2018 Youth Olympics… Ghana fail to win medal after Diafo finishes eighth

 

The 2018 Summer Youth Olympics will officially end on Thursday, October 18, 2018, but Team Ghana’s campaign has ended without a medal.

 The last medal hopeful, sprinter Solomon Diafo, failed to live up to expectations in the final of the men’s 400m on Sunday. Despite finishing sixth in the second stage of the competition, Diafo placed eighth with a time of 1:37.55.

Per the competition rules, athletes run in two stages of four heats each, following which they are ranked according to the best of time finish after a collation of results from all heats.

The 17-year-old Diafo, who couldn’t hold back the tears, expressed disappointment in himself but could only hope that he will get the needed support ahead of subsequent competitions.

 

In all, Ghana participated in four events namely beach volleyball, swimming, weightlifting and athletics. There were a lot of positives that the athletes especially will be drawing from the Youth Olympics.

 

Swimmer Abeiku Jackson, for instance, improved on his time in the 100m-butterfly event, reducing it by 0.28 seconds. Sandra Mensimah Owusu who participated in the women’s weightlifting competition lifted 75kg for the first time.

 

For officials who were with Team Ghana, they will take with them some notes on the general organization of the games as Ghana hopes to be given the rights to host the African version in 2023.

 

After day seven of the games, the only African countries visible on the medal table are Egypt who have two gold, one silver and five bronze medals. They are followed by South Africa with two gold and one silver. Tunisia has one gold, one silver and one bronze.

 

Overall, Russia still lead the pack with a total of 43 medals made up of 24 gold, 11 silver and eight bronze.

Source: Political

AWCON LOC blasts Presec authorities

The Local Organising Committee (LOC) for the upcoming 2018 Africa Women’s Cup of Nations, wants authorities of Legon Presbyterian Senior High School to be sanctioned following the browning of portions of a training pitch for the tournament.
Authorities of the Legon Presbyterian Senior High School allowed a playing field on the school’s campus earmarked as a training centre for this year’s AWCON to be used for an annual Alumni Bonfire event.

According to a member of Ghana’s LOC for the tournament, Evelyn Nsiah Asare, the school authorities can’t go unpunished.

“The field is for the state and government has pumped so much money to put the field in shape for the tournament. We told them of our plans to host the tournament so if they allowed their Old Students to use and damage the pitch, what are they trying to tell us?

“Even if you do this event every year and you know that there is a special programme that the whole continent is coming to Ghana and will use that facility, what will happen if you don’t have the Bonfire there? I believe they should be sanctioned, she added.”

Meanwhile, the Alumni of the school have engaged the services of Green Grass Technology to fix the brown patches on the turf.

The CAF Inspection Team was expected to visit the Legon Presbyterian Senior High School pitch yesterday to ascertain the nation’s readiness for the hosting of the AWCON, slated for November 17-December 1

Source: Political

Kotoko CEO sets aside …billions for player recruitment

Executive Chairman of Kumasi Asante Kotoko, Dr Kwame Kyei, has handed ‘billions of Cedis’ to the management for player recruitment to augment the already competitive squad, according to Accra rep, Edmund Ackah.
Despite being one of the few clubs with the best squad in depth in the domestic league, the Asante Kotoko boss is acting proactively by making available huge sums for additions based on Coach C.K Akonnor’s recommendations.

“Our Executive Chairman [Prof Dr Kwame Kyei] has set aside money for recruitment to beef up of the squad if the coach wants,” Edmund Ackah, spokesperson of the club told reporters.

“It’s not that the money is with him, he has given the money to us (management), I was there when the transfer [of the money into Kotoko’s account] was done,” Ackah emphasised.

According to the Accra rep, the executive chairman has no idea of how much will be needed for the additions to be made to the squad but has allocated huge sums to be spent on new recruitments.

He doesn’t know how much it will cost but has set the money aside, it is billions of cedis, what is needed is for coach CK to say I need this or that player, whether two, three or even ten players the money is available, all we need to do is to deduct what will be spent then return the balance to him (Dr Kyei),” he revealed.

Kotoko is currently one of the few clubs with the best squad in the domestic league and are looking beyond the local league with their eyes set on winning a continental title.

Source: Political

Adwoa Safo builds classroom block for Atomic Hills Demonstration Basic School

Member of Parliament (MP) for Dome-Kwabenya Constituency of the Greater Accra Region, Ms Sarah Adwoa Safo, has built a fully furnished three-unit classroom block at the cost of GH¢ S326,819.35 for pupils of Atomic Hills Demonstration Basic School located at Ashongman in Accra.

The classrooms block with auxiliary facilities, comprising a computer laboratory and modern toilet facility was commissioned by the MP on Thursday, October 11, 2018 to help bring quality education to the pupils in the school. Addressing the gathering, Ms Safo noted that the facility was part of her contribution towrads the development of education within Dome-Kwabenya, and promised to continue to provide more educational infrastructure facilities to help improve the standard of education in the constituency.

She said education was a top priority of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, hence the introduction of the free senior high (SHS) educational policy by President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo.
“These children are our future therefore, we need to invest in them. Today, the people of Ashongman and its environs will heave a huge sigh of relief following the commissioning of this fully furnished three-unit classroom block, computer laboratory and toilet facility,” she said.

Hon Adwoa Safo, who doubles as the Minister of State in charge of Public Procurement, commended the contractor of the project, Imarich Ventures, for showing commitment to complete the project on time. According to her, she used a total of GH¢326,819.35 of her MP’s share of the Ghana Education Trust Fund  (GETFUND) to finance the project.

She disclosed that she has undertaken numerous education infrastructure projects at Taifa Community Schools, six-unit classroom block and kindergarten at Dome Cluster, Kindergarten at Kwabenya Atomic School and Kindergarten at Ashongman Village School.

“As a mother of this constituency, I am aware of the negative effects congested classroom brings and the pain that children and teachers go through during class hours.    “Sometimes it even becomes very difficult for teachers to teach with ease. I thank the Lord Almighty God that today marks the beginning to the end of this canker at Atomic Hills Demonstration Basic School.  You will bear witness that, a better place like this is long overdue. I want to thank the head teacher and teachers of this school for their hard work,” she stated.

According to her, “Atomic Hills Demonstration Basic School at Ashongman is our pride,” and urged the teachers to continue to keep up the good work.  The MP pleaded with the head teacher and staff of the school to take the necessary maintenance measures to ensure the longevity of the three-unit classroom block.

 

 Story: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU

Source: Political

Help revive abandoned GETFund projects—Ga East MCE appeals to gov’t

Municipal Chief Executive (MCE) of Ga East Municipal Assembly in the Greater Accra Region, Mrs Janet Tulasi Mensah, has appealed to the government of President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo to help revive all abandoned educational infrastructure projects funded by the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) in the municipality. 

The completion of the abandoned projects on time, according to the MCE, would help bring about quality in the standard of education among the youth in the area.  Mrs Tulasi Mensah made the foregoing call when she joined the Member of Parliament (MP) for Dome-Kwabenya Constituency in the Greater Accra Region, Ms Sarah Adwoa Safo, to commission a fully furnished three-unit classroom block with auxiliary facilities, comprising a computer laboratory and modern toilet for the Atomic Hills Demonstration Basic School. She noted that the facility was part of the MP’s contribution towards the development of education within the Dome-Kwabenya and indicated the MP and assembly’s commitment to continue to provide more education infrastructure facilities to help improve the standard of education in the constituency.

“I wish to bring to your attention that there are abandoned Ghana Education Trust Fund projects in virtually all the schools stated above and we have already submitted audited reports to the GETFund Secretariat.

“It is, therefore, our humble plea that you use your good office to fast-track the awarding of contracts for the continuation and completion of these projects to help ease the pressure on the existing facilities and improve the quality of education in the municipality,” she urged the MP.

She enumerated a number of educational materials, infrastructure and logistics challenges facing public schools at different levels of education in municipality, and called on government to come to the aid of the various public schools. She stated that the lack of classrooms and furniture continue to hamper the development of education as most public schools were over populated with between 70 and 100 pupils per class and were without sufficient furniture to help enhance teaching and learning.

According to her, the assembly needs 82 tables, 400 chairs and 29 cupboards for the kindergartens, 2,500 dual desks and 193 cupboards for Primary and JHS- 214 tables and 219 chairs for the teachers in the basic schools as well as 850 mono desks for the Kwabenya Community Senior High School (SHS).

She appealed through the deputy majority leader to the government for the provision of furniture, as the situation was gravely affecting teaching and learning in schools within the municipality According to her, although the assembly was doing its bit through its internally generated fund (IGF), it was not adequate to address the teething challenges.

 

 

Story: Freeman KORYEKPOR AWLESU

 

Source: Political

GhIE and ASCE sign MoU

The Ghana Institution of Engineering (GhIE) has on Sunday, 14th October, 2018 signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) during the ongoing 2018 convention in Denver Colorado in the United States of America (USA).

The agreement was signed at the Hyatt Regency Hotel Colorado Convention Centre where the conference is being held on the theme: “Engineering, Innovation and Leading.”

The agreement will focus on the exchange of information regarding the engineering profession in general. It will especially, highlight the sharing of information on scientific research and technical issues of mutual interest to both bodies. The agreement also provides mutual professional advice in areas of emergency response to natural disasters and mitigation of risks and hazards.

The President of the GhIE Ing. Steve A Amoaning-Yankson, and the Executive Director, Ing. Kwabena Agyei Agyepong, signed for the GhIE whereas President Ing. Robin Kamper and Executive Director Ing Thomas Smith signed for the ASCE. In attendance was the Chair of the Civil Division of the GhIE Ing. Joseph Oddei.

 

Story: Business DESK

Source: Political

Eden Heights launches 1,272 luxury apartments

 

Eden Heights, a luxury residential development, located in the heart of west Accra, near the West Hills Mall, is providing approximately 1,272 excellent luxury apartments in a bid to reduce the housing deficit in Ghana.

 

The elegant-gated community, with grade ‘A’ finishing of its apartments and penthouses is undoubtedly a unique residential destination for luxury in Ghana. The master-planned development is about 30 minutes’ drive from the Airport and five (5) minutes’ walk from the West Hills Mall, which provides a great vista of the city and offers a seamless living experience with all its wonderful amenities.

 

The First Lady of the Republic of Ghana, Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo, unveiled a 3D Model of the facility at the launch held last Thursday in Accra.

The Minister of Works and Housing, Mr Samuel Atta Akyea, stated, “Eden Heights is coming at a time when we need them most and I am very happy and impressed about the features of the apartments”.

 

According to him, “Eden Heights fits perfectly into the government’s plans to develop new settlements in major cities. Indeed, Eden Heights development comes as a major contribution to government’s determination to effectively address the country’s housing deficit deriving support from real estate developers like Westhills Ridge Company Limited”.

 

He continued that “the Ghanaian economy is undoubtedly driven by projects such as this. The construction industry alone contributes about 15 per cent of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) and the ministry is taking steps to ensure a well-organized, effective and efficient construction sector that would offer its clients good value for money. You will agree that infrastructure, in this case housing, has been one of Ghana’s challenges to development over the years”.

 

“And most importantly, I believe such projects will open up the country further to investors and foreign nationals looking for quality and international standards as the real estate industry is proving to be a safe haven for investors, and Eden Heights will be no exception”, he added.

 

He commended the leadership of Westhills Company Limited and its partners for their concept and contribution to Ghana’s development.

The Deputy Director General for Admin & Finance at Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), Mr. Michael Addo, said:Eden Heights is a carefully planned community constructed to meet the demands of residents. We are proud to have played a key role in providing an ultra-modern state of the art edifice to serve our country. We believe in the importance and value of long-term relationships with our shareholders, our investors and our investment partners. With the highlights of our mission on the importance of shared interests, we use this partnership to bring a range of different dimensions to our services and investments to the greater benefit of all”.

 

In his welcome address, the acting Managing Director of Westhills Ridge Company Limited, Mr Emmanuel Ansah Ofei, said “Eden Heights has been carefully designed and constructed to meet safety standards and also to meet the health and lifestyle patterns of the modern city dweller. Potential home owners have the choice to choose among one (1), to four (4) bedroom apartments and penthouses.”

 

He added that “its ultra-modern sports facility which comprises two (2) short-course Olympic-size swimming pools, football pitch, athletics and gym facilities together with the proximity of the property to beach resorts along the shores of the Atlantic Ocean (about 10 minutes’ drive), makes Eden Heights the perfect home”.

 

Mr Ofei mentioned that the facility is creating job opportunities for over 1,500 Ghanaians at its construction site. “This project will create room for various categories of workers both skilled and unskilled labour in the areas of architecture, project supervision, engineering, electricians and foremen.”

 

A representative from Amandi Holdings, the constructors of the Eden Heights, Mr David Benayun, stated, “you can be assured of excellence and innovation at Eden Heights. I have no doubt that Eden Heights is a home ideally crafted for comfortability.”

 

 

 

Story: Business DESK

Source: Political

Bagbin picks Fritz Baffour as Campaign Director

National Democratic Congress (NDC) flag-bearer-aspirant, Alban Bagbin, has appointed former Minister of Information, Fritz Baffour, as his Director of Campaign and Communication.
Subsequently, the former Defence and Interior Committee Chair of Parliament and former Member of Parliament (MP) for Ablekuma South, entreated delegates of the NDC to eschew adversarial politics as he threw his support behind the former Majority Leader

Addressing a press conference in Accra yesterday, Mr Baffour described as unfair, accusations that appointees who served under former president John Mahama and are now contesting him, were traitors.

According to him, his endorsement was not based on malice, adding that Mr Bagbin truly upholds the principles of the NDC, hence his decision to support him.

“At a certain time, I said I was not ready to support anybody and I have now made my choice and my choice is A.S.K. Bagbin,” he emphasised.

 

 

Story: Political DESK

 

Source: Political

Road accident cases soar in A/R

National Road Safety Commission (NRSC) says Ashanti Region has recorded 25 per cent increase in deaths caused by road accidents since the beginning of this year.  

 

Two hundred and eighty-six people died from January to September, up from 229 over the same period in 2017.

 

Ashanti Region Manager of the Commission, Samuel Obeng Asiamah, said a multi-stakeholder approach was needed to address the situation because of the alarming numbers.

 

Records from the NRSC revealed that accidents increased from 1,679 in 2017 to 1,924 this year, a rise of 14.6 per cent.

 

Out of this number, almost 15 per cent involve from motorcycles and tricycles which authorities described as worrying.

 

42 per cent are private cars; whiles 43 per cent are commercial per cent.

According to Mr Obeng Asiamah, the alarming part was that most of these tricycle crashes were increasing.

 

“Initially, last year we were recording about between 9 to 11 per cent of motorcycle crashes of the total accident cases,” he said.

 

He said the Commission was not against the use of motorcycle but how it is used.

He explained that often, the riders and their passengers ride without a helmet.

 

He said it was about time various stakeholder put their heads together to streamline activities of motorcycle users on our streets.

 

“Now the motorcycles are becoming a necessary evil. You will find market women at the bucket of these ‘aboboyaa’ or tricycles. You find people sitting on the motorcycle two or three, and none of them is wearing a helmet.

“It’s about we regulate the use of motorcycles, if we have been able to regulate the use of cars, we should be able to regulate it,” he added.

 

Although the statistics show that there is an increasing rate in motorcycle accidents, some motorbike riders say the casualties cannot be blamed on them alone.

 

“Whether car or motor, once you are on the road there is the possibility of accidents whether you are in a motorcycle or a car. You can be cautious going your way and someone will hit you from behind, is that the fault of the motor rider?” Salim, who is one of the drivers, explained.

 

Pedestrian knockdowns according to the data, have reached 580 since the beginning of the year, from 507 in 2017 which is a 14.4 per cent increase.

This situation has been attributed to the inadequate road markings, road signs and for some places faded markings on the road.

 

Authorities observed that a significant number of persons knocked down on the road were below 18 years.

 

“These are probably school kids who are trying to get across to school and other persons who do not know how to use the roads very well,” Mr Asiamah said.

 

Meanwhile, Mr Asiamah says contracts for new road constructions must make an allocation for faded road markings to prevent accidents.

 

The Department of Urban Roads earlier this year awarded a lot of contracts to upgrade most of the roads in Ashanti Region because for close to six years most of the roads within Kumasi were in deplorable conditions.

 

Vehicles involved in accidents during the period are 2,970 in 2018, rising from 2,527 in 2017, which represents a 17.5 per cent increase. The data also revealed that persons injured from road traffic accidents in 2018 are 2,098, which also represent a 30 per cent increased from 1,607 in 2017.

 

“It is something that we should all pull our resources together. We must ensure that we fix our roads then ensure that our vehicles are also in proper shape. We are approaching Christmas, normally, few months to Christmas is when we have more crashes but now that we have 286 in the first ten months of the year, We don’t want to wait till 24th before we intensify our education. As soon as possible, we should sit down with the police, DVLA to re-strategize,” he said.

 

The Commission advised that everyone must be road-safety conscious.

 

According to Mr Asiamah, a visit to the Emergency Unit at the Komfo Anokye Teaching Hospital revealed that out of every 10 cases, between 7 and 9 were motorcycle accident related.

 

He appealed to motorcycle riders to exercise restraint, be cautious and not put other pedestrians at risk.

 

“Often, [a pedestrian] has to virtually beg the driver to stop for him or her to cross the road though it should have been the other way round. The pedestrian is more vulnerable and drivers must protect those on foot. Most often drivers fail to adhere to people trying to cross the road,” Mr Asiamah urged.

 

 

Story: James APPIAKORANG JNR., KUMASI, ASHANTI REGION

 

Source: Political

Minister backs Kaufman’s position on SHS curriculum

 

Deputy Minister of Education, Dr Yaw Adutwum, has made a critical appraisal of Ghana’s senior high school (SHS) curriculum, describing it as a major impediment to innovation.

The minister was reacting to comments that Ghanaian science students usually have knowledge about theories and none or limited knowledge about practical training.

Renowned Hostess of the National Science and Maths Quiz, Dr Elsie Kaufmann, lamented that students she has come into contact with were unable to translate the theories and ideas into meaningful innovations.

“They [SHS students] are the best and the brightest, and yet something is wrong with their education because they’re not able to translate all those theories, wonderful ideas and foundation into useful outcomes,” she sad on the KSM Showa late evening TV show.

 

She revealed that the 2018 winners of the National Maths and Science Quiz failed a global competition because although they were brilliant science students, they could not recognise the equipment at the global event.

“They didn’t understand it because they couldn’t even understand and recognize how the equipment they were given worked. The young man said they can tell you everything about the theories, they can describe and explain everything but they cannot apply anything,” she said.

A short video of Dr Kaufmann, who is also a Biomedical Engineering Lecturer at the University of Ghana, making the comments published on Facebook has generated a debate, perhaps for the umpteenth time, about Ghana’s education system.

When Dr Adutwum appeared on Joy FM yesterday, to make known his Ministry’s position on the education debate, he described the situation as unfortunate and called for a major revolution.

“We box them (SHS students) into these boxes called Visual Arts, and Science and General Arts, that is the worse form of curriculum you can give to high school students. Because when those students are growing up from Junior High School, what does she know to say I want to do Home Economics? And we tell them that once you do that that is the door of no return.

“Because when you do Visual Arts in this country what happens to you? Either you go to the university to do a Bachelor of Arts. Or if you did Elective Mathematics then you have a chance of doing Architecture and that is it,” he stated.

A better system would be one that gives students a well-rounded education possible.

“All science students should be able to do Visual Arts and Performing Arts. That is what is going to bring about the innovation,” he said.

He warned that if Ghana leaves the assessment of its students to the West African Examination Council (WAEC), the main examination body for Ghana, Nigeria, Sierra Leone and The Gambia, rote learning will only intensify.

“Why are we surprised that the children are doing rote learning? Because that is how you get to the university; that is how you pass the exams…” he said.

He explained that there was a holistic national curricula reform currently ongoing. The process, he said, will be completed in September 2019 for implementation to begin.

The deputy minister further revealed the National Council for Curricula Assessment (NACCA) was currently holding stakeholder consultations to change the high school and junior high school aspects in the curriculum.

 

 

Story: Kofi OWUSU TAWIAH

Writer’s email: kofi.tawiah@todaygh.com

Source: Political