The Let My Vote Count Alliance has taken due notice of the decision by President John Dramani Mahama to appoint Mrs. Charlotte Osei, 42, as Chairperson of the Electoral Commission (EC) of Ghana. We wish to greet her with this clarion message: NO NEW REGISTER NO VOTE IN 2016!

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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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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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I was glad to read the announcement made by World Bank President, Dr. Jim Kim, at the start of this year’s UN General Assembly meetings, about the Bank’s projected financing support through the end of 2015 to help developing countries reach the Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) for women and children’s health. As we move toward the culmination of the MDGs in 2015 and beyond, preventing maternal and child deaths should be seen by all government delegations and their partners in the international development community as a clear yardstick to measure their commitment for creating more just and inclusive societies. But as evidence has shown across the globe, to effectively address the insidiousness of this challenge, a broad multi-sectoral paradigm for action is needed. In some countries, particularly in resource-poor settings and among certain population groups, there are social and cultural norms that need to be better understood to deal with myths and misconceptions surrounding pregnancy, childbirth and proper care of the newborn. There are also geographical barriers, as in rural communities high in the Andean mountains of my native Ecuador, or in the Caucasus mountain range in Georgia and Azerbaijan, where the poor state of roads in a challenging terrain, or the unavailability of transport to a health facility, contribute to preventable maternal deaths.
Fraud and corruption is costing Britain £30 billion a year
It is almost 25 years since the Roskill Report published its radical recommendations for improving the way complex fraud, corruption and financial market crimes are tackled. In that time the complexity of business transactions and the amount of activity in financial markets have both increased dramatically.
Hundreds of Congo's registered voters may be fake
For several weeks now, accusations have been flung back and forth between the election commission and the opposition about the voter register, a database of around 32 million voters that identifies those eligible to vote in the November elections. The stakes are potentially huge, as if the register is rigged, it will be difficult for observers at the polling stations to identify fraud. The report is a confidential document written in early August by Zetes, a Belgian company contracted by the Congolese government to issue biometric voters cards.
STOP PEDDLING RUMOURS ABOUT THE JUDGES GABBY WARNS NDC, NPP
The Executive Director of the Danquah Institute has cautioned the general public, especially the two main political parties, against peddling rumours that attack the integrity of the nine justices sitting on the presidential election petition trial. The Statesman has learnt that all manner of unfounded rumours are being peddled about against the judges, including allegations of bribery, as the nation braces itself for the decision of the court, expected to be delivered by 29th August, 2013.
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.
So Who Are The Real Property-Owning Democrats?
Last week I wrote, "As an ardent believer of a property-owning democracy and a fierce critic of the shameful, lackluster commitment that the NPP showed in realizing this -- its philosophy -- when it was in office for 8 years, my initial reaction was one of great excitement to the news that a public-private-partnership was going to add 200,000 new, decent, affordable homes to the local housing stock. I greeted the news with some chuffy grin of irony: it took a so-called capitalist party to implement a health insurance policy and it is taking a so-called social democratic party to democratize property ownership." The NPP's founding father, the great man, Joseph Boakye Danquah, saw it as the patriotic duty of the party in government “to liberate the energies of the people for the growth of a property-owning democracy in this land, with right to life, freedom and justice, as the principles to which the Government and laws of the land should be dedicated in order specifically to enrich life, property and liberty of each and every citizen.”
Ghana Sits on Borrowed Money & Borrowed Time
The World Bank Ghana Country Office’s Conference Room was the scene of lively discussions and startling revelations on Friday last week (18th June 2010). It emerged in a fascinating exchange between senior officials of the Ministry of Finance (past and present) and the country program manager of the Bank, Katherine Bain, that considerable amounts of monies approved for various projects in the country were still sitting idly in various accounts at the Ministry, several months after they were earmarked for disbursement towards critical development projects.
List of successful coup d'etats in Africa
Coup leaders must seize and hold central authority for at least one week to be considered a “successful” coup d’etat. The names of coup “leaders” listed are those named in reports, accusations, and/or subsequent trials. The date of the coup event is the beginning date for successful or attempted coups and the date of announcement for discovered coup plots and coup allegations. Click here for full report
Ghana gives up on $10bn housing deal with STX
Ghana is seeking "alternatives" to a 200,000-unit housing deal it struck with South Korean conglomerate STX Corp. after failed negotiations over the details, President John Atta Mills said on Monday.The deal, initially announced in 2009, was estimated to be worth $10 billion. "We have some difficulties with the STX project and as a president, I am eating a humble pie to say that we are looking for alternatives," Mills said at a press conference.
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press, we have called you here to inform the good people of Ghana through you about developments in Parliament regarding the STX housing project. You will recall that on Thursday, July 15, 2010, the NDC government through it’s Parliamentary representatives withdrew from the floor of the House a motion to approve of A Supplier’s Credit Agreement Between the Government of Ghana and STX Engineering and Construction Ghana Limited for an amount of US$1,525,443,468 for the construction of 30,000 units of houses for the security services in Ghana. This withdrawal was ostensibly occasioned by arguments proffered by the Minority side which had started to debate the motion on Wednesday, July 14, 2010. We are here today to tell Ghanaians the reasons why the Minority was asking Parliament to reject the proposal placed before it at the instance of Professor Mills, since the agreement came by Executive approval and not Cabinet approval. It is critically important to let the good people of Ghana know this because, as you may recollect, of the seven people that the Minority had lined up for the debate only two people spoke before the government beat a hasty retreat.