Wednesday, January 26, 2011


THE East Akyem Municipal Chief Executive (MCE), Mr Simon Peter Asirifi, has advised farmers in the municipality to follow the guidelines for the cultivation of crops given to them by agricultural extension officers.
He said that would enable them to increase production of quality crops that would be on high demand on the market.
Mr Asirifi gave the advice when he presented a 21-inch television set and farming inputs to Mr Seth Douglas Diaka Asare from New Tafo, Akyem who emerged the overall best farmer for 2010 in the municipality at the area’s farmers’ day which was held at Akooko, a farming community.
In all, 18 farmers who excelled in the production of various crops were honoured with prizes of various farming implements.
Mr Asirifi stressed the need for farmers to adhere to technical guidance offered by agricultural extension officers to increase production of quality crops.
He said anything short of that would lead to poor harvests of crops which would not be accepted on the market.
The MCE also advised the farmers to till the land in such a way that would not destroy the environment.
He gave the assurance that his outfit would continue to give the necessary support for farmers to produce more and earn appreciable incomes for their livelihood.
Mr Asirifi congratulated farmers in the area for producing more food and cash crops resulting in availability of food at reasonable prices in the municipality.
The overall best farmer, Mr Diaka Asare, on behalf of the other award winners, expressed gratitude to the municipal assembly for honouring them.
He gave the assurance that they would perform better this year to make more foodstuffs available at reasonable prices.


A COMPREHENSIVE programme has been unveiled to provide basic social amenities in almost all the communities in the Kwahu South District in the Eastern Region, especially the remote ones, this year.
The programme estimated at millions of Ghana cedis, will be jointly funded by the government and the assembly with support from development partners.
The assembly has projected to rake in a revenue of GH¢2,8835,848.53 for the execution of the projects and other social services.
Although many communities in the district have already been provided with amenities such as good roads, markets, clinics, water, electricity and other social interventions like support for farmers, there were other communities which have not yet benefited from such amenities.
The District Chief Executive (DCE), Mr Joseph Omari, said almost all the new projects earmarked for this year just like similar ones undertaken last year, were demand-driven, some of which cost the assembly only GH¢5,000.
“Almost all the projects to be executed are demand-driven, the people led by their chiefs and other opinion leaders, have appealed to us to provide them with the facilities. One of the facilities is a mini bridge on a river costing only GH¢5,000,” Mr Omari stated.
On education, the DCE said the assembly had since 2009 done a lot to improve it, adding that a number of dilapidated school buildings were to be rehabilitated while new ones would be built, especially at villages where classes were held under trees.
With regard to roads, Mr Omari said 34.6 kilometres of bad roads, especially the Adawso-Mpaem road which connects a number of farming villages and the Nkawkaw-Atibie main road, the gateway to the area, would be reconstructed.
To improve farming in the area, the DCE stated that the assembly under the guidance of the District Director of Agriculture, Mr John Nketia Gyenfi, would be training 100 farmers in 39 farmer-based organisations in modern agricultural practice for the cultivation of potatoes, yams and cassava.
Mr Omari said seeds of such crops and other forms of assistance would be given to the farmers to increase yield so that they would in turn assist other farmers in the area.
For his part, Mr Gyenfi said although agricultural extension officers were doing their best to assist the farmers in the area, the bad nature of the feeder roads, especially the Adawso-Mpaem road was having a negative effect on food production and marketing.
He was, however, hopeful that with the reconstruction of that road, the bulk of foodstuffs obtained in that area, described as the food basket of the district, would be easily marketed in the urban areas.


CALL him the father of the needy, the disadvantaged, people with no hope of making a living and even those languishing in prison and you will not be mistaken.
For a period of almost 20 years, Pastor Kwabena Ankamah of the Apostolic Church of Ghana with the support of his wife, Agnes has given material and financial support to such unfortunate persons in the Eastern Region.
Such a benevolence has helped transform the social and spiritual life of the beneficiaries, especially prisoners some of whom he managed to be freed through legal aid offered them.
The beneficiaries are the inmates of the Koforidua and Akuse Prisons, the School for the Deaf at Mampong-Akuapem and needy persons within and outside the Apostolic Church of Ghana, especially widows and orphans.
Some of the items Pastor Ankamah recently presented to the Mampong School for the Deaf included 100 tubers of yams, three cartoons of canned fish, a bag of rice and a poly tank to store water for the students.
He also donated 100 tubers of yams, four cartoons of soap and a bag of rice to the Koforidua Prison’s while the inmates of Akuse Prisons had 100 tubers of yams, four cartons of soap, three cartons of canned fish, a bag of rice and GH¢200 cash for the choir group of the prison.
The prisons have been on the heart of Pastor Ankamah who also leads a team on ministerial visits to the Akuse and Koforidua Prisons where apart from providing material and spiritual needs to the inmates, the pastor with the support of a lawyer, Ivy Vandepujie, also gives legal assistance free-of-charge to prisoners.
As a result of his gesture, 10 of the inmates at the Koforidua and the Akuse Prisons gained their freedom between 2007 and 2009.
In 2009, three of the released prisoners accepted Christ and were baptised before they joined their families.
The Tetteh Quarshie Hospital at Mampong-Akuapem is not also left out as the pastor leads his congregation to visit the health facility on weekly basis to donate money to the hospital and at the same time pray for the sick on admission.
Pastor Ankamah, who is also a lawyer by profession and currently the Aburi District Pastor of the Apostolic Church of Ghana, has developed a passion for every needy person, the disadvantaged or even those who through some circumstances had found their way into the country’s prisons.
Such is the passion of this lawyer/pastor he cannot easily walk away from any unfortunate person whenever he sets eyes on them or hears about their plight without giving cash or any material thing such as clothing to them.
One significant thing about such monetary or material assistance is that it often goes with prayers for spiritual guidance to enable those benefiting from his largesse, specifically prisoners, to accept Christ and change for the better.
“Why should a human being created by God suffer just because that person is poor in such a way that he or she cannot provide the daily needs? It is the responsibility of every person with means, especially Christians to assist our unfortunate brothers and sisters with cash, materials as well as spiritual guidance to face the reality of life which at times is very bitter," he said.
Pastor Ankamah said, “There are many people who need just some few cedis and clothing to survive and I feel so sad when I come into contact with them so my wife and I have to do something for them to also feel that they are human beings.
“I derive my satisfaction when I am able to assist the needy, so all the time I work hard to get extra money and materials for that purpose.”
Pastor Ankamah, who was in the first place an elder of the Dansoman congregation of the Apostolic Church of Ghana and later became a pastor, developed the philanthropic character with a view to reach out to more people.
To accomplish that initiative, he founded the Kwabena Ankamah Foundation comprising himself, his wife, Agnes, Pastors Isaiah Pobi, Asamoah, Budu, one Christian as well as Mr Jude Sarpong.
Since then, he has been regularly visiting the poor, providing them with material needs and strengthening them in prayers.
The benevolence of Pastor Ankamah has impressed other philanthropists, namely Mrs Suzy Lambo and Madam Akua Ofori, who have also come to the rescue by financially supporting his initiatives, especially his visits to the prisons.
Although Pastor Ankamah’s desire to provide the necessary assistance to the poor and needy has made many of such unfortunate persons to overcome their financial, material and spiritual problems, the number of the needy and disadvantaged keeps on increasing each passing day, especially in the churches.
We need more Pastor Ankamahs in the various congregations but not Ananias’ who will not be prepared to share what God has given to them with others.
After all the various religious bodies, especially Christianity is based on equality and being each other’s keeper.

Monday, January 24, 2011

PROBE LOSS OF RELIEF ITEMS...Regional Ministers (PAGE 12, JAN 24, 2011)

REGIONAL Ministers meeting in Koforidua have called for an investigation into the conduct of officials of the National Disaster Management Organisation (NADMO) and the Non-Formal Education Division (NFED) who were at post before January, 2009 over the disappearance of relief items and other materials in their outfit.
The ministers also demanded that any staff of NADMO and the NFED who did not comply with posting instructions should face disciplinary measures.
These were contained in a statement issued after a two-day conference of the Regional Ministers in Koforidua.
The statement, which was read by the Volta Regional Minister and chairman of the conference, Mr Joseph Amenowode, also expressed concern about accidents on the Volta Lake and called for regular patrols to ensure safe water transport.
With regard to the National Health Insurance Scheme, the conference urged the government to use part of the oil revenue to support its implementation in order to close the financing gap.
To help stop illegal mining and chain-saw lumbering in the country, the conference suggested that heavier fines should be imposed on perpetrators to serve as a deterrent to others.
On the activities of the Macro Finance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC) scheme, the ministers acknowledged its important role in propelling small and medium enterprises thereby reducing poverty and called for the reduction of the current monthly interest rate so as to encourage repayment by beneficiaries.
The conference also urged MASLOC to focus on critical poverty-stricken areas to ensure effective poverty reduction and also diversifying loan disbursement to include the supply of inputs for economic activities.
Concerning the implementation of Legislative Instrument (LI 1961), the conference noted the inconsistencies in the various legislation on the decentralisation process and expressed the hope that a technical committee set up to look into the legislation would come up with recommendations that would address the discrepancies.
The regional ministers, who were not happy about poor communication between the Ministry of Education and the regional co-ordinating councils, called for better collaboration to enhance implementation of government programmes and projects at the local level.
The conference expressed its unflinching loyalty and support for his continuous assistance to them.
It congratulated the incoming Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, on his appointment and also thanked the outgoing minister, Mr Joseph Yieleh Chireh, for his support and contributions to the conference and wished the two men well in their new positions.

Friday, January 21, 2011


ERIC KWAKYE Darfour, the Eastern Regional Treasurer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), and four others will contest the Nkawkaw Constituency primary for the 2012 elections.
The four others are the incumbent Member of Parliament (MP), Mr Seth Adjei Baah, who contested the seat in the 2008 elections as an independent candidate; Mr Okerchiri Adusa, a former MP for the area; Mr Yaw Owusu Addo, a journalist, and Madam Vida Agyekum, a legal practitioner.
Although the five have not yet officially made public their intentions, reliable sources within the constituency indicate that they are keeping a low profile due to a directive from the party’s headquarters that it is too early to do so, since the parliamentary elections are almost two years away.
The source said the directive was also to avoid any mud-throwing among the contestants like what characterised the previous primaries, especially within areas considered as strongholds of the NPP.
According to the source, the party would soon come out with when all those contesting on its tickets could declare their intentions.
It said the contest for the seat would be keen in view of the fact that whoever wins the day had the better chance of occupying the seat that had never been won by any other political party.
In view of that, it said all the candidates had secretly started soliciting for support from the party’s members, especially polling station chairmen and other executives who would determine their fate at the primary.
Asked about the chances of each of the candidates, the source said Mr Darfour, who was also a Special Assistant to Dr Francis Osafo Mensah, a former Eastern Regional Minister, seemed to be the favourite.
It explained that the two other popular candidates, Mr Seth Adjei Baah and Okerchire Adusa, were likely to have some problems because Mr Adjei Baah went solo during the 2008 elections and Mr Adusa had also been an MP for three terms, and according to the source members of the electoral college think he must give way to a new face.
The source, however, said it would not be surprising if Mr Owusu Addo or Madam Agyekum carried the day.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


THE chiefs and people of Abiriw in the Eastern Region at the weekend celebrated their annual Eba (Ohum) festival with a grand durbar.
The gathering, the largest in the town in recent times was attended by a number of dignitaries such as the District Chief Executive (DCE) for Akuapem North, Mr George Opare Addo; the Member of Parliament (MP) for Okere, Mr Dan Kwaku Botwe; the General Secretary of the Convention People’s Party, Mr Ivor Greenstreet, and almost all the chiefs of Akuapem or their representatives.
Some of the chiefs were: Osahene Kwasi Offei Agyeman, the Krontihene of Akuapem, Nana Asiedu Okoo III, the chief of Larteh, Nana Obuodum Ameyaw, the chief of Aseseeso, Nana Osim Kwatia, chief of Amanokrom, Nana Asare Brempong, the chief of Awukugua, and the Mamfehene, Osabarima Ansa Sasraku, who chaired the function.
Addressing the durbar, the Abiriwhene, Nana Kwame Henaku II said the town had initiated a programme for the provision of a number of social amenities to improve the lives of the people.
The projects include rehabilitation of roads and construction of boreholes, public places of convenience for some of the basic schools and a wall for the local clinic.
Nana Henaku called for financial assistance towards the projects.
He said a number of tourist facilities such as a waterfall in the area were also to be developed, and invited investors to help in that respect.
Nana Henaku stated that chiefs in the area were prepared to release lands to make Abiriw a tourist destination on the Akuapem Scarp.
The chief was grateful to President John Evans Atta Mills and all the opposition political parties for ensuring peace in the country.
He thanked the assembly member, the MP, Mr Dan Botwe, and all individuals who had contributed to the town’s development over the years.
Mr Opare Addo, who deputised for the out-going Eastern Regional Minister, Mr Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, said the assembly had within the last two years, constructed 26 classroom blocks, offices for six area councils, sunk 16 boreholes and provided a number of rain harvesting facilities in the district.
He assured the people that by the end of July, this year, the irregular water supply in the area, especially within the Abiriw town would come to an end.
He added that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) administration would do everything possible to make Ghana a better place for all.
The assembly, Mr Opare Addo stated, would ensure that all communities in the area, including Abiriw would be provided with the necessary social amenities.
Mr Dan Botwe gave the assurance that he would continue to use his share of the Common Fund and solicit for funds from non-governmental organisations to provide social amenities and other poverty- alleviation initiatives for the people.
He urged parents to give the necessary support to their children’s education to improve the low level of education in basic schools in the area.
On the differences between some of the Akuapem chiefs and the paramountcy, Mr Botwe said he supported the call from such chiefs for the creation of additional paramountcies in the area.
He was, however, hopeful that an amicable solution would be found to the impasse.
Speaking about the recent district level elections, the MP stated that many things went wrong during the polls.
He called on all stakeholders to help address pertinent issues associated with the polls so that the 2012 general election would be peaceful.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


THE Eastern Regional executive and the rank and file of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) in the region have sent a congratulatory message to Mr Samuel Ofosu-Ampofo on his appointment as the new Minister of Local Government and Rural Development.
Mr Ofosu-Ampofo had, for the past two years, been the Eastern Regional Minister.
A letter signed by the Deputy Eastern Regional Secretary of the NDC, Mr M.M. Doe, stated, “Your appointment, competence and tenacity of purpose stand out unparalleled and we can say with all confidence that you deserve the honour. We in the region share in this honour and we are proud of you and will continue to pray for you in your future endeavours which we know you will rise equal to all challenges that this noble call to duty brings with it.”
In another development, the outgoing Akuapem South Municipal Chief Executive, Dr Godfred Osei Bonsu, and his wife, Mrs Ludimilla Bonsu, have donated six ceiling fans and a double-decker refrigerator to the Eastern Regional secretariat of the NDC.
The items, worth GH¢5,500, are to be installed at the regional office of the party.
Making the presentation at the party’s office in Koforidua, a representative of the couple expressed the hope that the items would improve the working condition of the staff at the secretariat.
The Eastern Regional Secretary of the NDC, Mr Anthony Gyampo, who received the items, expressed appreciation to the couple and appealed to the party’s sympathisers for more of such donations, particularly at this period, to enable the NDC to carry out its electioneering to retain power.