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Government will explore modern technology to fight corruption – Bawumia

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Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia on Monday expressed Government’s determination to explore the use of modern technological tools to combat the canker of corruption in the country.

He said corruption was the greatest threat to human race and served as an obstacle that undermined government’s ability to fulfill its obligation to promote, protect and respect human rights.

He noted that the nation might not attain its objective of building a Ghana beyond Aid, if corruption thrived, and assured of Government’s commitment to equip all the anti-corruption institutions in the country with the requisite resources to combat corruption.

“We’re capable of funding the majority of our development needs if we can check corruption.

“This is the time to wage an unrelenting war against corruption and to end the public resource waste to sustain fiscal discipline, change our mentality and attitudes towards state and state property, and imbibe sound work ethics into our national life,” he emphasized.

Vice President Bawumia gave the assurance when he delivered the keynote address at the closing ceremony of a week-long Anti-Corruption and Transparency Conference in Accra.

The Vice President also used the occasion to launch the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan (NACAP) Online Reporting Dashboard, which was developed to assist in the implementation and reporting on the Action Plan against corruption.

The digital system would help anti-corruption institutions to compile progress report and reduce the use of paper work.

The conference, organized by the Commission on Human Rights and Administrative Justice (CHRAJ), also marked the celebration of the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and the 15th anniversary of the United Nations Convention against Corruption.

It was held under the theme:”Waging the Fight against Corruption; Panacea for Ghana Beyond Aid?, which attracted key stakeholders in the fight against corruption, including civil society organization, anti-corruption coalitions, state agencies, development partners and the media.

Vice President Bawumia said the fight against corruption was a collective responsibility of all stakeholders and should not be left to the government alone, saying; “We must collectively fight corruption in a responsible and sustainable manner”.

“We must be able and willing to question poor behaviour, poor performance, administrative obstruction, dishonesty, maladministration, improper use of discretion in administration decision-making,”the Vice President added.

Vice President Bawumia noted that the implementation of the National Anti-Corruption Action Plan was a priority of (NACAP) because it was a home-grown solution to combat corruption, which posed a good understanding of the corruption risk across all sectors of the economy and how it must be eliminated.

He mentioned some programmes rolled out by the Government within the past 22 months to enhance delivery of public services and combat corruption, including the paperless ports system, e-registration of businesses and electronic public procurement system, while efforts was underway to implement online registration of land titles.

Mr Joseph Whital, the Commissioner of CHRAJ, in his welcoming address, said the Commission since its establishment about 25years ago, had been promoting, protecting human rights and administrative justice, as well as promoting integrity and ethical values and conduct, through coordinated implementation of NACAP.

He was optimistic that the outcome from the conference would ensure the implementation of NACAP, sustain the campaign against corruption and enhance integrity in the country.

Mr Richard Quayeson, the Deputy Commissioner of CHRAJ, presented the State of Human Rights Report of the country for the year under review and outlined some challenges facing the Commission regarding the implementation of NACAP.

He urged the government to address the low stakeholder participation in the implementation of NACAP and called on government to ensure all Ministries, Departments and Agencies implement actions in the Action Plan, the need to resource all anti-corruption institutions in order to reduce corruption and promote integrity in public offices.

Mr Antonio Gutierrez, the United Nations Secretary-General’s report to mark the 70th anniversary of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and 15th anniversary of the United Nations Convention against Corruption was read at the meeting by Ambassador Evans Klock, the UN Resident Representative to Ghana.

The World Economic Forum estimated that the cost of corruption is at least 2.6 trillion dollars, representing five per cent of the global domestic product, while the World Bank says one trillion dollars is paid in bribes by businesses annually.

GNA

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5.9m Ghananian Registered For Ghana Card so far-NIA

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The National Identification Authority (NIA) has so far registered 5.9 million (5,907,536) people as at the end of 2019 in the ongoing nationwide mass registration exercise.

Of this number, the authority has printed 5.1 million (5,167,994) cards.

Data from the NIA reveals that 3.3 million (3,323,839) of the printed cards have been issued to registrants while persons who did not receive their cards can pick them up at designated places.

The exercise which currently ongoing in the Ashanti Region has so far registered one million (1,015,259) people in the region as at the end of 2019.

In the Ashanti Region, 761,263 cards have been printed while 552,796 cards have been issued to registrants.

Meanwhile, the NIA has extended the mass registration exercise throughout the Ashanti Region from January 10 to 16.

The extension is intended to restore the two registration days lost in December last year (27 and 28) because of the Christmas holidays.

A statement issued by Assistant Commissioner of Immigration (ACI) Mr Francis Palmdeti, the Head of Public Affairs of the NIA, said the extension also took into account the challenges it encountered in the first two days of the exercise in the region.

It said the move would also enable many prospective applicants in communities across the region who could not register because of the late arrival of some registration equipment to do so.

“NIA is concerned about the disturbing phenomenon of unusually large numbers of persons whose applications are ‘Awaiting Decision’ or have gone into ‘Adjudication’ and, therefore, have not had their cards printed and issued to them in the Ashanti Region.

“This situation frequently arises from discrepancies in the current versus previous biographic data of an applicant, particularly conflicts in date of birth, the spelling of names, change of names and addition of names without the requisite legal documentation backing them.

For instance, where an applicant presented July 1, 1987 in a previous NIA registration but indicates July 1, 1985, in the current registration as his/her date of birth, noting that conflicts such as change of date of birth are particularly manifest in data submitted to NIA currently, compared to data submitted to NIA previously.

The net effect of this situation is that tens of thousands of applicants are unable to get their cards and vouch for their relatives.

The statement indicated that the NIA’s technical system was sensitive and robust enough to detect slight variations in biographic data, as well as acute similarities in biometric data between two or more individuals.

“The system is designed to ‘arrest”’ all suspicious registrations in order to ensure that our National Identity Register is credible and dependable,” it said.

The NIA said adjudication and release of the cards of applicants with relatively “minor issues” are currently underway, and thousands of such cards have been printed and are ready for issuance.

Central, Western and Western North regions

The mass registration exercise is expected to commence in the Central, Western and Western North regions immediately after the Ashanti Region mass registration ends.

In addition, it is the expectation of the NIA that registration on the 16th and final region in the Eastern Region starts by late February to mid-March this year.

Meanwhile, it said the leapfrogging technique, which has been in use since the start of the mass registration exercise in the Greater Accra Region on April 29, last year, should help ensure that every nook and cranny of the Ashanti Region is covered.

That system has been applied in the Volta, Oti, Northern, Savannah, North East, Upper West, Upper East, Bono, Bono East and Ahafo regions.

80% target

It said that although not every eligible Ghanaian can be registered during the mass registration phase, the NIA seeks to register 80% of the population aged 15 and above.

Therefore, the remaining registrable population of Ghanaians under 15, would be registered after the mass registration exercise.

More so, NIA would establish permanent NIA offices in each region, municipality and district by the middle of March, to ensure continuous registration.

It said prospective applicants will, at their leisure, visit NIA offices and get registered at no cost.

NIA staff will also visit schools, hospitals, maternity wards, CHPS-compounds and other birthing centres to register all Ghanaian children.

This way, all Ghanaians aged zero to infinity will be registered.

Starting later this month, NIA will also operate offices jointly with a number of cognate institutions such as National Health Insurance Authority (NHIA), Social Security and National Insurance Trust (SSNIT), Driver and Vehicle Licensing Authority (DVLA), Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA), Births and Deaths Registry, and the Ghana Statistical Service.

It noted that the co-location arrangement should enable applicants doing business at any of those offices to also register for the Ghana Card with ease and at no cost.

The authority entreated Ghanaians to provide evidence of bribery and corruption allegedly being perpetrated by some NIA registration staff to the appropriate quarters for investigation and the necessary action.

Source:the Finder

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GHS194,000 Worth Of Fuel lost In Tanker Fire Near Buipe Depot – BOST

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The Bulk Oil Storage and Transportation Company Limited (BOST) has estimated the value of product lost in a fire incident that occurred near its Buipe Depot at GHS194,760.00.

Initial reports suggested that three fuel tankers were consumed by fire at the truck park of BOST’s Buipe Depot in the Northern region on Friday evening, January 3, 2020, but a statement from the company said four Bulk Road Vehicles [fuel trucks] were instead affected.

The statement said three of the affected trucks belonged to the Ghana Oil Company Limited, GOIL, while one was for BF Energy.

The statement signed by Marlick Adjei, the Head of Corporate Communications and External Affairs at BOST noted that two out of the four BRVs “contained 36,000 liters of diesel (AGO) and 36,000 liters of petrol
(PMS) respectively.”

“At the current price of GHS5.41/liter, the value of the product lost is estimated at GHS194,760.00,” the statement noted.

“The fire occurred at the truck park of the depot and not within the depot. It started late in the evening and took a combined force of the depot technical staff and fire officers from the Damongo and Tamale Fire Stations to bring it under control around 10 p.m,” BOST added in the statement.

Cause of fire unknown

BOST in the statement noted that “the exact cause of the fire has not been ascertained as at now and investigations are underway. We shall furnish the public with the details once the technical team completes the investigations.”

The Buipe depot is the central fuel holding point of BOST serving the Savannah, Northern, North-East, Upper East and Upper West Regions of Ghana.

READ ALSO: Bawumia Preaches Peace, Unity In 2020

It receives products through river barges (via the Volta Lake) and through Bulk Road Vehicles (BRVs) loaded from the Accra Plains depot of BOST.

The statement assured that “though a sizable volume of products loaded for OMCs, were destroyed in the incident, product supply in the northern regions and the general operations of BOST as a company will not be negatively affected.”

Citinewsroom

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Bawumia Preaches Peace, Unity In 2020

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Vice President Dr Mahamudu Bawumia has delivered a New Year’s Message to Ghanaians.

Dr. Bawumia delivered the message when he served as the Special Guest of Honour during the Kaneshie District Presby Church’s Watch-night Service on December 31, 2019.

He shocked worshippers during the night to usher in the new year when he displayed an in-depth understanding of the Holy Bible.

Calling on Ghanaians to be peaceful and loving, the Vice President constantly made reference to the Bible about the importance of peace, unity and love.

He stated “as we start the year 2020, three things are so dear to our hearts as a people and we pray to the Almighty God to grant us these three things. We pray for peace, unity and love.”

According to him, “these three things are so important in the Bible. When you read Mathew 5:9 in the Bible, it says “blessed are the peacemakers for those are the sons of God.”

Dr. Bawumia added in his five minutes-plus address that “in Psalm 133, it talks about unity and it says, “behold how good and how pleasant it is for brethren to duel together in unity.”

source:dailyguideafrica

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