XCMG’s Water Cellar Project in Ethiopia Improves Life and Brings Hope to Dry Land

DDIS ABABA, Ethiopia, May 5, 2017 /PRNewswire/ — XCMG’s Africa-Ethiopia Water Cellar Project has yield impressive results since the first water cellar was built in Oda Nebe primary school in the country’s capital, Addis Ababa, in August, 2016.

In the past nine months, new water cellars constructed by XCMG have brought clean water for drinking and agricultural irrigation to schools, families and farms in several Ethiopian villages.

Tasew, a villager from the Kitcha village, grows lemons and oranges as a source of income. But the lack of water meant he had to travel 15 kilometers away every day to buy water for irrigation. Now, new water cellars under construction in Kitcha are about to change his life. They will give villagers easy access to clean water thanks to the company’s technologies that not only increase storage capacity but also keeps water sanitary.

“I’m helping the experts and construction teams to build our water cellars. Everything is in place; once the project finishes I’ll be able to expand the planting area. I’m very grateful for what XCMG and CFPA (the China Foundation for Poverty Alleviation) have done for us, making life better with clean water,” Tasew told CFPA recently.

By partnering with CFPA and the office of Mrs. Roman Tesfaye, Ethiopia’s First Lady, XCMG’s water cellar project is bringing much-needed help to the country, where the most severe drought in 30 years is affecting every aspect of life. The company has donated 1.85 million yuan (US$ 268,743) to CFPA to establish the BlueDream foundation, and 750,000 yuan (US$ 108,949) is being invested to build 50 water cellars to accommodate more than 4,000 villagers and students in Ethiopia.

“The water cellar initiative is part of our ‘For Better Life’ global public welfare campaign, which consists of 14 precisely positioned projects that support education and community development. XCMG is fully committed to fulfilling our promise and contributing to social progress with the goal of making the world a better place,” said Wang Min, chairman and president of XCMG.

About XCMG:

XCMG is a multinational heavy machinery manufacturing company with a history of 74 years. It currently ranks ninth in the world’s construction machinery industry. The company exports to more than 177 countries and regions around the world.

For more information, please visit: www.xcmg.com, or XCMG pages on Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, LinkedIn and Instagram.

Forum calls for stronger African natural resources control

Bahir Dar, Ethiopia, As the battle for Africa’s natural resources continues, there is need to ensure that the abundance of wealth is used to transform the economies of countries on the continent.

That was the consensus of the 6th Tana Forum on Peace and Security in Africa held in Bahir Dar in Ethiopia last week.

The focus was on natural resource governance in Africa, where the lack of transparency and accountability has negatively impacted on the lives of people who should benefit from their oil, gas and mineral assets. It also discussed the African natural resources being used for the development of the continent.

The African Union’s Agenda 2063 calls for the continent to maximise the benefits of its natural resources to improve the lives of Africans.

However the Forum noted that with the shift in the global political environment, a new scramble for the continent’s natural resources had evolved and that while investors were bringing investments into Africa, there were obvious cases where the costs associated with the loss of the resources were more than the benefits from the investment.

The Participants pointed out that even where the investors had been involved in Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR), the rate of extraction of the natural resources had not been matched with accrued benefits to the communities.

Investors leave behind huge environmental challenges which national governments have to address, the Forum noted.

The Global Witness in early April, came out with a report that accused Shell of being part of a vast bribery scheme that robbed Nigerians of over a billion dollars.

The claim was based on the internal emails from Shell, which were exposed by the Global Witness, showing how the world’s fifth biggest company took part in a scheme which deprived Nigeria and its people of $1.1 billion in a murky deal for access to one of Africa’s most valuable oil blocks, known as OPL 245.

The role of non-governmental organisations (NGOs) in helping to police natural resource extraction in Africa was acknowledged by the Tana Forum, which called on them to provide the necessary checks and balancesand to ensure the promotion of the rule of law and accountability.

Global Witness said of the Nigerian bribery case: For years, Shell has denied it did anything wrong, but today’s emails show they knew the money would be diverted to private hands, and they went ahead with the deal anyway.

This is devastating for the people of Nigeria.

Right now five million of them face starvation.

The money paid for the block equates to one and a half times what the UN says is needed to respond to the current famine crisis.

But the Nigerian people saw none of the benefits, Global Witness added.

The emails showed that senior Shell executives knew the massive payment for the oil block would go to Dan Etete � a convicted money launderer and former Nigerian Oil Minister.

The NGO, which focuses on exposing the hidden links between demand for natural resources, corruption, armed conflict and environmental destruction, said that Mr Etete spent some of the backhander he received from Shell on a private jet, armoured cars, and shotguns.

The emails also show Shell’s top brass were told that the money was likely to flow to some of the most powerful people in the country, including then President Goodluck Jonathan, the Global Witness report said.

Shell portrays itself as an oil company that does good.

Yet our investigation reveals a story of hypocrisy and deception, and finds the company’s most senior bosses depriving Nigeria of life-saving funds by going ahead with a dodgy deal that they knew was a vast bribery scheme.

It’s one of the biggest corruption scandals in the history of the oil sector.

It is in this light that participants at the Tana Forum called for the continent to come up with systems free from rent seeking behaviours for countries to have the full benefit of natural resources, adding that transparency, and accountability should be institutionalised across all stages of natural resource management and governance.

The Shell report comes in the midst of President Muhammadu Buhari’s much-vaunted fight against corruption.

In the Shell case in Nigeria, the company was suspected not to have been delivering for its shareholders either, according to the Global Witness report.

This is because when Shell sold its drilling lease in the troubled Niger Delta to Nigerian Benedict Peters and his company Aiteo, the oil giant was lifting 23,000 barrels a day but Aiteo has been able to reach an output of 90,000 barrels a day.

Aiteo’s success is in line with the Nigerian government’s long-held position of encouraging local companies to take charge of oil drilling, although indigenisation of the sector has not been at the stage that the government would like to see it.

However, Mr Peters, who spoke to journalists recently, was quite upbeat about the prospects for his company, which he said would, with new sites, increase production to 150,000 barrels of oil a day and 5.6 million cubic metres of gas daily.

We have shown by our story that indigenous oil companies are competent, he said.

This would create a transformed energy sector that creates wellness and economic prosperity.

Over the years, various Nigeria governments spent some $10 billion buying back oilfields as the country tried to take control of its natural assets.

The Tana Forum therefore noted that Africa needed to review its policies, regulations, and systems to ensure a level playing field in the natural resources sector.

Mr Peters, who borrowed from local banks to buy the Niger Delta lease, has been critical of the country’s dependence on oil without the backing of a strong local industry and a support to diversify the economy so that a drop in oil prices does not affect the country’s economy.

As long as Africa continues to lose its natural resources to global actors, the continent will continue to face discontentment among its citizenry, the Executive Secretary of the Southern African Development Community (SADC), Dr Stergomena Lawrence Tax, told the Forum.

This will continue to cause conflicts and threaten peace and stability in Africa.

Unlike the scramble for Africa of the yester-century, African citizens have become of age in terms of their knowledge of resource governance.

They demand that African resources should be used for Africa’s development, and that can only happen if there are measures to institute accountable and transparent governance systems, she added.

At the root of all this is how African national governments can develop long-term governance, rule of law, accountability and transparency.

One participant at the Forum told the GNA that, for a powerful company such as Shell to be exposed by Global Witness was good for the continent.

As you know, President Buhari is continuing with his war on corruption, and that’s not bad either when you consider that, in the discredited oil sector things are beginning to look up.

This has been achieved through increased output by local oil companies, which is good for the economy, according to the participant who declined to be named but expressed concern about the direction in which President Buhari’s anti-corruption campaign was heading.

It would appear that his administration is targeting perceived political opponents and someone like Benedict Peters who has shown no interest in politics.

This could inhibit the economic development the Buhari administration is aiming at, the Tana Forum participant told the GNA.

Source: Ghana News Agency

UCC Faculty of Education holds educational exhibition

Cape Coast, Students from the Basic Education Department of the faculty of Education, University of Cape Coast (UCC) has organised a day’s educational exhibition to showcase their knowledge and skills acquired in the field of basic education.

The annual event which is mostly held in the second semester of the academic year was heavily patronised by staff and students of the university as they walked through the exhibition stands in amazement.

More than 400 level 100 and 300 students studying creative arts, music and drama, development of instructional materials and play and integrated curriculum took part in the exhibition.

The exhibition offered them the opportunity to showcase exhibits of their acquired knowledge and skills in their respective fields of study.

Speaking at the ceremony, Dr Awo Sarpong, Lecturer and exhibition coordinator said the focus of the exhibition was to test the efficacy of the materials produced and not how the teaching aids were made.

This year’s exhibition is showcasing learning centred on over 200 teaching materials on display, including, clay, paper and art work produced by the students.

Dr Sarpong said the programme formed part of the Department’s agenda in carrying out what is known as ‘Cape Coast schools development partnership programme’ with a number of schools in the University’s catchment area.

They include; Apewosika, Kwaprow and the University Interdenominational Schools.

At the end of the exercise, all the materials produced were distributed to underprivileged schools in the Cape Coast Metropolis as the university’s social responsibility of giving back to society.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Consumers in UE owe GH5m to GWCL

Bolgatanga, Government and Domestic consumers in the Upper East Region owe the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) outstanding debts to the tune of GH 5million.

The government debt constitutes water consumed by various government agencies including; the Municipal and District Assemblies and educational institutions since 2013.

Mr Eric Kampim, Upper East Regional, Commercial Manager of the GWCL disclosed this to the Ghana News Agency in an interview in Bolgatanga.

He said even though water delivery services continued to be made flexible, unlike other services, which were pre-paid, the routine of water delivery before payment by users each month constantly remained abused because some consumers were adamant and delayed in the payment of their bills.

The Commercial Manager said the Municipality’s source of treated drinking water was from the Vea dam and added that the GWCL worked hard to ensure improved delivery of water to the people of the Bolgatanga Municipality and beyond.

He said water was important in all aspects of life and indicated that it was crucial for domestic users to pay their water bills on time to receive the service.

He said even though various departments and agencies were supposed to pay for water, less efforts were made to settle their bills since 2014.

He said if consumers paid their bills promptly, it would enable the company to provide uninterrupted good services, and advised the general public to respond fast to paying bills whenever they were served, to avoid disconnections.

Meanwhile, visits to some government agencies and departments in the Municipality revealed that most washrooms of these departments were without water thereby leaving washrooms with unpleasant smell while some of the departments had resorted to buying water to keep their places in order.

‘Other agencies and departments have abandoned their washrooms.’

Source: Ghana News Agency

Garu-Tempane Youth commend President Akufo Addo

Garu-Tempane(UE)Some concerned Youth of the Garu-Tempane district in the Upper East Region on Thursday commended President Akufo-Addo for appointing Mr Mustapha Hamid as Minister for Information and nominating Mr Emmanuel Asore as the District Chief Executive for the area.

The Youth said the appointments of the two people was in the right direction and geared towards development of the area as the two were committed, hardworking and development orientated persons.

The Youth expressed their gratitude through a press statement signed by Mr Jerry Didi, Chairman for the Concerned Youth Association (CYA) in the district and copied to the Ghana News Agency (GNA).

They indicated that they were pleased with the President’s offer and that they would support the appointees to achieve the task given to them.

The statement indicated that MrAsore and Mr Hamid were young people and would exhibit their positive exuberance to lobby development partners to bring development to the district and the Upper East Region at large.

The statement assured the President of the youths’ commitment to work closely with the government to enable it achieve its objectives as the citizenry looked up to it for better conditions of life.

The Youth described the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government as a listening one and there is hope that the dying economy would be revived to improve on the livelihoods of the citizenry in the country.

The statement said with the youth being the driving force for national development, they were committed to remain law abiding citizens and proactive to champion the course of the development of the district.

They called on citizens, especially the youth to be patient and support the policies of the government as it was on course to turn the living conditions of the Ghanaians for the better.

Source: Ghana News Agency