MTN FA Cup: Hearts, Aduana Stars reach quarter—final berth

Accra,– The Round of 16 stage of this year’s MTN FA Cup took centre stage over the weekend with five Premier League teams and three Division One League (DOL) sides making it to the last eight.

Defending Champions Accra Hearts of Oak reached the quarter-final stage after beating Elmina Sharks on 8-7 on penalties after regulation time ended two goals apiece.

Kofi Kordzi scored an equalizer for Hearts in second half stoppage to take the game into a long penalty shoot out of which Hearts goalkeeper Richmond Ayi pulled off five brilliant saves to aid his side’s progress.

Aduana Stars who are looking to win the FA Cup for the first time made it into the last eight after a narrow 1-0 victory over Berekum Chelsea at the Nana Agyemang Badu Park.

Abdul Manaf Mudasiru grabbed the decisive goal for the “Ogyaa Boys” to deny Chelsea a place in the quarterfinals.

King Faisal continued their excellent run in this year’s competition after beating Real Tamale United 4-2 at the Aliu Mahama Sports Stadium.

Legon Cities missed an opportunity to progress to the quarter-finals after losing to Dreams on penalties.

Dreams prevailed in the clash having won 4-2 on penalties after regulation time ended in goalless stalemate at the El-Wak Sports Stadium.

Tamale City who currently lead DOL Zone 1 league progressed into the quarter-final after beating Young Apostles 5-2.

Division One League side Skyy FC edged their counterparts Heart of Lions 1-0 to seal through to the last eight.

Qualified teams: King Faisal, Aduana Stars FC, Hearts of Oak, Dreams FC, Tamale City FC, Bechem United, Skyy FC, and Kotoku Royals.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Ghana beat Ethiopia to qualify for U-20 Women’s World Cup

Ghana beat Ethiopia on a 5-1 goal aggregate to secure qualification to the 2022 Federation of International Football Association (FIFA) U-20 Women’s World Cup to be staged in Costa Rica.

The Black Princesses beat Ethiopia 2-1 in Accra.

Salamatu Abdulai’s brace in the second leg played at the Accra Sports Stadium on Sunday was enough to book a ticket after the first leg ended 3-0 a fortnight ago.

Abdulai scored twice before Ethiopia’s Mercy Tanga beat goalie Cynthia Konlan to reduce the deficit for her side in the first half.

Despite a player down for Ghana, after goalkeeper Cynthia Konlan was shown a red card for handling a ball outside the 18-yard box with four minutes to end the game, the Black Princesses kept their composure to guard their lead.

Ghana defeated Zambia, Uganda to reach the final round of the qualifying series.

This would be Ghana’s sixth appearance at the U-20 World Cup.

Ghana joins Nigeria to represent the continent at the World Cup.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Surprise weeklong coronavirus lockdown stuns Shanghai after denials

A broad coronavirus lockdown went into effect on Monday in Shanghai, the biggest city in China, with its 26 million people subject to mandatory testing at some point in the next week.

The surprise announcement came late on Sunday and prompted panic buying at supermarkets. The government said the measures are needed to stop the spread of Covid-19, after 50 local cases were detected, on top of 3,450 asymptomatic infections.

The lockdown will hit the city in two waves. Initially, until Friday, residents of the Pudong district and neighbouring areas like Fengxian, Jinshan, Chongming and parts of Minhang will be required to stay home and get tested.

After that, the lockdown will shift to older parts of the city west of the Huangpu River, with tests required by April 4. Anyone found to be infected will be transferred to a special facility. Authorities are preparing six hospitals, two gymnasiums and two large exhibit halls filled with beds for the expected crowds of people.

“The outbreak in Shanghai is notable by the fact that there are regional nodes and that it’s spread across the whole city,” said Wu Fan, a member of a government Covid-19 team. That means “energetic steps” need to be taken to reduce people’s mobility and quickly find infected people to sideline under-the-radar cases.

China is pursuing an ambitious zero-Covid strategy, meaning anyone with an infection is isolated. Entire neighbourhoods or cities are locked down for testing after cases are identified.

But, as more cases of the Omicron variant pop up in China, that approach is being tested, especially after two years in which the country could operate somewhat normally, thanks to a policy of keeping its borders closed to most people from the outside.

Shanghai’s lockdown came as a shock since authorities had denied the possibility of any such course of action the day before. Courier services are being set up to deliver food as residential areas are sealed off. Public transport, ferries and taxis have been shut down in the city.

However, the city insists that airports, train stations and freight traffic will continue as “normal” in the world’s biggest harbour city.

Nationwide, officials reported 1,219 people with Covid-19 and 5,134 infections without symptoms. Jilin province is also under lockdown.

Source: Ghana News Agency

GRNMA supports nurse at Wiaga

Wiaga (U/E),–The Ghana Registered Nurses and Midwives Association’s (GRNMA) President, Mrs Perpetual Ofori-Ampofo, has presented a cheque of GH¢20,000.

00 to a nurse at the Saint Lucas Health Centre at Wiaga in the Builsa North Municipality of the Upper East Region.

The gesture was to assist the nurse, Mr Jibril Gambedu Apunen, who was involved in a Road Traffic Accident (RTA) and sustained fractures of the hip and knee and subsequently developed some other medical conditions.

The Builsa North Municipal GRNMA Executives, led by their Chair, Ms Zenabu Zimi, presented the cheque on behalf of Mrs Ofori-Ampofo in the presence of some GRNMA members in the Health Centre.

She reminded members that six per cent of their monthly total dues deducted from their salaries went to the Association’s Health Fund which was used to cater for the medical expenses of members.

She said members could apply for financial support for ailments beyond the National Health Insurance Scheme (NHIS) and entreated those in good standing with health conditions to apply to the fund for support when in need.

Ms Zimi said sick members in good standing were entitled to a minimum of GH¢5,000.00 and a maximum of GH¢50,000.00, depending on the health condition they suffered.

She said apart from the Health Fund, the Association had several benefit packages for members and mentioned the renewal of the Professional Identification Numbers (PINs) and the Axillary Identification Numbers (AINs) for members at the Nursing and Midwifery Council of Ghana for free.

Ms Zimi said the PIN and AIN renewal, which hitherto cost members of the GRNMA GH¢55.00 a year, without which they could not practice legally as enshrined under Section 73 (d) of the Health Professions Regulatory Bodies Act 2013 (Act 857), was absorbed by the Association.

She said the Association’s several hostel facilities spread across the former ten Regions of the country except for the Upper East Region, which was under construction, served as temporal accommodation for members who travelled to other Regions at discounted rates.

She said the regional hostel, which would also serve as Secretariat for the Association, located at Pusu-Namongo in the Talensi District, was still under construction and would soon be completed and commissioned for use.

The Municipal Chairperson encouraged all nurses and midwives across the Municipality and beyond to join the GRNMA, which according to her was the “Mother Association of the noble profession with the bargaining certificate to advocate for members’ welfare.”

Mr Apunen after receiving the cheque thanked the leadership of the GRNMA for the gesture and said it was an indication that he belonged to an Association that was concerned about the welfare of its members and took their health issues seriously.

“I am glad to receive this sum of money to enable me to cater for my medical bills. I pray that the almighty Allah would quicken my recovery process so that I would join my colleagues at work,” he said.

He thanked Dr Bismarck Lambon, the Medical Director of the Saint Lucas Health Centre and the entire staff of the facility for their care and support, and further advised his colleague nurses to join the GRNMA to make it a formidable force to fight for their interests.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Covid-19: Kumasi residents express mixed feelings over lifting of restrictions

Kumasi,– Residents in the Kumasi Metropolis have expressed mixed reactions over the lifting of the COVID-19 restrictions instituted to contain the spread of the virus.

While some are happy about the reopening of all land and sea borders, others did not agree with the President on churches, mosques, conferences and funerals, among others, to resume at full capacity.

Mr Kwame Frimpong, a businessman at Adum, told the Ghana News Agency (GNA) that the reopening of the land and sea borders was a good step by the government to revive the economy and bring relief to Ghanaians.

He expressed worry over the resumption of outdoor and social gatherings at full capacity, saying that this could lead to the spread of the virus.

He explained that it would be very difficult for members of the public to maintain social distance, especially when the wearing of nose masks was no longer mandatory.

Mr Frimpong said the probability of an infected person passing the virus to others at social gatherings was very high and wondered why the wearing of the mask was not mandatory.

“Lifting of the COVID-19 restrictions is a good step for the country to revive the Ghanaian economy, but my problem is where the President announced that churches, mosques, funerals, among others, were resuming at full capacity,” he said.

“I’m worried because social distancing will be a problem and this can lead to people getting infected with the virus since wearing the masks was no longer mandatory,” he said.

Madam Mavis Opoku, a trader who spoke with the GNA, pointed out that the nose masks business was no longer attractive because wearing it was no longer mandatory.

She explained that people would not purchase it anymore, therefore, collapsing their business.

President Akufo-Addo, on Sunday, March 27, in his update number 28 on measures taken against the spread of the coronavirus, declared that all land and sea borders will be opened from Monday, March 28, after a comprehensive review of some measures to fight the COVID-19 infections.

He also said the wearing of facemasks would no longer be mandatory, effective today, Monday 28th March 2022.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Opuni Trial: Defence witness on excuse duty for two weeks

Accra,-Mr Charles Tetteh Dodoo, a defence witness in the case involving Dr Stephen Opuni and others, has presented an excuse duty letter to an Accra High Court, seeking permission to treat a spinal problem.

Mr Samuel Codjoe, Counsel for Dr Opuni, who presented the excuse duty letter on behalf of the witness, told the Court that Dr Dodoo informed him on Friday, March 25, 2022, about his illness.

The Counsel said the witness had been complaining consistently in the cause of giving his evidence in chief.

“He got somebody to send me the excuse duty issued by a Medical Officer, who attended to him,” he added.

Dr Opuni and Mr Agongo are facing 27 charges, including defrauding by false pretences, willfully causing financial loss to the State, money laundering, corruption by a public officer and contravention of the Public Procurement Act.

They have both pleaded not guilty to the charges and are on a GH¢300,000.00 self-recognizance bail each.

Mr Codjoe said he tried getting in contact with his learned friends; the prosecution and Mr Nutifafa Nutsukpui for Seidu Agongo, the CEO of Agricult Ghana Limited to inform them about the date of facts but unfortunately, he could not get to them.

“This explains why I did not give them prior notice,” he said.

Asked, whether he was on admission, the Counsel answered in the negative, saying the witness had been advised to go for physiotherapy.

Mrs Evelyn Keelson, the Chief State Attorney, said she had seen the excuse duty letter but her only concern was the fact that it did not have enough details, except to indicate an illness and an excuse of two weeks.

Mr Nutsukpui said they could only wish the witness a speedy recovery for him to be fit for cross- examination.

The Court, presided over by Justice Clemence Honyenuga, a Justice of the Supreme Court, sitting as an additional High Court Judge, said it was unfortunate that the witness was unwell and therefore the Court could not continue with the hearing.

He said the excuse duty letter was scanty, stating only the illness and the duration of the excuse, and stated that though the court was not bound on the advice, “we will give the witness the benefit of doubt.”

The Judge had earlier stated that he would not tolerate delays and unnecessary adjournment of the four-year-old criminal case.

He said if at the next adjourned date, the witness did not appear for cross-examination, the Court would take further steps to ensure that the case proceeds.

The trial was adjourned to Friday, April 8, 2022.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Community police assistant jailed for fraud, impersonation

Accra,- An Adentan Circuit Court has sentenced a 28-year-old Community Police Assistant (CPA) to four years imprisonment over charges of impersonation and defrauding by false pretences.

Mark Apiu is said to have collected GHC12,000 from a finance officer to enlist the officer’s sister into the Ghana Police Service but failed to do so.

Apiu pleaded guilty to both charges.

The court presided over by Mrs Sedinam Awo Balokah, convicted Apiu on his own plea.

Prosecuting, Chief Inspector Maxwell Lanyo said the complainant (name withheld) was a finance officer of a hospital in Tamale whiles the convict was stationed at Walewale.

He said the complainant got to Know Apiu when he brought a patient to the hospital in 2016.

The prosecution said Apiu introduced himself to the complainant as a police officer and they became friends.

In November 2021, the complainant called Apiu and informed him that she has secured a job for her sister with the Ambulance Service.

The prosecution said the convict questioned the complainant as to why she did not enlist her sister into the Ghana Police Service.

Apiu then assured the complainant that he could assist to get her sister enlisted in the Police Service.

Apiu then gave her the phone number of one Nelson, a supposed senior police officer, to call him so he could assist with the enlistment.

He cunningly demanded and collected various sums of money from the complainant from December 2021 to March 18, 2022, all totalling GHC12,000.

The prosecution said on March 18, one General Sergeant Aglago received a call from the complainant that she had arrived for the enlistment in Accra.

Police intelligence led to the arrest of Apiu and during interrogation, he admitted the offence and pleaded for leniency.

Source: Ghana News Agency

AG lauds Registrar of companies’ support against corruption

Accra,– Attorney-General, the Godfred Yeboah-Dame, has lauded the cooperation of the Office of the Registrar of Companies with the government in its effort to root out corruption in the system.

He said the passage of the new Companies Act 992 of 2019 had also helped to reduce the creation of shell companies and opaque financial systems, which provided an opportunity for money laundering and concealment of illicit wealth.

“I am of the firm conviction that, effectively managed, the Registrar of Companies can indeed be a strong partner for the government in the fight against corruption and the promotion of good governance in the country.”

“…the duty to provide particulars of beneficial owners under section 13 of Act 992 together with other provisions, including the ones alluded to… provide a strong tool to aid in the fight against corruption, money laundering and ultimately, boost investor confidence in the Ghanaian economy.”

Mr Yeboah-Dame was speaking at the inauguration and swearing-in of members of the governing board of the Office of the Registrar of Companies in Accra.

The establishment of the governing body of the Office of the Registrar of Companies is one of the innovations of the new Companies Act, 2019 (Act 992).

The Office of the Registrar of Companies is vested with the important object of registering and regulating all types of businesses in Ghana as well as registering business names, partnerships and professional bodies in accordance with enabling statutes.

It is also required to appoint inspectors, a receiver or manager to ensure effective compliance with Act 992, discharge duties and perform functions of the Official Liquidator under the Bodies Corporate (Official Liquidations) Act, 1963, Act 180 and also manage the finances and fixed assets of the Office of the Registrar.

Mr Yeboah-Dame also stated that the development of the Registrar of Companies over the years and the broad array of functions thrust on the Office by Act 992 enjoined the relocation of the physical premises from which the office operated.

He said the office accommodation had become too small and unfit for the attainment of the objects of the Office.

He said the Ministry had assisted the Office of the Registrar of Companies to acquire a two-acre land at the University of Ghana for the construction of a new office for US$3.5 million.

He explained that the Land Lease Committee set up by the University of Ghana, owners of the land, had agreed to the payment of US$1.5million as a deposit towards the acquisition, which has been done.

Mr Yeboah-Dame also clarified that having regard to the capacity of the Registrar of Companies to rake in substantial internally generated funds, the time had come for the Office to be financially independent of government.

He said section 352 of Act 992 required the Office to be financially autonomous.

The sources of funds of the Office have been stated by section 364 of Act 994 to include monies approved by Parliament, fees accruing to the office in respect of services recorded by the Office.

Source: Ghana News Agency