Ghana President Self-Isolates Despite Negative COVID-19 Test

 

Ghana’s president has gone into self-isolation for two weeks as a precautionary measure despite testing negative for coronavirus, the government said, after one of his contacts was confirmed to have the illness.

President Nana Akufo-Addo began his quarantine on Saturday and will be working from the presidential villa in Accra, capital of the West African country, the information minister said in a statement.

“The president has elected to do so after at least one person within his close circle tested positive for COVID-19,” the minister said.

“(The president) has, as (of) today, tested negative, but has elected to take this measure out of the abundance of caution.”

Ghana has reported more than 19,300 cases of the new respiratory disease and 117 deaths, and has lifted its strict lockdown although social-distancing measures remain in place.

The announcement came a day after the presidency said a junior minister had resigned for failing to self-isolate after testing positive.

There was no official indication the events were linked.

Since the pandemic erupted, a number of senior political figures worldwide have caught the disease, including British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, who was hospitalised and has now recovered.

Senegal’s President Macky Sall also went into a preventative quarantine last month, despite testing negative, after coming into contact with a coronavirus case.

AFP

Ghana President Calls Buhari, Apologises Over Demolition Of Nigerian Mission

(FILE PHOTO) President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana speaks with President Muhammadu Buhari at the State House in Abuja, the nation’s capital.

 

President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana has called President Muhammadu Buhari Over the demolition of the Nigerian High Commission in Accra.

In a telephone conversation on Tuesday, Akufo-Addo expressed his sincere apology over the unfortunate incident that has sparked reactions from the Nigerian government.

This was confirmed in a statement issued by the Senior Special Assistant to the President, Garba Shehu.

The Ghana leader assured President Buhari that he has directed a full investigation into the matter, assuring that justice will be served.

Meanwhile, some suspects linked to the demolition have been arrested and will be arraigned in court.

READ ALSO: Nigerian Embassy Staff Quarters In Ghana Demolished

It will be recalled that a businessman who claimed ownership of the land housing the Nigerian mission reportedly moved with security personnel to demolish some portion of the staff quarters.

Although the demolition took place on Friday, the man was said to have shown up the previous week with some pieces of evidence to support his claim and began to knock down the fence surrounding the building.

A source at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs told Channels Television that the action of the man was not opposed, adding that the Nigerian High Commission petitioned the Ghanaian Government about it, but there was no response.

Following the incident, many Nigerians including the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama and the Speaker of the House of Representatives, Femi Gbajabiamila have condemned the action.

Coronavirus: Ghana Closes Schools, Bans Gatherings

 

Ghana on Monday closed all schools and universities and suspended public events to stop the spread of coronavirus as a string of African nations imposed tighter restrictions to stem the spread of the global pandemic.

President Nana Akufo-Addo announced in an address to the West African nation that the authorities were shutting schools and universities “until further notice”.

Public gatherings — including conferences, religious services, sports matches and political rallies — have also been suspended for four weeks, he said.

Ghana on Sunday announced it would start barring entry to the country from Tuesday for any non-Ghanaian citizen or resident “who, within the last 14 days, has been to a country that has recorded at least 200 cases”.

READ ALSO: PHOTOS: Blast Wreaks Havoc In Lagos Community

The move came as the authorities reported a rise in the number of confirmed cases of COVID-19 from two to six, with the new cases all arrivals from abroad.

Numerous nations in sub-Saharan Africa — including Senegal, Kenya and South Africa — have begun imposing entry restrictions or closing schools as the continent scrambles to halt the spread of the virus.

AFP

We Shut Borders Due To Influx Of Arms, Hard Drugs, Buhari Tells Akufo-Addo

President Buhari with Ghanian President Nana Akufo-Addo during a bilateral meeting at the sidelines of the Uk-Africa Summit on 20th Jan 2020

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has continued to defend the closure of the nation’s borders.

According to him, the partial closure of the borders was not caused solely because food products, particularly rice, were being smuggled into Nigeria, but also because arms and ammunition, as well as hard drugs were being ferried into the country.

The president said this on Monday at a bilateral meeting in London, on the sidelines of the UK-Africa Investment Summit 2020 with President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana.

He said he could not keep his eyes open, and watch youths being destroyed through cheap hard drugs, and compromised security caused by unbridled influx of small arms.

“When most of the vehicles carrying rice and other food products through our land borders are intercepted, you find cheap hard drugs, and small arms, under the food products. This has terrible consequences for any country,” President Buhari said.

He said it was regrettable that the partial border closure was having “negative economic impact on our neighbours,” but added that “we cannot leave our country, particularly the youths, endangered.”

Speaking further, the President said the Sahel region was awash with small arms, which accounts for severe security challenges in Mali, Chad, Burkina Faso, Niger and Nigeria.

“We are in fact the biggest victims,” he lamented.

On the time frame for reopening the borders, President Buhari said it would not happen till the final report of a committee set up on the matter was submitted and considered.

“We will get things sorted out. Our farmers, especially those who grow rice, now have a market, and are happy, and we are also concerned about hard drugs and weapons. Once the committee comes up with its recommendations, we will sit and consider them,” the President said.

President Akufo-Addo, while showing understanding of the need for Nigeria to protect her citizens, pleaded for “an expedited process, because the Nigerian market is significant for certain categories of business people in Ghana.”

President Buhari Receives Ghana’s Akufo-Addo In Abuja

 

President Muhammadu Buhari has met with the President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo.

The President received the Ghanaian leader on Wednesday afternoon at the Presidential Villa in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

Personal Assistant to President Buhari on New Media, Mr Bashir Ahmad, disclosed this on Twitter.

The meeting comes three days after the President returned to Abuja from Saudi Arabia where he attended the 14th Summit of the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).

See more photos of the visit below:

Ghana’s President Challenges African Govts To Promote SMSEs For Economic Growth

President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo speaks during the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship forum 2018 in Lagos on October 25, 2018.

 

President of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, has called on African governments to promote the Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMSEs), in order to achieve economic growth.

According to Akufo-Addo, who was a guest at the Tony Elumelu Foundation Entrepreneurship Forum 2018, which was held in Lagos on Thursday, SMSEs are crucial to a nation’s economic growth.

“Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (SMSEs) are those that drive the economy. You hear of the big corporations. (But) Even in America, it is the SMSEs that drive the economy. That is what we also have to build.

“When we put all of these things together, we are then creating an opportunity for growth and for prosperity and wellbeing.”

According to the Ghanaian leader, Africa is endowed with rich natural and human resources to cater to for needs of its people.

He, therefore, wants other African leaders to make good use of the resources at their disposal for the prosperity of all rather than seeking foreign aids and financial assistance.

As for the employment challenges facing the continent, Mr Akufo-Addo called for a change of attitude of African youths.

He explained that 70 per cent of youths in America work toward owning their own business, while only 30 per cent of youths in Africa work toward entrepreneurship.

Akufo-Addo added, “A survey was conducted by the Ministry of Business Development together with the Ministry of Education of selected schools in Ghana. The question that was posed was ‘how many of you want to be business owners?'”

“Two per cent gave the answer that they want to be business owners contrast them to 70 per cent when the same survey was conducted in American schools. Seven out of 10 young Americans said they want to be business owners.

“That is the nature of the challenge – the changing of the mindset, the changing of the culture, the changing of the attitude. That will then compel us to go down the line of entrepreneur development.”

PDP Tells Buhari To Learn From Ghanaian President

PDP Tells Buhari To Learn From Ghanian President
File photo: President Muhammadu Buhari received Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo at the State House in Abuja on September 12, 2017.

 

The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has called on President Muhammadu Buhari to rather use the benefit of his state visit to Ghana to draw lessons from his Ghanaian counterpart, President Nana Akufo-Addo.

In a statement by its National Publicity Secretary Kola Ologbondiyan on Wednesday, the opposition party advised the President to learn how Ghana is being run to be a peaceful, united and economically vibrant nation.

They criticised President Buhari for offering to assist Ghana in her war against corruption after the Transparency International revealed in its recent report that corruption has worsened in Nigeria.

The PDP noted that the country is plagued with economic recession while the President of Ghana paraded credentials of a robust economy and a peaceful nation.

“When President Buhari was reeling out President Akufo-Addo achievements in his one year in office, his ingenious approach to job creation, the farming for job initiative, the senior high school free education, one district-one factory projects and one village-one dam initiatives among others; we hope our dear President reflected on the fact that back home, his inept government had instead, wrecked our once robust economy.

“We hope President Buhari recollects that unlike his Ghanaian counterpart, his administration had nothing to show in its first year in office. Our President recalls that under his own watch, over eight million Nigerians have lost their jobs, 16 million remained unemployed, 18 million more were underemployed, while another 27.44 million refused to work for various reasons related to frustrations occasioned by the negative policies of his government,” the party claimed.

They alleged further that the nation’s debt profile has continued to escalate, adding that factories have shut down, inflation soared, and fuel price purportedly increased in parts of the country.

The PDP accused the President of “directly persecution of opposition members under the guise of a fight against corruption.”

On the forthcoming elections, they said: “We know that the Presidency sought to use the Ghana visit to curry international endorsement for their 2019 re-election bid.

“We want to urge Mr President to be wary of turning Nigeria into a joke in the international arena, especially as the world knows what is obtainable in his government.”

Ghanaian President, Akufo-Addo Visits Buhari

Ghana’s President Nana Akufo-Addo has arrived in Nigeria on a brief state visit with President Muhammadu Buhari in Abuja.

The Ghanaian President was received on Tuesday at the Nnamdi Azikiwe International Airport by a delegation led by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, Mr Geoffrey Onyeama.

President Akufo-Addo was accorded the courtesy of the Nigerian Guard of Honour, before he went into a closed door meeting with President Buhari, at the new Banquet Hall of the State House.

There has been no word concerning what the meeting is about, but Nigeria and Ghana share special bilateral relations.

While he was president-elect, Nana Akufo-Addo spoke about the need for stronger ties between the two countries, which he said was important for the growth of Africa.

Osinbajo Hosts Ghanaian President

FG To Distribute Food To 1.8m People In North-EastThe Acting President Yemi Osinbajo has received visiting Ghanaian President, Nana Akufo-Addo, at the Presidential Villa, Abuja.

President Aakufo-Addo arrived the Villa at about 11.10 in the morning and was welcomed by Professor Osinbajo, who ushered him into his office.

The visit lasted for about five minutes as the Ghanaian leader proceeded immediately to the National Defence College to deliver a lecture.

Both leaders did not speak to the press on the outcome of their discussion.

But President Akufo-Addo was in Nigeria last June where he held Bilateral talks with the Acting President.

African Countries Must Maintain Common Values Of Governance – Akufo-Addo

President Nana Akufo-Addo of Ghana has called on African countries to unite and ensure the implementation of regional and continental decisions including the ECOWAS Trade Liberalisation Scheme and the Continental Free Trade Area.

Akufo-Addo said this while speaking as a guest lecturer for this year’s graduation ceremony at the National Defence College in Abuja today.

According to him, by implementing such decisions and maintaining common values of governance Africa will achieve the economic and security benefits experienced by others such as the European Union.

He said, “The way forward is to implement regional and continental decisions such as the ECOWAS trade liberalization scheme and the Continental Free Trade Area, recognizing that ultimately the benefits are in everyone’s interest.

“Additionally, all governments in the region and continent need to collaborate to ensure that the countries of Africa adhere to and maintain common values of governance i.e. the principles of democratic accountability, respect for individual liberties and human rights and the rule of law.”

The Ghanaian leader blamed Africa’s economic woes on poor leadership and urged Nigeria to play a leading role in reversing this challenge.

“Our problem over the years, I suggest, has been leadership. The implementation of these plans has been left to well-meaning technocrats and bureaucrats. However well-meaning they may be, our region and continent cannot make the bold transformative changes they need to make without visionary political leadership,” Akufo-Addo said.

“We need leadership that is focused on the region and on the continent and not on individual countries.”

On the increase in insecurity on the continent, President Akufo-Addo said the use of force was not enough, stressing that collaborative effort must be made to eliminate the root causes of insecurity in member countries on the continent.
Before giving his speech, the Ghanaian President inspected the guard of honour mounted for him at the graduation lecture for course 25 of the college.

Ghana’s New President Akufo-Addo Promises To Cut Taxes

Nana Akufo-Addo, GhanaGhana’s new President, Nana Akufo-Addo, has pledged to cut taxes to boost the economy.

Mr Akufo-Addo made the promise at his swearing in ceremony on Saturday.

He also pledged to protect the public purse by getting value for money on services.

The 72-year-old, who contested under the platform of the New Patriotic Party, was elected president on his third attempt to reach the post.

He defeated incumbent John Dramani Mahama in peaceful elections a month ago, a rare peaceful transfer of power in a region plagued by political crises.

The major cocoa and gold exporter is half-way through a three-year aid programme with the International Monetary Fund to fix an economy dogged by high public debt and inflation.

It is not clear how the new president will be able to cut taxes and still stick to an IMF austerity plan that was a condition of a $918 million bailout, Reuters reports.

“We will reduce taxes to recover the momentum of our economy,” said Akufo-Addo, wrapped in a traditional kaleidoscopic “kente” robe. “Ghana is open for business again.”

At the venue for the inauguration in Black Star Square, thousands of Ghanaians also draped in traditional kente garments clapped. Outside the perimeters, revellers drummed and danced.

Akufo-Addo suggested government money would be spent wisely.

“I shall protect the public purse by insisting on value for money,” he said. “Public service is just that: service, and (is) not be seen as an opportunity for making money.”

Ghana expects growth will return to above eight per cent in 2017 as new oil and gas fields from Tullow and ENI come on tap.

Akufo-Addo served as foreign minister and attorney general in the NPP government that ruled between 2001 and 2009. He twice previously lost close battles for the presidency. He is the son of a former chief justice and non-executive president of Ghana.

During his campaign, he had accused the Mahama administration of corruption and incompetence, charges the outgoing president denied. Mahama attended the ceremony.

It was also attended by dozens of African leaders and other international dignitaries, including Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, Chadian President Idris Deby, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf of Liberia and former UN chief Kofi Annan.

Akufo-Addo’s New Patriotic Party also won a majority of 169 seats in Parliament while the former ruling National Democratic Congress now has 106 seats.

The former human rights lawyer had also promised free high school education and more factories in Ghana.

 

Obasanjo Assures Ghana’s Nana Akufo-Addo Of Nigeria’s Support

recession, Olusegun obasanjoA former Nigerian President and elder statesman, Mr Olusegun Obasanjo, has assured the new President-elect of Ghana, Mr Nana Akufo-Addo, that Nigerians will give him all the support he needs to succeed as he takes up the affairs of Ghana.

Mr Obasanjo gave the assurance on Wednesday in Owerri, Imo State’s capital, at the Imo Day of Thanksgiving where he was guest speaker.

He said the support would be possible, considering the strong bond of friendship between Ghana and Nigeria.

The former leader also expressed confidence that the president-elect would run the affairs of Ghana like no one else had ever done, when he assumes office.

Mr Obasanjo stated that he was particularly delighted to join Imo people in thanking God for what he had used their governor to do in the state, stressing that he was amazed to see a new Owerri Town because the Owerri capital he saw on arrival was quite different from the one he used to know.

“Rochas Okorocha was my unpaid adviser who helped me in most of the good policies I initiated as a president. I want to congratulate him because he has changed the face of Owerri. I know this city very well. As I came in today I came to ask, is this the Owerri that I used to know or another Owerri?” the former Nigerian President told the crowd that gathered for the thanksgiving.

The Ghana President-elect, Mr Addo in his speech at the event said “the relationship between Nigeria and Ghana should be an example of good relationship to the rest of West Africa.

“I am determined, following the mandate my people have conferred on me, to do everything to establish good relations with the leadership of this great country, Nigeria, because together we can work for the construction of a better Africa.

“We Ghanaians value so much our relationship with Nigeria which dates back to years. And the stronger the relationship, the better for the rest of Africa’s region. I cherish the progressive zeal I have seen in Rochas. In the next four years I hope to improve on the living standards of the Ghana people,” he told the gathering..

Governor Rochas Okorocha in his welcome speech at the event said the Imo Day of Thanksgiving is not for APC members in the state only but for the whole of Imo people not minding their political affiliations, adding that the thanksgiving event was organised for Imo people to thank God for what he has done in the lives of the state and her people, using him as the tool.

He remarked that the thanksgiving would attract more blessings to Imo people from God.

Mr Okorocha said all that his administration had achieved in the state would not have been possible without God, thanking the former president and the President-elect of Ghana for honouring the invitation of the government and people of the state.

The Imo day of thanksgiving is one of the event earmarked by the state government to herald the Imo carnival 2016.

It is also an avenue to celebrate Christmas with the less privileged in the state from all the 27 local government area of the state while also thanking for a fruitful year.