisor is not adept with facts and lacks the locus to speculate such words of indignation on the reputation of teachers in the Upper west region. Taking cues from his release he stated that “the same Lady wasn’t reporting to school for three months and had no lesson notes yet her headteacher shielded her, this compelled him to block the salary of the head teacher for not performing his duties”. This is a clear indication that he was ineffective and did not supervise his assigned circuit regularly for such truancy to occur under his umbrella.

4. To respond to his call for an audit of teachers’ certificates is a total madness on his part. We all recall that, Public workers, thus teachers of the Upper West inclusive were audited somewhere in September 2018 by the Audit service. Is Mr Bambason saying that the exercise was in futility and hence could not identify his so call “Fake Certificates” that the teachers presented for authentication? Or what at all is he insinuating?

5. Mr Bambason should come clear and present his evidential proof to his claim otherwise he immediately apologizes to the respected and dignified teachers of the upper West region. His statement has no time bearing. This is a serious allegation that dents the entire image of the teaching profession in the Upper West Region and thus deserves his immediate refrain and apology.

6. Teachers acquire their professional certificates from various training institutions. Most teachers are trained from the teacher training colleges across the country, others acquire their certificates from Universities and Polytechnics. Mr Bamboson should be educated that the modern educational system runs flexible programs that suits individual preferences. The regular, sandwich and distance programs are all available choices. We can guarantee that theses teachers might have acquired their certificate without his knowledge. He does not have the capacity to identify fake certificates because he is not National Accreditation Board to determine the authenticity of people certificates. Mr Bambason must be called back by upperwestmedia.net to come and clearly define his vague and unsubstantiated claim.

Signed
Kuule Ivon
Regional GNAT Chairman
Upper west region

HON AMEEN SALIFU SET TO CONTEST NDC PARLIAMENTARY PRIMARIES IN WA EAST

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Former Member of Parliament for the Wa East Constituency, Hon. Ameen Salifu has, yesterday July 11, 2019, picked a set of nomination forms to contest the upcoming parliamentary primaries of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the constituency.

Addressing overwhelming crowd of delegates and supporters who accompanied him to pick the forms, Hon Ameen Salifu expressed gratitude to the constituency executives for receiving him and his supporters. And further indicated that he was happy that delegates came from every community in the Wa East including old party executives to throw their weight behind him as he picked the nomination forms.

He told the crowd that “Hon. Ameen Salifu is a fighter and not a quitter”. And declared that “I will support any winner in the upcoming primaries so as to ensure that the seat is taken from the messing NPP government.”

The one time legislator and former Chief Executive for the Wa East District Assembly stated that he has no freebies (as in cash) to offer delegates, but that, his track record as Member of Parliament and District Chief Executive is enough freebies for delegates to give him a chance to contest the seat so that he can continue with the good works that halted since he left Parliament.

Meanwhile the Constituency Secretary, Kuri Suglo entreated supporters of competing candidates in the upcoming primaries slated for August 24, 2019 to run clean campaigns devoid of insults so as to maintain a united front to enable them wrestle the seat from the New Patriotic Party (NPP) in the 2020 general elections.

The NDC earlier announced that picking of the nomination forms will cost GH¢ 2,000.00 while filing fees are pegged at GH¢ 25,000.00 for male contestants and GH¢ 12,500.00 for female contestants and persons living with disabilities.

On his part, campaign team member of Ameen Salifu, Mr. Sule Abubakari, also thanked the NDC executives in the area for their warm reception and advice. He however pleaded with them to provide a level playing ground for all contestants and to be very neutral in their dealings with all.

Mr. Ameen Salifu is contesting against Dr. Seidu Godfred Jasaw who picked his nomination forms a day earlier.

Unconfirmed sources say Dr. Seidu Danaa, former Minister for Chieftaincy and Cultural Affairs, who beat Ameen Salifu to lead the NDC into the 2016 parliamentary elections in the constituency has dropped his interest to contest the upcoming primaries and now supporting Hon. Ameen Salifu.

GMO Court Case: Supreme Court rules in favour of Food Sovereignty Ghana

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Food Sovereignty Ghana (FSG) appeared before the Supreme Court today in a case in which one of the defendants sought to challenge a High Court ruling on the court’s jurisdiction to hear a petition brought before it by FSG and three others.

In a decision which did not take long to conclude, the highest court of the land ruled that the Human Rights High Court did have proper jurisdiction that it applied in ruling on the case brought before it by the four plaintiff parties.

The Supreme Court empaneled by five distinguished legal luminaries also wondered why the plaintiffs had not sought to appeal the High Court’s decision which they disagreed with, rather than invoking the jurisdiction of the Supreme Court.

It would be recalled that in the last appearance before the Human Rights High Court on June 7, Her Ladyship Justice Gifty Agyei Addo ruled in favour of FSG, that the jurisdiction of the Court was properly invoked to seek the reliefs sought by the plaintiffs given that the tribunal of the National Biosafety Authority (NBA) to which the defendants claimed should have been the proper body to hear such a case had not been properly constituted as required by law as of the time the case was first filed.

In his submission to the court, Counsel for the 1st , 3rd and 4th plaintiffs, George Tetteh Wayoe thanked the court for the decision and said the issue of introducing Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO) into Ghana’s food chain had serious implications on the human rights of Ghanaians and thus a competent court of jurisdiction as the court had identified in the High Court’s ruling deserved to hear the case.

FSG hails the Supreme Court ruling as a significant and important victory over the local and international GM lobby that has been eager to flout our laws to introduce Bt cowpeas and GM rice with little or no epidemiological studies investigating the potential effects of their consumption on human health.

For example, the Bt cowpea has not yet been commercialized anywhere in the world. This is the first time that human beings are being expected to consume them. In Ghana, cowpeas are found in staple foods like waakye, garri and beans, ripe plantain and beans (also known as “red red”), etc., hence its impact on the health of the population could be devastating if care is not taken.

For us, the case is clearly a case of human health versus corporate profit. Already, Monsanto’s GM maize, event MON810, which contains the same Cry1Ab gene, and has been approved for human and animal consumption in many countries, has been found to have toxic effects in human liver cells during in vitro experiments exposing the protein produced by MON810 which contains the Cry1Ab gene.

We are particularly pleased that the case was not referred to the so-called GMO Tribunal but in a high court, where we hope to receive unbiased attention and judgement. FSG looks forward to vigorously contest the legal obligations of the National Biosafety Authority in terms of risk assessments, socio-economic impact assessments, as well as public awareness and participation at each stage of the decision-making process leading to the authorization of the confined field trials, which are all standard biosafety practice enshrined in law.

We take this opportunity on such an important milestone to repeat our call to the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) to ensure that Ghana develops a mandatory labeling regime for any food or feed containing GMO based ingredients.

The case will continue in the Human Rights High Court on Thursday July 11th, as directed in the last sitting.