Seegene Introduces New SARS-CoV-2 Variants Detection Test That Can Screen Six Virus Variants Including the Delta and Delta Plus

  • Seegene launches new multiplex PCR test capable of screening six SARS-CoV-2 variants including the Delta and Delta Plus variants attributable for a recent surge in global COVID-19 cases.
  • The new CE-IVD marked variants detection kit to differentiate 10 major COVID-19 variants including the alpha, beta, epsilon as well as delta, when used in conjunction with the company’s first variants detection kit previously launched in March.

SEOUL, South Korea, July 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — South Korea’s leading biotechnology firm Seegene Inc. (KQ 096530) has announced the launch of a new SARS-CoV-2 variant diagnostic test capable of screening newly emerging virus variants including the Delta and the Delta Plus that have become the dominant version of the virus circulating around the world.


Seegene announced on June 30 that it has received the CE-IVD mark for its ‘Allplex™ SARS-CoV-2 Variants II Assay,’ a new lineup of the company’s variant detection kits capable of detecting the key genetic mutations of SARS-CoV-2 variants such as L452R, W152C, K417T and K417N. In a single reaction, the variants diagnostic kit identifies a total of six COVID-19 variants that are known to be originated from India such as Delta, Delta Plus, and Kappa, and Gamma(Brazil), Beta(South Africa), and Epsilon(California). While the number of daily new infections is growing exponentially, the launch of the new assay is expected to play an essential role in monitoring the spread of the Delta and Delta Plus variants that have been largely blamed for the bulk of new infections.

Earlier this year, the World Health Organization (WHO) classified the Delta variant as the ‘Variant of Concern’ as the variant is expected to rapidly outcompete other variants. Also, the emergence of a new mutation on the spike protein of the Delta known as K417N has raised alarm globally, as it is known to be more contagious than the Delta and exhibit vaccine resistance. These super-contagious variants recently have become a global threat. In countries like the UK and Indonesia Delta is the dominant strain accounting for around 90% of new cases. Also, in other countries like the United States, although the variant only made up about 20% of infections, the number appears to be doubling every two weeks.

Under such circumstances, the introduction of the ‘Allplex™ SARS-CoV-2 Variants II Assay’ is receiving much attention from around the world as the assay can screen both Delta and the Delta Plus variant as well as other major COVID-19 variants. Seegene also said that it has successfully developed a research-use-only diagnostic tests, ‘Allplex™ SARS-CoV-2/P681R Assay,’ to precisely target the Delta and Delta Plus variants. According to the company, the conjunction use of the two assays will allow researchers to accurately distinguish the Delta and Delta Plus variants from other genetic mutations.

Although many countries are speeding up with the vaccination process, Gavi, the global Vaccine alliance stresses the importance of surveillance screening, saying that the Delta Plus variant was found during routine screening. According to Seegene, the combination use of its two assays including ‘Allplex™ SARS-CoV-2 Variants II Assay’ and the ‘Allplex™ SARS-CoV-2 Variants I Assay’ can screen almost all existing COVID-19 variants. As the two assays can detect multiple variants in a single test, it also streamlines the conventional testing process in which it requires a secondary test to identify new variants. In such context, Seegene’s variant detection kit is expected to become a new ‘gold standard,’ helping to prevent new pandemics from occurring.

“An increased transmissibility, short incubation period, and a potential reduction in vaccine efficacy are the characteristics of the Delta and Delta Plus variants,” said Min-cheol Lee, Seegene’s Chief Technology Officer. “I know that there is currently a lot of concern about the Delta variants. While experts and the WHO are largely cautioning the public and governments to remain watchful, I believe that our latest two diagnostic tests will play a key role in the early detection of different viruses and help prevent the further spread of SARS-CoV-2,” he added.

Seegene Inc.
Jessica Jiyoung Park
P: +82-2-2240-6164

U.S. Media Contact:
Kristin Schaeffer

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Mediaocean to Acquire Flashtalking, Adding Complementary Solutions to Power $200 Billion in Annualized Media Spend

Combined companies will establish the most trusted, independent technology platform for omnichannel advertising with emphasis on cross-channel video and dynamic creative

NEW YORK, July 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Mediaocean, the mission-critical platform for omnichannel advertising, and Flashtalking, the leading independent ad management platform, announced today that they have entered into a definitive agreement in which Mediaocean will acquire Flashtalking. The combined entity will infuse Flashtalking’s best-in-class solutions for primary ad serving, creative personalization, identity management, and verification with Mediaocean’s modern system of record used by the world’s leading brands and agencies.

The announcement comes at a critical inflection point for the advertising industry as marketers seek trusted, independent solutions to manage the rise of big tech. Mediaocean and Flashtalking customers will benefit from comprehensive and future-forward solutions for global strategic planning, omnichannel media management, closed ecosystems optimization, and financial reconciliation across traditional media, open web, closed ecosystems, and connected TV.

“Bringing together Mediaocean and Flashtalking is an incredible opportunity for our customers, employees, and the industry at large,” said Bill Wise, CEO of Mediaocean. “Flashtalking is the source of truth for digital and CTV ads and Mediaocean is the system of record for all media. Combined, we will deliver comprehensive and future-forward solutions for omnichannel advertising. Most importantly, our platform is not compromised by media ownership so we can focus solely on driving outcomes for marketers and their agency partners.”

“Our mission of enabling marketers to move consumers to action is a perfect fit for Mediaocean’s vision of a world where marketers market the way consumers consume,” said John Nardone, CEO at Flashtalking. “Over the years, we’ve built the most trusted, independent platform for driving advertising relevance and improving campaign performance. Together, our teams and complementary tech will help brands succeed in a future dominated by converged media and anchored on cookieless identity resolution.”

“As we continue to innovate, it’s crucial to have technology that enables us to meet the moment for consumers,” said Deborah Wahl, CMO of General Motors. “It’s encouraging to see companies like Mediaocean and Flashtalking come together to deliver on the omnichannel advertising imperative. The industry needs a neutral and independent player in the ecosystem to enable media convergence.”

“The combination of Mediaocean and Flashtalking signals a critical milestone as the industry moves towards open and interoperable solutions,” said Paul Gelb, Head of Digital Activation and Investment at Bayer. “One of the biggest opportunities in modern media is connecting technology across planning, buying, ad serving, and creative optimization. With Flashtalking, Mediaocean has improved its potential value proposition for omnichannel advertising.”

The acquisition of Flashtalking by Mediaocean builds on a partnership the companies launched in 2018 to incorporate ad serving data into media buyer workflow. The combined entity will represent an advertising technology platform with over $200 billion in annualized media spend and over 1 trillion monthly ad impressions. Earlier this year, Mediaocean announced its new product paradigm that unifies solutions across media intelligence, management, and finance. The company’s product transformation and emphasis on culture have been recognized with Customer’s Choice designation from Gartner Peer Insights1 and Best Places to Work by Ad Age.

The global advertising industry is a $700 billion market2 undergoing major transformation due to changing consumer habits and privacy expectations. This has led to the rise of CTV and closed ecosystems in which Mediaocean made a large investment via the acquisition of 4C in July 2020 and, now with Flashtalking, will enhance its best-in-class solutions. The combined companies will enable a number of innovative value propositions for advertisers and agencies:

  • Unified planning and measurement of traditional and digital media including cross-channel video
  • In-flight campaign optimization through AI-driven recommendations and automation
  • Data-driven creative personalization across open web and closed ecosystems
  • Flexible identity resolution to enable omnichannel reach in a cookie-less world as well as privacy compliance with CCPA and GDPR
  • Advanced brand insights and analytics for media impact on sales conversions

The terms of the deal were not disclosed. The acquisition is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021.

J.P. Morgan Securities LLC served as exclusive financial advisor to Flashtalking and Travers Smith LLP and Goodwin Procter LLP as its legal counsel.

About Mediaocean
Mediaocean is the mission-critical platform for omnichannel advertising. With more than $200 billion in annualized media spend managed through its software, Mediaocean connects brands, agencies, media, technology, and data. Using AI and machine learning technology to control marketing investments and optimize business outcomes, Mediaocean powers campaigns from planning, buying, and selling to analysis, invoices, and payments. Mediaocean employs 1,200 people across 20 global offices and is part of the Vista Equity Partners portfolio. Visit for more information.

About Flashtalking
Flashtalking is the leading global independent primary ad server and analytics technology company. The company uses data to personalize advertising in real-time, independently analyze its effectiveness and enable optimization that drives better engagement and return on spend for sophisticated global brands. Flashtalking’s platform leads the market with innovative products and services to ensure creative relevance and actionable insights across channels and formats, powered by unique cookieless tracking, data orchestration and advanced analytics. Flashtalking supports clients at the crossroads where data, personalized creative and unbiased measurement intersect with expertise, service and a deep partner ecosystem to drive successful digital marketing. The company is part of the TA Associates portfolio.

Media Contact
Aaron Goldman
CMO, Mediaocean

1 Gartner Peer Insights Customers’ Choice constitute the subjective opinions of individual end-user reviews, ratings, and data applied against a documented methodology; they neither represent the views of, nor constitute an endorsement by, Gartner or its affiliates. Gartner does not endorse any vendor, product or service depicted in its research publications, and does not advise technology users to select only those vendors with the highest ratings or other designation. Gartner research publications consist of the opinions of Gartner’s research organization and should not be construed as statements of fact. Gartner disclaims all warranties, express or implied, with respect to this research, including any warranties of merchantability or fitness for a particular purpose.
2 Source: eMarketer Worldwide Total Media Advertising Spending, 2021

Golden Harvest Heats Up Edible Sunflower Oil Market

DODOMA, Tanzania, July 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Golden Harvest, a pure and locally-produced, edible sunflower oil brand, continues to gain traction as a market leader in Tanzania. The consumer brand launched in October 2020 and has sold more than 1 million liters of product within its first six months.

The brand’s sunflower oil is available in three and five liter, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) jerrycans and one, three and five liter polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles.

“We are overwhelmed by the market acceptance of our sunflower oil. Our daily production from our factory in Dodoma is sold immediately, with no stock holding of oil due to the high demand for Golden Harvest,” said Malcolm McGrath, Managing Director of Pyxus Agriculture Tanzania Limited.

Tanzania imports approximately 60 percent of its cooking oil, costing upwards of 400 billion shilling annually. Golden Harvest, however, is manufactured in Dodoma using sunflowers grown by farmers from across the country. As a result, Golden Harvest is sold at an attractive price while simultaneously improving farmer livelihoods, creating jobs for Tanzanians and enabling Tanzania to compete in international markets.

“Currently, there is a high demand for cooking oil in Tanzania, but a low supply due to high priced imports and low local production of sunflower seed for processing. Our ability to manufacture Golden Harvest locally helps us provide Tanzanian consumers with a consistent, high-quality cooking oil in a timely manner, all while supporting our local economy,” added McGrath.

Golden Harvest is produced in compliance with national safety and quality standards established by the Tanzania Bureau of Standards, is Halaal certified, cholesterol free and fully traceable—from seed to sale. The brand’s sunflower oil is available in three and five liter, high-density polyethylene (HDPE) jerrycans and one, three and five liter polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles. Golden Harvest is currently sold in 1,495 shops within Tanzania.

About Golden Harvest
Golden Harvest is a consumer-facing, edible sunflower oil brand. Its high-quality sunflower oil is produced in Dodoma, Tanzania, through the crushing and pressing of sunflower seeds, which are gleaned from locally-grown sunflowers. Prior to bottling, the oil undergoes a refining process to remove impurities, a neutralization process to ensure consistency and an enrichment process to boost micronutrients. Golden Harvest is produced in compliance with national safety and quality standards established by the Tanzania Bureau of Standards, is Halaal certified, cholesterol free and fully traceable—from seed to sale. Golden Harvest can be purchased across Tanzania in general and modern trade.

Golden Harvest Logo

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Zoho Advances BI and Analytics Market with New Self-Service Platform; Transforms Relationships Between Businesses and Their Data

Platform delivers new AI-powered data preparation and management capabilities, deeper augmented analytics, improved data visualization and analysis to create actionable, industry-leading business insights

Austin, Texas, July 13, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Zoho Corporation, a leading global technology company, today announced its new Business Intelligence (BI) Platform — an AI-driven data analytics solution empowering businesses to surface precise and actionable insights through self-service data preparation and augmented analytics. Combining newly launched Zoho DataPrep with an enhanced version of Zoho Analytics, Zoho’s end-to-end self-service BI Platform enables organizations to cleanse, unify, and analyze cross-departmental data, obtain an encyclopedic view of the company, and ultimately move toward a more competitive business strategy based on real-time insights.

Zoho’s BI Platform brings together pre-built, visual dashboards, comprehensive data integrations, data preparation, augmented and embedded BI, security and privacy capabilities, flexible deployment models (cloud or on-premise), and scalability. Below are four standout pillars of this platform, which allow businesses to perform better and remain competitive in their industries:

1) Augmented Data Prep and Management – Zoho DataPrep, a new application, is an AI and machine learning-driven self-service data preparation tool. The addition of Zoho DataPrep to the BI Platform allows business users to easily create and manage data pipelines that enable them to integrate, model, cleanse, transform, enrich, and catalogue data before making it ready for analysis.

2) Data Stories – Zoho’s BI Platform now offers an integrated enterprise portal builder (Zoho Sites) and presentation software (Zoho Show). Embedding live reports and dashboards into a website or presentation allows administrators to wrap additional context around data and foster more immersive discussion on business matters. Data Stories reduces friction within an organization, so that businesses can be data-driven without needing to learn new tools.

3) Augmented Analytics – Ask Zia, Zoho’s conversational AI, enables business users — with or without technical know-how — to surface data through natural language querying. Additionally, the all-new Zia Insights provides textual narration of key insights from reports and dashboards, which significantly reduces the time and effort required to explore data and glean insights. Zia Insights also includes what-if capability, enabling scenario analysis for effective decision-making.

4) Marketplace – Through Zoho Marketplace, an apps marketplace, Zoho is enabling partners to develop and publish analytical apps and integrations to complement Zoho Analytics users, thereby strengthening the BI and Analytics platform. Another dimension is the launch of deep native analytical apps, with domain-specific advanced analytics, in third-party marketplaces such as Shopify, ServiceNow and Atlassian.

The new Zoho BI Platform is built for scale and is extensible to more than 250 data sources—including Zendesk, HubSpot, Microsoft, Mailchimp, Stripe and Google—allowing businesses to integrate and analyze data sourced from diverse third-party systems. Blending with outside data sources has always been one of the key strengths of Zoho Analytics, and a value demonstrated by the fact that 60% of existing users have chosen it as their BI tool while solely running on non-Zoho applications and data sources.

The BI platform gives users on-demand insight into operational data to inform critical business decisions with the support of Zia, Zoho’s AI tool. Zia augments data preparation and visualization by using natural language querying and generation, text narration of key insights from reports and dashboards, and cognitive and advanced analytics. These self-service and real-time capabilities make it possible to capture actionable data insights to boost operational efficiency and productivity.

With more than 50,000 organizations already using it, Zoho Analytics has consistently been one of the company’s fastest growing products. Within the last two years, Zoho Analytics has grown by 30% YoY with a 40% YoY increase in the enterprise segment. The application has seen a 10% jump in customers switching from competitive platforms. Also, 50% of the customers have chosen Zoho Analytics after evaluating multiple competitive BI products. With this new BI Platform, Zoho expects above 45% YoY revenue growth.

Statements for Media:

“We originally chose the Zoho BI platform because Zoho Analytics was able to give us a complete 360-degree view of our customer journey and made it easy to blend data from multiple systems to do so. It’s only continued to innovate. While we used to spend a lot of time writing and maintaining custom scripts to import data, fix errors, and transform the data, the new platform has helped us eliminate custom scripts and manual data preparation. With Zoho DataPrep, we easily found the errors in the data and fixed them all from within the tool, and are now able to completely automate data preparation. This brings immense value to our organization as we are able to get the most relevant and accurate insight into our company-wide analytics while spending our time on more valuable tasks.” –  Claudio Cabeza, Director of Grupo Premo

“Self-service data preparation, computer-augmented analysis and in-context story telling are three important, emerging capabilities that set industry-leading BI and analytics platforms apart. The ability to build and share analytic apps is yet another differentiator, so I’m particularly excited to see Zoho enabling customers to publish breakthrough, data-driven applications.” – Doug Henschen, principal analyst at Constellation Research

“For data to be a true catalyst of business growth, there can’t be any gaps in the collection, management, or analysis process. Too few BI platforms in the market excel in both data preparation and analytics, which leaves businesses with weak — or worse, flawed — insights. Zoho’s BI Platform is industry-leading because it ensures organizations are acting on legitimate data, which can be effectively leveraged to determine new revenue streams, refocus funds, drive productivity, and overall gain a competitive edge among peers in their market.” – Raju Vegesna, Chief Evangelist for Zoho

“Data is now the lifeblood of any organization of every size. The ability to harness analytics and transform it into actionable insights is a strategic imperative — and something that is now far too important to be held hostage by an enterprise analytics or business intelligence team. For this reason, a new generation of self-service-first tools, such as Zoho’s new BI platform, are changing the way organizations look at the entire data-to-insight pipeline. This democratized approach enables organizations to put the power of data — from collection, through cleaning and analysis, to insight — into the hands of those who are best positioned to act upon it, and create competitive advantage as a result.” – Charles Araujo, Principal Analyst, Intellyx

Pricing and Availability

Zoho BI Platform, which includes Zoho Analytics and Zoho DataPrep, is available immediately in two versions, cloud and on-premise. For monthly option, the cloud version is $8 per user, per month. The on-premise version is $30 per user, per month. For annual option, the cloud version is $96 per user, per year. The on-premise version is $360 per user, per year.

Zoho DataPrep is also available as a standalone. The standard plan starts at $40 per month for 2 million rows including 3 users while the enterprise plan is highly customizable and the pricing is based on the customization.

For more information, please visit

Disclaimer: All trademarks, product names, and company names cited herein are the property of their respective owners.

About Zoho

With 50+ apps in nearly every major business category, including sales, marketing, customer support, accounting and back office operations, and an array of productivity and collaboration tools, Zoho Corporation is one of the world’s most prolific software companies.

Zoho is privately held and profitable with more than 9,000 employees. Zoho is headquartered in Austin, Texas, with international headquarters in Chennai, India. Additional offices are in the United States, India, Japan, China, Singapore, Mexico, Australia, the Netherlands, and the United Arab Emirates.

Zoho respects user privacy and does not have an ad-revenue model in any part of its business, including its free products. More than 60 million users around the world, across hundreds of thousands of companies, rely on Zoho every day to run their businesses, including Zoho itself. For more information, please visit


Sandra Lo
Zoho Corporation 


Bambu acquires investment management technology provider Tradesocio to accelerate global growth

The acquisition of Tradesocio will extend Bambu’s digital wealth capabilities, doubling the number of employees to 130 and further accelerating global expansion

SINGAPORE, July 13, 2021 /PRNewswire/ — Bambu is pleased to announce the acquisition of Tradesocio, a WealthTech company with 65 employees, specialising in investment management and trading technologies with offices in Singapore, India, and Dubai. This acquisition significantly strengthens the combined business’ competitiveness globally. Bambu will have a presence in all major financial hubs and expanded digital wealth capabilities covering stock trading and cryptocurrencies.

Bambu acquires investment management technology provider Tradesocio to accelerate global growth.

Through the acquisition, Tradesocio brings years of experience delivering and operating high-volume trading platforms across various asset classes. The acquisition puts Bambu in a unique position that will provide customers greater agency through broader system capabilities that go beyond the offerings of existing robo advisor platforms. In addition, Tradesocio’s presence across EMEA and India, along with an existing portfolio of clients, is set to further Bambu’s reach in a rapidly expanding and evolving global digital wealth market.

Ned Phillips, CEO of Bambu, said, “After five years of building solid foundations, Bambu is now entering a phase of rapid growth. This deal helps us in three key areas: it expands our product offering into stocks and crypto, it gives us a wider global footprint and enables us to scale our team effectively to match exponential demand. We believe this positions us well for our Series C and ambitions of becoming the global leader in WealthTech.”

This is unlikely to be Bambu’s last acquisition as they foresee acquiring more companies that strengthen their product mix and global reach to impact the digital wealth industry.

About Bambu

Bambu is a leading global digital wealth technology provider for financial institutions. We enable companies to make saving and investing simple and intelligent for their clients. The cloud-based platform is powered by our proprietary algorithms and machine learning tools. The company serves over 20 financial institutions globally. Founded in 2016, Bambu is headquartered in Singapore with a subsidiary in the United Kingdom and the United States and EMEA representatives. For more information, visit and follow us on LinkedIn and Twitter.

About Tradesocio

Tradesocio provides Digital Technology that helps Financial Investment institutions manage, offer and access secure and profitable financial services. We allow financial institutions to attract a wider clientele, ranging from the retail to the high-net-worth institutional investor, and offer them access to a variety of financial services, bringing equal opportunities to the world. We offer tailored digital investment management solutions to the wider investment management community that are reducing costs and increasing revenue potential.

We provide the complete end-to-end financial management solution, from development, hosting and maintenance, to security and post-sales technical support.

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Martin Bernstein Joins Synchronoss Board of Directors

B. Riley Executive Brings Strong Financial Acumen to the Board

BRIDGEWATER, N.J., July 12, 2021 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — Synchronoss Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: SNCR), a global leader and innovator of cloud, messaging and digital solutions, is pleased to announce that Martin Bernstein has joined its Board of Directors, effective immediately.

Bernstein was appointed to the Board in connection with the recent recapitalization of Synchronoss, and serves as a representative of B. Riley Financial, Inc. (NASDAQ: RILY) (B. Riley), the company’s largest shareholder.

“On behalf of our entire Board, I am pleased to welcome Marty to our team,” said Stephen Waldis, Founder and Executive Chairman of the Synchronoss Board of Directors. “Marty’s extensive experience in capital allocation strategies, corporate governance and financing will serve our organization well. I have no doubt that his impressive knowledge and extraordinary track record will not only benefit our already strong board, but I fully expect his impact will be key to helping Synchronoss achieve its strategic growth objectives.”

Bernstein represents B. Riley Principal Investments, an affiliate of B. Riley that makes direct investments in companies with proven platform technologies with significant near-term growth potential. He currently serves as Head of Private Investments at B. Riley and is responsible for sourcing, underwriting and managing company investments in addition to leading distribution to the firm’s syndication partners. Bernstein has extensive experience leading investments across technology, transportation, automotive, aerospace, manufacturing, power, infrastructure, and other sectors.

Bernstein commented, “It is an honor to join the Synchronoss board after working closely with Steve, Jeff, and the entire Synchronoss team on the recent recapitalization. I share management’s excitement and vision for the company, rooted in continued innovation and a best-in-class suite of white label products for leading telecom customers. We believe the Synchronoss business is at an inflection point and is well-positioned to execute on its growth strategy following the refinancing. I look forward to continuing to work with the team as a member of the board as we endeavor to create value for stakeholders and customers.”

Prior to joining B. Riley in March 2021, Bernstein was with Anchorage Capital responsible for leading investments across capital structures, including public equities, private equity, performing credit, bank debt and distressed debt, and restructuring situations. He previously worked as an analyst at Bocage Capital, and was on the investment team for the endowment at Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Bernstein earned an AB in history from Dartmouth College. He is based in Connecticut.

About Synchronoss

Synchronoss Technologies (NASDAQ: SNCR) builds software that empowers companies around the world to connect with their subscribers in trusted and meaningful ways. The company’s collection of products helps streamline networks, simplify onboarding and engage subscribers to unleash new revenue streams, reduce costs and increase speed to market. Hundreds of millions of subscribers trust Synchronoss products to stay in sync with the people, services and content they love. That’s why more than 1,500 talented Synchronoss employees worldwide strive each day to reimagine a world in sync. Learn more at


Anais Merlin, CCgroup (International)
Diane Rose, CCgroup (North America)

Todd Kehrli/Joo-Hun Kim, MKR Investor Relations, Inc.

First Lady rejects emolument; to refund allowances received

Accra, June 12, GNA – First Lady Mrs Rebecca Akufo-Addo has decided not to accept any monies that have been allocated to be paid to her pursuant to the recommendations of the Ntiamoa-Baidu Committee, as approved by Parliament.

She said she was doing that as purely a personal decision, without prejudice to the rights of others and not to undermine the propeity of the process undertaken by Parliament.

Mrs Akufo-Addo also said, she had in consultation with President Akufo-Addo, decided to refund all monies paid to her as allowances from the date of the President’s assumption of office – from January 2017 to date.

It amounts to GH¢ 899,097.84.

A statement signed by Madam Korkor Bleboo, Director of Communications, Office of the First Lady, and issued on Monday night announced in Accra.

The statement explained that the decision was taken by the First Lady following the public discussion on the issue that had been “laced with some extremely negative opinions, in some cases”.

It said, Mrs Akufo-Addo considered such statements as “distasteful, seeking to portray her as a venal, self-serving and self-centered woman, who does not care about the plight of the ordinary Ghanaian.”

The statement referred to the recommendations of the Prof Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu Committee that was established, pursuant to Article 71 of the Constitution, which, among other things, sought to regularise the payment of allowances to spouses of the current President and the Vice President, former Heads of State, Presidents and Vice Presidents, respectively, as part of the privileges due the President and Vice President under Article 71 of the Constitution.

It said the First Lady had taken note of the ongoing conversation in the nation, following on from the recommendations and the bipartisan approval by Parliament, as mandated by the Constitution as the body, which approved the emoluments of the Executive.

It explained that the payment of such allowances existed and was made to previous First Ladies in the course of the Fourth Republic, prior to Mrs. Akufo-Addo becoming the First Lady.

“Mrs. Akufo-Addo did not request to be paid any allowance. She only received that which existed and attached to her status, albeit informally.”

The statement said the First Lady “does not want these matters to serve as a distraction from the good work that the President, who is currently touring the Savannah and Upper West regions, is doing to develop our dear nation.”

It also stated that the First Lady would continue to support the President, as she had always done, in the execution of the mandate entrusted to him by the good people of Ghana.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Registrar-General reviews companies listed for strike off

Accra, – The Registrar-General’s Department (RGD) says it has commenced a review of the sample group of companies listed on its website for strike off.

The exercise is to validate companies that complied with the directive for dormant companies to file their returns or risk being delisted from the companies register at the end of June 30, 2021.

A statement from the Department, issued and signed by Mrs Jemima Maama Oware, the Registrar-General, said the three-month long review began on July 1, 2021 and would end on September 30, 2021.

It said the review had become necessary after the final notice was issued on March, 18, 2021, to officials of dormant companies to file their annual returns to be in good standing with the Department.

It said the Department had earlier issued two notices on March 12, 2020 and December 01, 2020, and had published them in the national dailies and the Department’s website respectively in accordance with the Companies Act 2019, Act 992.

The statement said the Companies were Public/Private Companies Limited by Shares, Public/Private Companies Limited by Guarantee (Associations, Fun Clubs, Churches, etc.), Private Unlimited Companies and External Companies.

It said the strike off exercise became necessary because the Department’s Company database became bloated with names of dormant Companies entered onto the Companies Register.

The statement said, 257,241 Companies existing in the new database had not filed their Returns or Amendments with the Department and that also, 670,282 Companies in the Legacy system had not carried out their re-registration as at the release of the first notice in March, 2020.

The statement said Companies due for strike off still in default after the three-month review would be published in the national sailies and on the Department’s website.

It said a Company’s status during the period would be classified as being inactive and would not be able to be accessed for any business transaction for 12 years except by a court order to the Registrar.

The statement said such Companies were, therefore, advised to use the three-month review to undertake all the necessary measures to be in good standing with the Department.

The Department urged all clients to visit its website, click on news and scroll down to view the list of Companies the Registrar intended to strike off the Register.

The statement said penalty for late filing remained GH¢450.00 with GH¢50.00 for filing of Annual Returns for each year.

It asked Company Officials to include their Beneficial Ownership information when filing their Annual Returns.

Source: Ghana News Agency