NPA’s Arrogance or Economics?

On the eve of the New Year, 2015, the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) announced a reduction in ex-pump prices of petroleum products by 10% across board. This was not without drama. Most of the headlines that followed the announcement pointed to price reduction under duress. A number of civil society organizations and political parties put pressure on NPA to reduce the prices due to reasons such as the oil price crush and relative stability in the value of the local Ghanaian currency. Some of the organizations threatened public demonstrations against NPA and the Government; a situation that was expected considering that petro-politics is a feature of petroleum pricing in most parts of the world.

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FITCH Rating’s latest report on Ghana lays particular emphasis on the importance of Ghana’s democracy and stability to the country’s economic prospects. Whiles it gives a negative outlook based on how the economy is being run, Fitch makes the point that Ghana’s credit rating has not, however, fallen below ‘B’ because of the country’s “strong governance record and recent democratic history,” and that, this is “reflected in Ghana’s ability to attract foreign direct investment, which at 7% of GDP is well above that of Nigeria, Gabon, Zambia, Kenya and Angola.”

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Public policy and governance think tank, the Danquah Institute has expressed grave concern about the Electoral Commission's decision to register all persons in the country who, simply, are in possession of identity cards issued by the National Health Insurance Authority.

At a press conference organised by DI last week, a fellow of the institute, Mr. Boakye Agyarko, explained that “one of the objects of the National Health Insurance Authority” as captured on the NHIA’s website which states that “persons not resident in the country but who are on a visit to this country” can obtain NHIS cards is deeply worrying.

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The attention of the Danquah Institute has been drawn to a story making the rounds on social media and now on www.ghanaweb.com, as well, titled “Danquah Institute predicts 64.7% win for Kwabena Agyepong.”

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Other Stories

Tullow statement out clarifies what is going on in Ghana
Tullow Oil plc (Tullow) issues the following Interim Management Statement, for the period 1 July to 14 November 2012, in accordance with reporting requirements of the EU Transparency Directive. The Group will announce its full year Trading Statement and Operational Update on 11 January 2013. Full year results will be announced on 13 February 2013.
The Conservative Alliance Network (CAN) is calling on Ghana’s new President, John Dramani Mahama to make his position clear on the outcome of the petition filed by three leaders of the New Patriotic Party at the Supreme Court. It will be recalled that the NPP is at the Supreme Court contesting the Electoral Commission’s declaration of President John Mahama as winner of the 2012 presidential election.
This report provides institutional assessment of the Electoral Commission of Ghana (hereinafter EC). The assessment was conducted in the period of July-August 2015 under the UNDP-funded project “Conduct of an Institutional Assessment and the Development a Strategic Plan for the Electoral Commission of Ghana”. Full Report
Danquah Institute Gets New Executive Director
The Governing Board of the Danquah Institute announces the appointment of Nana Attobrah Quaicoe as the new Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, effective September 1, 2015.
Afari Gyan Caught on Pink Sheet Serial Numbers
Dr. Kwadwo Afari Gyan, Chairman of the Electoral Commission on Monday found it extremely difficult to defend the rationale for the occurrence of pink sheets with same serial numbers and the printing of two sets of pink sheets as contained in the response of the Eectoral commission to the 2nd amended petition and as had been stated by the Electoral Commissioner himself while in the witness box.
Research International Opinion Poll - March 2011
The results showed a 15% discrepancy between the percentage who claimed to have voted and the actual outturn in 2008. This result is not surprising in view of the general tendency among Ghanaians to over-claim. This is a typical therefore one must always tamper claims with a little bit of caution, whether it is in the consumption of products or relationship to things or individuals. Therefore, the near 90% respondents who said they would vote in 2012 must be looked at carefully since the average over the past three elections is no where near 80%. Click here for full details of report
Biometric Identification Machine Failure and Electoral Fraud in a Competitive Democracy
We study election fraud in a competitive but not fully consolidated multiparty democracy. Results from a randomized field experiment are used to investigate the effectiveness of newly-introduced biometric identification machines in reducing election fraud in Ghana’s December 2012 national elections. We uncover a non-random pattern to the frequent breakdowns of the equipment. In polling stations with a randomly assigned domestic election observer, machines were about 50 percent less likely to experience breakdown as they were in polling stations without observers. We also find that electoral competition in the parliamentary race is strongly associated with greater machine breakdown. Machine malfunction in turn facilitated election fraud, including overvoting, registry rigging, and ballot stuffing, especially where election observers were not present. Our results substantiate that partisan competition may promote election fraud in a newly-established competitive democracy. They also show that domestic election observers improve election integrity through direct observation and also thanks to their second-order effects on election administration. Full Publication
(PANA)-- African foreign ministers meeting on Thursday, January 27,eugene came under pressure from foreign partners on the need to correct the continent’s electoral flaws that have precipitated the kind of post-election crisis in Cote d’Ivoire. Denmark’s Foreign Minister Lene Espersen told the opening session of the AU’s Executive Council meeting that despite overall progress in the field of democratisation, the challenge of organising free and fair elections and lack of proper state institutions constituted a worrying trend in Africa.‘It is unfortunate that recently, we have seen a number of challenges to electoral processes and institutions, latest in Cote d’Ivoire,’ she said.
The Danquah Institute, a policy think tank, has cautioned against plans of the government to return to the discredited old policy of selecting, by discretion, 30% of first year Senior High School students from catchment areas. While welcoming the policy to ensure that the local people are given a special allocation to schools in their areas, DI disagrees with the discretionary manner the Government intends to have the policy implemented. In his State of the Nation address to Parliament, President JEA Mills said, “We have noted that the rate at which the computerized placement mechanism is blocking access to second cycle education by pupils from basic schools in the catchment area.”
WASHINGTON, March 31, 2011 The Government of Ghana over the past one week has been granted a total of US$295 million by the World Bank Board to support its developmental process. The Land Administration Project-2 (US$50m) was approved today, March 31 2011; whilst the Skills and Technology Development Project (US70m) and Local Government Capacity Support Project (US$175m) were approved on March 29th and March 22nd , 2011 respectively.