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The past eight years have been a disaster for the people of Ghana. Governance standards have slipped and the economy has struggled, making life more difficult for every Ghanaian. Our country, once held up as the gold standard, has fallen markedly behind our peers.

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By the middle of July, the nation expects its sovereign Parliament to debate and vote on the constitutional amendment intended to change the date for holding general elections in Ghana from December 7 to November 7. Since, 1992, when the presidential election was held in November, all subsequent ones were held on December 7. The bill needs both Parliamentary Majority and Minority to agree in order to become law.

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Voter Validation is an exercise aimed at cleaning up the voter register, and is considered to be the only feasible solution at this stage, as a lesser alternative to compiling a whole new register.  The Electoral Commission’s Panel of Experts, the team tasked with making recommendations to Mrs Charlotte Osei and the EC leadership on how to get a credible register for 2016, has told the EC to carry out Validation, because it is at the moment the most viable option for a credible election.

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Other Stories

Decisions of the 15 African Union summit
This weekend, 30 to 31 January 2011, the heads of state of the African Union are holding their 16th AU summit in Addis Ababa. The 15th AU summit held in Kampala, Uganda, from 19 to 27 July, 2010, adopted the following decisions: On the Theme of the Summit: “Maternal, infant and child Health and Development in Africa” adopted actions to be undertaken in various Member State, in particular the actions aimed at attaining the MDGs 4, 5 and 6, including the launching of CARMMA, mobilisation of adequate resources for integrated health programmes up to 15% of national budgets, the sharing of best practices within regions, regular evaluation and reporting of progress achieved by Member States;
DI'S Comments on the Decision of the Parliamentary Select Committee on Finance to Recommend the $1.5Bn STX Agreement for Parliamentary Resolution
Attached is the Report of the Finance Committee of Jul 5, 2010 on the $1.5 billion supplier credit facility between STX Engineering & Construction Ghana Limited and the Government of Ghana for the construction of 30,000 housing units of houses under the Security Services Housing Project. Below are the Danquah Institute's initial comments on the report submitted to the House. Issues identified: (i) DOUBTS ON SOURCE OF FUNDING Although the terms and conditions of the agreement are laid out in certainty. Sources of funding, according to the report, are far from certain. So, who is providing the $1.5 billion supplier's credit facility? In spite of the agreement describing STX Ghana as lender, STX Ghana is, in fact, merely an on-lender to the borrower - the Government of Ghana.
Is Ghana truly the beacon of hope for democracy in Africa?
Ghanaians went to the polls on Friday 7th and Saturday 8th December 2012 to elect an executive President and 275 Parliamentarians for a four year term January 2013 to December 2016. Less than 48 hours after the voting was closed, the caretaker President H.E. John Dramani Mahama of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) was declared a winner with 5,574,761 votes representing 50.70% of the valid votes cast (10,995,262) by the Chairman of the Electoral Commission (EC), Dr Afari Gyan. According to the EC, the flag bearer and presidential candidate of the NPP got 5,248,898 votes representing 47.74% of the total valid vote cast. The total turnout was 80.15% and the elections was held in 26.002 polling stations across the 10 Regions of the country. For some people in and outside Ghana, including this writer, the result was a big surprise. The Economist Newspaper of 15th December 2012 in a short article over the elections wrote that “Mr Mahama’s victory was surprising”. Reasons for the surprise are explained further in the article.
Africa's Chance to Leapfrog the West
You've heard about the African Renaissance, right? The Aid Bosses, once the unquestioned successors in Africa to the joint heirloom of Mother Teresa and Lord Clive of Chennai, are finding it harder and harder to get face time with the political grandees in our wheeling and dealing capitals. The Chinese are fawning all over our oil and copper, forcing once-aloof Westerners to write treatises about why China's engagement with the continent isn't all marshmallow candy.
Inside Obama's Idea Factory in Washington
Amid their self-congratulatory celebrations of the past few weeks, it's easy to forget that Democrats were in a state of absolute despair not so long ago. At the dawn of 2003, the House, the Senate and the White House lay in Republican hands, while the Supreme Court threatened to tilt further to the right. Rep. Tom Delay, then the Republican majority leader, was overheard calling out, while smoking a cigar in a government building, "I am the federal government." If liberals had any hopes of being able to make the same claims in the near future, they knew they needed to be more like conservatives. Wealthy Democrats wanted to have ideological rabble rousers like Rush Limbaugh and activist breeding grounds like the College Republicans to create a new generation of shock troops. But most of all, to have a real shot at regaining control of Washington, they wanted to plot an intellectual coup, spearheaded by an aggressive idea factory like the Heritage Foundation. (See pictures from the historic Election Day.)
President Mahama must name his Vice President
The sudden death of the President of the Republic of Ghana, John Evans Atta Mills, has thrown the entire nation into an understandable state of mourning. Our thoughts and prayers go to his wife and family. Indeed, our hearts are with all Ghanaians as we mourn the passing of our leader. We wish to commend the nation, especially the responsible state institutions and personnel, for our conduct so far, particularly, in the seamless transition within hours of former President Mills’ death that saw power smoothly transferred to his vice president.
Biometric verification in December polls will be
The Managing Editor of the Daily Dispatch newspaper, Ben Ephson has predicted it will be suicidal for the Electoral Commission to implement full electronic voter verification in the December elections. Ben Ephson served the warning on Accra-based Radio Gold’s Power Drive morning show on Wednesday and according to him, voter verification would not be a panacea to vote rigging or electoral fraud in the December 7 polls.
Mitt Romney's poor judgment is already undermining his candidacy
Finally, Obama's opponent has been confirmed, but can the Republican nominee mount an effective challenge? I doubt you will ever find a politician more desperate to believe Nietzsche's aphorism that whatever doesn't kill us makes us stronger than Mitt Romney. With former Pennsylvania senator Rick Santorum announcing that he is suspending his presidential campaign, it ensures what many political observers have assumed for quite some time – that Mitt Romney will be the Republican nominee for president this autumn.
What Makes Countries Rich or Poor?
The fence that divides the city of Nogales is part of a natural experiment in organizing human societies. North of the fence lies the American city of Nogales, Arizona; south of it lies the Mexican city of Nogales, Sonora. On the American side, average income and life expectancy are higher, crime and corruption are lower, health and roads are better, and elections are more democratic. Yet the geographic environment is identical on both sides of the fence, and the ethnic makeup of the human population is similar. Read full article
Mike Ocquaye calls for bi-partisan inquiry into Vikileaks
Former Member of Parliament for Dome Kwabenya constituency, Prof Mike Ocquaye, has called for a Parliamentary nquiry into comments made by sacked Deputy Communication Minister, Victoria Hammah, on a leaked tape. Prof Ocquaye who is also a former Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament said Parliament is mandated to enquire into allegations of corruption such as those made by Victoria Hammah. Miss Hammah said on the leaked tape that has gone viral since last week that the Minister of Gender, Women and Social Protection played a key role in the August 25 ruling of the Supreme Court Judges on the 2012 Election Petition.