2021 Afcon will be a success, says CAF boss Patrice Motsepe

President of the Confederations of Africa Football [CAF], Patrice Motsepe has insisted that the 2021 Africa Cup of Nations [Afcon] will be a success.

The 33rd edition of the continent’s most prestigious tournament was left in the balance after European Club Association [ECA] together with World League Forum [WLF] wrote to CAF and FIFA they will not release their African players for the tournament.

However, after several deliberations, players will join their respective countries on January 3 for the tournament which start on January 9 to February 6.

With all the stars set to assemble in Cameroon for the tournament, Motsepe is confident the tournament will be a success.

“We are going to host with the people of Cameroon an exceptional tournament. It will be the most successful AFCON (Cup of Nations),” he said.

“The world will witness the best of African football and hospitality. We can host a football tournament as good as any in Europe,” he added.

Source: Modern Ghana

“We must support each other”- Stonebwoy to African musicians.

Accra, Dec. 31, GNA – Ghanaian Afro pop, dancehall and reggae musician, Stonebwoy has urged African musicians especially Ghanaians and Nigerians to support each other in order to dominate the world music market.

Stonebwoy made this assertion on his official Twitter page after a banter on social media involving his fellow dancehall musician, Shatta Wale.

Shatta Wale while hosting a joint concert with rapper Medikal at the Accra Sports Stadium on December 25, said he does not need the help of Nigerian artistes to sell his show which aroused a social media backlash among Ghanaian and Nigerian music fans.

Stonebwoy in a Twitter post, advised Nigerians to allow other African musicians to flourish on their platforms to help foster unity and also to promote African music.

“Our Nigerian brothers must consider that their great power comes with the responsibility of helping to forge a united African front by deliberately allowing music from other African countries to pollinate Nigerian platforms on local and international levels”.

“This approach would enable the African sound to dominate the world as one big family and a global force,” he wrote on Twitter.

According to him, there was an iota of truth in what Shatta Wale said but went further to critique his approach of addressing the issue.

“My brother Shatta Wale’s approach may be wrong but the topic of our brother nation Nigeria not reciprocating the love and support it receives particularly from Ghana is valid and deserves critical attention,” Stonebwoy said.

He urged both Ghanaians home and abroad to emulate the Nigerian approach of patronizing an agenda to invest and support Ghanaian talent.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Tax Exemption Bill is a good step to sanitise exemptions regime—GRA

Kumasi, Dec. 31, GNA – The Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA) says efforts to pass the Tax Exemption Bill, 2021 is a good step towards sanitizing the tax exemptions regime from wanton abuse.

The Authority has, therefore, welcomed the Bill and looking forward to its passage to curtail exploitations and improve revenue mobilization for national development.

Mr Michael Acheampong, Office Manager of Asokwa Taxpayer Service Centre who made the observation, said the Bill when passed into law would enhance their work as implementers of tax laws in the country.

He was speaking at a Regional Tax Dialogue on Ghana’s Exemptions Bill, 2021 in Kumasi attended by participants drawn from the Northern, Upper East, North East, Ahafo, Bono, Bono East, and Ashanti Regions.

The participants were made up of representatives from the private sector, the Association of Ghana Industries (AGI), entrepreneurs, Civil Society Organisations (CSOs) and the media.

The dialogue was put together by the Tax Justice Coalition, Ghana (TJCG) in collaboration with Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) with funding from the Foreign Commonwealth and Development Office (FCDO) under the Ghana Revenue Programme.

It sought to build a civil society alliance for consultations and inputs on the Exemption Bill and other domestic revenue mobilization strategies in Ghana.

Mr Acheampong said the perspective of the GRA about the exemptions regime was aptly captured in the Bill which sought to coordinate various laws in that environment for efficient administration.

“We understand that the Government is always looking for avenues to optimize revenue but we also understand the critical role of exemptions in every aspect of our lives,” he pointed out.

He said much as the government needed adequate revenue to prosecute its development agenda, certain vulnerable groups needed to be protected through threshold relieves and concessions due to their low level income.

Some businesses in certain parts of the country also require tax incentives to stimulate their growth, he noted.

“I must also admit that these incentives and exemptions are also needed to support the economic agenda of the government. So there are a lot of socio-economic and political reasons for giving tax exemptions,” Mr Acheampong indicated.

The other adverse effect of the exemptions, he said, was that it eroded the tax base of the economy as a result of low level of taxes.

He said exemptions also distorted fair competition among businesses in the same industry where private projects were granted exemptions which were not available to other players of the same industry.

Mr Louis Acheampong, Coordinator of TJCG said the Coalition was part of the global advocacy network committed to ensuring that taxes and domestic revenues mobilised were appropriately utilised to enhance the development of the country.

He said Ghana had a lot of tax incentives granted by Parliament, Ministries and other authorities at different levels hence the introduction of the Exemptions Bill to bring them together to ensure proper coordination.

He noted that there were numerous exemptions granted to multinational and local companies with the aim of attracting foreign direct investments and also promoting local industries.

The dialogue, according to him, was to collate inputs of various stakeholders across the country and present to Parliament for consideration ahead of the passage of the Bill into law.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Revelers who contravene law and order won’t be spared—Police cautions

Cape Coast, Dec. 31, GNA— The Central Regional Police Command has cautioned holiday revelers to celebrate the New Year in moderation to avoid the excesses associated with it.

It said: “revelers are encouraged to ensure law and order at all times. The Police will deal ruthlessly with all manner of persons found to have contravened the laws without fear or favour.”

“Our men are on guard at various public places, entertainment centres, pubs, and beaches to maintain public peace and human safety, it added.

Deputy Commissioner of Police (DCOP), Kwadwo Antwi Tabi, gave the caution at a media briefing on security preparations in the region at Cape Coast on Friday.

He also cautioned residents and the general public not to take their personal security for granted during the festive season as criminals will take advantage with the least opportunity.

“This is the period theft and burglary tend to rise, so people must secure their homes, vehicles, and shops and desist from revealing sensitive personal information such as their home address, financial information, phone number, and travel details to strangers,” he stressed.

The Central Regional Police Commander said the Police would be on the roads to ensure road traffic regulations were obeyed, while patrolling to forestall any highway robberies.

He cautioned vehicle owners, drivers, and other road users to be vigilant when using the road to avoid collisions due to the nature of some of the roads.

He also urged vehicle owners and pedestrians to be very vigilant when using the road for their day-to-day activities so that there will be no cause for accidents on the roads, adding that vigilance would reduce road crashes considerably.

On the COVID-19 pandemic, he called on the people to observe the protocols to avert the spread of the virus, saying, the Police will ensure strict enforcement to safeguard public health.

He asked residents to refrain from flouting laws on social distancing, wearing of nose masks, private funerals, and church services duration.

Source: Ghana News Agency