Martial Arts Instructor inducted into WOMMA Hall of Fame

Koforidua� Mr. Raphael Sylvanus Akoto, a Ghanaian Martial Arts Instructor, has been inducted as an Ambassador into the Martial Arts prestigious World Organization of Martial Arts Athletes (WOMAA) Hall of Fame, in Germany.

Mr. Akoto, was chosen for the award of Martial Arts “President of the Year” by the WOMAA-Team Germany, at Dinner Banquet held in Germany.

WOMAA International was formed in 1998 to host world class Martial Arts tournament every year in different countries.

Mr. Akoto, is the Country Director for WOMAA, Chung Do Kwan Ghana, Taekwondo Ghana and Chun Ki Do Association Ghana (Africa) and Chief Executive Officer of Chung Young Martial Arts Academy.

Mr Akoto began his study of Martial Arts (Taekwondo) in 1988 and formed martial arts (Taekwondo) clubs and taught the sports since 2004.

He studied and learned by means of the traditional instructor and discipline apprenticeship method and done substantial graduate work in Martial Arts theory and practice.

Mr. Akoto’s main academic areas of specialization are History and Philosophy of Martial Arts.

Mr Akoto currently holds the rank of Seventh Degree Black Belt in Hapkido and Fourth Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo and title of a Grandmaster.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Normalisation Committee apologises to Nation

Accra- The Normalisation Committee of Ghana Football Association (GFA), has apologised to the media, football fraternity and the general public over the incident that happened at their meeting with the press on Wednesday, October 17, in Accra.

In a statement signed by Mrs, Lucy Quist, the Vice President of the Committee states, “the Normalisation Committee unequivocally apologised for the unfortunate incident, which occurred at the media interactions”.

It said, they believe in treating every stakeholder with respect, adding that the committee appreciates all the people who joined the event and offered better views and comments.

It said, the Normalisation Committee is counting on all stakeholders to work with them in order to reform the beautiful Ghana football.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Asamoah Gyan thrilled with Kotoko sponsorship deal

Kumasi- Asamoah Gyan, captain of the senior national team, the Black Stars, has said, he is elated to be associated with two-time African champions, Kumasi Asante Asante Kotoko after his company, Paradise Pac Mineral Water, agreed to a two-year sponsorship deal with the Porcupine Warriors.

I am happy to be given this opportunity by His Royal Majesty, Otumfuo Osei Tutu II, Owner and Life Patron of the Club, as well as the Management, he noted.

Kotoko is my childhood club and for me this is historic. I hope the two sides would uphold terms under the agreement for a strong partnership.

The Porcupine Warriors sealed a deal with Paradise Pac in Kumasi on Thursday and the package includes provision of cash and products worth about 10, 000 US Dollars.

Gyan, was of the conviction that the sponsorship deal would help support the club to meet some of its financial commitments.

Mr. George Amoako, Chief Executive Officer of Kotoko, assured all that, the club would work assiduously to give the company the mileage it needed by promoting its products.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Malawians Protest Statue of ‘Racist’ Gandhi

Activists in Malawi are protesting construction of a statue of India’s independence leader Mahatma Gandhi. The statue in the commercial capital Blantyre is being erected as part of a deal for India to construct a $10 million convention center. A group of protesters says the statue is an insult to Malawians and Africa because of racial slurs Ghandi made as a young man.

An online campaign in Malawi has collected nearly 4,000 signatures against erecting a statue of India’s independence leader Mahatma Gandhi.

Mpambira Aubrey Kambewa, an organizer of the Gandhi Must Fall campaign, said Malawians should not honor Gandhi because of racial slurs.

This also draws back from the time he was in South Africa, when he was an activist, where he based his fight for the rights of Indians based on discrimination of black people. He alluded to the fact that Indians are racially superior to black people, said Kambewa.

Gandhi’s racial slights were documented in letters the Indian leader wrote as a young man while living in South Africa in the late 1800s.

In the letters, Gandhi referred to African savages and kaffirs, an insulting term for black Africans, when comparing them with the Indian population.

Gandhi’s relatives and supporters note the comments were common parlance at the time and that he made no similar slurs in later life.

Malawi government spokesperson Nicholas Dausi said he does not believe that Gandhi was a racist.

There is no issue here. This just a storm in a tea cup. It is just being perpetrated by bad people. It is just drawn out of proportion. I don’t think we should have such kind of behavior but, the government will proceed, he said.

Malawi’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs says the Gandhi statue aims to recognize his role in the struggle against colonialism.

Gandhi’s non-violent fight against British rule in India inspired numerous independence and civil rights movements and leaders across the globe – from Martin Luther King in the United States to Nelson Mandela’s struggle against South African apartheid.

Rafik Hajat is the executive director of the Blantyre think tank Institute for Policy Interaction.

He argued the Malawi government should admit Gandhi had racist views in his 20s but abandoned them in his 40s in the struggle for civil rights.

I think one has to shed the love light on the subject before proceeding. Because, otherwise, the philosophy of nonviolent resistance that Mahatma Gandhi embodied will be lost, said Hajat.

Construction of Malawi’s Gandhi monument began in August on a street already named after the Indian leader.

Along with the statue, the Indian government is building the Mahatma Gandhi Convention Center in Blantyre � a win for Malawi’s economy.

On the streets, Malawians have divided views on the Gandhi monument.

Rachel Misoya sells second-hand clothes.

We have countries like America, Britain and we have some Malawians who done great jobs to this country – why not respecting them? We are respecting someone who just did something little to the country, said Misoya.

Grey Massa is a resident of Chimwankhunda township.

Whether people think Mahatma Gandhi is a racist or not is just an opinion, which each one can have. People can choose to erect statues anywhere as far as it is in according with [the] law of that land, said Massa.

It is not the first time an African monument to Gandhi has been met with protest because of his early views on race.

There was a similar uproar in 2003 against a Gandhi statue in Johannesburg.

In Ghana, a statue of Gandhi in 2016 was relocated off a university campus after professors petitioned against the monument. They said African heroes should be honored first.

Source: Voice of America

Entrepreneurial skills, key to poverty reduction in Ghana

Accra� MrBayon Godfrey Tangu, the Member of Parliament for Wa East, as reiterated the need to restructure schools’ curricula to include entrepreneurial skills training to reduce extreme poverty in Ghana.

He said most of the things in the current schools’ curricula were not geared towards poverty reduction.

MrTangu, who is also the Chairman of Ghana Poverty Reduction Strategy Committee, said there was the need to train school children in entrepreneurial skills to empower them to be self-reliant after their education.

MrTangu was speaking at a day’s Multi stakeholder Conference on Pro-Poor Intervention Financing, organised by SEND-Ghana, under its Addressing Inequality Through Pro-Poor Budget Advocacy (AIPBA) Project to discuss interventions that are geared towards poverty reduction in the country.

The MP called for redefinition of the agricultural system to bring the majority of the people in that sector out of poverty.

We also need to review our tax system to relieve the poor in our society. As a country, we should be able to tax the rich to take care of the poor. Collectively, we should all be fighting poverty, which has become a social problem, he said.

He said many countries, including China, were able to reduce the poverty rate in their countries and Ghana too could do same.

Mr Anthony Krakah, the Head of Industrial Statistics, Ghana Statistical Service (GSS), presenting Ghana’s Poverty Profile � GLSS R7 said the Report indicates that out of every 100 persons living in Ghana, at least eight of them are extremely poor.

He said over the years, growth had become pro-poor in the country and poverty was still a rural phenomenon.

Rural Savannah still ranks highest in poverty rates among all the ecological zones. 26 per cent of all poor people in Ghana are in the three northern regions, contributing more than 40 per cent to national poverty, he said, and called for concrete measures to assist the people there to come out of extreme poverty.

MrKakrah said the Report showed a rise in inequality as a result of discrimination in welfare at the regional level and called for implementation of policies and programmes that would bridge the gap between the rich and the poor.

Mr Thomas BoatengQuaison, the Head of Monitoring and Evaluation, Livelihood Empowerment Against Poverty (LEAP), at the Ministry of Gender, Children and Social Protection, said the Ministry was collaborating with all other interventions to improve the poverty status of people benefiting from the programme.

He said currently about 400,000 households were benefitting from the LEAP programme and they depended largely on the GLSS Report to do their targeting for the programme.

Mr George Osei-Bimpeh, the Country Director of SEND-Ghana, said few years back, they had partnered FORD Foundation to address inequality and reduction of poverty.

The Conference, therefore, is to provide the Ministry of Finance the opportunity to respond to how it is addressing issues raised in the GLSS Report.

He said SEND-Ghana went round the country to collate inputs from the people and had submitted the Report to Parliament for action.

He said SEND-Ghana would continue the fight until the battle against poverty is won adding; I hope 2019 will address some of the problems to harness welfare distribution across the country.

Source: Ghana News Agency