Friday, February 27, 2009


The Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Bechem Chelsea Football Club (FC), Mr Obed Nketiah, aka Nana Kwame has assured fans of the club that the team would return to its winning ways when the Glo premiership league resumes.
He has therefore urged supporters of the club to exercise restrain, bury their differences and rally solidly behind the team, since the board and management had put in place measures to raise the team’s performance in the elite division.
Nana Kwame who gave the assurance in an interview with the Graphic Sports in Sunyani said the club which has “The Blues, the Winners” as its slogan, would go all out to win the rest of its matches to survive the premiership and also occupy a respectable position on the league table.
The CEO who was so optimistic about the future of the team said as a first step, the technical director of the club, Mr Peter Dlbessch, the newly signed Dutch expatriate has recommended that the 34 players currently in camp be pruned down to 25 before the league resumes.
He said the Dutchman has further recommended that the team should also train at least three times a week at their adopted Sunyani Coronation Park to ensure that the players became familiar with the pitch, while the technical bench also worked on the striking abilities of the players to ensure that the numerous chances that the team creates are utilised.
Nana Kwame disclosed further that to enhance the performance of the team, management had agreed to another recommendation made by the technical director to recruit five extra players to beef up the strength of the team in defence, midfield and attack.
Asked where the players would be recruited from, Mr Nketia said some of them would come from the premiership while others who ply their trade outside would be signed.
Pressed further to mention the names of those players that the team has targeted for recruitment for the second window of opportunity for registration of players, Nana Kwame said the club’s management was holding that close to their chest and would unveil them when the time comes.
He said the club’s management has also decided to drop at least two people from the eight-member technical team of the club as part of measures to enhance the fortunes of the club when the league resumes.
Asked to name the two officials who would be sacked when the league resumes, the CEO stated that “we are all here and we would see who comes back and those who would be sacked”.
On the issue of the Coronation Park not favouring the the team in the premier league ,so far, Nana Kwame believes evil forces could be employed to work against them. But was quick to add that in all cases, it was the performance of the team that matters most and not a home advantage.
“It is only in Ghana football that every home team wants to win its home match at all cost, but elsewhere like in England, the scenario is different, teams playing away are able to win”, he asserted.
The Chelsea boss said until the club built its own stadium at Bechem, it would continue to use the Sunyani Coronation Park as its home ground but stated that the management was going to embark on a massive membership drive to expand the team’s support base throughout the country.
Nana Kwame hoped that one of the Sunyani-based teams playing in the division one league would qualify and join them in the premiership saying, that the club would offer them the needed support to enable such a team qualify.
He said Bechem Chelsea would continue to maintain a healthy relationship with all clubs, especially those in the region.
Nana Kwame also called on indigenous businesses and companies in the region to sponsor teams in the region, saying that this was what was lacking in the region though there were so many of such businesses and companies in the region that have the capacity to do so but where not doing it.
Touching on officiating in the Premier League this season, Nana Kwame said so far it has been good and said when it came to ratings he would give them 70 to 80 per cent, adding that there was more room for improvement.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


The Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, Mr Kwadwo Nyamekye Marfo, has given the assurance that his administration would not practise politics of exclusion, but would rather embrace and welcome all shades of opinion that would ensure the rapid socio-economic development of the region.
“As the regional minister, I will not discriminate based on party, ethnic or religious lines, but rather be the regional minister for everybody as President J.E.A. Mills whom I am representing in the region has pledged he will be a President for all Ghanaians,” he stated.
Mr Marfo gave the assurance during a visit to the Bechemhene’s palace on Saturday. He earlier received a rousing welcome on his arrival at Bechem Nkwanta, the entry point to the region, by hundreds of supporters of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and a cross-section of residents in the region.
Among the dignitaries who were also part of the crowd to welcome the new regional minister on his arrival were Messrs Maxwell Oti Yeboah, the Managing Director of Oti Yeboah Complex, S.K. Nimpong, a leading member of the NDC in the region, John Owusu Agyemang, Justice Samuel Adjei, the NDC Regional Chairman and Secretary respectively and some leading members of the party in the region.
Addressing the chiefs and elders of the Bechem Traditional Council whose president was represented by the Queen of the Bechem Traditional Area, Nana Adwoa Po Dwamena Serwaa II, Mr Marfo further assured the people of the region that he would serve them in humility and to the best of his capabilities, adding that consensus building would be one of the cardinal principles of his administration.
He also pledged that health, education, provision of potable water, extension of electricity to rural communities in the region would be priority areas as well as the reshaping of feeder roads in the region, especially those leading to farming areas.
Mr Marfo called for the co-operation of all, especially traditional rulers in the region, to help him realise his vision of bringing development and good governance to the doorstep of the people.
The regional minister also called for the support of nananom to help him resolve the numerous chieftaincy disputes that had bedevilled the region.
Mr Marfo was, however, quick to add that he would not dabbled in chieftaincy issues that were purely customary but those which were a potential threat to the peace and stability of the region.
He stated that now that the politicking was over, it was time for the people in the region to bury their political differences and unite for the speedy development of the region.
Mr Marfo also thanked the chiefs and people of the region for rallying behind the NDC, adding that this helped the party to come to power.
Nana Serwaa who represented Nana Fosu Gyeabour, the Omanhene of the Bechem Traditional Area, called on the regional minister to use the rich experience he acquired when he served the people of the region as a district secretary and district chief executive of Sunyani during the Rawlings regime to serve the entire region in his new position and the nation.
She urged him to be guided by the principles of equity and social justice in the discharge of his duties and to eschew all tendencies that would bring division among the people in the region.
Nana Serwaa also called on the regional minister not to award contracts based on political lines but should be fair in his dealings with all, no matter one’s political background and ideology.
The regional minister also called on the Omanhene of the Sunyani Traditional Area, Nana Bosoma Aso Nkwrawrie II at his palace in Sunyani, Nana Boakye Tromo II, Omanhene of Duayaw Nkwanta Traditional Area and Nana Owusu Acheaw II, the Chief of Abesim, near Sunyani.
Mr Marfo later addressed a gathering of NDC supporters in and around the Sunyani municipality at the Sunyani catering rest house.

Monday, February 23, 2009


By Samuel Duodu, Sunyani.

NINE out of the 10 individuals who filed their nominations to contest for the Council of State membership for the Brong Ahafo Region have withdrawn their candidatures.
The sole contestant for the Council of State elections in the region now is Mr J H Owusu Acheampong, 68, a Master of Science degree holder in Agriculture Economics and former Minister of Food and Agriculture in the first NDC administration.
Those who have withdrawn their nominations are Pemampem Yaw Kagbrese V, 58, the Paramount Chief of Yeji Traditional Area, Nana Kwaku Dwuma Ankoana II, 60, Paramount Chief of Seikwa Traditional Area, Mr Kwabena Kyere, 73, a former Deputy Minister of Education in the first NDC regime, Nana Dr David Kwabena Mensah, 53, a Development Specialist and Nana Kwadwo Sito, 53, the Paramount Chief of Banda Traditional Area.
The rest were Mr Kwaku Dartey, 46, a teacher, Usman Fakih Suallah, 27, a journalist with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Sunyani and Nana Sabe Damoah, self-employed.
The list of the contestants was made available to Graphic Nsempa in Sunyani by the Regional Electoral Commission (EC) office.
Officials at the office said at the close of nominations, 10 people had submitted their nominations forms to contest for the single slot.
However, the nine people who had earlier filed their nominations to contest the elections sent letters to the office to withdraw their candidatures leaving Mr Owusu Acheampong as the sole candidate.
Consequently, the Regional Directorate of the EC had sent letters to 22 municipal and district assemblies in the region to select two representatives each that would form the Electoral College to elect the region’s representative to the Council of State.
The Regional EC office gave the names of the districts that have so far submitted the names of the two representatives to form the electoral college as Kintampo South, Atebubu / Amantin, Sene, Kintampo North, Jaman North, Berekum, Tano South, Asunafo South, Sunyani West and Tain.
The office said the election, which was initially slated for February 10, 2009, has been postponed to February 24, 2009 upon a request made by the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development.
The request was to allow a proper constitution of the district assemblies.


The Techiman Traditional Council has renewed its appeal to President J.E.A. Mills and his government to consider extending the ongoing construction of a 75-kilometre Kumasi-Techiman dual carriageway from the Ghana Nuts Company factory at Hansua to Techiman.
According to the council, the appeal for the construction of the dual carriageway to include the Ghana Nuts area to the town was to help ease congestion in the centre of the town, since Techiman was fast expanding and developing into a commercial hub of the region and the West African sub-region as a result of its market.
The council, led by its President, Oseadeeyo Akumfi Ameyaw IV, who is also the Omanhene of the traditional area, renewed the appeal to the new government when it met with the consultants, contractors and supervising agencies of the 75-kilomentre, 30-million Euros project being funded by the European Union at Techiman in the Brong Ahafo Region.
Among the issues raised by the traditional council at the meeting concerning the ongoing road construction included the expansion of the drainage systems to check flooding, access to people’s houses, ‘U’ turns, access to the Omanhene’s Palace, service lanes, the roundabout in the town, link roads, parking spaces at the main station and the Akisimasu link road.
According to the Omanhene, the council sent a petition on the appeal to former President J.A. Kufuor who pledged that his government would consider it, adding that as of now construction work had begun but there was no sign of “our request for the road to begin from Ghana Nuts being factored in”.
The council made the request when former President Kufuor went to inaugurate Ghana Nuts on February 28, 2008, after which the former President assured the council that the government would factor its request into the project.
The Omanhene called on the consultants, contractors and the relevant agencies working on the project to always engage the traditional council in its execution to factor in the cultural, social and economic lives of the people, adding that they should invite Nananom to their site meetings.
Meanwhile, in an interview, the contract engineer of the project, Mr Joseph Omani-Mensah, said “the European Union says it cannot fund that extra work from the Ghana Nuts factory, as is being demanded by the traditional council, which was not part of the original design”.
He noted that if anything could be done, then it was the responsibility of the Ghana government to fund the extra work from the Ghana Nuts area.
Mr Omani-Mensah, however, stated that the consultants working on the project had agreed to address the other concerns raised by the traditional council and pledged to engage Nananom from time to time to ensure the successful execution of the project.
Later, Oseadeeyo Ameyaw, in the company of some members of the traditional council, the consultant, as well as the contractors of the project, went on an inspection tour.

Sunday, February 22, 2009


Some residents in the Sunyani municipality, the Brong Ahafo regional capital, have described President J.E.A. Mills’s maiden State of the Nation address as impressive and reconciliatory, since he called on all to assist in building the economy.
The residents who spoke to the Daily Graphic after the President’s address to Parliament on Thursday, also said the President touched on almost all the sectors of the economy, but failed to speak on the reduction in fuel prices.
Alhaji Yakubu Anderson, a social commentator, said he was happy that Prof. Mills called on Members of Parliament (MPs) from both sides of the political divide to help build the economy.
“I expected the President to mention the reduction in fuel prices, since it was one of the major campaign promises made by him during the electioneering but I did not hear anything on that,” Alhaji Anderson said.
The social commentator observed that since President Mills took office he had shown modesty and humility which was a shining example for all to follow and also as a sign of greater things to come.
Mr Seth Gakpetor, a worker with one of the revenue agencies, said he was impressed with President Mills’s State of the Nation Address which virtually touched on all the sectors of the economy.
According to him, he was happy that the President spoke about the health sector where he said more hospitals would be built and the existing ones equipped with the state-of-the-art equipment.
Mr Gakpetor also said he was happy when the President mentioned that his government would consider building cocoa processing factories in the cocoa growing areas of the country in order to add value to increase prices.
On education, he said the President’s decision to pay allowances to teachers promptly was also laudable.
Mr Emmanuel Mensah-Abludo, Regional Correspondent for Radio Ghana for his party described the President’s address as very reconciliatory and said the address touched on most of the things he expected.
He added that the President spoke about the economic challenges facing the country, but gave the assurance that there was hope and therefore, there was no need for Ghanaians to be worried.
Mr Mensah-Abludo observed that another statement by the President that caught his attention was the institution of the Founder’s Day as a statutory public holiday to honour the memory of the First President of the country, Osagyefo Dr Kwame Nkrumah.
He further stated that the President’s decision to assign national service personnel as research assistants to MPs was also a laudable one.
Paa Kwesi, a Sunyani-based businessman, also described the President’s address to Parliament as very impressive since it was his first time of delivering such an address.
He said what even made him more confident in the new government was the fact that even though most ministers appointed by the President had not started work, he was able to speak on all sectors of the economy with much brilliance.
Paa Kwesi noted that the President’s call on all Ghanaians, no matter their political affiliation, to help build the economy in view of the discovery of oil was heartwarming and sounded reconciliatory.
Miss Akosua Owusuaa Owusu-Banahene, a student of the University of Ghana, Legon on her party also described the address as a bit reconciliatory.
She said she was impressed when the President said he would also give attention to the lesser known sports in the country.

Friday, February 20, 2009


VEGETABLE farmers at Degedege in the Tain District in the Brong Ahafo Region have appealed to the government, as a matter of urgency, to work on the channels in the irrigation dam leading to their farms in order to prevent their crops from withering.
A visit to the dam site by the Daily Graphic saw the farmers in a desperate attempt to save their vegetables from destruction, as a result of serious damages to the channels.
The Chief of the area, Nana Kwabena Mensah, who is one of the vegetable farmers, lamented the extent of damage to the channels that had impeded the flow of water to the farmlands.
“The channels were poorly built and the amount of cement used for the construction was very small,” he observed.
Nana Mensah stated further that the situation had made it possible for crabs to make holes through the channels to the farms, resulting in water flowing to the farmlands.
Most of the farmers who spoke to the Daily Graphic at their farms were disappointed at the current situation, saying if the crops withered, life would be unbearable for them.
Nana Mensah stressed that if immediate action was not taken, poverty levels in the area could swell astronomically.
“Now we do not know what to do. Last year, a team from Accra promised to assist in repairing the dam but the members have since not returned,” the chief lamented.
The dam, which was constructed under the Village Infrastructure Projects (VIP) to assist in alleviating poverty in the area, has over the past four years carved an image for itself as the main producer of vegetables such as okro, tomatoes, onion, garden eggs, especially in the dry season.


THE Nkoranza Area Teachers’ Co-operative Credit Union in the Brong Ahafo Region was adjudged the best credit union in 2006/2007 according to a classification exercise conducted by the Credit Union Association (CUA) within that period.
The union also emerged the best participating credit union in the CUA Risk Management Programme.
The leadership of the CUA presented certificates of honour and two 24-inch colour television sets to the union for its impressive record.
The Chairman of the union, Mr Seth Badu, announced at the union’s annual general meeting at Nkoranza.
Mr Badu also stated that the union realised a net surplus of GH¢44,926.09 in 2006 as against GH¢32,670.64 the previous year.
He said the total loans granted to members in 2007 was GH¢643,217 as against the previous year’s of GH¢386,099.52.
The Board Chairman said as part of its social responsibility, the union gave out GH¢600 financial support to six brilliant, needy students from the Nkoranza Senior High School, adding that the union would extend the assistance to the two private SHSs at Yefri and Akuma next year.
Mr Badu mentioned loan defaulting, low share holdings of the members and irregular savings by members as some of the challenges of the union.
He, therefore, pleaded with the guarantors to monitor the loan repayment system of the people to whom they guaranteed loans.
Mr Badu advised members of the union to increase their shares and also save regularly so as to increase the union’s capital base.
The Brong Ahafo Regional Manager of CUA, Mr Joseph Arcko Incoom, commended the management and board of directors of the union for their hard work, which had enabled it to chalk up such impressive successes.
Mr Incoom also praised the leadership of the union for its educational campaign, which had increased the membership to 1,276.
In an address read on his behalf, the acting Nkoranza District Director of Education, Mr Kwadwo Osei-Asibey, called on all teachers in the district to join the union in order to receive financial assistance in time of hardships.
He paid glowing tribute to the board of directors and the management of the union for organising annual general meetings to account for their stewardship.
The Manager of the union, Mr Philip Asante-Kodom, urged the members to increase their savings.

Thursday, February 19, 2009


THE Ghana Chapter of the Federation of International Women Lawyers (FIDA-Ghana) has lamented the violation of the rights of and the abuse suffered by female traders who travel long distances to the hinterlands to buy foodstuffs from the farms for sale at marketing centres.
It said the extreme vulnerability and the risk confronting the traders, who travel with truck drivers, must be seriously considered and concrete legal and financial measures put in place to protect them from sexual exploitation that left them exposed to the deadly HIV virus and other sexually transmitted diseases.
According to FIDA-Ghana, it was important that those women traders were included in the target groups of the HIV Sentinel Survey so that they would be offered the best medical care.
The Administrator of the Kumasi Office of FIDA-Ghana, Madam Eudora C. Oppong, made the statement when she presented the report of a research conducted by FIDA at a day’s refresher course organised for 25 paralegals trained by FIDA-Ghana in Sunyani.
The programme was on the theme, “Promoting the Rights of Women Affected and Infected by HIV and AIDS”.
She said the research was undertaken in 2007 to find out the legal challenges confronting women living with HIV and AIDS and the fields of study were Ho, Tema, Wenchi and Agomanya in the Volta, Greater Accra, Brong Ahafo and Eastern regions, respectively.
She said the roles played by those women traders, who serve as a link between farmers and consumers, were indispensable and the least the nation could do for them was to ensure their safety.
Madam Oppong said to help prevent the spread of the disease, there was the need to deal with the issue of stigmatisation, which discouraged people from checking their HIV status and also make persons living with AIDS (PLWAs) feel reluctant to disclose their status, thereby compounding the spread of the disease.
The report, therefore, urged healthcare providers and social workers to abide by the principle of confidentiality in accordance with the National HIV/AIDS and Sexually Transmitted Infections Policy and desist from disclosing any confidential information they obtained in the normal course of their work about a client to any other person without the express consent of the client.
Madam Oppong noted that the rights of HIV positive women were violated more than those of men due to existing stereotypes, inequalities and patterns of discrimination against women in society, adding that of the 264,481 people currently living with HIV/AIDS, 58 per cent were females.
She said stigmatisation was more prevalent among HIV positive women and girls to the extent that the reproductive health needs of such women were affected due to stigmatisation, abuse and rejection by their families and communities or dismissal from employment.
She said although statistics from the National AIDS Control Programme (NACP) indicated that Ghana’s national prevalence rate stood at 1.9 per cent, the rate in some regions, such as the Eastern Region, were as high as 8.9 per cent.
Madam Oppong indicated that culturally accepted patriarchal power relations and gender norms favoured men, allowing them to have multiple partners and sex on demand, often subjecting women to physical violence if they refused and accelerating the spread of HIV.
In addition, she said the burden of care fell on women who took care of sick family members, often spending their limited resources and time to care for those HIV positive persons who fell sick.
Madam Oppong also said the research brought to the fore the issue of disclosure because the number of married women among the infected group was more than those who were single, divorced or separated, adding that a married woman was more at risk in her matrimonial home because she could not negotiate for safe sex or the use of condoms.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


THE 11th matriculation ceremony of the Berekum Nursing and Midwifery Training College in the Brong Ahafo Region took place at the weekend.
In all 141 students made up of 54 males and 87 females who have been admitted for the 2008/09 academic year matriculated. One hundred and two candidates, will be pursuing Nursing and 39 will pursue Midwifery programmes.
Out of 1,600 applications received for the Nursing and Midwifery programmes, 517 candidates were qualified to be admitted, but 431 candidates turned up for the selection interview and after the screening exercise, the 141 were admitted.
The Catholic Bishop of Sunyani, the Most Rev. Matthew Akwasi Gyamfi, reminded the students of the noble profession they had chosen and urged them to be prepared to serve the sick during and after their training.
He urged them to live up to their matriculation oath and be committed to the tenets and ethics of their profession to serve mankind.
Most Rev. Akwasi Gyamfi called on health workers to be ministers of life and be professionals in the discharge of their duties in order to avoid being known as agents of death.
According to him, the health profession, especially nursing, was a ministry and therefore every health worker should be alert and sympathetic to the plight of patients to help save their lives.
He urged all health workers, particularly nurses, to see their profession as a call by God and the need for them to show God’s love, saying that some patients had died because health workers, especially nurses, who have been trained to give proper attention to them had been impatient with them and not treated them well.
He said since nurses served as the face of every health institution and the first port of call in hospitals, they must put up pleasant faces at all times, show concern, be patient and give the sick all the assistance they need, since that could help cure somebody of his or her illness.
The Principal of BNMTC, Ms Monica Nkrumah, said the students were selected after a thorough scrutiny of the results they obtained at the West Africa Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) and a check from the West African Examinations Council (WAEC).
The principal said the total enrolment at the college stood at 391, comprising 156 males and 235 females.
She said the college needed more tutors, a resource library to help enhance teaching and learning, a bus to convey students to and from field work, staff accommodation and a stand-by generator to help the college realise its mission of producing quality nurses and midwives.
A speech read on behalf of the Registrar of the Nurses and Midwives Council (NMC), Mr Ampem Darko Oklodu Abbey, said the nursing and midwifery training and standard practices in Ghana was governed by Law, NRCD 117 and LI 683.
He urged the students to be guided by the training and education they would receive when dealing with patients, adding that as nurses and midwives there was the need to demonstrate good interpersonal relationship by handling patients in a manner that would make them feel comfortable, secured and relaxed.


SCHOOL authorities must create a conducive environment and platform for students to dialogue with them to solve problems facing their schools, a lecturer at the Department of Crop Science at the University of Ghana, Legon, Professor Daniel Obeng-Ofori, has advised.
He noted that the absence of effective internal communication channels to enable students to express their views and put across their grievances for redress by school authorities had led to some of the violent confrontations witnessed in some schools in recent times.
Prof. Obeng-Ofori, who made the call at the 43rd anniversary and speech and prize-giving day of the Bechem Presbyterian Senior High School (PRESEC) in the Tano South District of the Brong Ahafo Region, said ensuring a convenient atmosphere was better than to allow the situation to degenerate into violent confrontations.
The occasion was on the theme: “The Importance of Formal Education to National Orientation”.
He called on all stakeholders to play their roles effectively, to ensure that schools in the country produced individuals or students who were disciplined enough for the socio-economic development of the nation.
Prof. Obeng-Ofori stated that if the nation was to have disciplined and hardworking citizens then parents must play their expected roles towards instituting discipline in their children, since that function did not occur in a vacuum.
"Practising good governance in the homes, schools, workplaces and churches, established the developmental process in a disciplined manner. The quality of parent-child relationship determines the type of peers that teenagers choose,” he stressed.
He advised students to search for academic discipline that would guide them to become good citizens of the country.
Prof. Obeng-Ofori urged students to try to strive to achieve academic excellence through discipline in order to become good citizens for their families, communities, as well as the country, saying irresponsible future leaders compromised excellence and discipline.
The Headmaster of the school, Mr Francis Yaw Asamoah, said the current total population of the school stood at 1,437 made up of 927 males and 510 females.
He disclosed that the certified results of the school's West Africa Secondary School Certificate Examination (WASSCE) for 2008 saw an improvement over the previous year’s, with 99.7 passes.
The headmaster disclosed that the school saw massive infrastructure developments under the model school project of the previous government.
Mr Asamoah said the school also benefited from the Parent-Teacher Association (PTA), which was constructing a five-room kitchen block at a cost of GH¢11,500, as well as providing the school with drying lines and fire extinguishers, while the old students association also assisted the school with dustbins and books as prizes to the students.
He appealed for the construction of a Visual Arts block and more staff bungalows for the school, as well as the re-roofing and re-wiring of the school's administration block.
Students and staff who distinguished themselves in their various areas were rewarded.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


NEWMONT Gold Ghana Limited(NGGL), operators of the Ahafo Mine in the Brong Ahafo Region, has pledged to attach importance to the safety of its workforce and the communities within which it work.
To demonstrate this, the company in collaboration with the Asutifi and Tano North district directorates of the Ghana Health Service (GHS) has trained 60 community health volunteers as peer educators on sexually transmitted infections, HIV/AIDS and Tuberculosis.
To ensure the success of the community health project, NGGL has presented the community-based volunteers selected from all the 33 communities in both Asutifi and Tano North districts with certificates, bicycles, wellington boots, torch lights, and other working tools to facilitate their work and also as recognition for their hard work.
Speaking at one of the presentation and recognition ceremonies at Ntotroso in the Asutifi District, Mr Joseph Danso, Community Development Superintendent of the company said the project further demonstrated the company’s commitment to its social responsibility.
The recognition durbar, he said, was also to create awareness and to educate community members on HIV/AIDS prevention.
Mr Danso disclosed that since the training of the community volunteers in August, last year, they had been able to organise 350 group discussions with community members, 670 one-on-one sessions and reached out to 1,847 females and 1773 males, as well as directed 72 sexually transmitted infection cases to the various health centres.
Mr Danso stated that for effective collaboration and the sustainability of the programme, health personnel had been included to serve as supervisors of the volunteers’ activities, collect data and supervise their outreach exercises.
The Asutifi District Coordinating Director, Mr Kwaku Gyimah, commended NGGL for initiating the project.
He noted that the HIV/AIDS situation in the Asutifi district was still precarious and disclosed that out of the 430 people who went for HIV/AIDS voluntary testing in 2007, 47 tested positive, representing 11 per cent while in 2008 out of the 701 people who went for testing, 115 tested positive, representing 16.4 per cent.
“These figures are very alarming and scary. This reveals the extent and nature of the situation we are facing as a district. This is no child’s play,” he stressed.
Mr Gyimah therefore called on all stakeholders, especially traditional rulers, religious organisations, non-governmental organisations and community-based organisations to lead the crusade against the spread of the deadly disease in the district.


THE Queen of the Wenchi Traditional Area in the Brong Ahafo Region, Nana Toa Snamangyedua, has appealed to the Ghana Police Service to help maintain law and order in the unending chieftaincy feud that has bedevilled the area.
She noted that certain individuals had taken advantage of the chieftaincy dispute to visit mayhem and inflict wounds on innocent and law-abiding citizens of the area.
Nana Snamangyedua made the appeal when she donated two computers, accessories and a printer valued at GH¢3,000 to the Wenchi Divisional Police Headquarters at Wenchi.
She said the donation of the computers was in response to an appeal made by the Divisional Commander, Superintendent Samuel Kwame Nkrumah Akumia, when she visited him at his office.
The Divisional Command would keep one of the computers and the other sent to the charge office of the Wenchi Police Station to enhance record keeping and data processing.
Nana Snamangyedua also appealed to the divisional command to intensify its night patrols in the area to clamp down on criminals who operate in the area.
She called on the people to co-operate with the police in their fight against crime by providing them with information and expressed the hope that the computers would be put to good use.
Nana Snamangyedua also called on her people to assist the police since the government alone could not shoulder all their logistical needs to enhance their work.
Supt. Akumia, who received the computers on behalf of the acting Inspector General of Police, thanked the queen for the gesture and pledged that the service would take good care of the computers.
He appealed to the people in the area to assist the police by providing them with vital information in their resolve to clamp down on criminals in the area, adding that the computers would go a long way to help the division in its record keeping.
Supt. Akumia called on other citizens in the area to emulate their queen by assisting the command with other office equipment such as a photocopier to enhance administrative work.

Sunday, February 15, 2009


By Samuel Duodu, Sunyani.

YOUTH for Leadership, a non-profit and non- political group, has congratulated President J. E. A. Mills for nominating Messrs Kwadwo Nyamekye Marfo, Alexander Asum Ahensan and Alhaji Collins Dauda to the positions of Brong Ahafo Regional Minister, Minister of Chieftaincy and Culture, and Minister of Lands and Natural Resources respectively. The group also commended the nominees for their selfless services to the region and expressed the hope that they would go through the vetting process succesfully.
A statement issued to the press in Sunyani and signed by Messrs Chester Oppong Peprah, Ibrahim Doercher Doe and P. K. Frimpong, the executives of the group, said the nominations would rekindle the confidence the people of the region had in the government.
It explained that the nominees served as a perfect link between the Brong Ahafo Region and the government and expressed their total confidence and trust in the nominees.
The statement called on the chiefs and people of the region to throw their support behind the three personalities in order to make them succeed in their respective positions. The group pointed out that the current political environment had been so polarised with arrogance and shamelessness.
“We believe that majority of the younger generation were born at the dawn of the great revolution spearheaded by former President J. J. Rawlings and that it was regrettable that information about Mr Rawlings have been distorted by his opponents to suit their political agenda.
That trend, the statement noted, had created the wrong image of Mr Rawlings in the minds of people.
The statement said the group would design programmes to provide platforms for erasing these erroneous impressions and instil his noble principle and values in the youth who represent the future leaders of the country.
It said the goals of the group were to promote, sustain and perpetuate the ideals of Mr Rawlings and it pledged in the statement to make it their duty to correct the distorted history of this country regarding the Rawlings legacy.
"We are committed to honour the icon of our time by upholding and projecting his (Rawlings) ideals and principles and keeping them alive for future generations", it said.

Friday, February 13, 2009


The Chairman of Berekum Arsenals Football Club, Alhaji Yakubu Moro, has declared that his team will maintain its unbeaten home record till the end of this Glo Premier League season.
“We would not lose a home match until the 30th week fixtures,” he declared confidently, after his side had defeated unimpressive city rivals Bechem Chelsea by a lone goal in their 10th week game played at the Berekum Golden City Park last Wednesday.
Alhaji Moro, who was speaking in a post-match interview with the Graphic Sports said, “Allah God was the Chairman of his club.”
“Some have asserted that Arsenal employ all kinds of tactics to intimidate their opponents at home while others have also attributed our home invincibility to the poor nature of the pitch at the Golden City Park,” he said.
“But I can assure you this is not the case because we rely on massive home support, good direction from management and a dedicated playing body to win our home matches and not by intimidation as its being wrongly perceived,” he added.
“I challenge those who have been rubbishing our home victories to come and see things for themselves,” he urged.
“This season the pitch is in good condition, yet Arsenal have not lost a game after six home matches. We were able to beat Ashgold, Liberty, All Blacks and Chelsea and held Heart of Lions to a drawn game at the Golden City Park which attest to our strength at home,” he stated.
Alhaji Moro said the team would continue to ensure a level playing field for all visiting teams “but what I can say is that Berekum Arsenals would not taste any defeat in this Premier League season as we will do everything within our means to beat teams like Hearts and defending champions, Asante Kotoko, at home,” he declared.
Referring to the records to buttress his point, the Berekum Arsenals Vice- Chairman said out of a total of 101 home matches played at the Berekum Golden City Park from the year 2001, Arsenals have lost just six.
He argued that from 2005 till date all the 51 Premier League matches played at home, Berekum Arsenals had not lost and this included Top 4 games at the venue.
Asked why the team could not replicate the same feat when it played at other league centres, Alhaji Moro stated that what had worked in the favour of the team at home was the support of the management and players, but the same could not be said when the team play ‘away’ matches.
Arsenals, he said, was just 10 years old and therefore its support base throughout the country was not big and this had affected them whenever they travelled to the other league centres and that they were working to increase their support base throughout the country.

CONCRETRATE ON MORAL UPBRINGING ...School authorities advised (PAGE 11)

THE immediate past Anglican Bishop of the Sunyani Diocese, the Rt. Rev. Thomas Ampah Brient, has said management and teachers of senior high schools (SHSs) in the country must not only concentrate on the academic performance of their students but also on their moral upbringing.
He said formal education should focus on the total development of the students in all spheres of their lives to enable them to grow to become responsible citizens of the country.
Rt. Rev. Brient said this at the handover ceremony of a 45-seater bus valued at GH¢20,000 donated to the Yamfo Anglican SHS in the Tano North District in the Brong Ahafo Region by the school’s Parent-Teacher Association (PTA).
The bus was purchased from monies raised from the levy of GH¢20 paid by each parent.
Rt. Rev. Brient blamed the high moral decadence in our second cycle schools and among the youth on the neglect of character-building in schools and also by parents who had shirked their responsibilities towards their children.
"As much as we want to produce students who are academically good we must also help to mould them into upright and responsible adults who would contribute their quota towards the socio-economic development of the country," he emphasised.
Rt. Rev. Brient bemoaned the skin bleaching spree embarked on by some female students in SHSs and called on school authorities to educate their students on its harmful effects.
The school’s PTA Chairman, Mr Peter Adjei, said the bus was meant to enhance academic work and social activities such as field trips.
The Headmaster of the school, Mr George Kojo Abiw-Abaidoo, thanked the PTA for the gesture and emphasised that it would go a long way to enhance academic work in the school.

Thursday, February 12, 2009


Berekum Arsenal yesterday kept their unbeaten home record in the Glo Premiership intact when they beat city rivals, Bechem Chelsea, by a lone goal at the Berekum Golden City Park.
Arsenal kept the pressure on the visitors right from the blast of the whistle of Kumasi-based referee Thomas Nuhu.
This earned them the only goal of the match in the 36th minute when Stephen Amakwaah tapped home a cross from the left flank to beat Chelsea’s goalkeeper Abubakar Iddrissu.
After recess, Chelsea lifted their game causing the home team to adopt defensive play but could not sustain the pressure as Arsenals took over the game once again and dominated in all departments.
About 20 minutes from regulation time, the game degenerated into rough play, which nearly marred its beauty.
To restore order, Referee Nuhu showed Arsenal’s Frank Yeboah and Lee Arday of Chelsea the yellow card.
Both sides made changes in the game. Chelsea introduced Ernest Adoma in the 63rd minute while Arsenal introduced Richard Addai but they did little to change the pattern of play.
A minutes silence was observed before the commencement of the match for the four fans who lost their lives during the Kotoko-Hearts epic encounter last Sunday at the Baba Yara Stadium in Kumasi.

Monday, February 9, 2009


By Samuel Duodu, Sunyani

THE Principal of the Bethel Vocational Training Institute in Sunyani, Reverend Munufie Ameyaw-Frimpong, has suggested institution of stiffer punishment for parents who shirk their responsibilities towards their children, especially the girl-child.
He said the enactment of such laws would help curb the high incidence of irresponsible parenting.
He added that the rise in moral degeneration and other social vices among the youth was as a result of the neglect of children by their fathers.
Rev. Ameyaw-Frimpong made the suggestion at the 3rd graduation ceremony of 92 students of the Institute in Sunyani.
The graduation ceremony coincided with the presentation of sewing machines and an unspecified amount of money to the ‘graduands’ who were trained in dressmaking, hairdressing and cookery free of charge by the institute.
The Founder of the Bethel Prayer Ministry International (BPMI) was the late Bishop Owusu Tabiri who also established the institute.
The institute has the objective of contributing to building the manpower base of the nation through the acquisition of employment skills.
It is targeted at the poor, orphans and street girls who roam the streets of villages, towns and cities without any hope for a better future.
Rev. Ameyaw-Frimpong said the 92 ‘graduating students’ who represented three batches from 2006 to 2008 wrote the National Vocational Training Institute (NVTI) examinations, and about 90 per cent of them passed in all the subjects.
The principal appealed to Nananom, politicians, business people and other well- meaning Ghanaians to go to the aid of the institute in cash and in kind to save the it from collapse.
Apostle Samuel Gyamfi, Chairman of the BPMI, for his part, reiterated that the institute was established to train, facilitate, encourage and harness the development of the creative talents of the less-fortunate young girls.
He stated that apart from the students enjoying free tuition, the church, through its own resources and the benevolence of other philanthropist, had provided school uniforms, sewing machines and cash donations to the students.
Apostle Gyamfi disclosed that some of the old students had established their own small-scale businesses and the feedback indicated that they were doing well.
He expressed the church’s appreciation to all who, in one way or the other, had contributed both in cash and in kind towards the sustenance of the institute.
“My special thanks go to Madam Patricia Appieagyei, the Mayor of Kumasi, for donating 25 brand new sewing machines to the school recently”, he said.
Apostle Gyamfi also appealed to the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GET Fund) to assist the school to complete its infrastructure and also donate a pickup vehicle for the school.


A citizen of Asutifi South Constituency in the Brong Ahafo Region, Mr Bernard Owusu, has expressed his appreciation to President John Evans Atta Mills for nominating a citizen of the area, Alhaji Collins Dauda, as the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources.
According to him, his appointment would go a long way to serve as a morale booster and motivation for citizens from the Asutifi District and the region to aspire for greater heights in all their endeavours.
Mr Owusu stated this when he called at the Daily Graphic office in Sunyani to express hope that the appointment of Alhaji Dauda would further strengthen the party’s chances of winning more support.
He thanked President Mills for also acknowledging the hard work of Alhaji Dauda in the region and reposing his confidence in him to serve in his government.
Mr Owusu expressed the hope that Alhaji Dauda would bring his rich experience and the knowledge he acquired when he was the Chairman of the Forestry Commission to bear on his work as the Minister of Lands and Natural Resources after being approved by Parliament to become the substantive minister, and prayed to Allah for his guidance for him to excel in that portfolio.
He stated further that he had no shred of doubt in his mind that Alhaji Dauda would serve the nation to the best of his capabilities and help protect and harness the country’s natural resources for the benefit of all.
Mr Owusu also expressed the hope that he would also seek the welfare of communities affected by mining and ensure harmony in the extractive industry.


THE Vice-Chancellor of the University of Ghana, Legon, Professor Clifford Nii Boi Tagoe, has said it is important for the government to exercise its political will to take decisions that would improve the educational system of the country and ensure development.
He has, therefore, called on the government, as a matter of policy, to bring Information and Communication Technology (ICT) to the doorstep of all educational institutions to give them universal access to new technologies, lifelong teaching and learning opportunities for all, regardless of the institutions’ location or social standing.
Prof. Tagoe said this when he delivered a goodwill message from the University of Ghana at the third congregation of the Catholic University College of Ghana (CUCG) at Fiapre in the Brong Ahafo Region at the weekend.
The Vice-Chancellor stated that a strong political commitment was key to harnessing quality education to achieve national development.
In all, 92 students who had obtained Bachelor of Science (BSc) degrees in Computer Science, Economics and Business Administration and Bachelor of Arts (BA) degrees in Religious Studies and Education graduated.
Five out of the total number of the graduating students obtained first class honours in the various programmes while the rest got second class honours and third class honours, and two others obtained passes.
The congregation also coincided with the matriculation ceremony of 175 freshmen and women, increasing the total number of students at the university to 1,450. The CUCG Alumni Association was also inaugurated.
Prof. Tagoe urged the government to put in place measures to ensure that teachers are well trained and motivated and students have greater access to facilities and technology which would instil in them lifelong love for learning and prepare them to place greater emphasis on personal initiative and entrepreneurship.
He announced that the CUCG and the University of Ghana were exploring further links to run Health and Allied Sciences programmes at the Catholic University.
“Universities have a major role to play in producing human resource and in undertaking the necessary research for development. The global environment, coupled with the complexities of modern-day governance, advancement in science and technology, and the ICT revolution, call for a highly trained labour force”, he stressed.
The Vice-Chancellor of the CUCG, Prof. James Hawkins Ephraim, thanked all the experts who responded positively to the call by the Ghana Catholic Bishops Conference to advise it on the establishment of the Catholic University as well as all who contributed to the development of the university.
He said the university was granted five institutional re-accreditation, from September 1, 2008, adding: “It is our projection that before our institutional accreditation expires on August 31, 2013, the Catholic University will have attained its charter to become autonomous. At that time, not only will the university be able to award its own degrees, but it would also be able to establish other satellite campuses-because the university would have been thought of as coming of age”.
Prof. Ephraim stated that all courses offered by the CUCG had received accreditation before their commencement, adding that the university’s senate had approved courses in Bachelor of Science in Actuary, Mathematics and Economics, Mathematics and Finance while stakeholder consultations were also far advanced for nursing programmes whose accreditation would be obtained before it starts in August, this year.
Among the dignitaries present at the congregation were Peter Cardinal Appiah Turkson and the Apostolic Nuncio, Most Rev. Leon Kalenga Badekebele who was also the special guest of honour.
Others were the Episcopal Chairman of the university, Most Rev. Matthew Kwasi Gyamfi, who is also the Catholic Bishop of the Sunyani Diocese; the Chairman of the University’s Board of Trustees, His Lordship, Bishop Joseph Osei Bonsu and some members of the board.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


The Brong Ahafo Regional Directorate of the Domestic Violence and Victims Support Unit (DOVVSU) of the Ghana Police Service recorded 383 child non-maintenance cases last year.
Statistics made available to the Daily Graphic in Sunyani by Deputy Superintendent of Police (DSP) Kwaku Amoako, the Regional Commander of the DOVVSU, indicated that the Sunyani Municipality recorded 54 teenage pregnancy cases in the same year.
The Regional Commander said most of the teenage pregnancies involved girls under 16 years, who got impregnated as a result of lack of proper parental care.
He said the directorate recorded a total of 614 cases in the year 2008 which were made up of various offences such as rape, non-maintenance, defilement, assault, exposing a child to danger, among others while 70 out of the total cases recorded for the year were sent to court with 471 cases still under investigation.
According to DSP Amoako, out of the 70 cases that were sent to court, 13 of the suspects were convicted; three for defilement, one each for incest, assault, causing harm and damage with nine for non-maintenance.
He stated that suspects involved in six cases were acquitted and discharged, 51 are awaiting trial and 15 of the cases have been closed.
Mr Amoako also commended the courts that dealt with the non-maintenance cases, especially the Sunyani Magistrate’s Court ‘B’ presided over by Mr Albert Zoogah, for dealing with them expeditiously.
He called for the establishment of juvenile courts and the family tribunals in each of the 22 administrative municipal and district capitals in the region to handle some of the child non-maintenance and teenage pregnancy cases which were on the ascendancy in the region.
He said because of the absence of these specialised courts in certain parts of the region, victims had to travel far distances to Sunyani to attend courts and that affected they and their family members financially.
DSP Amoako disclosed further that the directorate was supposed to have offices in all the municipal and districts in the region but currently the unit could boast of only two other offices in the Wenchi and Berekum municipalities apart from the regional office which is accommodated at the Regional Police Headquarters.
He said the two offices in the municipalities lacked proper office accommodation while the regional office lacked certain logistics such as means of transport to operate smoothly.
DSP Amoako, therefore, appealed to child and women’s rights non-governmental organisations (NGOs) to come to the aid of the office, especially with the provision of a pick-up to enhance its operations in the region.
He disclosed further that the directorate would continue with its public education and expressed his appreciation to the Ghana chapter of ActionAid, an international NGO, for supporting the unit in its activities while pledging to establish a shelter at the regional headquarters for the unit to cater for victims and family members who accompany them to file their complaints.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


ROAD contractors in the country are owed more than GH¢850 million as a result of works they executed last year, the National Treasurer of the Association of Road Contractors, Ghana, Mr Kwasi Dankyi, has disclosed.
He said the amount remained unpaid from contracts awarded members under the Kufuor administration due to the award of contracts that exceeded the government’s projected expenditure.
He has, therefore, appealed to the new government to expedite the process of payment of the money.
Mr Dankyi, who made this known at the first general meeting of the Brong Ahafo Regional branch of the association in Sunyani, has, therefore, urged the government to ensure that it awards contracts according to its expenditure to avoid the undue delay in payment for jobs duly executed.
He said the debts, some of which were overdue for payment for over six months now, had created a lot of financial burden for local contractors and if not honoured could push many of them out of business.
Mr Dankyi also bemoaned the award of major contracts by the previous government to foreign firms contrary to its policy of giving such contracts to indigenous firms to build their capacity.
He noted that during the electioneering the association met with the various political parties and their leadership to tell them their vision for the road construction industry and expressed the hope that the new government under President J.E.A. Mills would fulfil all the pledges he made during their meeting with him.
He disclosed further that the association had put in place measures to enhance the capacity of its members and in view of that the association had secured a $570,357 fund to prepare a comprehensive database for its members in all the 10 regions of the country to enhance their work.
He said the association would also organise training workshops on capacity building on contract administration and tendering and bidding processes so that members could put in tenders for contracts below the price index.
Besides, Mr Dankyi said, the association would also train its members on site operation so as to reduce unnecessary cost when executing their contracts.
He stated that the association had sought the assistance of J.A. Plant Pool in Accra to establish an equipment pool to help local contractors to hire equipment for their jobs.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


From Samuel Duodu, Techiman

The Police in Techiman in the Brong Ahafo Region, have intercepted a bus loaded with five bags of dry leaves believed to be ‘Indian hemp’, at the Techiman –Takoradi Station.
Three people suspected to be connected to the substance have also been arrested.
They are the driver of the vehicle, Kwame Dagati, 28, from Agona Nkwanta in the Western Region, the bookman of the station, Kwame Kum, 40, from Dwomo No. 2 in Techiman and the owner of the substance, Kwesi Joseph, 32 a farmer from Badu in the Tain District of the Brong Ahafo Region.
The Techiman Municipality Police Commander, Supt Solomon Kwabena Ntim, told The Mirror that upon a tip-off, the Police went to the station at about 4 p.m on January 14, 2009, and seized the vehicle and the substance.
He said Kwesi Joseph told the police that the substance was for a customer in Takoradi, but did not disclose the customer’s name.
Supt Solomon K. Ntim said investigations still continue.


A severe rainstorm has hit Sunyani and its environs in the Brong Ahafo Region, ripping off the roofs of some homes and schools and uprooting trees in some places.
No casualty has, however, been reported.
The severest hit structures were the Ghana Immigration Service (GIS) barracks on the Sunyani Airport Road near Gold House, which accommodates 12 officers and their families, and the Emeredane Basic School behind the Regional Administration flats that got their entire roofs ripped off.
The storm, which started at about 5.30 p.m., lasted for nearly two hours and was so strong, it also destroyed the personal belongings of many residents including their electrical appliances.
At the Immigration Barracks, some of the officers whose personal belongings had been soaked with rainwater were seen packing some of them to homes of friends and other secure places in the municipality.
According to some of the affected officers, they had closed from work and were in their rooms when the storm started and before they could do anything the strong wind had ripped off the roof of a section of the building that accommodated six officers and their families.
The officers told the Daily Graphic that they were desperate and did not know what to do, since they did not have any relatives or friends in town whom they could put up with for the night, adding that the barracks was initially to accommodate six officers and their families but was being occupied by 12 officers and their families.
They, therefore, appealed to the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) to go to their aid and appealed to the Immigration Service Headquarters in Accra as a matter of urgency to also renovate the barracks to make it more habitable.
At the Emeredane basic schools the schoolchildren who reported to school yesterday were seen loitering because of the situation.
The authorities of the school also appealed for help to re-roof the classrooms to enable classes to resume as soon as possible.
Meanwhile, the acting Brong Ahafo Regional Meteorological Officer, Mr Noah Kwasi Asare, has told the Daily Graphic that the sudden change in the weather conditions predicts that the region will experience many rainstorms this year.
Mr Asare, therefore, urged residents in the region to take the necessary precautionary measures during this period to ensure that there were no casualties and damage to properties.
He also advised that during the rainstorms residents should also put off all their electrical gadgets as a result of the thunder and lightning that accompanied the rains, and to also ensure that their children were indoors during such periods.

Monday, February 2, 2009


A representative of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in Ghana, Dr Yasmin Ali Haque, has called on the government to consider increasing the budgetary allocation for the sanitation sector to help communities in the country to live in a healthy and disease-free environment.
“At present, the budgetary allocation for that sector is extremely low, with the sector heavily reliant on donors. Development partners provide over 90 per cent of resources for water and sanitation in Ghana,” she observed.
Dr Haque made the call when she delivered a statement on behalf of Ghana’s development partners at the 2008 annual performance review and planning meeting of the Environmental Health and Sanitation Directorate of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development in Sunyani last Thursday.
She urged the government to make water and sanitation issues a national priority.
“It is indeed worthy of note that the issue of sanitation has received attention in the manifestos published during the recent elections. The new government also stated its aspiration to improve sanitation for a better Ghana. On this note we would like the government to consider the budgetary allocation for the sector,” she stressed.
Dr Haque said development partners had noted that in Ghana just 10 per cent of the population used improved sanitation facilities and when the use of shared latrine facilities were included this increased to 51 per cent.
Furthermore, she stated that out of 54 African countries assessed in 2006 by the World Health Organisation and the UNICEF Joint Monitoring Programme for the 2nd African Conference on Sanitation, Ghana was placed 51st, only ahead of Chad, Niger and Eritrea.
“This clearly presents a major challenge to the government, development partners and other stakeholders to focus on strategic measures to accelerate progress in the country, especially if we are to work towards an open defecation-free environment,” she stated.
Dr Haque, however, commended the EHSD for the progress being made in establishing mechanisms and systems to strengthen capacity and ensure that the people of Ghana lived in a healthy and disease-free environment.
Mr Michael Owusu Amoako, Deputy Director, Brong Ahafo Regional Co-ordinating Council, who chaired the open ceremony, in his remarks called for attitudinal and behavioural change on the part of all citizens to help make every community clean and disease free so that each individual would be healthy to contribute his or her quota to national development.
To that end the new government has made sanitation part of its initial critical issues to be tackled within the first 100 days and has, therefore, asked all regions and districts to launch their sanitation week.
Saturday, February 21 has been set aside for the Brong Ahafo Region to launch its sanitation week.


SOME metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) have called on the transitional team to fast-track the appointment of new MMDCEs, so that they could hand over to them in order to have their peace of mind.
According to them, some hot-headed National Democratic Congress (NDC) activists were harassing them and issuing out threats on them since President J.E.A. Mills gave directives asking them to stay on until further notice.
At a meeting with a member of the Transitional Team in charge of the Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development (MLGRD), Mr Kwasi Oppong Ofosu, the Asunafo South District Co-ordinating Director, Mr I.K. Acheampong, expressed concerns about the President’s directives, saying the continuous stay in office of the MMDCEs was a problem to some of them.
Citing instances where some of them were Members of Parliament (MP), he explained that their continuous absence in the districts were slowing down the pace of work, since they had to attend parliamentary proceedings in Accra.
Mr Ofosu, who met with the MMDCEs and some co-ordinating directors from the northern sector of the country, namely Brong Ahafo, Ashanti, Northern and Upper East and West regions in Sunyani to express the transitional team’s appreciation, as well as to discuss matters of mutual concern, explained that the directive by President Atta Mills asking all MMDCEs to remain in office until further notice was to ensure an orderly, peaceful and smooth transition.
He has, therefore, given assurance to all the MMDCEs who served the previous administration to abide by the directives until such a time that he (President Mills) deemed it fit to ask them to leave.
“The country is for all of us and it is the country that we are serving not any political party. I commend you for your patience and ask you to still hold on to your post as declared by President Mills until further notice,” he stressed.
Responding to those concerns, Mr Ofosu assured the sitting MMDCEs to exercise caution, since the President had not asked them to leave and called on supporters of the ruling NDC to desist from such acts and give respect to the President’s directives.
Mr Ofosu further gave the assurance that the NDC government would continue with the Ghana School Feeding Programme and called on NDC party activists who were going around threatening caterers who were contracted under the previous administration to halt such behaviours, saying “even the new government has released some funds for the programme.”
He said it was not the policy direction of the ruling NDC government to party supporters to go about threatening and issuing out threats and orders to appointees under the previous administration who had been asked to stay on. He unequivocally condemned such acts.
Touching on waste management issues by the various district assemblies, the transitional team member said it was a daunting task but, gave the assurance that the new government, considering the importance of sanitation, had made it part of its initial critical issues which would be tackled, and had, therefore, asked all regions and districts to launch their sanitation week.
He also urged MMDCEs who had increased their property rates and other fees paid to their various assemblies to desist from such acts until such a time that the new government would take decision on that issue.


Nine individuals have filed their nominations to contest for the single slot of the Council of State elections in the Brong Ahafo Region, slated for February 10, 2009.
The candidates are Pemampem Yaw Kagbrese V, 58, a farmer and Paramount Chief of Yeji Traditional Area; Nana Kwaku Dwuma Ankoana II, 60, Paramount Chief of Seikwa Traditional Area; Mr Kwabena Kyere, 73, a teacher and former Deputy Minister of Education under former President Rawlings’s NDC regime; Nana Dr David Kwabena Mensah, 53, a Development Specialist, and Nana Kwadwo Sito, 53, the Paramount Chief of Banda Traditional Area.
The rest are Mr Dartey Kwaku, 46, a teacher; Usman Fakih Suallah, 27, teacher; Mr Ofori Mensah Evans, 22, a journalist with the Ghana News Agency (GNA) in Sunyani, and Mr J.H. Owusu-Acheampong, 68, a former Minister of Food and Agriculture under former President Rawlings’s NDC regime.
The list of the contestants was made available to the Daily Graphic in Sunyani by the Brong Ahafo Regional Office of the Electoral Commission (EC) .
As at the close of nominations on Tuesday, the nine were those who had submitted their nomination forms to contest for the single slot of the region on the Council of State.
In view of the elections, the Regional Directorate of the EC had sent letters to the 22 municipal and district assemblies in the region to select two representatives each who would form the Electoral College to elect the region’s representative to the Council of State.
The Regional EC office gave the names of the districts that had so far submitted the names of the two representatives to form the Electoral College as Kintampo South, Atebubu/Amantin, Sene, Kintampo North, Jaman North, Berekum, Tano South, Asunafo South, Sunyani West and Tain.
It said all was set for the Council of State elections in the region and that the EC was only waiting for the day of the elections, and added that the pictures of the contestants would be embossed on the ballot papers for the elections.


THIRTY-THREE inmates of the Sunyani Central Prisons have been granted amnesty for this year by the previous government.
Those granted the amnesty were in the classes of first offenders who have spent about half of their jail terms and were of good behaviour, very old prisoners who are above 70 years of age and the seriously ill whose conditions had been certified by the Medical Board.
A Deputy Director of the Ghana Prisons Service, Mr Jacob Agambire, who is also the Brong Ahafo Regional Commander of Prisons who disclosed this in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Sunyani, said the recommendations for those to enjoy amnesty were made at the regional level.
He said a letter for the release of the 33 prisoners had been sent to the Prisons Headquarters in Accra for approval, saying until they received the letter those prisoners could not be released.
However, Mr Agambire disclosed that his outfit would receive the letter from Accra this week which would enable those 33 prisoners to gain their freedom from incarceration.
He explained further that once the letter had been received, copies of it including the names of the beneficiaries would be sent to the Regional Commanders of Bureau of National Investigation (BNI) and the Police Criminal Investigation Department (CID) who would be at the prison yard with the committee set up at the prison on the day of their release to ensure that those granted amnesty were the ones who were being sent out.
The Regional Prisons Commander stated that several mechanisms had been put in place to ensure that the system released the right people who had been recommended to enjoy the amnesty back into society.
Mr Agambire stated further that those who were granted amnesty would have been freed from jail but their criminal records were still there while those who been pardoned by the president and released from prison would have their criminal records erased and might qualify for ministerial and other government appointments except that they cannot stand for election for the presidency.
He observed that there are categories of prisoners who committed certain crimes and were brought to jail who cannot be granted amnesty and mentioned those offences as rape, defilement, armed robbery, narcotics, use of offensive weapons in committing crime, manslaughter and escapees from prisons, saying: “if even they show remorse they would not be granted amnesty.”
Mr Agambire disclosed further that currently there was a total of 1,260 prisoners in the Sunyani prisons and the Yeji, Kenyasi and Duayaw Nkwanta Prison camps.
Touching on the Justice for All Programme initiated by the previous government, the Regional Prisons Commander called for its continuation by the new administration since it was aimed basically at ‘decongesting’ the various prisons in the country.
He stated further that the programme was also targeted in the speedy trial of cases in order not to keep innocent people in prisons for a long time as well as to soften the conditions of bail for minor cases instead of remand.

Sunday, February 1, 2009


Newmont Ghana Gold Limited (NGGL), operators of the Ahafo Mine in the Asutifi District of the Brong Ahafo Region, has pledged to continue to carry out its social responsibilities in the communities affected by its operations.
The company has also given the assurance that it will be prudent and ensure that its operations are carried out in a manner that will be beneficial to the company and its stakeholders.
Mr Dan Michaelson, General Manager, Environment and Social Responsibility (ESR), made the pledge at a soiree organised by the company for media practitioners in the region over the weekend.
He announced that the company, in the next few weeks, would inaugurate the Newmont Ahafo Secretariat.
The secretariat, he said, would be responsible for the disbursement of money accrued from the community development fund set up under the Ahafo social responsibility programme to support the NGGL’s sustainable development projects in the 10 communities in the Ahafo operational area.
He further disclosed that the company would also focus on expanding the Ahafo South project by developing the Amoma pit project.
The general manager thanked the media for their unbiased coverage of the operations of NGGL over the past five years since it began its operations in the Ahafo area.
Mr Michaelson said one of such extensive coverage by the media was during the signing ceremonies of the Ahafo social responsibilities agreements.
“You told the whole world the story of our historic feat in mining community relations in Ghana. Thanks to you, our social responsibility agreement model continues to be a reference point for many in the area of social responsibility,” he said.
The acting Communication Manager of the NGGL, Mr Agbeko Kwame Azumah, also commended the media for their coverage of the company’s activities and operations over the past years.
He urged the media to do features and analytical stories to educate the public to appreciate the role of mining in the socio-economic development of the country.
Mr Charles Koomson, the Brong Ahafo Regional Chairman of the Ghana Journalists Association (GJA) and Regional Manager of the Ghana News Agency (GNA), urged media practitioners to be guided by the code of ethics of the association in the discharge of their duties.
“We must ensure that our reportage is educative and informative to let the public also appreciate the positive role mining plays in the socio-economic development of the country,” he added.


The Brong Ahafo Regional Minister designate, Mr Kwadwo Nyamekye-Marfo, has said, given the nod by Parliament to become Minister, education, health and agriculture will be a top priority in his administration.
He said he would also give attention to the reshaping of feeder roads in the region, especially those leading and linking food production areas to the marketing centres.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo gave the assurance in an interview with the Daily Graphic in Sunyani moments after he was mentioned as the President’s nominee for the position of the Regional Minister.
He further gave the assurance that he would take a look at the water and electricity sectors.
This, he said, he would do by ensuring that potable water and electricity were extended to the newly developed areas in the Sunyani Municipality, as well as other towns and villages.
He said his administration would also work closely with traditional authorities and all religious groupings in the region for development.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo said he felt humble by his nomination, saying there were several people who put in their bid for the regional minister position from the region, which he also did.
“I was therefore ready to serve in any capacity or play any role President Mills would have assigned me so I was not surprised by the appointment,” he added.
Mr Nyamekye-Marfo told the Daily Graphic that he had once served on the executive at a lower level for a total period of 11 years, under the People’s National Defence Council (PNDC), and the previous National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration under former President J J Rawlings, as District Secretary for Jaman South and District, Chief Executive (DCE) for the then Sunyani District now a municipality.
He called for co-operation from all sectors of the local economy to help speed up the socio-economic development of the region, which he said was endowed with a lot of natural and human resources, which would be tapped and harnessed for the progress of the region.
Meanwhile, some residents in the Sunyani Municipality from the various political parties, civil society groups among others, have hailed the nomination of Mr Nyamekye-Marfo as the Brong Ahafo Regional Minister designate.
They welcomed the news with joy and excitement and described the President’s choice as a good one.
They also described the Regional Minister designate as an affable, God fearing, hard-working and a ‘down to earth’ person who was committed to the cause of all, no matter their social, ethnic, religious and political background.
“I think Mr Nyamekye-Marfo would be a father of all in the region,” Mr Paa Kwesi Ansah, a businessman declared.
Madam Akosua Kyeremaa, a trader at the Sunyani Central Market, also described President Mills’s choice as a good one and said she was expecting good days ahead for all in the region.
They expressed the hope that the Regional Minister designate would work to implement the party’s electioneering slogan ‘Change’ and ‘a better Ghana for all’ at the regional, municipal and district levels.


THE Tain District Director of Education, Mr Francis Dongbetigre, has appealed to teachers in the district to endeavour to live above reproach and discharge their duties conscientiously to help uplift the standard of education in the area.
He said bad habits such as alcoholism, absenteeism, befriending teenage schoolgirls and many other anti-social behaviours exhibited by some teachers continued to cast a slur on the good image of the noble profession.
He made the call at the inauguration of the St Peter’s Catholic Teachers Association at Seikwa in the Tain District of the Brong Ahafo Region.
He stressed the need for teachers to emulate Christ, who exhibited true dedication to duty as a distinctive teacher, saying, “As Catholic teachers, you should be shining examples for others to emulate.”
He lamented the extent to which parental control had deteriorated in the district; a situation which had contributed to the fallen standards of teaching and learning in schools.
“If parents and guardians neglect their duties, there will be no way for the children to produce the desired results, since education is a shared responsibility among teachers, parents, the government and children,” he stressed.
Mr Dongbetigre urged teachers to endeavour to adopt new methods of teaching and learning to enhance their work.
The director further urged them to show love and care to their students in order to nurture the future of the young ones who were required to take up the mantle of leadership in future.
Nana Twum Barima II, the Oyokohene of the Seikwa Traditional Area, who represented the Omanhene of Seikwa, also urged parents not to destroy the future of their children by pampering them unnecessarily.
The chief lamented the manner some parents allowed their children to adopt the use of mobile phones in schools.
He reiterated the need for parents to encourage teachers by showing concern for their general welfare and appealed to landlords not to be reluctant to release their houses to teachers.
Present at the inauguration ceremony were the Catholic Bishop of Sunyani, the Most Rev. Matthew Akwasi Gyamfi; Mr Johnson Asiedu-Nketia, the General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), and the NDC Member of Parliament for Tain, Mr Ahmed Ibrahim.


NKORANMAN Senior High School (SHS) at Seikwa in the Tain District of the Brong Ahafo Region has for three consecutive times maintained its splendid performance in the West Africa Senior School Certificate Examination (WASSCE).
The school, with a current population of over 600, has enriched its progressive track record with the 2008 WASSCE results in which it maintained its 100 per cent record since 2006.
The Headmaster of the school, Mr M. K. Boakye, told the Daily Graphic that out of the 143 students who sat for the examination last year, 78 candidates had passes in eight subjects while the rest had passes in seven, six and five subjects and added that it was gratifying that none of the candidates presented failed in all subjects.
The school is situated at Seikwa in the Tain District of the Brong Ahafo Region and is considered as one of the less-endowed in the region and country.
Mr Boakye said by the current standard the school had a better position than the other SHS in the struggle for the siting of the district model school in the Tain District.
“In terms of population and academic standards none of the senior high schools can match Nkoranman,” he said.
He stated that the secret behind the current performance was partly due to the seriousness of teachers and students.
Meanwhile the Seikwa Tertiary Students Association (SETSA) has congratulated the headmaster, the entire administration and the student body for the splendid performance.
In the letter, the association expressed its profound gratitude to the school for giving the entire Seikwa Traditional Area a facelift. The union, therefore, pledged to continue its programme of offering free tuition during vacation periods in order to maintain the splendid performance.
In a related development SETSA has also sent a congratulatory message to the National Democratic Congress (NDC) . Mr Asiedu Nketsiah, the NDC General Secretary, and the Member of Parliament for the area, Mr Ahmed Ibrahim, for emerging victors in the immediate past general election.
The student body also appealed to Mr Nketsiah, who is a son of Seikwa, and the MP to take into consideration the poor nature of road network in the Tain Constituency, particularly the road linking Seikwa to Berekum, and do something about it.


THE General Secretary of the National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, has commended the Catholic Church for its pivotal role of providing humanitarian services to supplement government’s efforts.
He said the church’s distinctive contribution to areas such as hospitals, schools, water and sanitation as well as other benevolent services could not be overemphasised.
He attributed his success as a career politician to the virtues acquired in his days as a teacher trainee at St Joseph Teacher Training College at Bechem where he schooled before entering the University of Ghana.
Mr Asiedu Nketiah gave the commendation at the inauguration of St Peter’s Catholic Teachers’ Association at Seikwa in the Tain District in the Brong Ahafo Region.
He noted that while the church was making such remarkable strides, teachers and other professionals should also endeavour to complement the effort of the church and government.
The general secretary who has also served a three-term tenure as the Member of Parliament for Wenchi West Constituency which is now known as the Tain Constituency, further urged the church to continue its invaluable delivery of social services for the benefit of all.
As a native of Seikwa in the Tain District, Mr Asiedu Nketiah has promised to accommodate teacher trainees who are posted to the area for their teaching practice.
He therefore urged the community to encourage teachers posted to the area in order to enhance educational standards in the Seikwa traditional area.
He encouraged students there to also take their studies seriously in order to attain higher heights in the future. “I believe with perseverance Seikwa will not only boast a general secretary, but even a President in the near future.
He called on parents to help their children to realise their dreams.
Mr Nketiah was accompanied by the NDC Member of Parliament of the area, Mr Ahmed Ibrahim as well as other constituency executive of the party. He and his entourage donated GH¢50.00 towards the inaugural ceremony.
The Bishop of the Catholic Dioceses of Sunyani, Most Rev. Mathew Kwasi Gyamfi, in his sermon also urged the teachers to emulate the footprints of Jesus Christ. He said Jesus as the greatest teacher exhibited love, care and support for his disciples.
Most Rev. Gyamfi stressed that it was the duty of teachers to take good care of the young ones entrusted to them.
The Bishop also called on students to refrain from habits such as alcoholism, smoking and other anti-social acts that could destroy their future.
Most Rev. Gyamfi expressed optimism that the 52 teachers who formed the association would transform the face of education in the area in the near future and appealed to them not to allow the challenges of the profession to obstruct their call as shepherds.


THE Sunyani High Court in the Brong Ahafo Region, presided over by Mr Justice Francis Kwabena Opoku, has adjourned sine die (indefinitely) the case in which the New Patriotic Party (NPP) parliamentary candidate for the Asutifi South Constituency, Mr Yiadom Boakye-Boateng, is challenging the parliamentary election results in the constituency.
When the case was called for hearing yesterday, the Judge informed the court that he had received notice that the Electoral Commission (EC) had filed an appeal and a stay of proceedings at a Court of Appeal against an earlier ruling by his court.
Mr Opoku had on January 12, 2009 overruled a preliminary objection application raised by the respondent in the case in which he had filed a ‘motion on notice for interim injunction’ for the re-collation of the parliamentary results in the constituency.
The presiding judge said he only gave ruling on the preliminary objection raised by the responding and therefore could not fathom the basis on which the EC filed an appeal and a stay of proceedings at the Court of Appeal pending his reasons for the ruling.
He therefore adjourned the case until further notice and said he would give the reasons on his ruling on January 30.
Mr Opoku also said no date had also been fixed for the motion to be heard by the Court of Appeal and added that he could not show disrespect to the Court of Appeal by going ahead with the case.
Lead counsels for plaintiff and respondent, Captain Nkrabeah Effah–Dartey (retd) and Mr Chris Ackumey announced to the court that they were yet to be served with the suits for the appeal and stay of proceedings.
They had however agreed that the case should be adjourned sine die to enable them pursue it at the Appeal Court.
The Supervising High Court Judge ,Mr Justice Opoku, had fixed yesterday for the actual commencement of the case in agreement with the counsel for the plaintiff and respondent.
There was heavy police presence at the court premises yesterday and therefore, there was no sign of supporters of the NDC and NPP but the courtroom was filled to capacity with some leading members of both parties and regional executives.
In the motion, the Plaintiff said, “Please take notice that Messrs Asomah-Cheremeh & Co. Counsel for and on behalf of the Petitioner/Applicant herein will move this Honourable Court for an order restraining the 1st and 3rd Respondents herein from declaring the Parliamentary election held in the Asutifi South Constituency on the 7th day of December, 2008 as upon the grounds set out in the accompanying affidavit. And for such further order(s) as the Honourable Court may deem fit to make”.
In his 17-point petition, accompanied by an affidavit, the NPP candidate contended among other issues that, “it is clear that the results of the Constituency had been tampered with and that fairness cannot be achieved in this circumstances and for that matter do crave the indulgence of the Honourable Court to investigate and take a firm decision on it either to discount two ballot boxes and declare the winner or the entire parliamentary result of the constituency be annulled and fresh election for the parliamentary held”
Subsequent to the motion, Mr Boakye-Boateng, who contested the election with Alhaji Collins Dauda of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the incumbent Member of Parliamentary (MP) for the area, and Mr George Okyere, the Democratic People’s Party (DPP) candidate, has observed that the parliamentary election in the Asutifi Constituency was characterised by some corrupt practices and, therefore, prayed the court to investigate it.
Meanwhile the court has also adjourned the case in which the NPP parliamentary candidates for Tain and Kintampo South, Messrs Joe Danquah and Adjei Duffuor were challenging the election results in the respective constituencies in the Brong Ahafo Region for hearing on January 30, 2009 to enable the respondents in the case to be properly served with the suit.


THE General Secretary of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), Mr Johnson Asiedu Nketiah, has stated that any former government functionary or appointee who is found culpable or found to have committed any crime while in office would be made to face the full rigours of the law.
According to him, the day of reckoning was here and, therefore, every functionary or appointee of the previous administration who could not give account of his or her stewardship would be made to answer.
The General secretary, alleged that information reaching them indicated that some of the metropolitan, municipal and district chief executives (MMDCEs) who were directed by President John Evans Atta Mills to stay on until further notice had started destroying vital documents to cover up their bad deeds while in office.
He, therefore, sounded a note of caution to such appointees who had indulged in those criminal acts to stop, saying the ruling NDC already had all those documents in their possession, thus whether those involved destroyed those documents or not they would still be made to give account of their stewardship.
Mr Nketiah, who stated this at a thanksgiving rally held at Seikwa in the Tain District of the Brong Ahafo Region over the weekend for their steadfastness and support for the party during the 2008 elections, said the NDC would not embark on political witch-hunting as was done by the previous regime, but would ensure that the due process of the law took its course in the country.
He said Professor Atta Mills’s government would work with all who were committed, qualified, competent and were ready to help bring to fruition his vision of a better Ghana.
He debunked the rumour that the ruling NDC had sacked Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, a Deputy Governor of the Bank of Ghana and running mate of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, the NPP Presidential Candidate for the 2008 election, from office.
Mr Nketiah explained that Dr Bawumia was not sacked by Prof. Mills, but what he told him was that he (Dr Bawumia) was committed rather to a certain ideology, which he expressly propagated during the 2008 electioneering, and which was in sharp contrast with Prof. Mills’s. Prof. Mills, therefore, asked him to go home and rethink whether he would change his mind and be now committed to Prof. Mills’s task of making a better Ghana.
The general secretary, who is also a citizen of the Tain Constituency, urged the people of the area to bury their political differences which might have arisen during the electioneering and unite for the development of the area, adding that the ruling NDC was for development and would ensure that the area got its fair share of development projects, especially in the road sector, since many roads linking the constituency to other towns were in a bad shape.
He also expressed the gratitude of the party as well as that of President Mills to the people in the area for rallying behind him when the constituency became the deciding factor as to who became the next President of Ghana.
Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, the National Organiser of the NDC, for his part, called on party supporters to exercise restraint and allow President Mills to do things in his own style and way.
According to him, an Appointments Committee has been put in place and they must allow the committee to work in order not to weaken the structures of the party.
He, therefore, called on party supporters to accept and rally behind anybody who would be appointed as a minister or MMDCE to enable them to discharge their duties efficiently, so that in 2012 Prof. Mills would be able to account for his stewardship as President.
The Brong Ahafo Regional Chairman of the NDC, the NDC Member of Parliament (MP) for Tain, NDC Parliamentary Candidate for Asutifi South, Messrs John Owusu Agyeman, Ahmed Ibrahim and Alhaji Collins Dauda respectively, took turns to address the rally and urged the people in the area to exhibit the same kind of confidence they reposed in the party and voted it into power to rule the nation.
They thanked the people for their support and said the NDC stood for development and would, therefore, ensure that the area had its fair share of development under the ruling NDC.
Present at the rally were some regional executive members of the party who included Mr Justice Samuel Adjei, Regional Secretary, and Baba Gausu, the Regional Organiser.