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MP Joins Odupong SHS at SRC Week Celebration

The Member of Parliament for Awutu Senya East Constituency, Mavis Hawa Koomson, made a memorable appearance at the Odupong Senior High School (SHS) SRC Week celebration symposium.

In a remarkable show of support, she contributed cash donations and 200 bags of cement to assist the school’s development projects and foster an improved learning environment for the students. The MPs presence at the Odupong SHS SRC Week celebration symposium demonstrated her unwavering commitment to education and youth empowerment.

She shared her efforts that secured the school Bus for the school and now collaborating with appropriate ministries to transform the school into a boarding facility, showcasing her dedication to improving educational opportunities.

She expressed her admiration for the students and their pursuit of excellence. She reiterated her dedication to supporting educational institutions and empowering the youth, emphasizing the importance of quality education for a prosperous future.

Irene Kwakye/Ghanamps.com

Kwabena Agyapong Picks Npp Nomination forms

The charismatic flagbearer hopeful of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Kwabena Agyei Agyepong (KAA) has picked forms for the Flagbearer position of the NPP today, Friday, 26th May 2023.

This officially confirms his candidacy for the flagbearer position of the NPP as the primaries draw nearer.

According to the former General Secretary of the NPP, this is the beginning of great things to come. KAA is promising to usher in “A New Dawn” on Ghana’s political landscape anchored on the restoration of our cherished values of SERVICE SACRIFICE and SELFLESSNESS what he calls the Triple S Doctrine.

Ing Agyepong expressed his profound passion to see to the transformation of the country, promising to cut waste by leading a lean, effective and efficient government machinery primed to deliver meaningful development to the underserved population.

He advised NPP delegates to choose wisely, looking out for thinking leaders; those with innovative ideas and a clear understanding of where they want to take the country. He implored the delegates to trust his capacity and fortitude to take the difficult uncomfortable measures needed reverse our economic decline.

He entreated them not to mortgage their futures for a pittance and denounce any monetary and material overtures and inducement. He added that there’s a crying need to instill authenticity and substance in our body politic.

He called on his fellow flagbearer aspirants to accept his call for an open debate. Ing Agyepong said “Ghanaians are entitled and deserve to examine and know what each of us stands for. Our ideas, policy priorities and preferences, our temperament and character all matter”.

He added, “If you want to lead the people of Ghana then you should be humble enough to submit yourself for scrutiny by the people”.

Finally KAA as he is affectionately called was confident the National Executives and Elders of the NPP will ensure that the upcoming Presidential Primaries are conducted in a spirit of fairness and equity devoid of manipulation, coercion, favoritism and utmost respect for the party’s Code of Conduct regarding same.

He urged party members of the party to remain the beacon of democracy and transparency.


Sissala East MP calls on MMDAs to intensify communal mobilization to execute projects

The Member of Parliament for Sissala East in the Upper West region, Amidu Issahaku Chinnia, has identified community mobilization; and not always contract, as key to the realization of community projects.

He said in the event where funds were not readily available, community leaders and politicians could mobilize the people and other resources for such projects, to reduce cost, and avoid undue delays in their execution.

“Let’s not always award contracts; Community Mobilization is key to communal projects,” Mr. Chinna said, and cited some projects he has accomplished in the constituency through community engagement rather than contracts.

The MP who is also the Deputy Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, said it’s time communities and leaders acted swiftly on development projects, especially those in relation to water, sanitation and hygiene.

In an interview with the Media, Mr. Chinna called on all Metropolitan, Municipal and District Assemblies to play their supervisory roles effectively in the implementation of WASH projects.


Sub-regional Coups: “ECOWAS is always ignoring early warnings signs” — Njai

The only female member on the Gambian delegation to the Community Parliament, Fatoumatta Njai has slammed the Authority of Heads of States and Governments and the sub-regional bloc for ignoring early warning signs that leads to coups in the wake of the high political tension currently in Senegal.

According to her the Authority of Heads of States has become a fifteen (15) member club that only seek to protect the interest of ruling governments and to entrench themselves in power at the expense of ordinary community citizens.

“I think as Parliament, we should look into that and ensure that every citizen of the Community is protected and irrespective of their party affiliation. We come to the Community Parliament read and adopt reports, we never follow up on those reports, the plight of our citizens are ignored, – what is happening in Senegal?”

Madam Njai made the observations on Tuesday, May 23, 2023 at the closing of the 2023 first Ordinary Session in Abuja Nigeria when the joint Committees of Political Affairs, Peace, Security & APRM / Legal Affairs and Human Rights report was being presented for adoption at the plenary.

It was however, stated during contributions towards the debate on the floor that ECOWAS as a bloc is doing a lot of close door engagements to prevent coups in the sub-regional bloc.

There is political tension currently in Senegal, where a case of rape is pending in the court against the opposition leader Ousmane Sonko and this has heightened political tensions in the country.

She argued that currently three member states that experience coup – Mali, Guinea, and Burkina Faso are in transition to constitutional rule, but the way things are going, as a sub-regional bloc, we might have more all because ECOWAS is not proactive in stopping the root causes of constitutional changes, “they ignore the root cause”, she lamented.

Additionally, she pointed out that her home Country just came out of a local level election and the amount of disrespect that government officials with the security have inflicted on civilians if they had reacted there would have been chaos.

“ECOWAS should recognise and respect the right of the opposition”.

On the debate and adoption of the joint Committees report, she pointed out that on the Senegal political situation all she sees is colleagues from Senegal reacting and stating points in the interest of their political afflations’ ignoring the obvious signs”.

The Banjul South lawmaker in the Gambia who is a neighbour to Senegal, told the plenary she does not see her colleagues speaking in the interest of their citizens on the floor. Again she supports the idea of sending fact finding missions to member states when there are issues to be addressed.

But was quick to point out that, when they go they go and seat with the ruling government and they tell them what they want them to know instead of going to the citizens to verify what is on the ground.

She said instead of spending weeks, they go there for a day or two; they rather wine and dine with the authorities and at the end of the day come out with reports, “for us to adopt that do not reflect realities on the ground”.

She gave a classical example of her country report, in the Gambia, stating that at the moment, there is Acute Kidney Infection leading to the death of some 70 children but this was not stated in their country report. “So  are we here enjoying at the expense of our citizens or we should rather go to the grounds and see what is happening rather than sitting here  talking about reports that do not have true reflections of the situation on the ground?”

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

“ECOWAS Speaker Tunis will go down history as one of the worst”—Vilane

A member of the Senegalese delegation to the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Parliament, Abdoulaye Vilane has taken a swipe at the Speaker Dr. Sidie Mohammed Tunis saying he would go down history as “one of the worst Speaker’s the Parliament has had.

According to him the speaker’s remarks that Sierra Leone and Liberia are not affected by the terrorist attacks hence not his business is really unfortunate.

Rather Countries like Senegal, Gambia, Ghana, Togo and Nigeria should be concerned about terrorist attacks, “this is irresponsible comments”.

Mr. Abdoulaye Vilane, a member of the Trade, Customs and Free Movement Committee who attended the joint Committee meeting of Political Affairs, Peace, Security and African Peer Review Mechanism/ Legal Affairs and Human Right on Friday, May, 19, 2023 was unhappy of the absence of the Chairman of the Parliament Affairs Peace, Security and APRM and key persons as well as the Rt. Hon Speaker Dr. Sidie Mohamed Tunis.

He noted in an interview that important matters such as efforts to bring back Countries under sanction because of coup like Mali, Guinea, and Burkina Faso are being discussed and the political situation in Senegal but the Speaker and chairman are nowhere to be found.

Again, he further pointed out that he is reliable informed that the Speaker was supposed to be in Panama for the opening of their Parliament, but did not go because the President of his Country was celebrating his birthday.

Checks done by Ghanamps.com, has revealed that chairman of the Political Affairs Committee Senator Snowe is in Panama Parliament to represent the Speaker Rt. Hon Dr. Sidie Mohammad Tunis.

In addition, “he comes to sign for first week when there is parliamentary work but was nowhere to be seen all because his term is coming to an end, he does not care about anything”, he stated.

When Ghanamps.com reached out to the Speaker’s secretariat on the issue of the terrorist comment, it was revealed that it was meant to be a joke and not serious comment.

And on the issue of absence of the Speaker at the joint committee meeting of Political Affairs Committee of which he is a member, it came up that ahead of next month’s general election in Sierra Leone, the Speaker is back in his home country.

Mr. Abdoulaye Vilane further pointed out that similar situation was witnessed last year during the second Ordinary Session November to December of 2022, “the Speaker came in for few days and was nowhere to be seen”.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Afransie community Mining Scheme launched

The Member of Parliament for Tarkwa Nsuem, who doubles as the deputy Minister for Lands and Natural Resources George Mireku Duker, on behalf of the Sector Minister, has launched the Afransie Community Mining Scheme in the Wassa Amenfi East District in the Western Region of Ghana.

In his delivery, he urged the Directors of the scheme to prioritize safety practices as they mine accordingly as enshrined by the Minerals and Mining Act 2006, Act 703 and also cautioned that mining should strictly occur within the dedicated and approved concession and no further, otherwise, the license will be revoked.

He further tasked the Directors to contribute to the development of the Municipality through contributions towards reshaping roads, schools etc.

The Western Regional Minister, Kwabena Okyere Darko Mensah in his remarks, urged the youth to capitalize on the scheme to create employment for themselves and indulged managers of the Scheme to mine responsibility and sustainably.

Addressing the durbar of Chiefs, opinion leaders, District and Regional officers of the Minerals Commission and the good people of Afransie, the Municipal Chief Executive, Fredrick Korankye, expressed his profound gratitude to the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo for such an insightful initiative and requested that, more of the schemes be implemented in his Municipality.

The Chiefs and Elders of Afransie indicated their support towards the success of the scheme, as they expressed their gratitude for the implementation of the policy in their traditional area.


Senegal’s Political situation pops up at joint Committee for discussion

The joint Committees meeting of Political Affairs, Peace, Security and Africa Peer Review Mechanism (APRM)/ Legal Affairs and Human Right involving political issues in Senegal was up for discussion on Friday, May, 19, 2023.

In an interview after the Committee meeting, a friend to the Committee Stephen J. H Zargo noted that Senegal is one of the most flourishing countries in West Africa.

Senegal and Cape Verde are the only two West African countries that have never had coup; so they do want to hear any situation that would lead to that, but the political situation in Senegal is becoming worrying.

Where the Senegalese opposition leader Ousmane Sonko is being tried for alleged rape, the 48-year-old has denied the charges and has accused President Macky Sall of trying to prevent him from running in elections next year.

Mr. Zargo further noted that ECOWAS needs to get involve so that a peace nation like Senegal does not plunge into chaos. “We are happy to be informed by the Commission that there are some back door channels being used that is tapping the expertise of the council of the wise and they should ensure that Senegal is safe and they can continue to enjoy as stable West African state”.

In addition, engagement with the Commission is good, “we all went there with open mind when one person felt short the other person picked up from it. We informed each other, we are cross cutting, we have gotten to know the challenges”, he added.

As to whether the exercise by the Committee would lead to any significant changes, he pointed out that the Parliament has moved from advisory level with their enhanced powers and it’s not only about their opinion as MPs that matter; they also push further.

He was however, quick to point out that they embark on country visitation in some instances and where action has to be taken they do that. “We dispatched some ECOWAS female MPs to Senegal when a female lawmaker was abused; we are making progress”.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Low visibility of ECOWAS activities

Head of Mediation and Coordination of Regional Political Affairs at the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) Commission, Dr. Mrs. Onyinye Onwuka has expressed worry of low visibility  of the sub-regional bloc’s activities.

According to her, for instance,  tons of  grains were sent to Burkina Faso,  in view of the humanitarian challenges  and the Commission also deployed  High Level Humanitarian Assessment mission, in March 2023 to identify the country’s needs/challenges, for informed support.

She  stressed on  the need to increase visibility to ECOWAS activities in the region by all the ECOWAS institutions and at member states, to adequately inform and sensitize community citizens on the efforts made by ECOWAS towards sustainable peace and development of the region.

And wonders why the activities of ECOWAS are not getting the same level of publicity like other partners.

She made this revelation when the directorate of Political Affairs of the department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security appeared before Parliament’s joint Committee on Legal Affairs & Human Right/ Political Affairs, Peace, Security and APRM on Friday, May, 19, 2023.

In an interview just after the Committee’s deliberation, she further explained that visibility is very important and sells a brand, hence the need to be more intentional in publicity with the right mechanism and network.

“We need to reach out and tell our stories ourselves so it is the intentional aspect of it that we need to amplify currently because we are public servants, whatever you do, you have to be modest about it”.

Dr. Onyinye emphasised the need to create that awareness for the citizens to know that what their monies are used for at that level that is why it is key, that we become more intentional with publicity.

And further added that the Communication divisions of the ECOWAS institutions need to do more by showcasing its activities.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

Referrals to four joint committees set for approval by plenary

Twenty referrals made to the joint Committees on Agriculture, Environment and Natural Resources/Macroeconomic Policy and Economic Research/Trade, Customs and Free Movement/Industry and Private have been worked on by the Committees and set for onwards transmission to the plenary for approval.

Some of the referrals worked on were as follow, draft directives on the harmonisation of the legislation of ECOWAS Member States on exercise duties, draft directives on harmonisation of value added tax (VAT) legislation of ECOWAS States and draft legislation on the adoption of the ECOWAS regional strategy for the implementation of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) among others.

Chairman of the Committee on Macroeconomic Policy and Economic Research, Kebba K. Barrow thanked members for their participation to deal with referrals from the ECOWAS Commission, adding that it is the beginning of a relation they want to see would exist between the Parliament and the Commission.

And as contain in the Supplementary Act, they would ensure that the aspiration and dreams of their fore fathers are met.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com

“Don’t blame Sierra Leone for missing another opportunity to present report”—Sama

The Republic of Sierra Leone for the Second time at the ongoing 2023 first Ordinary Session in Abuja Nigeria of the Community Parliament missed the opportunity to present its Country report to the plenary when MPs were waiting to listen to its Country report.

In the first instance, the Country report was not ready despite its arrival in Abuja-Nigeria. Another opportunity presented itself on Thursday, May 18, 2023 but due to the packed nature of programme for the day, only ten (10) MPs were left in the hall as at two o’clock and they suggested looking at the number of members present to have a meaningful discussion the Country report should be pushed to the next plenary.

Just after adjournment of the proceedings, Shiaka Musa Sama who was on the standby to present his Country report told Ghanamps.com it’s unfortunate, “Sierra Leone was ready to present its Country report but we did not have the opportunity”.

As to whether Sierra Leone would have the opportunity to present its report before the end of the session, he noted that it is left for the delegation to decide. “I was to present today, I do not know who would be appointed the next time, we would let you know”.

Meanwhile Ghanamps.com can reveal that MPs are in anticipation to listen to the Country report of Sierra Leone as they head towards election next month.

Kwaku Sakyi-Danso/Ghanamps.com