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Tema Regional Police Command makes use of drones to monitor activities in Tema and other areas

The Tema Regional Police Command on Thursday launched the use of a drone to monitor crime in the region.
The GH¢7,000.00 worth phantom three drone was personally acquired for the Regional Command by its Commander, Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP) Nana Asomah Hinneh.
The Phantom 3 is very powerful, highly responsive and will fly precisely to your commands.  The integrated gimbal and camera greatly assist you to take professional aerial photos and film. Without doubt, the Phantom 3 is very impressive to fly and film with. It can fly to an altitude of 500 feet
The Phantom 3 flies longer; has a 4k UHD camera; a new Vision Positioning system; stronger GPS signalling and reliability; a totally revamped remote controller; massive improvement in precision flying with much improved responsiveness and performance from both the quadcopter and camera.
The operations of the phantom drones would be controlled by trained personnel and monitored to detect criminal activities in the area.
Drone Pilots from the national command of the Ghana Police Service flew it with two other drones belonging to the Service at Kpone trotro station at Tema Community One, Site 20.
DCOP Hinneh said the drone would mostly be used in the Tema Community One business area, industrial area, Accra-Tema motorway, and the Ashaiman Municipality on a pilot basis.
He added that its operations would be monitored from the Command, to enable them gather and monitor crime for a swift response.
He indicated that it would currently be deployed to the Tema Metropolis during the day due to poor visibility in the night.
Its operations, he added, would subsequently be extended to Ashaiman, Ada, Afienya and other districts especially those with high crime incidence.
Source GNA

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NPP without aid; Blay to lead party venture into transport business

The governing New Patriotic Party would soon be entering the transportation business as an avenue to generate income to run the party at the grassroots.
The acting NPP National Chairman, Freddie Blay, who is seeking election as National Chairman said, he is leading talks with a financial institution to procure 275 buses for nationwide distribution.
Each constituency is to get one bus, he said on Joy FM Super Morning Show Friday and explained, each constituency will hire out the buses to generate income needed for the constituency.
Financing a party is any leader’s biggest headache he said, and pointed out that other parties are collapsing because of a lack of resourcefulness.
The NPP which has won three president elections since Ghana returned to democratic rule in 1992, is not immune to the challenges of other struggling parties.
The NPP, he said, raises money through dues and other fundraising activities. It also depends on donations from individuals and interest groups.
But he said the party must find innovative ways to raise money because “the party is not a church” to depend on charitable spirit of its members and sympathisers.
The procurement of Toyota Hiace buses is one of such innovations he wants to introduce in the party.The cost of a Toyota Hiace bus hovers around $46,000.
The 76-year old politician would not give details but hyped the idea as something even its rival the NDC may like to adopt.
Freddie Blay said the presidency is put under pressure to give appointments or contracts to big-financiers. This, he said, affects the president’s ability to make merit-based appointments.
“We must give space to the presidency” he said, and explained it is the duty of the party to “stop that pressure” on the president to reward campaign financiers.
Freddie Blay has been acting as National Chairman since November 2015 after the elected leader, Paul Afoko, was suspended over what some say are his questionable loyalties to the party.
Freddie Blay entered parliament in 1997 on the seat of the Convention Peoples’ Party (CPP) as MP for Ellembele constituency and was elected Second Deputy Speaker of Parliament from 1997 to 2001.
After 11 years in Parliament, he crossed carpet to the NPP in 2008 and has since enjoyed an unlikely rise in the party.
He was elected First Deputy Speaker of Parliament in 2005 under the NPP government of President John Agyekum Kuffuor but lost his seat in 2008 to the NDC.
The seasoned politician wants to crown his sterling political career by leading the NPP into the 2020 elections.
 
Source: myjoyonline.com

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Issues Emanating From the TOR Saga

It has emerged that the idea of building a new 150,000 to 160,000 barrels-per-day-capacity refinery, after which the existing infrastructure of Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) will be decommissioned and converted into a tank, was discussed as far back as December 13, 2017.
Information gathered by The Finder indicates that Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko discussed the issue with five, out of the eight, members of the TOR board.
The Solicitor Secretary of TOR was also present at the meeting. The agenda of the meeting included courtesy call, sulphur content of TOR products, preparations to restart TOR machines, the state of the refinery, as well as strategic direction of the refinery.
And as part of the strategic direction of the refinery, the building of a new refinery was discussed without opposition from anyone present.
This is in sharp contradiction to comments by the Managing Director of TOR, Isaac Osei, who denied knowledge of any such discussions.
Workers of TOR and the Tema District Council of Labour have descended heavily on Agyarko, accusing him of making the intention public in faraway America without the knowledge of the board, management and staff of the refinery.
According to information, the Minister agreed with the Board of TOR that the refinery needed a new refinery to replace the aged one, built in 1962.

Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko
 
Agyarko asks TOR to look for a partner
Consequently, Agyarko asked TOR to look for a partner to invest in the new refinery for TOR, which would be built next to the existing refinery.
New refinery to cost about $3 billion
According to estimates, the strategic partners are expected to invest between $2 billion and $3 billion to set up the new refinery.
3-4 Years to construct new refinery
It is estimated that the construction of the new refinery would take about three to four years to complete.
TOR will continue to operate throughout the period of construction of the new refinery.
Existing TOR staff to work in new refinery
When completed, all existing staff of TOR would work in the new refinery while more people would be employed as the new refinery is about three times bigger than the capacity of the existing TOR.
After the new refinery, which is expected to process between 150,000 and 160,000 barrels of crude a day is commissioned, it would need a huge tank farm to support the operations of the new refinery.
Decommissioning of old TOR. The proposal is to use the space of the decommissioned old TOR to build the tank farm for the new TOR refinery.
 
Managing Director of TOR, Isaac Osei

New refinery tank farm to hold 4 months’ supply of crude oil

This is critical because the new refinery would need tanks that can store about four months’ supply of crude oil, which translates into about 18 million barrels at any point in time.
120,000 Barrels of crude oil a day
Ghana consumes 120,000 barrels of crude oil per day.
TOR refining 20,000 barrels per day
However, TOR is only able to refine 20,000 barrels of crude oil per day, with the hope of scaling up to 45,000 barrels a day.
100,000 Barrels deficit currently
The current 20,000 barrels per day leaves a deficit of 100,000 barrels of refined products per day the country has to import.
Financial health of TOR
The financial health of TOR is not known as information indicates that the refinery has not submitted any audited accounts for over three years now.
With ageing equipment and small capacity, the profitability of the refinery is in doubt.
 
Source: The Finder

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TEMA: Tema will be safe this raining season, NADMO

The National Disaster Management Organization (NADMO) has assured residents of the Tema Metropolis of a flood free raining season.
Mr Ebenezer Cudjoe, Tema Metropolitan Director of NADMO, told the Ghana News Agency that three major storm drains in the area has been successfully dredged.
Mr Cudjoe said NADMO in collaboration with the Tema Metropolitan Assembly (TMA) dredged the Communities 5, 18 and 20 storm drains which often overflows leading to flooding and threat to life and property in the areas whenever it rained.
He explained that the Community 18 and 20 storm drains carried water from rivers Mamahuma and Onukpa Waahe from Ajirigaano near East Legon in the Greater Accra Region into the Sakumo lagoon and subsequently into the sea.
He added that the Community Five drain also carried flood waters from the area and its environs into the Sakumo lagoon and the sea.
According to him, it was their aim to dredge all major drains that linked the various rivers in and around the Metropolis into the sea adding however that his outfit was waiting for the release of the next tranche of money to fully complete clearing.
Other water bodies that carry rain water through drains in the Metropolis into the sea are Rivers Ozoku, Gbeemi and the Chemu lagoon.
While the Ozoku River connects from the Volta Aluminium Company (VALCO) down into the Chemu Lagoon, river Gbeemi carried water from the Adjie-Kojo under bridge into the Sakumo Lagoon.
The Chemu Lagoon, he added, also carried flood waters from the Tema timber market drain into the sea.
He indicated that all Assembly Members in flood prone areas had been tasked by NADMO through the Assembly to embark on special clean-up exercises targeted at clearing all drains in their areas.
Mr Cudjeo appealed to residents who were fond of dumping their refuse into drains whenever it was about to rain to desist from the act as it also contributed to flooding.
He added that some developers also built on water ways, an act that could spell doom for residents during the raining season saying a resident filled the front of his house at Tema Community Five while another at Lashibi Vivian Farms area walled his house leading to the flooding of houses around them.
He said residents who may be trapped in their homes or in any part of the Metropolis during the rain should call NADMO officials for assistance on the following toll-free numbers; 999, 0202014040, 0299350303, 0299350244, and 0299350620.
The Tema Metropolis has a total of nine flood prone areas with Tema East mostly the Newtown area burdened with eight and Tema central having one.
The flood prone areas are: Chemu lagoon, VALCO down, Zigenshor, waterland, parts of Bankuman, Acheampong village, Abonkor area and storm drain around GTMC, and Community Six SOS down.
The Tema West Municipality has 18 flood prone area which including Community 17 roundabout, Community 18 washing bay joint, Community 20 Awudu Issaka down, Klagon, Sakumono Ramsar site, Abbatoir bridge, Aponkye clinic and Devtraco.
Ten safe havens made available by NADMO in case of flooding in the flood prone areas are Eastern Naval Base, Lighthouse Church -Newtown, Mexico School, Grace Outreach Church, Stanley Business College, Bethel Prayer Camp, St Augustine’s Catholic, George Gunn Int. Academy, Victorious Child Ministry and the Adjei-Kojo public school.
 
Source: GNA

TEMA: Bola Ray donates to SOS village

Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of EIB Network, Nathan Kwabena Anokye Adisi, widely known as Bola Ray, has donated items worth thousands of cedis to the Tema SOS village. The media personality, who doubles as the boss of music record label Empire Entertainment, made the donations on Sunday, April 29, 2018. Bola Ray visited the facility to donate a host of products to aid in the day-to-day care of the children at the facility.
He was joined by a team from EIB Network and Empire Entertainment to donate assorted drinks, bottled water, and many other goodies. The TV and radio presenter also took time to interact with the caretakers of the facility as well as the children under care. He further joined some of the kids to dance, before availing himself to take pictures with all who were present at the donation. Bola Ray actually visits the Tema SOS village every year to make various donations to the children.
Source: Yen.com.gh

New guidelines for placement of candidates into SHSs out

The Computerised Schools Selection and Placement System (CSSPS) has introduced new policy guidelines for the placement of candidates of this year’s Basic Education Certificate Examination (BECE) into senior high schools (SHSs) and technical institutes (TIs).
The policy guidelines, which aim at ensuring the smooth placement of BECE candidates, follow a review of last year’s placement exercise undertaken by the Ministry of Education and the Ghana Education Service (GES).
“We have received some policy guidelines from the Ministry of Education and there is a new paradigm shift from the guidelines that were implemented last year. We are the policy implementors and so whatever comes from the ministry is what we will use,” the National Coordinator of the CSSPS, Mr Mark Sasu-Mensah, told the Daily Graphic in an interview in Accra.
Challenges
He said the improved policy guidelines were developed out of the challenges encountered during last year’s placement exercise.
Giving an explanation of the guidelines, he said all second-cycle school had been grouped into public SHSs, public technical/vocational institutions, private SHSs and private technical/vocational institutions.
“Candidates must select a total of five schools in their school selection process. They must, in addition, select programmes and residential status of their choice. This is compulsory because some schools have boarding facilities, while others have provision for both day and boarding students, with others still being day or community schools,” he said, adding that “failure to follow instructions will result in the computer rejecting one’s selection”.
Guidelines
Mr Sasu-Mensah said the public SHSs are in four categories: A, B, C and D, adding that the guidelines required BECE candidates to choose only one school from Category A, which has 55 schools regarded as top institutions or popular and were oversubscribed.
He said Category B had 220 schools and candidates had the opportunity to choose two schools from the category.
Category C had 363 schools and candidates could choose up to four schools from that group, he said.
With regard to Category D, he said candidates were compelled to choose a school from that class.
“Category D is the group from which candidates must compulsorily choose a day school. In choosing a school from here, it is important for candidates to choose a day school in their catchment area. I’d like to stress that it is compulsory and every candidate has to do that.
“If you live in Madina, for example, you can choose a school like the Presbyterian Boys’ Senior High School (PRESEC), Legon because PRESEC, Legon is both a day and a boarding institution. This is irrespective of whether you have chosen PRESEC, Legon in Category A. The same applies to schools in other areas,” he said.
For the technical, vocational education and training (TVET) schools, Mr Sasu-Mensah said a candidate could choose all his five schools from that section.
He said as soon as a candidate chose an SHS from categories A, B or C, the person would have to satisfy Category D by compulsorily choosing a day school from the group.
He said after going through the process of selection, candidates would have to arrange their schools in an order of preference.
Mr Sasu-Mensah said candidates who desired to attend private schools were also free to do so.
He appealed to candidates, parents, teachers and district examination officers to be meticulous in their selection of schools, since problems encountered in the past were as a result of the wrong selections done by them.
“I beg all those who feed the choices and data of candidates into the West African Examinations Council (WAEC) system to be extra careful in their work because failure to do what was required would affect the selection done by the candidates,” he said
About 500,000 candidates from16,060 public and private basic schools from across the country will be taking part in this year’s BECE.

“Gov’t Clears Gh¢1 Billion Out Of Gh¢1.2 Billion NHIS Inherited Debt” – President Akufo-Addo

The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has revealed that his administration is reviving the strength of the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS), which, under the Mahama government, was being strangled by debt.

According to President Akufo-Addo, “of the GH¢1.2 billion debt we inherited, the equivalent of $300 million, we have paid, in the last 15 months, GH¢1 billion, the equivalent of $250 million.”

He added that payments to service providers, since his government took office in January 2017, are current.

As a result, “the Scheme is regaining its effectiveness, so that for a minimum amount, subscribers can have access to a wide range of medical services.”

President Akufo-Addo made this known on Saturday, 21st April, 2018, when he delivered the keynote speech at the London School of Economics’ Africa Summit, on the theme “Africa at Work: Educated, Employed, Empowered.”

Addressing a packed gathering, President Akufo-Addo noted that the urgent responsibility confronting the continent is to make African countries attractive for African youth, and for them to see the Continent to see as places of opportunities.

“It means we must provide education, quality education and skills training. It means our young people must acquire the skills that run modern economies,” he said.

The President indicated that with the African Union’s Agenda 2063, titled The Africa We Want, calling for an education and skills revolution to meet the human resource needs for inspiring Africa’s socio-economic development, he noted that the AU has, quite correctly, placed high premium on science, technology and innovation as critical ingredients to the achievement of Agenda 2063.

“The provision of education for our young people should not become an ideological tussle. We should never have to make a choice between basic education or higher education. We should never have to rely on the World Bank or any other institution to decide for us where the emphasis should be in our education needs,” the President said.

Whilst stressing that education is the key to Africa’s development, he noted that African countries must run their economies to be able to fund the education of African children.

“We should not get into arguments with donor agencies about our priorities. We must set our own priorities, and we must accept that we should provide the funds to translate our plans into reality,” he said.

The President continued, “That is why, despite the bleak economic situation my government inherited, we decided to implement immediately the pledge we had made about providing Free Senior High School education. The most dramatic aspect of its implementation has been that 90,000 more students entered senior high school in September last year, the first term of the policy, than in 2016.”

He was confident that “if we stop being beggars, and spend Africa’s monies inside the continent, Africa would not need to ask for respect from anyone. We would get the respect we deserve.”

President Akufo-Addo also revealed further that, in Ghana, whereas the indications are that the economic dividends are on the horizon, there are other areas where the nation is thriving.

The media in Ghana, he said, has come into its own, and what used to be called the culture of silence has been replaced with a cacophony that now worries some.

“I have said it before, and I believe it bears repeating, I would much rather put up with a reckless press than a monotonous, praise-singing one. A democracy has no place for a media that does not keep public authorities on their toes,” he added.

He stressed that “I am a firm believer in a strong and vibrant media, and I have no doubt that it is a force for good, no matter how irritating and how irksome they can be and often are. They provide the avenue for the other point of view.”

In concluding, he indicated that “our success story and changed narrative come with building our economies that are not dependent on charity and handouts.  Then we shall put an educated, employed and empowered Africa to work, and repudiate the recent culture of failure. We shall then take our rightful place in the world.”

source: presidency.gov.gh

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Ghana Gas Company to begin supplying possible customers soon

Authorities of the Ghana Gas Company has lauded government’s efforts at synchronize all activities across the gas value chain.
The synchronisation has ensured that all the necessary tie-ins are done with relevant stakeholders in maintaining a world class facility tied around efficiency and effective service delivery that met international best practices.
Engineer Maxwell Kally, Senior Manager, Engineering and Maintenance of the Ghana Gas Company said this during a briefing exercise on the success chalked during the 24-day shutdown period for maintenance and repairs as well as expansion works on the facility to Journalists in the Western Region.
The maintenance, he said had helped to improve on reliable energy supply as well as built resilient infrastructure that would ultimately culminate to growth of businesses and larger industries.
“We are ready to supply to any potential investor wishing to do business in the country”, he said.
The period of the maintenance according of him recorded no lost time injury, adding that safety was cardinal in all the stages of maintenance.
Engineer Kally said great efforts were being made to ensure that direct connection from Western region to Tema… “And this we will do without any interruption to production”.
The Maintenance Engineer said the company would continue to harness all tie-ins as a measure of saving the country time and cost. “We are also looking at channeling current flared gas to energy generation”, he added.
He said the maintenance also gave room for the provision of new valves which would ultimately increase capacity.
Mr Kally lauded the contribution of the local team for a great work done and working within the stipulated time, “great efforts is being made to ensure the participation of locals”.
Mr Jaasu Yahaya, Safety Manager said the company was committed to safety and would therefore work in a manner that promoted safer communities and the environment.
He said the ability to do the maintenance work with little expatriate involvement was a marvel to partner companies like ENI and Tullow adding, “We have demonstrated that though young in the industry, we are capable as Ghanaians to work in the industry. We observed all standard procedures in accordance with the EPA, we did not vent any gas”, he added.
Mr Ernest Owusu-Bempah, Head of Corporate Communications said using locals to do the repair works had saved the country GH¢10million to be channelled into other areas of development.
“The successful work done only goes to affirm that Ghanaians are capable, let build Ghana together”, he added.
Mr Owusu-Bempah said the repairs and tie-ins were to boost the industrial drive of the country, “in fact there will be more power for people to work with and no dumsor”.
The Head of Corporate Affairs said the company in the near future would be building pipelines from Prestea to Ashanti region, “we are not concentrating on the southern sector alone, and there will be more expansions to take care of emergencies”.

 
source: GNA

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“Ghana Stands Ready To Beat Malaria” – President Akufo-Addo

The President of the Republic, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, says the effective execution of the National Strategic Plan for Malaria Control, as well as the introduction of other innovative strategies, means that “Ghana stands ready to beat malaria.”

Speaking at the Malaria Summit London 2018, on Wednesday, 18th April, 2018, on the sidelines of the ongoing Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting, President Akufo-Addo stated noted that the fight against malaria in Ghana is an age-old one.

“According to the Ghana Health Service, malaria tops Out Patient Department cases, and is responsible for the death of three children, every day, in the country. Indeed, in 2016, 10.4 million cases of malaria were recorded in a population of some 30 million people,” he said.

The President continued, “Although the figure from 2016 represents an improvement over that of 2015, we recognise that a lot of work has to be done in reducing prevalence of malaria to the barest minimum.”

Reiterating the “solid, decade-long work and advocacy undertaken by my fair lady, Rebecca, Ghana’s First Lady, through her Infanta Malaria Prevention Foundation”, the President stated that this has reinforced his conviction that Ghana’s aim of reducing malaria morbidity and mortality by 75%, by the year 2020, is attainable.

Ghana’s goal, through the National Strategic Plan for Malaria Control, he said, is to achieve and sustain near-zero malaria deaths, and, ultimately, a malaria-free Ghana.

Key interventions of this Plan, the President outlined, include integrated vector management; malaria case management, including malaria in pregnancy; integrated community case management; seasonal malaria chemoprevention; integrated support systems, including  advocacy and behavioural change communication; surveillance, monitoring and evaluation; and the strengthening of health systems.

“Additionally, Government is providing tax exemptions on anti-malarial commodities, adopting measures to deal with antimalarial drug resistance, and implementing policies to mitigate the effects of climate change and environmental degradation, that impact on malaria transmission,” he added.

Ghana’s strategy, the President told the gathering, is based on innovation, as Ghana is one of the first countries to adopt the new generation of insecticides for indoor-residual spraying, as well being one of the three countries testing the new malaria vaccine.

“I am confident that the effective execution of this Plan and strategy would mean that Ghana stands ready to beat Malaria” he concluded.

source: presidency.gov.gh

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Stop dispensing over-the-counter prescribed tramadol – FDA warns

Mr John Odai-Tettey, the Acting Central Regional Director of the Food and Drugs Authority (FDA) has cautioned over-the-counter medicine sellers to desist from either stocking or selling prescribed medicines like Tramadol to patients.
He pointed out that sellers who contravened the order would be made to face the full length of the law as the Authority intensified its surveillance and public education campaigns.
Mr Odai-Tettey gave the order on Wednesday at a day’s training workshop for over-the-counter medicine sellers across the Region to woo their unflinching support to end the increasing abuse of tramadol across the Region.
The goal among others was to educate them on the need to operate within the confines of the law with a clear understanding of what they could do and what they could not do regarding the class of medicines they could stock and sell for patients.
Mr Odai-Tettey advised that failing to dispense tramadol to patients was important to end the increasing abuse of the strong pain reliever which had become popular among the public, particularly the youth.
Instead, he urged over-the- counter medicine sellers to direct patients to the accredited pharmacies in their areas of jurisdiction.
Mr Odai-Tettey explained that Tramadol was a restricted medication used to treat moderate to moderately severe pain, but had become almost “a street drug” for the treatment of a normal pain like a headache, sometimes with approval from health practitioners.
He cited peer influence, curiosity, lack of parental control, easy access to tramadol, and negligence among others as the leading cause of the abuse or otherwise medically approved pain-relieving drug.
According to him, in addition to the euphoric and mood-enhancing effects sought by tramadol abusers, taking tramadol for non-medical purposes or in a manner different from that prescribed by a Medical Doctor could have negative and sometimes dangerous health implications.
These, he identified to include; disturbed sleep patterns resulting in insomnia, nausea, vomiting, constipation, light-headedness or dizziness, drowsiness, headache, loss of appetite, dry mouth and increased risk of convulsions or seizures.
The Acting Regional Director mentioned drivers, students, youth and manual workers  as the leading segment of the population hugely engaged in the abuse of tramadol, a situation he described as “alarming and dangerous” to achieving their future aspirations.
Mr Odai-Tettey reiterated his outfit’s commitment to their mandate to regulate  manufacturers, importation, exportation, distribution, use and advertisements of food, drugs, cosmetics, medical devices and household to protect the safety of the people.
He called on the public to stop buying non-prescribed medicine from unauthorised and untrained persons and cautioned that the health risk to the user could be severer and stressed the need for all stakeholders to join the fight in its import, distribution, sales and consumption of tramadol to drastically reduce the abuse of the drug that had driven many youth into taking it.
 
source: GNA