GHANA REITERATES QUEST TO CLEAR STREETS OF HAWKERS, BEGGARS

ACCRA– The Ghanaian government has reiterated its quest to rid the country’s streets of hawkers and beggars.

To that end, it launched an initiative dubbed “Operation Get off the Streets for a Better Life” here Tuesday wiowht the aim of reducing the phenomenon of people living on the streets.

The main objective of the project is to provide a better alternative to street life and integrate people back into families and communities, says Gender, Children and Social Mrotection Minister Otiko Afisah Djaba.

The target group includes hawkers, child beggars and those contracted to push disabled people in wheelchairs to ask for alms, persons with disabilities, families living on the streets and displaced persons, the minister said.

The five-year programme is expected to get more than 6,000 children off the streets across the country. So far, 4,098 children have been registered under the scheme.

Addressing the media in Accra, Djaba appealed to corporate organizations to support the government’s initiative to get children off the streets.

“If your child is on the streets, parent, please look for that child; child, if you have run away from home, go back home; the streets are not safe,” Djaba said.

Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK

Majority Leader refutes perception that executive is controlling parliament

Accra – Mr Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, Majority Leader has dispelled the notion that the appointment of the Minister for Parliamentary Affairs by the Executive reinforces the perception of a culture of executive dominance over the legislature.

According to the Majority Leader who is also the Minister for Parliamentary Affairs, this may seem so on the face value, however, just a little perusal beneath the surface, would reveal the essential role the ministry plays in the country’s democracy.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu made the observation at a seminar on strengthening the oversight role of Parliament for Accountable Governance in Ghana The role of the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs.

The meeting was attended by the leadership of Parliament as well as chairmen and ranking members of the various Committees of the House.

The concept of Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs existed in many forms in other Commonwealth Jurisdiction particularly India, Sri Lanka and Pakistan.

Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu also explained that the mandate of the Ministry of Parliamentary Affairs was to interface between the Executive and the legislature to enhance governance in the country.

He said the Ministry as part of its function was to interface between the Executive and Parliament to enhance the delivery of government business.

He said the Ministry was also to facilitate the development and implementation of citizens centred collaborative interface with other state actors on matters relating to legislation.

The Majority Leader also stated that the Ministry would enhance the democratic process to guarantee good governance through dialogue, consensus building in the organs of government, state and non-state actors for the economic development of Ghana.

He said the vision was to promote consensus building among and within the political class in a purposed, transparent and accountable manner to deepen and broaden inclusiveness in the country’s participatory democracy.

He said the Ministry’s unique role as part of the Executive would serve as tool for Executive self-censoring and are sensitive to the sensibilities of the polity and without pressure from any specific party or institution of authority.

Mr Haruna Iddrisu, the Minority Leader in his contribution stated that the exercise of Parliamentary oversight since 1993 up till now had remained the role of the Minority members of Parliament and explained that members of the majority party usually tend to support the government to succeed because they do not want their government to look bad and also wanting to catch the eye of the Executive to be considered for a position.

He said thus overtime the process of Parliamentary oversight has remained weak and impotent to exercise control over the Executive.

Mr Iddrisu also stated that a Speaker of Parliament as an impartial arbiter has role to play in the oversight responsibilities of the House over the executive.

He said the filing and admission of questions from executive by the Speaker is an important tool that the he could use to hold the executive accountable.

Dr Evans Aggrey Darkoh, Acting Chief Director of the Ministry for Parliamentary Affairs in his presentation stated that the governance goals of greater accountability, transparency and participation were inextricably intertwined with the three core functions of Parliament, thus law making, representation and oversight.

He said legislative oversight in particular sought to ensure that the executive and its agencies and those who wield delegated authority, remain highly responsive and accountable.

He said the Ministry had been strategically positioned to serve as an interface between the executive and the legislature was working diligently to enhance representative democracy processes to guarantee good governance through dialogue and consensus building for the development of the country.

Dr Agrey Darkoh also highlighted five priority areas that the ministry would focus on including; enhancing good governance through improving relationship between the executive and the legislature.

He said the ministry was aimed at deepening political and administrative decentralisation by harmonising the relationship between Members of Parliament and Metropolitan, Municipal and District Chief Executives.

He said the ministry would promote the fight against corruption by supporting the strengthening of the oversight functions of Parliament, improving the participation of civil society in shaping public policies and programmes as well as demystify the perception of executive dominance through fostering of effective collaboration between the executive and the legislature.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Kwabenya case adjourned to May 28

Accra – An Accra Circuit Court on Wednesday adjourned to May 28 the case in which some armed men attacked and freed inmates at the Kwabenya Police Station killing a Police Officer on duty.

Four of the accused who are still standing trial after six others were acquitted and discharged by the court were not in court when the case was called. The court then set May 28 for them to come and open their defence.

At the last sitting, six out of the ten who were standing trial for abetment to escape from lawful custody were acquitted and discharged by the court on the grounds that the prosecution failed to establish a case against them.

The prosecution ended its case after calling four witnesses including Lance Corporal Robert Owusu, Lance Corporal Samira Mohammed, Lance Corporal Richard Amoakohene and Detective Inspector Frank Owusu Afrane.

The facts of the case as presented by Prosecution led by Superintendent of Police, Kweku Bempah were that, the complainants are Policemen stationed at Kwabenya District Police station.

Prince Osei, 25, is a scrap dealer living at Glefe Dansoman; Atta Kwadwo, 20, is a driver; and Kofi Darko, 25 also a trader living at Glefe, Dansoman.

Nancy is 28 and lives at Dome; and George Yeboah is 30 and lives around the Graphic Road.

Prince Kofi Acheampong is 32 and lives at Afienya; Edward Lartey is 20 and lives at Tema Newtown; Kofi Seshie is 28, George Sarbah is 23, Elvis is 31, George Asante is 33, and Theophilus is 25.

Mr Bempah said on January 21, at about 0130 hours, a gang of armed men numbering six attacked the Kwabenya Police station and freed their colleagues who were being held in detention for various violent crimes.

He told the court that in execution of their plan, the assailants proceeded to the station whilst two of them who pretended to have a complaint to lodge, entered the charge office and told the counter Non-Commission Officer (NCO) that someone borrowed money from them and had refused to pay back.

The counter NCO No. 43225 G/Cpl. Robert Owusu advised them to seek a redress at the civil court since the case they were reporting was civil matter, the two then signalled the rest, who had laid ambush within the premises, and launched an attack on the Policemen at the charge office.

The prosecution said they shot Inspector Emmanuel Ashilevi, who was on duty as a Monitoring Officer on the right buttocks, held the counter NCO, his counter orderly, the charge office guard, and the night investigator hostages.

He said they took the keys to the cells and released seven of the inmates, namely, Chibuzor Akwuba, Emmanuel Kotey, Rockson Edem Dzigbede, Dickson Ofori, Prince Osei, Attah Kwadwo, and Kofi Darko.

After the armed attack, the assailants fled the scene, the NCO and the night Investigator arranged for an ambulance and rushed Inspector Ashilevi to the Police Hospital for treatment, but they were referred to the 37 Military Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Mr Bempah told the court that, Police intelligence, led to the arrest of George Yeboah, who assisted Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo with GH 200.00 to escape out of the jurisdiction.

He also gave GH 40.00 to Kofi Darko to enable him escape from the jurisdiction.

He said on January 23, Police intelligence led to the arrest of Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo at Worawora in the Volta Region.

Investigations also revealed that whiles in detention, on January 18, Prince Osei overheard the other inmates planning to escape.

According to the Police, in the evening on the same day, Nancy brought a mobile phone to Dickson in the cells, which he used to contact his people outside to execute the escape plan.

Rockson’s brother also brought a hacksaw blade to him by hiding it in bread to cut the padlocks to the cells but he could not do so.

He said upon interrogation, Prince Osei, said he stole a gun from Prince Kofi Acheampong.

He also revealed that Dickson and Chibuzor are Acheampong’s boys whom he normally sends out on robbery trips.

Mr Bempah said further investigations also revealed that it was Acheampong in collaboration with Dickson and Chibuzor who sent the armed men to attack and release them from the cells, which led to the death of the Inspector.

On January 25, at about 0200 hours, Acheampong was arrested together with Edward from their hideout at Afienya.

The prosecution said on January 27 at about 0230 hours, Attah led the Police to a house at Kasoa Nyanyano and pointed Kofi Seshie to the Police as one of the gang members who came to rescue them from the cells and also shot and killed the Inspector.

He said the rest are all suspected accomplices arrested to assist in police investigations.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Kwabenya case adjourned to May 28

Accra – An Accra Circuit Court on Wednesday adjourned to May 28 the case in which some armed men attacked and freed inmates at the Kwabenya Police Station killing a Police Officer on duty.

Four of the accused who are still standing trial after six others were acquitted and discharged by the court were not in court when the case was called. The court then set May 28 for them to come and open their defence.

At the last sitting, six out of the ten who were standing trial for abetment to escape from lawful custody were acquitted and discharged by the court on the grounds that the prosecution failed to establish a case against them.

The prosecution ended its case after calling four witnesses including Lance Corporal Robert Owusu, Lance Corporal Samira Mohammed, Lance Corporal Richard Amoakohene and Detective Inspector Frank Owusu Afrane.

The facts of the case as presented by Prosecution led by Superintendent of Police, Kweku Bempah were that, the complainants are Policemen stationed at Kwabenya District Police station.

Prince Osei, 25, is a scrap dealer living at Glefe Dansoman; Atta Kwadwo, 20, is a driver; and Kofi Darko, 25 also a trader living at Glefe, Dansoman.

Nancy is 28 and lives at Dome; and George Yeboah is 30 and lives around the Graphic Road.

Prince Kofi Acheampong is 32 and lives at Afienya; Edward Lartey is 20 and lives at Tema Newtown; Kofi Seshie is 28, George Sarbah is 23, Elvis is 31, George Asante is 33, and Theophilus is 25.

Mr Bempah said on January 21, at about 0130 hours, a gang of armed men numbering six attacked the Kwabenya Police station and freed their colleagues who were being held in detention for various violent crimes.

He told the court that in execution of their plan, the assailants proceeded to the station whilst two of them who pretended to have a complaint to lodge, entered the charge office and told the counter Non-Commission Officer (NCO) that someone borrowed money from them and had refused to pay back.

The counter NCO No. 43225 G/Cpl. Robert Owusu advised them to seek a redress at the civil court since the case they were reporting was civil matter, the two then signalled the rest, who had laid ambush within the premises, and launched an attack on the Policemen at the charge office.

The prosecution said they shot Inspector Emmanuel Ashilevi, who was on duty as a Monitoring Officer on the right buttocks, held the counter NCO, his counter orderly, the charge office guard, and the night investigator hostages.

He said they took the keys to the cells and released seven of the inmates, namely, Chibuzor Akwuba, Emmanuel Kotey, Rockson Edem Dzigbede, Dickson Ofori, Prince Osei, Attah Kwadwo, and Kofi Darko.

After the armed attack, the assailants fled the scene, the NCO and the night Investigator arranged for an ambulance and rushed Inspector Ashilevi to the Police Hospital for treatment, but they were referred to the 37 Military Hospital, where he was pronounced dead on arrival.

Mr Bempah told the court that, Police intelligence, led to the arrest of George Yeboah, who assisted Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo with GH 200.00 to escape out of the jurisdiction.

He also gave GH 40.00 to Kofi Darko to enable him escape from the jurisdiction.

He said on January 23, Police intelligence led to the arrest of Prince Osei and Attah Kwadwo at Worawora in the Volta Region.

Investigations also revealed that whiles in detention, on January 18, Prince Osei overheard the other inmates planning to escape.

According to the Police, in the evening on the same day, Nancy brought a mobile phone to Dickson in the cells, which he used to contact his people outside to execute the escape plan.

Rockson’s brother also brought a hacksaw blade to him by hiding it in bread to cut the padlocks to the cells but he could not do so.

He said upon interrogation, Prince Osei, said he stole a gun from Prince Kofi Acheampong.

He also revealed that Dickson and Chibuzor are Acheampong’s boys whom he normally sends out on robbery trips.

Mr Bempah said further investigations also revealed that it was Acheampong in collaboration with Dickson and Chibuzor who sent the armed men to attack and release them from the cells, which led to the death of the Inspector.

On January 25, at about 0200 hours, Acheampong was arrested together with Edward from their hideout at Afienya.

The prosecution said on January 27 at about 0230 hours, Attah led the Police to a house at Kasoa Nyanyano and pointed Kofi Seshie to the Police as one of the gang members who came to rescue them from the cells and also shot and killed the Inspector.

He said the rest are all suspected accomplices arrested to assist in police investigations.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Cabby driver granted bail for possession of narcotic drugs

Accra-An Accra Circuit Court has granted John Adibi, unemployed bail in the sum of GH 40,000 with three sureties for alleged possession of narcotic drug.

The accused will have to report to the Police every Monday until otherwise directed by the Court.

John, who pleaded not guilty, would reappear on Monday, June 11.

Chief Inspector K. Adu told the Court presided over by Mr Aboagye Tandoh that on February, 9 at about 2130 hours, a cab, which was heading towards Nungua Chris berry was intercepted by Police Officers, who were on a snap check duty at Nungua barrier.

He said when a search was conducted in the said cab, 22 wraps of dried leaves suspected to be cannabis was found concealed in the accused’s socks.

He said the Police Officers immediately arrested the accused and handed him over to the Nungua Police.

During investigations, the accused admitted ownership of the drugs and stated that he bought it from a dealer at Nungua Kantamanto and was sending it to a Nigerian friend but he failed to lead the Police to his source of supply.

Chief Inspector Adu said the exhibits were forwarded to the crime laboratory for analytical examination and it was confirmed to be cannabis with a net weight of 26.33g.

Source: Ghana News Agency