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Elections are around the corner in both America and Ghana and the airwaves are filled with spin. In the United States, former pizza mogul Herman Cain’s campaign is over due to accusations relating to womanizing and harassment.

Here in Ghana, every few days, there are accusations about the moral failings of one candidate or another. There are charges of womanizing, homosexuality, drug use and lack of smarts.

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An Accra High Court (Cocoa Affairs, Court 11) presided over by His Lordship Patrick Baayeh has handed down a heavy judgement on the National Petroleum Authority (NPA) and Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) in a case in which three plaintiffs accused the NPAand TOR of inflating fuel prices and using the money for hidden purposes. more>>

The Executive Director of the Danquah Institute Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko is mocking government’s attempt to reverse the falling standards in education. Results released by the West African Examination Council show that over half of the students who sat for this year’s Basic Education Certificate Exams failed and could not proceed to the Second Cycle Education.

It is reported to be the worst performance in 13 years.

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THINK OF the revolutions in the Middle East as Act 1 in a five-act play that may not conclude for a generation or more. Nearly a year since protests in Tunisia ignited a regional wave of reform and revolt, the euphoria and hope of last January has turned to frustration and cynicism as Egyptians battle their military government in Cairo and sectarian war in Syria intensifies.

The Arab world may be heading for an unpredictable and violent Act 2 in 2012.

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Other Stories

Mustapha Hamid appointed Executive Director of Danquah Institute
The Board of Governors of the Danquah Institute have appointed Mustapha Abdul Hamid as acting Executive Director of the Danquah Institute, the Accra-based policy and governance think tank. Mustapha Hamid takes over from Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko who is leaving the country to undertake research work abroad.
Drug Trafficking: Has it really been reduced?
The Danquah Institute has questioned the validity of the claims from the Presidency that the incidence of drug trafficking in the country has been reduced. Even though President Mills during his campaign pledged to vigorously fight the menace, the reported shortage of drugs by the Narcotics Control Board (NACOB) last week can not be simply explained as the result of increased efforts by the government and security agencies.Nana Attobrah Quaicoe, Head of Research at the Danquah Institute remarked: “Governance is essentially about policies, legislations and enforcements and not mere indications or speculations; it is particularly worrying because it is difficult to point at any new policy or legislation of the new government in this regard. There is no statistics to back the claims, no coast guards nor sniffer dogs at border post and indeed we don’t even know of any increment in budgetary allocation to NACOB.”
Ace Ankomah explains to all ye lay men why Woyome-gate stinks
There are a lot of things flying all around and above us about a man whose name has over the past few months become a noun, a verb, an adjective and any other literary device you may want to attribute it to. I had frankly never heard the name Woyome until the Chronicle blew the lid over some gargantuan amount (with all due respect and the succinct permission of a certain Martin Amidu) to the whole nation. All kinds of people, most of whom have absolutely no background in law nor finance to investigate or the journalism skill to piece together all of the numbers and laws for us all to understand, have been on air, on TV, on social media all seeking to exonerate government or make government look like a bunch of criminals out to dupe Ghana.
Press Release: Bank of Ghana sanctions Access Bank and 5 Forex Bureaus for breaches of Foreign Exchange Act
The Bank of Ghana has decided to take action on a number of irregularities in the conduct of foreign exchange transfers by a bank and a number of forex bureaux. Access Bank Ghana Limited engaged in the externalization of various sums in favour of a company which had no account relationship with the bank and, in another instance, in favour of a company without any documentation. The transfers were made without the documentation required by the Foreign Exchange Act and Guidelines.
Site for Upper West Regional hospital covered by weeds
A visit to the proposed site for the construction of the Upper West Regional Hospital, in Wa, by Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia and a team of media men indicates that nearly two years after the sod was cut for construction of the Hospital to begin, not even a single block has been laid on the site.Despite assurances by President Mahama almost three months ago that funding had been fully secured for construction of the hospital to begin, and the project completed within a few months, the site for the proposed hospital has been completely taken over by weeds.
Press Release: Bank of Ghana’s response to allegations of illegal money transfers into Ghana
The attention of the Bank of Ghana has been drawn to reports in the media about illegal money transfer activities. The Daily Graphic of August 11, 2011 carries a story to the effect that the Bank of Ghana, the regulatory authority, did not appear to be attaching the requisite relevance and urgency to the growing threat of unregistered foreign exchange transactions to the nation’s balance of payments and finances. Another story in the Daily Guide, also of August 11, 2011 under the caption ‘Money Laundering booms’ reached a similar conclusion with advice to the Bank of Ghana to proactively promote the operations of formal transfer methods and act against illegal methods as well as consider allowing MTOs to transmit money out of Ghana as a solution to the growing menace.
AU must move away from automatic membership, says Akufo-Addo
The 2012 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says the African Union must move away from granting automatic membership to African countries solely based on geography but rather on the strict adherence to certain fundamental democratic principles. These democratic principles that member countries need to demonstrate, according to Nana Addo, include a commitment to strengthening and protecting the institutions and culture of democratic governance; respecting human rights, religious freedom, and the rights of the individual and minorities; building functioning market economies and facilitating the free movements of people, knowledge, goods and services across member states.
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.
FACTBOX: Political risks to watch in Ghana
The start of commercial oil production in 2010 has helped promote Ghana into the ranks of the world's lower middle-income nations, fuelling hopes of ending a dependence on aid and forging a future as one of Africa's star economies. While President John Atta Mills's government is seen to have done well in knocking public finances into shape since 2008, elections are due in December and the country's deficit is being strained by a high wage and fuel subsidy bill. The Bank of Ghana is tightening monetary policy to fend off mounting inflation pressures and stabilise the sliding cedi currency.
The Danquah Institute has predicted that Government is "very likely" to miss its revised end-of-year inflation target of 14.5%, despite projections by the highly reputable Centre for Policy Analysis (CEPA) that inflation could fall to 14.2% by the end of December. The institute also fears that World Bank prediction that another 500,000 Ghanaians would fall below the poverty line by 2010 “may be alarmingly conservative, considering subsequent unimpressive economic indicators since that prediction was made in June.”