The Republic of Ghana benefits from strong GDP growth, strengthening oil production volumes, and a track record of political stability. However, it continues to suffer from weak fiscal management highlighted by a widening of the fiscal deficit in 2010 and increased supplier arrears.

We are therefore affirming our 'B/B' foreign- and local-currency sovereign credit ratings on the Republic of Ghana. The stable outlook balances our view of the country's strong growth prospects and track record of political stability against its weak payment culture and fiscal challenges.

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Figures from the West African Examinations Council show that the pass-rate of students who sat for the Basic Education Certificate Examination has been on a constant downward decline since 2009. In sum, out of the total number of 1,121,817 students who sat for the BECE in the past three years, 574,688 failed to achieve the pass mark.

This means that more than half a million young people, with an average age of 15 years, have been thrown onto the streets with no employable skills in the past three years alone.

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A national opinion poll conducted by international market research organization, Synovate, has the 2012 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, 5 percentage points ahead of his closest rival, President JEA Mills, Presidential Candidate of the ruling National Democratic Congress, in the run up to the 2012 general elections.

However, if elections were held today Nana Akufo-Addo would lead but still fall short of the more than 50% mark required for outright victory. The opinion poll carried out in September this year surveyed a total of 1,723 respondents.

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The World Bank has urged Ghanaians to expand public discussions on the controversial record loan facility from China to focus more on interrogating the efficient use of the funds and the nature and scope of the projects selected in order to achieve the desired national development results.

Speaking at a public forum on the $3 billion Chinese Development Bank loan for infrastructural development, organized by the Danquah Institute, the resident Chief Economist of the World Bank, Sebastien Dessus, has called for a competent assessment of infrastructural projects to ensure that Ghana consistently gets value for money and that such investment spending does not disturb future national budgets and the country’s ability to pay off its debts.

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Other Stories

 Ghana cocoa's reputation at risk
Concerns over Ghana's management of its cocoa sector, hit by a surprise crop failure this season, have undermined its relationship with the industry and threaten its reputation as the world's premier supplier of top-quality beans, traders said.
Are Danquah-Busiasts Really Elitist?
In 1949, J B Danquah of the United Gold Coast Convention said “independence in the shortest possible time.” Kwame Nkrumah countered that with the scream “independence now!” Nkrumah’s shout resonated with the masses of the Gold Coast and within one year, Nkrumah had used the nucleus of the party he was invited from the United Kingdom to help organise, to set himself up as the popular leader of the independence struggle. Eventually, it took another 8 years for Ghana to gain independence from the United Kingdom, and only becoming a republic in 1960.
On two definitions of over-voting and ballot accounting
In challenging the validity of President John Mahama's election, the NPP has leveled five main allegations of electoral malpractices and irregularities against the Electoral Commission of Ghana (hereafter EC). One of these allegations is over-voting. There are two definitions of over-voting in elections. Over-voting occurs when (a) the number of votes cast exceeds the number of registered voters (call this the first definition), and/or (b) the number of votes cast exceeds the number of ballots issued to voters (call this the second definition). These are definitions of the incidence or occurrence of over-voting. It appears that the NDC believes that the first definition is the only valid definition of over-voting. For example, the General-Secretary of the NDC, Mr. Johnson Asiedu Nketia, in his affidavit observed that: Full Document
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.
It would be correct to say that a number of the policies and actions of democratic governments in the world often run counter to the wishes and desires of a great majority of the people in the nation. This is because those policies and actions are adopted by the government and some lawmakers that comprise a relatively few people, thus exclusive of the inputs, preferences, and wishes of a large majority of the people. It is not enough, surely, for the people to be included—and to participate--only in the periodic election of those who are to govern and to make laws for the state. The consequences of the exclusion of large segments of the population from the decisions of the government that affect the lives of the people have been public demonstrations to protest government policy and action and to indicate the preferences of the people. Political conflict, violence, rancor, and misunderstanding have also resulted from the exclusion of the people from decisions and choices of their government.
Kenya Election Results: Uneasy Calm After Court Ruling On Vote
Kenyan police deployed forces Sunday in the capital and the lakeside city of Kisumu to contain the continuing threat of violence after five people were killed in riots Saturday, officials said, but the country remained mostly peaceful after a court upheld Uhuru Kenyatta's election as president. Rowdy youths in Nairobi's slums were still trying to protest the Supreme Court's ruling against Prime Minister Raila Odinga's challenge to the validity of Kenyatta's win, Nairobi police officials said Sunday.
NDC, NPP demand Ayariga inclusion in IEA debate
The governing National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), have demanded the inclusion of People’s National Conventions’ Hassan Ayariga in the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) presidential debate. The two parties told Joy News that IEA was being unfair in expelling Hassan Ayariga without their permission.
The Danquah Institute is organsing a symposium at the University of Ghana on Thursday, 17 September. The theme of the symposium is: Has Ghana a Founder or Founders? The symposium is part of DI's mission to enhance today's generation of Ghanaians' appreciation of the country's history as an essential part of efforts towards nation-building. The symposium is being organised in conjunction with the national secretariat of the Graduate Students Association of Ghana (GRASAG). It will take place at 4pm at the conference hall of the Kwame Nkrumah Complex, Institute of African Studies, University of Ghana, Legon, Accra and feature speakers and historians from different ideological traditions.
PRESS RELEASE: KENYA GOES E-VOTING IN 2012, AS GHANA DITHERS
Kenya, keen on preventing the kind of violence that followed the general election of December 2007, has resorted to the introduction of electronic voting for the 2012 general election. Kenyan politicians, civil society and the Interim Independent Electoral Commission (IIEC) of Kenya have all committed the destiny of the East African country’s democracy to the introduction of electronic voting. Unfortunately, it seems Ghana is waiting for violence to strike before heeding similar calls here for election automation technology. more >>>
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.”