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At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election? – A Plus to Akufo-Addo

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At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election?

At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election? – A Plus to Akufo-Addo

At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election? Although he campaigned for Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo during the 2016 elections, A Plus seems to be losing hope in the president as he posits that the country’s leader is now focused on retaining power rather than being tough in his fight against activities bedeviling the nation.

In the wake of concerns by the Forestry Commission that some powerful members of the ruling party are behind illegal mining (galamsey) in forest reserves, Kwame Asare Obeng, as the political activist is known in real life, argues that the president “has also become an ordinary Ghanaian politician who only thinks about the next election and not the next generation.”

He is of the view that the president, instead of succumbing to the wrongs, should rather be resolute and change the narrative for the sake of posterity.

“At your age, what will happen if you save the environment and lose an election?” he asks. “Your maker will reward you better if u save the environment and lose the election than to win an election, ride in a convoy around the country with police and military, fly around the world with 12 million dollars in 9 months to speak English like ‘akoo te brofo’ at conferences.”

In August 2017, a combined team of military and police personnel tasked with the aim of stamping out illegal mining activities in the country was inaugurated.

The president at the time said his decision to wage war on galamsey, was one he does not regret and was prepared to see through till the end.

During an interaction at Breman Asikuma in the Central region, president Akufo-Addo reiterated that he was committed to safeguarding the environment for the present and future generations even if it would cost him his bid for a second term.

“Some young men were not happy. Some insulted and vilified me, threatening to vote against me in 2020. But what I did was to protect the environment and do what God told me will be best for Ghana. I will not think about the implications it will have on elections,” he remarked.

Two years on and A Plus has observed the president is failing to keep his promise. He alleges in a social media post on Tuesday that some bigwigs of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) are involved in galamsey, daring them to swear by a deity to prove their innocence.

He says: “When government formed ‘Operation Vanguard’ to fight galamsey (illegal mining), I thought they were serious about the protection of our environment. Little did I know they were only using the force to steal mining concession, confiscate gold and equipment from locals and jail landowners just to pave way for some few NPP big men to take over and do worse to the environment than before.

“We were all in this country when the deputy speaker of parliament, a lawmaker for that matter suggested that people suspected of engaging in illegal mining must be shot and killed on the spot without trial. If I meet him, I’ll give him a gun and a list of Big NPP guys who are now suspected NPP galamsey kingpins.

“As I type, galamsey is back in full swing, led by members of the same government which wanted to use the shoot to kill approach to end it. Go to any galamsey community and they will give you their names. I want the president to call them and ask them to swear by Antoa or Nogokpo (bible takes too long) if they are not the new ‘Lords’ of galamsey in this country.”

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Speaker Alban Bagbin travels again to Dubai for medical checks

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Alban Bagbin

Speaker Alban Bagbin travels again to Dubai for medical checks

The Speaker of Parliament, Rt. Hon. Alban Bagbin is scheduled to travel to the United Arab Emirates (Dubai) again for his due medical review.

In a letter to President Akufo-Addo, the Speaker explained that his trip for another medical review was due on January 7, 2022.

“I am writing to inform you of my absence from Ghana from Friday, 7 January 2022 till Sunday 23, 2022 in order to honour an appointment for a medical review in the United Arab Emirates.”

“It is also important to bring to your attention that the House will resume its sittings for the First Meeting of the Second Session of the 8th Parliament on Tuesday 25 January 2022,” the letter from the Speaker’s Office noted.

Speaker Bagbin also informed the President that “prior to the resumption of the House, Parliament intends to undertake a Covid-19 (booster) vaccination exercise for Members of Parliament and Officers of the Parliamentary Service.”

Copy of the Speaker’s letter to Prez. Akufo-Addo;

alban bagbin's letter to Akufo-addo

Alban Bagbin was in UAE in November 2021, for similar medical check-ups.

Meanwhile, Parliament will be resuming the controversial debate on the 1.75% Electronic Transaction Levy (E-Levy) which has divided the House and caused massive uproar amongst Ghanaians.

The E-Levy approval is expected to rake in a little above ¢6 billion in tax revenue for the country.

This month [January 2022] we will go back to the floor of Parliament with the E-Levy and ensure that it gets passed by the end of the month,” Minister of State at the Finance Ministry, Charles Adu-Boahen said during the investiture of the newly elected president of the Association of Ghana Industries, Humphrey Anim-Dake.

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Data from SIM card re-registration is bogus; we advised them to stop – NIA Boss

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Data from SIM card re-registration is bogus

Data from SIM card re-registration is bogus; we advised them to stop – NIA Boss

Photos of letters signed by the Executive Secretary of the National Identification Authority (NIA) in response to the National Communications Authority (NCA) regarding the commencement of the SIM Card re-registration reveal NIA’s initial rejection of the move since September 2021.

The Executive Secretary of NIA, Prof. Kenneth Attafuah has described the so-called biometric data being collected by the various telecommunication companies in the ongoing SIM card re-registration as useless.

In the letter, Professor Kenneth Attafuah, and his outfit cannot confirm that the data being collected by the telcos “will meet the standard to enable successful verification against the National Identification System (NIS) database.”

The letter was in response to a request for information to ascertain the synergy between the NIA data collection and the exercise being conducted by the telcos as being championed by the Communications Ministry through NCA.

“NIA is unable to confirm that the biometric data to be collected by the NCA for the purpose described above will meet the standard to enable successful verification against the National Identification System (NIS) database,” portion of the letter stated.

“The use of an App that is not developed or certified by NIA to rend the Ghana Card using a two-step data collection and verification process is outside NIA’s control. NIA is, therefore, unable to guarantee the results of such a process.”

Data from SIM card re-registration is bogusData from SIM card re-registration is bogusData from SIM card re-registration is bogus

Scanned copies of the letters dated September 2021 were first shared by one Selorm Branttie, Vice President at Imani Center for Policy & Education who doubles as Global Strategy Director at mPedigree Network, on his Facebook timeline.

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Nigeria commits to pay off US$28.7 million capital arrears in Shelter Afrique

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Nigeria Finance Minister Dr Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed and Shelter Afrique MD Andrew Chimphondah

Abuja – January 11, 2022: The Federal Republic of Nigeria has pledged to pay the full capital arrear of US$28.7m in Shelter Afrique, Nigeria’s Finance Minister Dr. Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed disclosed at a meeting with Shelter Afrique Group Managing Director and CEO Mr. Andrew Chimphondah in Abuja.

The Minister further disclosed that the payment will be made in four installments starting January 2022.

In September 2020, the pan African housing development financier received US$$9.4 million from Nigeria. The contribution moved Nigeria to become the second-largest shareholding in the organization with 13.27% of the shareholding, behind Kenya with 17.78%, and ahead of the AfDB at 12.83%.

Lauding the government of Nigeria for its show of confidence in the institution and a stamp of approval for the organisation’s financial turnaround, Mr. Andrew Chimphondah said, “This is a major milestone which is set to propel Nigeria to become the largest shareholder in Shelter-Afrique when the country meets its capital commitment. This is a strong testament of the strong shareholder commitment and support of the Shelter Afrique Board and Management.”

Housing Bond

Shelter Afrique is planning to raise 250 Billion Naira Bond (US$500million) in 2022 to support its affordable housing projects in Nigeria. The Company is set to commence the road shows with prospective investors in January 2022 and is expected to conclude fundraising by end of February.

Shelter Afrique has embarked on a defined strategy of developing and deepening local capital markets so that access to local currency which is competitively priced can be made available to Nigerian Developers from the Real Estate Developers Association of Nigeria (REDAN), Large Developers and Tier 1 and Tier 2 Banks and Primary Mortgage Lenders. The significance of this is that Shelter-Afrique will have been successful in dealing with the foreign exchange exposure risks that have crippled many African countries caused by the weakening of local African currencies against hard currencies such as the United States Dollar and the British Pound Sterling,” Mr. Chimphondah said.

Thanking the Finance Minister Dr. Zainab Shamsuna Ahmed for supporting the Bond Issue by the approvals received on critical waivers from the Ministry of Finance, Mr. Chimphondah noted that Nigeria was a critical and strategic market for Shelter Afrique, adding that the fund realized from the bond issue will go a long way in address the affordable housing shortage in the country, now estimated at 17 Million Units against the continent’s 56 million units.

“As a response to addressing this housing shortage, Shelter Afrique will implement a transformative strategy that will crowd in additional capital funding into the low cost large scale affordable housing market in a commercially viable manner,” Mr. Chimphondah concluded.

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