Thursday, August 27, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Thursday, August 27, 2015

The Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has come under lens of many Ghanaians, especially the security agencies, following reports that the state-run university appears to becoming a fertile ground for recruiting would-be terrorists.

 Reports indicate that a house at Palm Wine Junction, La in Accra, is the place where the potential recruits hold regular meetings.

According to a friend of Nazir Nortei Alema, a KNUST graduate who is reported to have joined the deadly terrorist group,   Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS), he was invited by his friend (Alema) to attend their meetings at La but he turned down the invitation.
The meetings often take place on Wednesdays and Fridays. The potential recruits also occasionally, meet on weekends, according to report.

At least 10 boys, mostly in tertiary institutions, allegedly left Ghana in May 2015 alone to join terror cells in the Middle East, but the security agencies are yet to confirm or deny the claim.

News about the 25-year-old graduate of the KNUST, Nazir Nortei Alema, purportedly joining ISIS recently spread like wild fire and it has attracted both national and international concerns.

The National Security as a result, has reportedly commenced investigations into the recruitment schemes of the would-be terrorists; and the Ghana Police Service Counter Terrorism Unit is deeply involved.

Islamic Extremists
DAILY GUIDE learnt that there is a group of young Muslims at KNUST who express extremist views on campus and Nazir Nortei Alema was said to be a key member.

They are said to be living together in a hostel outside campus and do not allow anybody to easily infiltrate their ranks.

Other private Islamic institutions, especially at the tertiary level, are said to be having students who exhibit extreme religious tendencies towards people who do not share their views.

A key agent allegedly doing the recruitment for the ISIS has already been identified as Badhan Diallo, a Guinean, who was at the University of Ghana but purportedly left to join the terror grouping a few months ago.

The National Security was hit by DAILY GUIDE’s publication of Tuesday (on the alleged departure of Alema), sending security operatives scurrying for details of the story and location of Nazir’s house.

Security experts have concluded that Nazir Nortei Alema’s issue could be a tip of the iceberg because a good number of Muslim youth are ever prepared to join ISIS and other terrorist groups to fight Jihad (Holy War).

KNUST authorities have already expressed ‘shock’ and ‘worry’ over the report that Nazir Nortei Alema, who graduated last year with a degree in Geography and Rural Development, has already left to join the ISIS per evidence available to his family.

KNUST spokesperson, Ankamah Lomotey, served notice that the university would investigate the existence of any sects and take swift action on them.

Parents’ Concern
DAILY GUIDE learnt that Muslim parents whose wards are not on KNUST’s traditional hostels are becoming worried over the latest revelations.
One parent reportedly withdrew her daughter from the university recently when she realized that the daughter appeared to exhibit extremist tendencies.

Widespread Phenomenon
A lecturer at KNUST who is a Muslim, has told DAILY GUIDE on condition of anonymity that “It is really a fact that it is a widespread phenomenon. The youth appear ready to join ISIS and others, judging from the interactions we have with them on the various platforms, particularly social media.

“It is becoming like a passion among the so-called various youth for those who want to portray commitment to the religion.”

 “As a patron of the local religious group, the student association, we tend to observe these sorts of things when we are engaged in orientation with these boys. They kind of portray extremist zeal and appear to exhibit fanaticism.”

Brainwashed Youth
He said, “They always give us hell of a time for us to really educate them about the position that what they are standing for is myopic and utopian and cannot find space in contemporary times,” as they are said to have been brainwashed.

“There are a whole lot of instances that abound that some of us encounter when we meet these student groups. They tend to express their attraction towards groups such as the ISIS,” the lecturer underscored.

Wednesday, August 26, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Wednesday, August 26, 2015

There is growing disquiet in the Ghanaian Muslim community following news that some Muslim youth are joining the swelling ranks of the dreaded Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS).

News about a 25-year-old graduate of the Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST), Nazir Nortei Alema, purportedly joining the terrorist group recently spread like wild fire and it has attracted both national and international concerns.

The National Security as a result, has reportedly commenced investigations into activities of the would-be terrorists and the Ghana Police Service is deeply involved.

The National Security was apparently hit by DAILY GUIDE’s publication yesterday, sending security operatives scurrying for details of the story and location of Nazir’s house.

DAILY GUIDE learnt that Nazir Nortei Alema’s issue could be a tip of the iceberg because a good number of Muslim youth are ever prepared to join ISIS and other terrorist groups to fight Jihad (Holy War).

At least more than 10 boys, mostly in tertiary institutions, allegedly left Ghana in May 2015 to join the terror grouping in the Middle East but the security agencies are yet to confirm or deny the claim.

Widespread Phenomenon
A lecturer at KNUST who is a Muslim told DAILY GUIDE on condition of anonymity that “It is really a fact that it is a widespread phenomenon. The youth appear ready to join ISIS and others, judging from the interactions we have with them on the various platforms, particularly the social media.”

He continued, “As a patron of the local religious group, the student association, we tend to observe these sorts of things when we are engaged in orientation with these boys. They kind of portray extremist zeal and appear to exhibit fanaticism.”

Brainwashed Youth
He said, “They always give us a hell of time for us to really educate them about the position that what they are standing for is myopic and utopian and cannot find space in contemporary times.

“There are a whole lot of instances that abound that some of us encounter when we meet these student groups. They tend to express their attraction towards groups such as the ISIS.”

The lecturer wondered, “How many of the Ulama (Clerics) are orientated occasionally to really appreciate that some global issues are really not desirable to our Ghanaian national identity?” adding, “They have to mount the platform to educate the youth.”

ISIS Influence
He said that “Muslim extremist organizations are there but ISIS clearly is now gaining grounds more than the Al-Qaeda,” wondering “to what extent are the Ulama aware of the need that they have to start preaching against this kind of extremism?”

He added, “The way it is gaining grounds somewhere, it can find its way in our local space if we do not reach out to the youth.”

No Support
The lecturer said that “Even in the mosques, there appear to be limited activities taking place. The mosque has always been seen only as centre for prayers. There is no occasional platform created to orientate or educate the youth.

 “Those intellectuals in the Islamic community are also handicapped in the sense that unless the students themselves organize programmes or create platforms for us to speak on something of their interest, we are not able to do anything. There is no opportunity for us to have extra funding to be able to move about to give orientation to the youth about things that do not conform to the religion.”

According to him, “To a large extent, the way some of the youth express extremism in their various platforms during our engagement with them, I will say it is widespread. It is widespread because of the easy use and accessibility to ICT in various ways.

“What we are experiencing now is just consequences of modernity or globalization of technology which has made the world a small village. We have been encountering such problems when we engage with them.”

The alarm bell is currently ringing over the subtle recruitment drive for vulnerable Muslim youth in especially tertiary institutions in the country for the ISIS whose stock-in-trade is publicly beheading their opponents or those they regard as infidels.

ISIS In Retrospect
According to the BBC, the so-called Islamic State burst on to the international scene in 2014 when it seized large swathes of territory in Syria and Iraq.

In June 2014, the group formally declared the establishment of a "caliphate" - a state governed in accordance with Islamic law, or Sharia, by God's deputy on earth, or caliph.

It has demanded that Muslims across the world swear allegiance to its leader - Ibrahim Awad Ibrahim al-Badri al-Samarrai, better known as Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi - and migrate to the territory under its control.

Many already have, among them several offshoots of the rival al-Qaeda network.

IS can trace its roots back to the late Abu Musab al-Zarqawi, a Jordanian who set up Tawhid wa al-Jihad in 2002. A year after the US-led invasion of Iraq, Zarqawi pledged allegiance to Osama Bin Laden and formed al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI), which became a major force in the insurgency.

After Zarqawi's death in 2006, AQI created an umbrella organization - Islamic State in Iraq (ISI). ISI was steadily weakened by the US troop surge and the creation of Sahwa (Awakening) councils by Sunni Arab tribesmen who rejected its brutality.

Baghdadi, a former US detainee, became leader in 2010 and began rebuilding ISI's capabilities. By 2013, it was once again carrying out dozens of attacks a month in Iraq.

It had also joined the rebellion against President Bashar al-Assad in Syria, setting up the al-Nusra Front.

In April 2013, Baghdadi announced the merger of his forces in Iraq and Syria and the creation of the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant. The leaders of al-Nusra and al-Qaeda rejected the move, but fighters loyal to Baghdadi split from al-Nusra and helped ISIS remain in Syria.


By William Yaw Owusu
Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Kwabena Abankwah-Yeboah, National Treasurer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), has filed a suit at an Accra Fast Track High Court against the editor of al-Hajj newspaper, Alhaji Bature Iddrisu, for libel.

The treasurer is claiming GH¢1 million as aggravated damages from Alhaji Bature as well as Harzet Company Limited, publishers of the al-Hajj newspaper for ‘loss of reputation.’

According to the plaintiff, who has Gary Nimako Marfo of Safo & Marfo @ Law as his counsel, the defendants had accused him in a publication that he operated a secret bank account belonging to the NPP but could not account for the proceeds.

Plaintiff’s Reliefs
Mr. Abankwah-Yeboah is seeking a declaration that the banner headline of Thursday, August 13, 2015 in the al-Hajj - “Police probe: NPP Treasurer confesses - GH¢6 million in ‘secret account,” is defamatory.

He wants a further declaration that “the publication by the defendants that the plaintiff cannot properly account for nearly GH¢1 million belonging to the NPP is defamatory” and was “without any justification or probable cause.”

“A declaration that the entire publication of the defendants about the plaintiff is libelous as same was published without any lawful, reasonable or probable cause,” the plaintiff sought.

He is also seeking an injunction to restrain the defendants from further publishing defamatory stories about him and an order directed at the defendants to retract and apologize for the publication in the same prominence as the original story.

Statement Of Claim
According to Mr. Abankwah-Yeboah, the defendants had said in the publication that nearly GH¢1 million out of the GH¢6 million could not be properly accounted for and that some of the party’s finance committee members were pushing for the case to be reported to the CID since it was a criminal offence.

Particulars Of Defamation
The plaintiff is averring that he “understands the banner headline to mean that he is somebody who is criminally minded and has secretly kept funds meant for the NPP without the knowledge of the executives of the party.

“The plaintiff understands the assertion that GH¢1 million cannot be properly accounted for by him to mean that he has embezzled party funds thereby warranting investigations to be conducted by the police as it’s being alleged by the said publication.”

False Publication
The plaintiff is insisting that the entire publication is ‘false’ and that he is not under any police investigation/probe for embezzling funds meant for the NPP, adding that the party has no secret account and as the National Treasurer, he is the custodian of the party’s funds and is obliged under the constitution of the party, to account for his stewardship to the stakeholders of the party at the end of his tenure of office.

He further said he had never been arrested or invited by the police to assist in any investigation in respect of any secret account or alleged embezzled GH¢1 million funds belonging to the NPP.


By William Yaw Owusu
Wednesday, August 26, 2015

Anti-corruption body, Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), has expressed disquiet over the failure of the committee that probed allegation of abuse of office leveled against the suspended chairperson of the Commission for Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), Ms Lauretta V. Lamptey, to release its findings.

The committee was set up by Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood.

“The continued silence of the committee and the Chief Justice on the matter seems to be telling Ghanaians that the judiciary could be going down the same lane as the executive,” Vitus A. Azeem, Executive Director of GII, said in a statement yesterday.

Worrying Silence
According to GII, “The committee was set up because justice needed to be served and the commissioner needed to be given the chance to be heard. However, the long silence is worrying and many Ghanaians may give different interpretations to this silence.”

It averred, “If Ms. Lauretta V. Lamptey has been cleared, she should be restored to her position as the commissioner of CHRAJ; and if she has been found guilty, the necessary sanctions should apply. Justice cannot afford to be delayed, especially by the Judiciary.”

Judicial Independence
GII said it was calling on the Chief Justice “to display the independence and the incorruptible nature of Ghana’s judiciary by releasing the report, if it is ready or by informing Ghanaians why the investigations have still not been concluded. This is the only way to go if the judiciary hopes to maintain its credibility.”

In the view of GII, “It is unacceptable for any arm of government to yield to political pressures when it comes to addressing governance issues, but it is even worse when citizens perceive the judiciary to yield to such pressures or even fall victim to other factors such as corruption in its various forms.”

Multiple Investigations
GII noted that the Mahama-led administration yielded to ‘pressures’ to investigate allegations of corruption and other types of malfeasance against various public officers and mentioned the Judgment Debt Commission, the Brazil 2014 Commission, EOCO investigations into the operations of GYEEDA and “the so-called investigations into the Subah Info Solutions saga.”

It said that most of the commissions of inquiry “have taken longer than expected to carry out their investigations, often for no obvious reason.”

The statement pointed out, “Even when the delayed investigations have finally been completed and the reports submitted, it takes a lot more time to take action on the recommendations of these commissions.

“Sometimes, no action is taken at all on the recommendations and public officers that have been indicted remain in their positions, monies stolen remain unrecovered and recommended prosecutions never take place.”

President’s Inaction
It said that the inaction by the president on reports of commissions of inquiry and other investigations might be attributed to factors including “political pressures from party financiers and faithful who are indicted.”

“Pressures may also come from involvement of people high up in the party or government who feel threatened by further revelations if action is taken against the indicted officers or who feel that their indicted tribesmen should not be penalized for the improprieties or possible benefits of the ruling party from the improprieties.” 

“We need to know why they have been cleared or found guilty. The reports must be published and the Attorney General should take the necessary action against those who have been indicted,” the GII insisted.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015


It has been confirmed that the Ford mini bus that crashed last week killing the Ghanaian Times Presidential Correspondent, Samuel Nuamah and leaving others fighting for their lives, was hired to convey the journalists.

The press corps was returning to Accra from the Volta Regional capital, Ho, where President John Mahama had attended the annual convention of the EP Church, climaxing it with a donation of a vehicle to the church.

A source at the presidency told DAILY GUIDE that he could not name the hiring company but was emphatic that it was the Flagstaff House’s Transport Department that hired the GMC Savanna mini bus with registration GB 506 – 12 at the request of the Communications Department to augment the fleet to Ho in the Volta Region.

 First Time

According to the source, the Flagstaff House regularly hired buses to convey media practitioners to the President’s assignments but the crashed vehicle was let out to them for the first time.

Interestingly, the source could not tell whether the Transport Department conducted thorough checks on the road worthiness of the vehicle, particularly the tyres, which DAILY GUIDE has learnt, appeared worn out.

The source said that the bus was hired from Accra and not Ho, the Volta Regional capital, as initially reported. It crashed at Shai Hills on the Accra-Akosombo highway when it was returning to Accra.

 Camera Crew

The source also said the accident bus always followed the first vehicle in the presidential convoy, which was full of camera crew and said the driver often travelled with them.

He said the driver of the accident vehicle had been discharged and added that every occupant in the bus sustained injuries saying, “It was a terrible accident. The occupants went through a lot.”

According to the source, initially the presidency was providing a single bus for journalists but incessant complaints from editors whose reporters were left out compelled the Flagstaff House to bring in an additional bus.

 The Injured

So far, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation’s Pascaline Amenyo Adadevoh and Napoleon Ato Kittoe of GTV; Patrick Biddah of the Enquirer and William Gyentu of Peace FM, are receiving treatment at the hospital.

The rest are TV3’s Edward Frimpong  Kwabi and TV Africa’s Mawusi Gboglah.

Mr. Gyentu is said to have regained consciousness but was yet to speak while Pascaline, Atto Kittoe and Biddah were able to grant interviews amidst pain.

Ato Kittoe had most part of his face covered with plaster while Edward Kwabi had his neck and his right leg bandaged. Patrick Biddah had some cuts around his mouth, with his jaw swollen.

A media coordinator at the Flagstaff House, Victor Odoi, who was in the front seat of the bus, also sustained injuries but has been discharged from the hospital.


According to some members of the presidential press corps, Samuel Nuamah had complained of ‘getting tired’ with the job and had contemplated going to the United States to join his wife Lilian, who is domiciled there.

On that fateful day, Nuamah, who was said to be sitting at the rear, reportedly started to jot down his story when they got to Asutsuare and as a result, allegedly removed his seatbelt. He was thrown out of the vehicle, dying instantly.

His mother-in-law granted radio interviews and said that even though Mr. Nuamah visits his almost two-and-a-half-year-old son on weekends, he ‘strangely’ came to them on Wednesday, a day before the accident, and even took a photograph with the little boy.

Monday, August 17, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Monday, August 17, 2015

Irate National Democratic Congress (NDC) members last week chased out the ruling party’s Greater Accra Regional executives who had paid them a visit.

The incident occurred at the Nima Community Centre, popularly called CDR, in Accra in the East Ayawaso Constituency and was repeated at Adanseman Hotel, Maamobi in North Ayawaso, the same day.

A team of regional executives, including Alhaji Hilla (vice chairman), Hajia Fati (deputy women’s organiser), Hajia Mowa (deputy women’s organiser), Yaw Kundo (treasurer) and Alhaji Haruna Majesty (deputy treasurer), had organised separate meetings with the constituency executives, branch executives and ward coordinators to discuss the party’s biometric registration exercise and the general welfare of members in the constituencies, especially following the apathy that had greeted the process in the two constituencies.

However, the irate NDC members would not even listen to the leaders because they claimed the bigwigs in the party were enjoying themselves at the expense of the foot soldiers and threatened to beat them up.

The disappointed NDC youth allegedly charged on their leaders who had to run away before the unexpected happened. According to the NDC members, they were looking for the regional chairman, Kobina Ade Coker, whom they accused of virtually hijacking everything meant for party members in the region.

The Accra NDC executives had particularly organised the meetings because there was a very low turnout in the two constituencies for the maiden biometric registration exercise which the party says will afford members the chance to vote in the November 7 presidential and parliamentary primaries.

According to DAILY GUIDE’s sources, after the biometric registration, the cards for Greater Accra were reportedly launched at the residence of the Accra Metropolitan Assembly (AMA) Chief Executive, Alfred Okoe Vanderpuije, and it was detected that party members in the Ayawaso East and North constituencies had failed woefully to participate in the exercise.

In Ayawaso East for instance, only 35 out of about 450 members were said to have been registered in the biometric exercise.

The party, the source said, was concerned that Nima and Maamobi of all places could record low turnout in the whole exercise and therefore the regional executives were tasked to find out the reasons behind the action.

It was in the process that the foot soldiers told the executives in plain language that they were enjoying at their expense and did not care about the grassroots.

Amid alleged threats, they said they felt neglected as the party had not been able to provide them with jobs and the bigwigs only visited them when there was an impending election.

When reached via telephone, Alhaji Majesty said the party was embarking on an outreach programme to educate members on the biometric exercise.

Just last month during the Id-el-Fitr festival dubbed, ‘Sallahfest,’ climaxing the end of Muslim fasting, the Nima youth vented their spleen on the MP for East Ayawaso,  Naser Mahama Toure, for the problems they were going through.

They hooted at the MP and prevented him from talking at the function after he had mounted the stage.

Thursday, August 13, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Thursday, 13 August 2015 

President John Dramani Mahama yesterday said he has resurrected from the land of the dead, as he is no longer a ‘dead goat’ but a living one.
“I am a living goat not a dead goat,” he said jokingly, after the backlash from his ‘dead goat syndrome’ comment.

The President, addressing Ghanaians living in Botswana in March this year, said he had become impervious to threats of strikes and demonstrations back home and adopted what he termed a “dead-goat syndrome", telling agitating labour groups and the opposition that a dead goat does not fear the knife.

His comment at the time caused public uproar and his political opponents in particular had since used the ‘dead goat’ analogy against him in almost every political discourse.

However, in an interview on state-run Uniiq FM in Accra in commemoration of the World Youth Day, President Mahama backtracked and said he had now changed from a dead goat to a living one, as strike actions by agitating public sector workers overwhelmed him.

Charles Antwi
He also sounded biblical when he was asked about the recent arrest and incarceration of Charles Antwi, the supposed mentally deranged man who was caught with a gun at the President’s church at the Ringway Assemblies of God church.

“I didn’t think much of it. God is my protector….no weapon fashioned against me shall prosper,” he said, before asking the public to allow the BNI to conduct thorough investigations into the issue.

Doctors’ Strike
He ripped the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) apart, virtually describing as senseless the ongoing strike embarked upon by public sector medical doctors.

He said the GMA-led action was illegal and reiterated that it “does not make sense”.

President Mahama insisted that the doctors must back down and call off the strike without further delay.

“The strike must be called off because we are paying doctors their salaries and allowances as negotiated on single spine.

“The Labour Law states that nobody must negotiate under duress. Even before negotiations began, they declared strike. Nobody must die as a result of an illegal strike. The doctors’ strike is illegal… The doctors must go back to work while negotiations continue in good faith.”

Tough Decisions
“A leader must take the decision that needs to be taken and I believe Ghanaians are discerning,”  he said, adding, “I think that the time has come when we have to do what we have to do and not keep an eye on the political ball. This government has taken some of the toughest decisions."

President Mahama said singling out the doctors and giving in to their demands would have a ‘cascading’ effect that could cause ‘misalignments’ in the management of the economy.

No Work No Pay!
The government on Tuesday issued a statement that appeared to suggest that all public sector workers who were on strike would not be paid.

The statement, signed by the Employment and Labour Relations Minister, Haruna Iddrisu, said: "Government wishes to remind all public sector workers of the provisions of the Labour Act 2003 (Act 651), which states among others that a worker on strike “may forfeit his/her remuneration in respect of the period during which he/she is engaged in the illegal strike.”

President Mahama in the course of the interview appeared to endorse the minister's decision, saying, "If we don't live by our laws, we go back to the jungle."

No Love Lost
There had been a no-love-lost relationship between the Mahama-led NDC government and doctors over the conditions of service of the latter, including end-of-service benefits.

As a result, the health sector is witnessing what looks like unprecedented chaos because the government and the GMA cannot find a common ground regarding the impasse, while the strike continues unabated.

President Mahama, in the ensuing confusion, served notice that he would not authorise spending outside the approved budget while Employment and Labour Relations Minister Haruna Iddrisu said the government was already overstretched and would not be able to accede to the outrageous demands of the striking doctors.

NDC Propaganda
Some NDC communication members, with support from the presidency, released a document which contained what they termed the ‘outrageous demands’ of the GMA, but the doctors rebutted and the contents of the said document, saying it was not what they presented on their improved conditions of service.

The doctors said they were even prepared to resign en bloc if their demands were not met.

The GMA members insisted that they would not return to work unless government provided them with suitable conditions of service; but indications were that the salaries of the striking doctors would be frozen by government, per the statement released by Hon Haruna Iddrisu.

UTAG Strike
President Mahama said he was yet to be ‘adequately briefed’ about the strike by the University Teachers Association of Ghana (UTAG) over the non-payment of their book and research allowances, even though the lecturers had been on strike for more than a week.

He asked public sector workers to ‘tone down’ on their demands for improved conditions of service, since the economy did not belong to him but “the entire nation”, adding that the labour groups needed to bear with the government.

Employment Freeze
On the freeze on employment, President Mahama explained that the move was to reduce pressure on government’s wage bill.

He said the wage bill continued to take a toll on government revenue, adding that “we want to bring the wages and compensation bill down. In 2013 wages took 73% total tax revenue.”

The IMF Bait
There is a moratorium on public sector employment by the government as a result of an IMF conditionality, though the government continues to deny that fact. But President Mahama alluded to the fact that his government was able to reduce the wage bill from 73% to 49% of tax revenues due to such austere arrangements.

Interestingly, the recent three-year loan agreement between Ghana and the IMF contains a freeze on public sector employment and prevents the government from increasing the wage bill to more than 10 percent - a move labour experts say is triggering labour agitations since they all want more than 10 percent on the negotiation table.

The IMF is also asking the government to eliminate subsidies on utilities and petroleum products (which is already being implemented) and the Breton Wood institution expects that the measures will lead to savings of two percent GDP.

Some Ministers Not Paid
The President said reforms at the Controller and Accountant General’s Department (CAGD) was responsible for the delay in the payment of remunerations of some public sector workers, even though some had been working for the past two years without pay.

Over 1,500 NADMO staff on Tuesday staged a demonstration at the Finance Ministry over unpaid salaries running into about 30 months.

He urged public sector workers to exercise patience because the reforms had affected other categories of public office holders such as some of his ministers.

The use of strikes to demand an entitlement is entrenching public perception that industrial action is the only language government understands.
“It is not true…it is a wrong perception and I think it is unfortunate,” Mahama said.


By William Yaw Owusu
Thursday, 13 August 2015

There seem to be no end to the protracted Ga chieftaincy dispute in spite of a caution by Minister for Chieftaincy and Traditional Affairs Dr. Henry Seidu Danaa to the various factions to exercise restraint and follow due process.

The purported enstoolment of Dr. Kelvin Nii Tackie Abia Tackie with stool name Nii Tackie Teiko Tsuru II as the new Ga Mantse on August 2, 2015 has rekindled the debate over who is actually the rightful occupant of the stool.

The glaring interference by politicians into the whole enstoolment process as well as some of the controversial decisions taken by the Regional House of Chiefs could be interpreted as what has prolonged the selection of a new Ga Mantse that will be acceptable to all factions.

As it is, Boni Nii Tackie Adama Latse II is reportedly gazetted in the National Register of Chiefs by the National House of Chiefs as the current Ga Mantse but his position is being contested in court by other factions who believe he comes nowhere near the stool and cannot hold himself as such.

The Chieftaincy and Traditional Affairs Minister said at a press conference recently that “the Ministry is therefore appealing to those who enstooled a new Ga Mantse on Sunday, August 2, to slow down so that the court process will work accordingly, considering the fact that the issue of the induction of Nii Adama Latse, whose name for the time being is in the register, is presently before court.”

In the ensuing confusion, a kingmaker from Nii Teiku Tsuru We, one of the three (some argue there is a fourth) gates, has said that the only way the whole Ga Mantse dispute will cease is first to select the rightful Dzaase (Head of the Privy Council) who has the mandate to select a Ga Mantse in consultation with all the gates.

He said the three gates: Nii Teiku Tsuru We, Amugi We and Tackie Komme We had a duty to present their respective candidates to the Dzaasetse for initiation anytime the mantle fell on any of the gates but the whole process for some years has been fraught with irregularities and that has protracted issues.

“The Ga Mantse saga can never go away without the determination of a Dzaasetse. In the absence of the Dzaasetse, the only person who can sit somebody down on the throne is the Sentse (Stool Father) who is presently Nii Tetteh Ashong V,” the kingmaker said.

He said interestingly, the various individual gates have themselves always disagreed over who should be chosen as the Ga Mantse and that has even complicated matters.

He said for instance that when Nii Amugi II from the Amugi We gate passed on as Ga Mantse and Nii Tackie Tawiah III was enstooled, some people from his own Nii Teiku Tsuru We gate which had the mandate to rule, opposed him and never recognized him until his demise.

He said it was in the ensuing confusion that Nii Adama Latse entered the scene also on the card of Nii Teiko Tsuru We and tried to fight to become Ga Mantse.

The kingmaker said that three candidates at the time including Dr. Jo Blankson (Nii Tackie Tawiah III), the young Dr. Kelvin Nii Tackie Abia Tackie who was recently enstooled with the stool name Nii Tackie Teiko Tsuru II and George Tackie who was also enstooled as Boni Nii Tackie Adama Latse II emerged.

According to the kingmaker, the panel chaired by Nii Dodoo Nsaki II, Otublohum Manste reportedly rejected the candidature of Nii Adama Latse II and Nii Tackie Abia Tackie.

The kingmaker further said that when Nii Tackie Tawiah III was on the throne, his kinsmen from the same gate as well as those in Tackie Komme We gate vehemently opposed his rule and tried to replace him with either Nii Adama Latse II and Nii Tackie Abia Tackie but it did not work out.

The kingmaker said ironically that E.N.A Tackie who is the father of Kelvin Nii Tackie in collaboration with Nii Adama Latse II filed as petitioners in court to challenge the enstoolment of Dr. Jo Blankson as King Tackie Tawiah III but the two have currently split heads to fight for the same stool.

“As things stand, the Ga Mantse mantle is supposed to fall on the Tackie Komme We gate if those with the belief that the Nii Teiko Tsuru We gate had their turn through Nii Tackie Tawiah III but because others claimed they did not recognize Nii Tackie Tawiah III after the death of Nii Amugi II, the Nii Teiko Tsuru We gate still want to have another shot at the stool.”

He said “interestingly, some leading characters within the Tackie Komme We gate had embroiled themselves by supporting Nii Adama Latse II who is even not from their gate and that appeared to have incapacitated Tackie Komme We gate from selecting a new Ga Mantse.”

He said “The next ruling gate is always determined at the installation of a new Ga Mantse. The mantle of Amugi We was passed on to Nii Teiko Tsuru We and this has since been passed on to the Tackie Komme We who are supposed to present a new chief strictly speaking.”

In fact, we all agree that the Dzaase should come from Amugi We. We also agree that the Dzaase should not come from the same gate of the sitting Ga Mantse.”

“Until there is a roundtable and dispassionate discussion held and accepted by all and compromises made, we will continue to be in this mess.”

“Until the truth is told, there is not going to be any peace in the chieftaincy arena in the whole Ga State,” he said.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Tuesday, 11 August 2015

Idrissu Musah Superior, a staunch member of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), says it is wrong for anybody to insist that a political party must have its manifesto in place before starting serious campaign towards elections.

The former Tamale Central NPP parliamentary candidate said it was evident that  “there is more to winning an election than a manifesto,” and that it was up to the party’s hierarchy to set its campaign team in motion for the 2016 election before it was too late.

He was reacting to a statement purportedly issued by an aide to NPP National Chairman Paul Afoko over the recent announcement that the party’s flagbearer, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, was ready to present his campaign manager to the party.

According to Musah Superior, the NPP Chairman’s Spokesperson, Nana Yaw Osei, had said in a statement titled, “The Detractors Are At It Again’, that the party needed to put together a manifesto first before naming the campaign team.

Musah Superior quoted Mr Afoko’s aide as saying in the statement that "Mr Afoko believes that the party must quickly finish with most of the ongoing parliamentary primaries, and then move on to form a manifesto committee to draft a manifesto for the party before... This is because without a message, which should be contained in a manifesto, what is the campaign team going to talk about? The party should have a campaign strategy."

Musah Superior rebutted that claim and said it was a ‘fallacy’ to conclude that the party ought to have a manifesto in place before reaching out to the electorate.

“What we as a party should be doing now is to continue to point out the incompetence of the NDC government to the people, expose the backward manner the country is being governed and hold their feet to the fire on the numerous failed promises.

“The NPP campaign team is required urgently to kick-start the campaign. That is what everyone in the party is waiting for. The appointment of a campaign team must not be seen by any office holder as a threat to their title. It is to bring focus on the work at hand,” he added.

He said the statement from the NPP chairman appeared to assume that without a manifesto a party could not have a message, adding that it was also assumed that the only purpose of appointing a campaign manager and team is to propagate a campaign message and that an election is won or lost mainly on the strength of a manifesto.

UK Example
“In the recent UK general elections in May, the Conservatives appointed their campaign manager on the 2nd of August, 2013 and published their manifesto on the 15th of April, 2015—three weeks before the elections.  Labour on the other hand named their campaign manager on the 18th of April, 2014 and released their manifesto on the 13th of April, 2015. These are parties with party structures like we have and, more so, without even presidential campaigns.”

Local Scenario
He said “In our own backyard, the NPP in office in 2008 hired the campaign manager on the 14th of March, 2008 and formally communicated its manifesto to the public on the 23rd of September, 2008—three months to the general elections. In 2012, the NPP in opposition appointed its campaign manager on 25th January, 2011 and published its manifesto on the 29th of August, 2012—four months to the general elections.”

“The NDC, in like manner, in 2008 appointed their campaign manager on the 9th of January, 2008, launched their campaign in March 2008 and released their manifesto on the 4th of August, 2008. In 2012, their campaign manager was named on the 11th of September, 2012 whilst their manifesto was published on the 4th of October, 2012,” he added.

Friday, August 07, 2015


By William Yaw Owusu
Friday, August 07, 2015

Immediate-past national women organizer of the ruling National Democratic Congress (NDC), Anita De Soso, has claimed it is the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) that is ‘pushing’ the Ghana Medical Association (GMA) to make ‘outrageous demands’ from the government.

According to Anita, who is now one of NDC’s national vice chairpersons, it is the NPP that is behind the nationwide indefinite strike embarked upon by the doctors that, she noted,  had created chaos in the health sector.

Speaking on Eastern FM in Koforidua, Eastern Regional capital, on Wednesday, Anita told host Nana Osei that the NDC had also set its propaganda machinery in motion by going to the villages and telling them that it is the NPP that is ‘killing’ them.

 “NPP are behind the doctors’ action so we have also started going to the villages informing them that if something happened to them it is the NPP who should be blamed,” she said.

NDC Propaganda
In the ensuing confusion, some NDC communication members with support from the presidency, released a document which they claim contains what is termed as ‘outrageous demands from the GMA,’ but the doctors rebutted and said the contents in the document are not what the propagandists presented.

A presidential staffer, Stanislav Xoese Dogbe, had sought to downplay the doctors’ demands by putting out figures on a social media platform which the GMA leadership had come out to deny, even though the government appointees  had equally failed to tell Ghanaians how much they also draw at the expense of the tax payer each month.

The Trades Union Congress (TUC) says government should punish the person who leaked the doctors’ proposals to the media.

The striking doctors are asking the likes of Stan Dogbe to tell Ghanaians how much they receive as salaries and perks and accused the Mahama administration of using its propagandists to sow seed of discord between them (doctors) and the public instead of listening to the genuine concerns that they have put on the negotiation table and offer what it (government) can accommodate.

Cuban Doctors
The NDC propagandists have cynically urged the government to sack the doctors and bring in medical professionals from Cuba but the doctors have called their bluff and said they were even prepared to resign en-bloc if their demands were not met.

“We should train more people in Cuba and bring them home. In the interim, we should bring in Cuban doctors,” Anita also said adding, “We have to also pay serious attention to traditional medicine because if we do not develop that area things will go bad for us as a country.

 “I am happy that some of the doctors have started talking. Some are even asking their leaders to resign because they are forcing them to go on strike.”

Outrageous Demands
Anita continued, “They have asked the government to pay their clothing allowance, book allowance, utility, among others, and they have again asked for import waiver - meaning any car they bring, they should be allowed to clear from the port tax-free.

“At first the government was doing it but some of them started abusing the system and it was withdrawn. If you put all these together, then it means each will be paid about GH¢15,000 monthly and they also want improved pension and are looking for 180 months, which is equivalent to 15 years of service.”

She retorted, “The government cannot simply accommodate their demands. It is too much for the country to bear.

“We are struggling with electricity. Economy has not fully taken off. Our revenue was plagued by ghost names but thankfully, we are getting rid of the problem. Where I live, the dumsor is improving. We have gone to the IMF for a loan and all of a sudden these doctors are making outrageous demands.”

She also warned that “We have teachers and other workers groups around. If we should give all this money to one group (doctors), how are we going to develop this country?

“When you say it the doctors reply that ministers and government appointees are enjoying freebies and so they also have a right to do same; but they have not investigated to know if that is the truth. If you are a doctor and you want to indulge in partisan politics then you have to resign.”

The health sector is witnessing unprecedented chaos because the government and the GMA cannot come to a compromise on the impasse.

President John Mahama has already served notice that he would not authorize spending outside the approved budget, while Employment and Labour Relations Minister, Haruna Iddrisu, has said the government was already overstretched to be able to accede to the demands of the striking doctors.