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Year Of Return Rakes In $1.9billion — Tourism Minister

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A total of $1.9 billion has been generated into the economy through activities related to the “Year of Return”.
The Minister of Tourism, Arts and Culture, Mrs Barbara Oteng-Gyasi, said the “Year of Return” programme had also brought about an increase of over 200,000 in total arrivals into the country.
She said total arrivals in the country this year stood at about 750,000.
Mrs Oteng-Gyasi was speaking at a ceremony at Anomabo to inaugurate a tourist centre and hand over facilities at the Heroes Garden which has been transformed into a Memorial Garden of Return to boost tourism in the town.
Before the refurbishment exercise, the Heroes Garden had portrait statues of Kwegyir Aggrey, Ekem Ferguson and Nana Amonoo I of Anomabo and now has in addition symbolic statues of people of the African diaspora returning “home”.
The activity is part of the Legacy Project by the ministry to commemorate the “Year of Return.”
The tourist centre will serve as an information centre and provide a welcoming environment for tourists.
Mrs Oteng-Gyasi said the government was working hard to ensure that the country derived optimum benefits from the sector to accelerate development of Anomabo and indeed the country at large.
Citizenship
She said further that more than 200 people of the African diaspora had been granted citizenship by the President while land had been offered to encourage many more to return to the motherland.
She added that the year of return had improved relations between the country and the African diaspora while international media coverage of Ghana had been enhanced and high profile visits to the country gone up.
“There has been tremendous community involvement which has stimulated the local economy including hoteliering, tour operating and other related businesses,” she said.
Narrative change
The Minister of Tourism said the “Year of Return” had cemented Ghana’s pan-African legacy and had put a global spotlight on the country and helped to position it as a historic, cultural and vibrant hub and had as well changed the narrative of what was reported about Ghana and the rest of Africa in general.
She said the Ghana Tourism Authority (GTA) had also had indications of a 100 per cent hotel occupancy rate recorded for the last week of November with increased bookings for tours to areas linked to the trans-Atlantic slave trade such as Cape Coast and Elmina.
Year of Return
The “Year of Return” is a year-long event of the return of the descendants of the first enslaved Africans from James Town in Accra to James town in Virginia in the United States of America (USA).
Mrs Oteng-Gyasi said the “Year of Return” had been largely successful and established Ghana as a preferred destination for the global African family.
She said the memorial garden and tourist centre at Anomabo was part of the social impact and community development project and part of the of the ‘Year of Return’ programme, adding that it was expected to invigorate local businesses.
She thus urged the community to take full advantage of it.
More sites
The Chief Executive of the Ghana Tourism Authority, Mr Kwesi Agyeman, gave an assurance that the authority would work to develop more sites to further boost tourism and urged the people of Anomabo to take good care of the facility.
A representative of the Omanhen of Anomabo, Nana Owiansah, urged the Ministry of Tourism to rehabilitate Fort William and the old Anomabo Palace into a museum.
source:graphic.com.gh

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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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