Sefwi-Bekwai SHS wins Western North renewable energy challenge competition


Students of the Sefwi-Bekwai Senior High School (SHS) in the Bibiani Anhwiaso Bekwai Municipality have won the 2024 Western North Regional Renewable Energy Challenge Competition as defending champions.

They won the competition with a project work that demonstrated the purification of water, designed to address issues related to pollution of water in areas where illegal mining was rampant.

They scored 76.2 points to win the competition, while Sefwi-Wiawso SHS placed second with 70 points, and Awaso STEM SHS came third with 69.5 points with Queens Girls SHS and St. Joseph’s SHS recording 66 and 64.8 points respectively.

The champions would represent the region at the zonal level.

The challenge, organised by the Energy Commission in collaboration with the Ghana Education Service (GES), was under the theme: ‘Application of Renewable Energy Technologies in Solving Land Degradation and Water Pollution.’

Mr Julius Nkansah-Nyarko, the General Manager, Renewable Energy and Project Coordinator, Energy Commission,
said the challenge sought to promote energy research and development among students, and facilitate the establishment of mentorship programme to advance ideas into game-challenging solutions.

He said the challenge was also to assist students to come out with innovative skills, ideas, and projects to transform the energy sector, especially on lands and water bodies in Ghana.

He said: ‘It is to serve as a platform to foster renewable energy-focused research and development among students and facilitate mentorship programmes that encourage the transformation of ideas into impactful and commercially viable solutions.’

Mr Nkansah explained that the competition would be grouped into the Southern and Northern zones and that three schools would be selected from each zone to compete for the grand finale in October this year in Accra.

Mr Frederick Owusu, the Western North Regional STEM and SHS Coordinator, on behalf of the Western North Regional Director of Education, expressed gratitude to the organizers, sponsors
, teachers, and students for the good job done.

He also commended the Energy Commission for the educative and innovative programme, which he noted would help transform the economy and enhance the lives of students.

Mr Owusu congratulated the winners and encouraged them to work harder as they prepared to represent the region at the zonal level.

Source: Ghana News Agency

10,000 out-of-school children to be back to school this year


The Reverend John Ntim Fordjour, a Deputy Minister of Education in charge of General Education, says the Education Ministry through the Complementary Education Agency will bring back 10,000 out-of-school children into school this year.

‘Last year alone, 3,000 out-of-school children were brought back to school through the Complementary Education Agency (CEA). This year, we are targeting 10,000 children by the close of year.’

‘We also have another programme running, that is Ghana Education Outcome Project (GEOP), which is targeting 70,000 children that are out of school to reintegrate them back into school and to give them the skills needed to thrive,’ he said.

Mr Fordjour said this during a Conference on Tackling Out-Of-School Children in West Africa organised by the Associates For Change in partnership with the Centre For the Study of Economies of Africa, Dalan Development Consultants and the Complementary Education Agency.

The two-day event focused on ‘Scaling up accelerated education programmes in Afric
a to tackle the high prevalence of Out of School Children in West Africa.’

The Minister said it formed part of Government’s resolve to ensure all children of school age had access to education devoid of status and condition.

He said the Ministry in the last two years, that’s in the first years of the functioning of the CEA and GEOP, had been able to reintegrate 17,000 out-of-school children into schools.

Mr Fordjour said though the numbers of out-of-school children were growing globally, Government was committed to ensure that whatever challenges, being it societal or financial, that led them out of school, were addressed systematically to ensure their continuous stay in school.

‘We cannot have a holistic education and be proud of what we have done and achieved within the Ministry of Education if we don’t tackle out-of-school children,’ he added.

Mr Fordjour said between 2017 and 2024 Government had built more than 1,132 educational infrastructure from the kindergarten to the higher levels of education t
o improve school enrollment and learning.

He said, so far, Ghana had been able to achieve a gross pre-primary enrollment of 100 percent, making it one of the few countries in the world that had been able to achieve such feet.

Dr James Natia Adam, Research Technical Lead, Associates For Change, urged Governments of West Africa to allocate at least five per cent of their Gross Domestic Product to address the increasing numbers of out-of-school children in the subregion.

‘When Governments in the subregion increase their investments to support out-of-school initiatives and programmes, it can help address the issues that we are faced with.’

‘For instance, if the Government of Ghana adequately supports the CEA, it may also be able to work in partnership with education innovators to carry on with accelerated education programmes to support out-of-school children,’ he said.

New UNESCO data shows that 244 million children and youth between the ages of six and 18 worldwide are still out of school with 40 per cent
in sub-Saharan Africa.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Paul Boateng to deliver keynote address at UPSA Annual Leadership Lecture 2024


Mr Paul Yaw Boateng, Member of the House of Lords of the United Kingdom will deliver the keynote at the University of Professional Studies, Accra’s (UPSA) 2024 Annual Leadership Lecture.

The UPSA in a statement copied to the Ghana News Agency said the public lecture, which is on the theme ‘Fulfilling the Promise-The Challenge of Leadership: Moving from Rhetoric to Delivery’ is slated for Tuesday, June 18, 2024, will be held at the Kofi Ohene Konadu Auditorium, UPSA campus, at 1000 hours.

The lecture is designed to provide an intellectual platform for distinguished speakers from around the world to examine and discuss critical global and national issues pertinent to society and proffer suggestions for Ghana’s sustainable development.

The event is open to the public and is expected to draw a wide audience from academia, industry, politics, traditional authority, and civil society.

The statement said attendees would have the opportunity to engage Mr Boateng on the critical issues facing leaders today and the
practical steps needed to fulfil the promise of leadership in transformative ways.

It said past distinguished speakers at the UPSA Annual Leadership Lecture include Dr Mohamed Ibn Chambers, former President John Agyekum Kufuor, Asantehene Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Cardinal Peter Kodwo Appiah Turkson, and renowned economist Mr Kwame Pianim.

Mr Boateng is a globally renowned diplomat, lawyer, and politician.

He has extensive experience in government and public service, having served in various high-level positions in the UK government and played significant roles on the global front.

He was the first person of African descent to serve in a British cabinet when he was appointed Chief Secretary to the Treasury in 2002 and later Minister of State for Police and Prisons.

In 2005, Mr Boateng returned to Africa as the UK’s High Commissioner to South Africa and the Prime Minister’s Special Representative to the Africa Commission.

He played a pivotal role in promoting cooperation and development in the region.

Beyon
d government, Mr Boateng has held significant positions in the corporate sector, including as Senior Independent Director and Chair of the Nominations and Remuneration Committee of the Ghana International Bank.

He also chairs Water and Sanitation for the Urban Poor, a development utilities advisory company that supports underserved communities in Africa and Bangladesh.

Mr Boateng is passionate about community relations, youth development, and the performing arts.

He is the current chair of the Church of England’s Archbishops Commission on Racial Justice and Co-Chair of the Grenfell Tower Memorial Commission.

He also serves on the board of the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra and Ballet Rambert

Source: Ghana News Agency

Afenyo-Markin urges MPs to avail themselves to Business of Parliament


Mr Alexander Kwamina Afenyo-Markin, the Majority Leader and Leader of Government Business in Parliament, has urged his colleague Members of Parliament (MPs) to avail themselves to Business on the Floor of the House.

He also appealed to them to support their respective Committee Leadership and the Leadership of the House to fast-track Government Business to enable the

Government work towards improving the living standards of the good people of Ghana.

‘Mr Speaker, having said so, let me proceed to state that there a number of priority business to be transacted by the House including Bills to be laid, loan

agreements, mining leases and commercial agreements, Instruments, and request for waiver of tax, import duties,’ Mr Afenyo-Markin stated in his welcome remarks upon the resumption of the House from the Easter Break, for the Third Meeting of the Fourth Session of the Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic of Ghana.

The Majority Leader mentioned that Bills to be taken by the House within the period includ
e the Energy Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2023; the Community Service Sentencing Bill, 2024; the Ghana National Service Authority Bill, 2024, and the Ghana Book Development Agency Bill, 2024.

Others are the University for Engineering and Applied Sciences (Ankrodie) Bill, 2024; the University for Health, Agriculture and Life Sciences (Kintampo) Bill, the University of Mampong Bill, 2024; the University of Sports and Development Bill, 2024; the Colleges of Applied Arts, Science and Technology Bill, 2024; the Business Regulatory Reform Commission Bill, 2024; and the Conduct of Public Officers Bill, 2024.

The rest are the Economic and Organised Crime Office (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Legal Profession Bill, 2024; the Presidential Transition (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Environmental Protection Agency Bill, 2024; the Fisheries and Aquaculture Development Bill, 2024; the Ghana Housing Authority Bill, 2024;

the Rent Bill, 2023; the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) (No.2) Bill, 2024;

the Broadcasting Bill, 2024; th
e Internal Audit Agency Bill, 2024; the Ghana Deposit Protection (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Fees and Charges (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Amendment) Bill, 2024; and Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (Amendment) Bill, 2023.

Mr Afenyo-Markin noted that there were also a few statutory Reports that ought to be laid and considered by the House.

These include the Annual Report on the Management of the Energy Sector Levies and Accounts for the Year 2023; the Annual Public Debt Management Report for the 2023 Financial Year; the Reconciliation Report on the Petroleum Holding Fund for the Year 2023; Annual Report on Public Private Partnership Projects for the Year 2023; and the Annual Report on the Petroleum Funds for the 2023 Fiscal Year.

Others are the Annual Report on the Management of the Energy Sector Levies and Accounts for the Year 2022; the Annual Public Debt Management Report for the 2022 Financial Year; the Reconciliation Report on the Petroleum Holding Fund for the Year 2022; and Annual Report on Public P
rivate Partnership Projects for the Year 2022.

The rest are the Annual Report on the Petroleum Funds for the 2022 Fiscal Year; and the Annual Report on the Collection and Utilisation of the African Union Import Levy for the 2022 Fiscal Year.

‘Mr Speaker, looking at the above business and others waiting to be programmed, my Honourable Colleagues will agree with me the herculean task ahead of us in this Third Meeting and I humbly encourage our hardworking Committee Chairpersons and their Ranking Members to expedite action on the various items already before them and prepare to receive new referrals as the Speaker may so direct,’ Mr Afenyo-Markin stated.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Afenyo-Markin urges MPs to avail themselves to Business of Parliament


Mr Alexander Kwamina Afenyo-Markin, the Majority Leader and Leader of Government Business in Parliament, has urged his colleague Members of Parliament (MPs) to avail themselves to Business on the Floor of the House.

He also appealed to them to support their respective Committee Leadership and the Leadership of the House to fast-track Government Business to enable the

Government work towards improving the living standards of the good people of Ghana.

‘Mr Speaker, having said so, let me proceed to state that there a number of priority business to be transacted by the House including Bills to be laid, loan

agreements, mining leases and commercial agreements, Instruments, and request for waiver of tax, import duties,’ Mr Afenyo-Markin stated in his welcome remarks upon the resumption of the House from the Easter Break, for the Third Meeting of the Fourth Session of the Eighth Parliament of the Fourth Republic of Ghana.

The Majority Leader mentioned that Bills to be taken by the House within the period includ
e the Energy Commission (Amendment) Bill, 2023; the Community Service Sentencing Bill, 2024; the Ghana National Service Authority Bill, 2024, and the Ghana Book Development Agency Bill, 2024.

Others are the University for Engineering and Applied Sciences (Ankrodie) Bill, 2024; the University for Health, Agriculture and Life Sciences (Kintampo) Bill, the University of Mampong Bill, 2024; the University of Sports and Development Bill, 2024; the Colleges of Applied Arts, Science and Technology Bill, 2024; the Business Regulatory Reform Commission Bill, 2024; and the Conduct of Public Officers Bill, 2024.

The rest are the Economic and Organised Crime Office (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Legal Profession Bill, 2024; the Presidential Transition (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Environmental Protection Agency Bill, 2024; the Fisheries and Aquaculture Development Bill, 2024; the Ghana Housing Authority Bill, 2024;

the Rent Bill, 2023; the Minerals and Mining (Amendment) (No.2) Bill, 2024;

the Broadcasting Bill, 2024; th
e Internal Audit Agency Bill, 2024; the Ghana Deposit Protection (Amendment) Bill, 2024; the Fees and Charges (Miscellaneous Provisions) (Amendment) Bill, 2024; and Ghana Investment Promotion Centre (Amendment) Bill, 2023.

Mr Afenyo-Markin noted that there were also a few statutory Reports that ought to be laid and considered by the House.

These include the Annual Report on the Management of the Energy Sector Levies and Accounts for the Year 2023; the Annual Public Debt Management Report for the 2023 Financial Year; the Reconciliation Report on the Petroleum Holding Fund for the Year 2023; Annual Report on Public Private Partnership Projects for the Year 2023; and the Annual Report on the Petroleum Funds for the 2023 Fiscal Year.

Others are the Annual Report on the Management of the Energy Sector Levies and Accounts for the Year 2022; the Annual Public Debt Management Report for the 2022 Financial Year; the Reconciliation Report on the Petroleum Holding Fund for the Year 2022; and Annual Report on Public P
rivate Partnership Projects for the Year 2022.

The rest are the Annual Report on the Petroleum Funds for the 2022 Fiscal Year; and the Annual Report on the Collection and Utilisation of the African Union Import Levy for the 2022 Fiscal Year.

‘Mr Speaker, looking at the above business and others waiting to be programmed, my Honourable Colleagues will agree with me the herculean task ahead of us in this Third Meeting and I humbly encourage our hardworking Committee Chairpersons and their Ranking Members to expedite action on the various items already before them and prepare to receive new referrals as the Speaker may so direct,’ Mr Afenyo-Markin stated.

Source: Ghana News Agency

My gov’t will not accept LGBTQ+ no matter the consequences – Dr Bawumia


The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, says the government under his presidency, will not accept homosexuality no matter the consequences.

He said it was important Ghana held and protected its culture, traditions and values as sacred devoid of any foreign influences.

Dr Bawumia, who is the flag-bearer of the NPP in the 2024 general elections, was addressing members of the clergy and church leaders in Kumasi, as part of his three-day campaign tour of the Ashanti region.

He stated clearly that, the traditions of the country’s forefathers needed to be protected and hold as sacred and that the LGBTQ+ was not part of it.

‘It is no, no, no for LGBTQ,’ he told the clergymen.

Dr Bawumia pledged what he called ‘golden age’ for faith-based organizations to enable them to strengthen their contributions to the socio-economic development of the country.

He said faith-based organizations would be empowered to manage their schools and shape the character and behaviour of the Ghanaian children.

The Vice President pr
omised to take the country into the fourth industrial revolution, which was the digital age.

He said the world of development was very competitive and Ghana must be prepared to be there as well, adding that, there was the need to put in place pillars such as technological education, digitalization and other innovations to move the country there.

Dr Bawumia said the introduction of the free senior high school policy and the distribution of tablets to students as part of the smart schools project, were all part of strategies to put the country on the global technological map.

He said the use of solar energy to power technologically driven agriculture would be one of his priorities, adding that, he would move the country into a credit economy.

Dr Bawumia said the private sector would be empowered to contribute significantly to the industrial revolution of the country and said flexible tax regimes would be introduced to help ease business operations in the country.

He said he would actively involve chiefs an
d traditional rulers in the fight against illegal miner (galamsey) in the country and promised to fight corruption at all fronts if elected as president in the December general elections.

Source: Ghana News Agency

My gov’t will not accept LGBTQ+ no matter the consequences – Dr Bawumia


The Vice President, Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, says the government under his presidency, will not accept homosexuality no matter the consequences.

He said it was important Ghana held and protected its culture, traditions and values as sacred devoid of any foreign influences.

Dr Bawumia, who is the flag-bearer of the NPP in the 2024 general elections, was addressing members of the clergy and church leaders in Kumasi, as part of his three-day campaign tour of the Ashanti region.

He stated clearly that, the traditions of the country’s forefathers needed to be protected and hold as sacred and that the LGBTQ+ was not part of it.

‘It is no, no, no for LGBTQ,’ he told the clergymen.

Dr Bawumia pledged what he called ‘golden age’ for faith-based organizations to enable them to strengthen their contributions to the socio-economic development of the country.

He said faith-based organizations would be empowered to manage their schools and shape the character and behaviour of the Ghanaian children.

The Vice President pr
omised to take the country into the fourth industrial revolution, which was the digital age.

He said the world of development was very competitive and Ghana must be prepared to be there as well, adding that, there was the need to put in place pillars such as technological education, digitalization and other innovations to move the country there.

Dr Bawumia said the introduction of the free senior high school policy and the distribution of tablets to students as part of the smart schools project, were all part of strategies to put the country on the global technological map.

He said the use of solar energy to power technologically driven agriculture would be one of his priorities, adding that, he would move the country into a credit economy.

Dr Bawumia said the private sector would be empowered to contribute significantly to the industrial revolution of the country and said flexible tax regimes would be introduced to help ease business operations in the country.

He said he would actively involve chiefs an
d traditional rulers in the fight against illegal miner (galamsey) in the country and promised to fight corruption at all fronts if elected as president in the December general elections.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Election 2024: Many voters in difficult situation – IDEG


The Institute for Democratic Governance (IDEG) says a ‘significant’ number of undecided voters are in a ‘difficult situation’ deciding on participating in the upcoming General Election.

The Institute said internal works conducted within the regions indicate that ‘a lot’ of voters ‘are not sure’ whether to participate in the December 7 polls as they had lost trust in the New Patriotic Party (NPP) and National Democratic Congress (NDC) due to past experiences.

In an interview with the Ghana News Agency, Professor Kwesi Jonah, Senior Research Fellow, IDEG, said the development was dangerous to Ghana’s democracy.

‘Voters say that they have seen the NPP and NDC and they are going through same difficulties all the time. So, the real problem that we face at this moment is that a lot of people who are undecided whether they want to participate in the elections at all.

‘This is a danger to our democracy,’ he said.

Prof. Jonah encouraged politicians to do more to convince voters that they would perform better when
offered the mandate in the upcoming elections.

‘Between now and voting time, this is the time for politicians to convince those people who are sitting on the fence right now that things are going to change, in terms of the ways which politicians have performed in the past.

‘Otherwise, a lot of people have decided that they won’t vote at all,’ he said.

It is barely six months to the 2024 General Election and political parties and aspirants are criss-crossing the country to make a case to various segments of voters, stakeholders, and opinion leaders in a bid to win their support.

The parties appear to have adopted stakeholder engagements and house-to-house campaigns as starting points to the year-long campaign that is expected to intensify in the coming months.

The IDEG observed that the parties had adopted a shift in strategy at the initial stages of the campaign by targeting identifiable groups and people without spending too much financial resources.

Prof. Jonah described the approach adopted by the pa
rties as a ‘very good beginning’ and expressed hope that the parties would adopt measures to reduce the cost of their campaigns.

He said big rallies increased the cost of politics and proposed the allocation of a principal place where politicians could engage with voters directly instead of staging rallies in every district, constituency, and region.

‘If we want to cut down the cost of politics, we should begin a process. Instead of big rallies, having a central place where the leaders can go, talk to people, supporters, we can make more progress in cutting down the cost of politics,’ he said.

Source: Ghana News Agency