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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Mick MooreTaxation is zipping up the development agenda, but the discussion is often focussed on international aspects such as tax havens or the Robin Hood Tax. Both very important, but arguably, even more important is what happens domestically – are developing country tax systems regressive or progressive? Are they raising enough cash to fund state services? Are they efficient and free of corruption? This absolutely magisterial overview of the state of tax systems in Africa comes from Mick Moore (right), who runs the International Centre for Tax and Development (ICTD). It was first published by the Africa Research Institute.

Anglophone countries have led the way in reforming tax administration in Africa, considerably more so than their francophone peers. The reasons for this are numerous. Networks of international tax specialists are based mainly in English-speaking countries. Many of the modern systems that promote best practice within tax authorities were developed in anglophone countries, especially Australia. International donors, and particularly the UK’s Department for International Development (DFID), have directly and indirectly promoted a lot of reform of national tax authorities. In fact, this has been one of the success stories of British aid.

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You are welcome to this Press briefing. The Monetary Policy Committee (MPC) held its 58th meeting on November 25 to 27, 2013 to review the latest economic developments and the monetary policy stance. I present to you the outcome of the deliberations.

The latest projections by the IMF indicate a pickup in the pace of global activity from 2.9 percent in 2013 to 3.6 percent in 2014, driven largely by the advanced economies with the impulse to global growth expected to come mainly from the United States against weaker prospects in emerging market economies.

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As the 20th anniversary of the birth of democracy in South Africa, on April 27 2014, approaches, it seems a perfect opportunity to take a step back and get a long-range perspective on the important question: “So, what has Nelson Mandela’s South Africa done with its freedom?”

Goldman Sachs has produced this report in the hope of contributing to- wards a more balanced narrative on South Africa; one, which in the wake of 2012’s tragic events at Marikana, had become somewhat hysterical, short-term and often negative

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Other Stories

Nigeria's Ascendant Oil Industry Faces Host of Pitfalls
Nigeria has decisively reclaimed the mantle of Africa's top oil producer, with rising output and crude prices spurring growth in the continent's most populous country. But the same industry driving the economy—oil—faces a host of challenges. In the next month, Nigeria's national assembly is expected to approve energy legislation that U.S. and European oil executives warn could curtail investment. The presidential election early next year may reignite fresh violence in the Niger Delta, the West African country's main oil region, where Royal Dutch Shell says its pipeline was attacked recently.
 
On Monday, September 16, 2013, the Danquah Institute, in partnership with other civil society groups will hold a symposium at the British Council for jurists and other legal and statistics experts to critique the decision of the Supreme Court in the presidential election petition filed by Nana Akufo-Addo and two others against the election of President John Mahama in the December 2012 election.But, last week, as a panellist on two separate current affairs programmes on radio (Oman FM and Joy FM), I provoked an argument, which will be one of the topics that the legal and analytical minds will delve into at the upcoming symposium.
Unlike Danquah Institute (DI) chief Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, I was not the least bit surprised, much less shocked, by the reported backtracking of the Ghana Real Estate Developers’ Association (GREDA) on its initial protest of the NDC-STX $10 billion scam, purportedly aimed at providing affordable housing to middle- and low-income Ghanaian citizens. I wasn’t surprised because in the published statement released by GREDA and signed by its president, Dr. Alex Tweneboah, the national realtors’ organization emphatically let on its rather capricious tentativeness towards the entire saga. In other words while, indeed, GREDA firmly agrees with the think-tank likes of the Danquah Institute and IMANI, to name just a few, as well as other thoughtful and well-meaning individuals, Dr. Tweneboah makes it patently clear in his press release that absent STX, GREDA would be left absolutely clueless in the negotiations process. What the preceding implies is that GREDA’s overriding concern has more to do with the fact that the association had not initially been invited as a junior partner to STX by the government.
Akufo-Addo promises a society of freedom and responsibility
Sunday, June 12, 2011:- The 2012 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party has stated that the quest to build a modern society for Ghana will depend largely on the citizens of Ghana accepting in equal measure the concepts of both individual liberty and individual responsibility and the authorities having the discipline and conviction to ensure that such an environment thrives without fear or favour. Addressing an international conference of party members in Hamburg, Germany, at the weekend, Nana Akufo-Addo told his audience that for the 2012 campaign he remains committed to the substance of the vision he articulated in 2008, though emphasis may change to respond to prevailing circumstances.
For How Long Shall We Continue this petrol politics?
Alas the recent uncertainty surrounding the pricing of petroleum products appears being resolved. The NDC led government which won the 2008 elections on the back of some populist promises on petroleum pricing has demonstrated some level of boldness. The new government had tied itself by some of its populist campaign messages to the Ghanaian public and voters that petrol could be sold for less than was being sold at the time (Dec. 2008 GHC3.80).It also campaigned that the cost was unbearable for Ghanaians and promised to reduce it drastically when voted into office. But only five months into the new administration, a gallon of petrol is selling for GHC5.00 while a barrel of crude oil is selling for US$68!
OBAMA’S VISIT – WHAT’S IN IT FOR US AND U.S.?
Abstract This article argues that in the excitement surrounding President Obama’s July visit to Ghana, what has been missing is an analysis of what is in it for the United States, an understanding of which is crucial for Ghana if it is to capitalise on the immense opportunity provided by this trip.Highlighting the significance of the deepwater oil find in 2007, the article sets out why Ghana is now the subject of strategic U.S. energy and military interests which, as far as the Obama administration is concerned, has raised the stakes considerably in Ghana–United States relations. As the potential gem in the crown of what Washington terms Africa's ‘New Gulf’, the article highlights how Ghana’s pending oil-rich status will shift the terms of negotiation during the trip.
New constituencies to favour NDC – Kyei Baffour
A former President of the National Association of Local Government Authorities (NALAG), George Kyei Baffour, has underscored the fears of the Danquah Institute, which said the Electoral Commission is being coerced by government to create some more constituencies in its favour. According to the policy think-tank, “Ordinarily, the creation of districts, with its apparent purpose of bringing governance closer to the people, would be welcomed.
"It's not he who casts the votes that matters -- but he who counts the votes." -Joseph Stalin President Obama’s visit to Ghana earlier this year, gave us all as Ghanaians deep pride in our country and in our international reputation. That our small West African nation was chosen as the first in the whole continent to be so honoured since Obama took power was the result of an achievement we have built as a whole people since 1992 in not only the reborn of democracy but successfully warring off the infant mortality that has put paid to too many of our continental contemporaries.
The Partnership of Free Speech & Good Governance in Africa
Freedom of speech is not just valuable as a democratic end in itself. It is strongly linked to popular perceptions of both media effectiveness and good governance, according to new data from Afrobarometer, collected during face-to-face interviews with 51,605 people in 34 countries during 2011-13. People who indicate they are free to say what they think also report higher levels of trust in their leaders, lower levels of corruption, and better government performance – especially greater success in fighting corruption. Greater freedom of expression is also linked to mass media that are more effective in keeping a watchful eye on government. These findings can be interpreted in several ways. It is possible that capable, effective and trustworthy governments also grant greater freedoms to their people and their media.
Accountability and transparency initiatives hav e taken democratisation, governance, aid and development circles by storm since the turn of th e century. Many actors involved with them – as donors, funders, programme managers, implementers and researchers – are now keen to know more about what these initiatives are achieving. This paper arises from a review of the impact and effectiveness of transparency and accountability initiatives which gathered and analysed existing evidence, discussed how it could be improved, and evaluated how impact and effectiveness could be enhanced. This paper takes the discussion further, by delving into what lies behind the methodological and evaluative debates currently surrounding governance and accountability work. It illustrates how choices about methods are made in the cont ext of impact assessment designs driven by different objectives and different ideological and epistemological underpinnings. We argue that these differences are articulated as methodological debates, obscuring vital issues underlying accountability work, which are about power and politics, not methodological technicalities.