Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport swears in Eighth Governing Council


The Chartered Institute of Logistics and Transport (CILT) Ghana, has sworn into office a 16-member council to run its affairs for the next two years.

The Council, the eight in the series, will influence and shape government policies, provide education and training at all levels and in all sectors to ensure standardized practices.

The governing council comprises Mr Mark Amoamah, President, Mr Lackson Legah, Vice President, Finance, Andrews Osei, Vice President, Education and Professional Development, Alhaj Saaka Dumba, Vice President, Roads, Ephraim Asare, Vice President, Logistics, and Dky Frimpong Manso, Vice President, Rail.

The others are Madam Naa Densua Aryeetey, Vice President, Maritime, Mr Patrick Andoh, Executive Member, Dr. Ebi Hammond, Immediate Past President, Mr Maxwell Zah, Chairman, Tema Section, Ebenezer Adjei, Chairman, Accra Section,

The rest are Clement Kubakwana, Chairman Takoradi Section, David Antwi, Chairman, Kumasi Section, Emmanuel Kankam Boadu, Chairman, Sunyani Section, Linda Owu
su-Afriyie, Chairman, WILAT, and Oliver Bowers, Chairman, Next Generation.

Mr Amoamah, at the inaugural ceremony, expressed excitement on his re-election to lead the Governing Council to continue to champion its ideals.

He said his first term saw the institute make lots of strides in the industry, key among them being enhancing CILT-Ghana’s visibility and corporate brand, and promoting CILT education and qualifications.

The President, on behalf of his team, assured members of their resolve to position the Institute to achieve its vision and remain the leading professionals in the supply chain, logistics and transport sectors.

The President assured the members that with the help of his executives, the Institute would develop strategic partnerships with developing partners to support their five-year strategic plan.

He commended the outgoing Governing Council members for their dedication, commitment and selfless leadership to the service of the Institute.

Dr Doreen Owusu-Fianko, a former Board Member of th
e Ghana Airport Company, who chaired the inauguration, urged the executives to take bold decisions to impact the institute positively.

‘Leadership is not about holding a position but accepting the challenges that come with it. You have been selected because of your ability and together help shape the future of logistics,’ she said.

The CILT, which has more than 54,000 memberships across the globe, was founded in 1919 in the United Kingdom and granted its Royal Charter in 1926.

The Ghana branch was founded in 1965 and duly registered as a recognized professional body under the laws of Ghana.

It has five sections in the country; Accra, Kumasi, Sunyani, Takoradi and Tema.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Shaving ‘sakora’ connotes fashionist and religious importance – barber


Mallam Musa Bouchi, a roving barber and nail cutter at Ashaiman in the Greater Accra Region, says shaving the head bald, otherwise known as ‘sakora’ has fashion and religious implications.

He said a bald head did not only add a touch of greatness to men but was also aligned with Islamic tradition, where it was recommended to trim the hair bald every Friday.

He said mastering the skill of shaving the hair with precision required years of practice to be able to handle the equipment, taking into consideration the sensitivity of the scalp to avoid cuts.

Mallam Bouchi, affectionately called ‘abochi,’ who operates without a shop, diligently serves his loyal clients by moving from one area to another, garnering new customers through word-of-mouth ‘advertisment.’

While many of his colleagues mastered only nail trimming, a select few possessed the finesse of ‘sakora’ hair barbering, he told the Ghana News Agency in an interview on Saturday.

He mentioned the essential tools needed for bald shaving as liquid soap,
water, hairbrush, and a locally manufactured cutting tool that securely held the blade for the shaving.

To ensure a uniform shave, Mallam Bouchi employs a meticulous technique that begins by applying the liquid soap to the hair to soften it for the blade to glide through with ease, smoothly moving over the scalp.

He then held the head firmly while alternating between the use of a brush and the sharp blade to navigate the contours of the head, ensuring that every strand of hair was evenly trimmed.

‘Bald shaving is particularly favoured by big men,’ he said, citing some individuals in positions of authority or influence as his clients.

Through his craftsmanship and dedication, Mallam Bouchi continuously upheld the tradition of ‘sakora’ barbering, leaving his clients with some confidence and refinement.

Alhaji Musah Abdallah, a satisfied customer, emphasised the significance of maintaining a well-groomed appearance, particularly when it came to the head, as that ‘depicts the gentleman one is.’

He said the
head was of paramount importance as it symbolised maturity and responsibility, indicating that individuals, especially elders, who opted for hairstyles other than ‘sakora or down-cut,’ may not command the same level of respect in society as those with bald head.

This belief underscores the cultural reverence for traditional grooming practices and the enduring appeal of ‘sakora’ in portraying a dignified and respectable image.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Let’s reduce dust on roads under construction – GMA


The Ghana Medical Association (GMA) has urged contractors working on broads to water them regularly to reduce dust associated with the harmattan season.

A press release signed by Dr Frank Serebour, President of the Association, said the general dry weather was leading to increased respiratory conditions, adding that people with Asthma and other chronic respiratory conditions could suffer acute attacks should the situation not be managed.

Drivers, it cautioned, should avoid speeding especially on dusty roads and at night.

The Association said the dust also reduced visibility on the roads, especially at night.

It encouraged the public to wear face masks to protect them from the dust.

The Association asked the public to limit outdoor activities more importantly for children, stay hydrated by drinking water liberally all day.

It asked Asthmatic patients to carry their inhalers always and take all prescribed medications as directed.

It advised against burning bushes and activities that could lead to bush fi
res.

The GMA asked anyone experiencing signs and symptoms of respiratory conditions such as cough, runny nose, painful swallowing, and chest pain or difficulty breathing to report to the nearest health facility.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Kwahu Bepong Attacks: Court remands 37 accused persons


The Nkawkaw District Court has remanded 37 accused persons into Police custody over the attack on Kwahu Begong Chief’s Palace on February 4, 2024.

A news brief from the Police said the accused persons were arraigned before the Court on five counts, including causing unlawful damage to properties following their arrest in connection with the attack.

It said all the accused persons were to reappear before the court on February 23, 2024.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Rev. Washington K. Darke Inducted as new Senior Pastor of Calvary Baptist Church Accra


The Ghana Baptist Convention (GBC) has inducted Reverend Washington Komla Darke as the new Senior Pastor of the Calvary Baptist Church in Accra.

Rev. Darke replaces Rev. Dr. Fred P. Deegbe, the immediate past Senior Pastor of the Mega Church.

Rev. Darke originally took office in 2023 as the Senior Pastor Elect of the Calvary Baptist Church but underwent a year’s mentorship under the Senior Pastor Rev. Dr. Fred Deegbe.

During the mentorship period, Rev. Darke was assigned the responsibility of leading and supervising key assignments including the Development of a long-term (2024 – 2033) Vision Statement for the Church, which provided a broad guide for the development of the Medium-Term Strategic Framework for the Church.

He also ensured the development of the Medium -Term Strategic Framework for the Church covering the period 2024 to 2028; and also Developed an enhanced Quarterly Progress Report Format for the monitoring and evaluation of activities outlined in the Strategic Framework.

In a short sermon a
t the Induction Service held at the Calvary Baptist Church Auditorium, Rev Dr. Ernest Adu-Gyamfi, former Executive President of the Ghana Baptist Convention reminded Rev. Washington Darke of his responsibility as the head shepherd of God’s sheep.

He also reminded him that the house of God (Calvary Baptist Church) was not only a place of worship, but also a place of refuge for all those looking for salvation or seeking the help of God.

Rev. Dr. Adu-Gyamfi appealed to the leaders of the Church to operate a people friendly church and make it a place where souls are safe and protected.

‘The church is supposed to be a refuge for unbelievers and all believers, a place where murderers can even run to and find salvation. There are many souls that are being lost and need to be led to Christ Jesus’.

Rev Dr. Adu-Gyamfi called on the Church leaders to support the administration of Rev. Washington Darke and ensure his succeess.

He entreated the Church members, which he described as a ‘Mega Church’ to raise more minis
ters and workers of God.

Rev. Washington Komla Darke was inducted into office by Rev. Dr. Fred P. Deegbe, the outgoing Senior Pastor of the Church who led him to take the oaths of office and secrecy.

He also handed over to him, the symbol of office, official bible, copy of GBC constitution and the official minister’s rope.

In a short remark, Rev. Dr. Deegbe expressed his profound appreciation to the Ghana Baptist Convention and the congregation of Calvary Baptist Church for working closely with him throughout his tenure.

He urged the Church to extend the same cooperation and support they accorded him to his successor.

Rev. Dr. Deegbe expressed his readiness to play any role or give any assistance required of him by the church or the new Senior Pastor.

On his part, Rev. Washington Komla Darke, the new Senior Pastor of the Church applauded the good leadership of his predecessor who served the convention for over 30 years.

He said that even though he knows that the shoe size of his predecessor is very hug
e, he needs the help of Christ to grow in it, and would graciously serve the church humbly and diligently to the glory of God.

According to him, he would continue to build on the good foundations of his predecessor, and also ensure that the vision and mission of the church remained supreme and would not be changed in his tenure.

The current operational vision of the Church quotes: ‘A vibrant congregation impacting the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ’ and its mission quotes: ‘To exalt God in worship, grow towards Christian maturity and reach out to the world with the gospel of Jesus Christ’.

Rev. Darke revealed that his administration would introduce some core principles – Alertness, Compassion, Thoroughness and Initiatives and Diligence to guide the church in the discharge of their duties.

This, he said, is where the Church would be very aware of its environment and provide the appropriate responses; invest in people and provide care to them; avoid practices that diminish effectiveness and efficienc
y; act proactively with due regard to church leadership; and to complete tasks assigned for the glory of God.

As its long-term goals in the next 10 years, the Calvary Baptist Church under the leadership of Rev. Washington Komla Darke would focus on four thematic areas including; Evangelism, Missions and Spiritual Growth; Christian Education; Mentorship and Empowerment; Governance and Infrastructural Development as well as Financial Sustainability for Growth.

The Executive President of the Ghana Baptist Convention, Rev. Enoch Nii Narh Thompson who graced the occasion encourage Rev. Washington Komla Darke to remain focus, committed and loyal to the Church, the Convention and most importantly the Lord Jesus Christ.

He expressed confidence in his ability and anointing to lead such huge congregation.

Source: Ghana News Agency

ICU-Ghana suspends industrial action


The Industrial and Commercial Workers’ Union has joined organized Labour to suspend its intended strike on February 13, 2024.

This was due to the government’s intentions to suspend the introduction of VAT on electricity to engage the International Monetary Fund.

Mr Morgan Ayawine, the General Secretary of the ICU-Ghana, said at a press briefing, ‘We are equally suspending our action, and we will be on red alert.’

‘The message we are sending to our members out there is that it is a victory, a victory not only for our members but for Ghanaians,’ he said.

He said the Union believed that the government’s decision to suspend the tax on electricity should be final and nothing else.

‘We want to believe that it is a suspension in perpetuity. So our members should not feel that we have been defeated,’ he said.

Organized Labour met on Friday, February 2, and took a decision on their ultimatum to the government to withdraw the tax on electricity, which ends in January 2024.

The demonstration was intended to get t
he government to back down on the introduction of the tax on electricity, which has impoverished Ghanaians and increased their difficulties in the country.

The leadership of organized Labour called on all workers in the country to start wearing’red’ to work on Monday, February 5, to send a strong signal to the government that they won’t compromise until the government dropped the decision to impose VAT on electricity.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Togbe Afede invited to Harvard’s Africa Development Conference 2024


Togbe Afede XIV, the Agbogbomefia of Asogli, has been invited to be a ‘distinguished panelist’ at thus year’s Harvard’s Africa Development Conference (ADC), set to take place on the 12th and 13th of April 2024 at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

The ADC stands as the premier global platform for meaningful discourse on Africa’s development and facilitates crucial conversations that shape the continent’s future.

Heads of state and influential figures, such as William Ruto, Kenyan President, Paul Kagame, Rwandan President, João Lourenço, Angolan President, Director-General of the World Trade Organisation, Ngozi Okonjo-Iweala, and Former Credit Suisse Chief Executive Officer, Tidjane Thiam, are set to come together to share progressive policies, fostering partnerships for Africa’s development.

The 2024 ADC is on the theme: ‘Africa Delivers: Pragmatic Paths to Prosperity’ spotlights the continent’s progress and potential amid global challenges, spanning vital sectors such as law, governance, inte
rnational relations, economics, business, technology, environment, security, health, education, media, and arts.

The organizers are excited about the inclusion of a panel devoted to trading in and with Africa, a realm in which they believe Togbe Afed’s wealth of knowledge and expertise was invaluable.

The panel will explore the transformative potential of the African Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA) and its implications for the future of trade in Africa, and discuss how it can strategically address energy supply and transportation infrastructure challenges.

As the Executive Chairman of World Trade Centre Accra, and a member of the Board of the World Trade Centres Association, New York, the organizers believe Togbe’s ‘deep engagement in the field of trade and commerce’ makes him an ideal panelist, and that, his leadership and contributions to the establishment of companies demonstrated his expertise in finance, economics, corporate advisory, and infrastructure development-all of which are crucial aspect
s of trade in Africa’.

The ADC organizers expressed their belief that Togbe Afrde’s insights would greatly enrich the discussion on the transformative potential of AfCFTA and sustainable trade partnerships and contribute to the collective dialogue on Africa’s development journey.

This assembly of prominent personalities highlights the event’s significance as a platform for dialogue and collaboration on practical solutions to propel the continent towards sustainable development, and underscores the importance of leveraging African leaders’ knowledge and experience in this regard.

Thus, the invitation of Togbe Afede XIV, who had been a participant at Harvard’s Annual Global Empowerment Meetings, not only honors his contributions to economic development in Africa but also provides a forum for him to share his vision for the continent and his insights into strategic approaches for overcoming infrastructure deficits and ensuring energy security.

The Harvard Africa Development Conference 2024 is poised to be a
landmark event, offering actionable insights, and fostering partnerships that will be instrumental in unlocking Africa’s economic potential.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Experts warn Africa needs better data on air quality urgently


You can’t manage what you can’t measure’ – the famous quote by Peter Drucker, the late father of modern business management, has been used in many fields.

Now experts say it needs to be urgently applied to Africa’s air quality in order to save millions of lives being cut short by rising levels of air pollution.

The threat from toxic air is already severe in Africa where just drawing breath is killing 834,000 Africans prematurely every year, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO).

That number is only set to escalate as African population growth outstrips that of every other continent in coming decades. The WHO now says air pollution is the greatest global environment risk.

Air quality data challenge

But just how dangerous air pollution is in Africa is not clear. Until now data on air quality and its impacts have not been well recorded according to experts.

The push now is to build a massive baseline dataset to measure where things are headed.

‘It is important also to build on a baseline for ma
ny reasons especially, to compare the past and present,’ says Dr Dan Westervelt, Lamont Associate Research Professor at Columbia University, Lamont-Doherty Earth Observatory.

He was in Ghana for a workshop training of West African expert in air pollution. Dr. Westervelt has partnered with researchers at the University of Ghana to conduct air pollution studies.

The latest WHO research in Ghana from 2020 estimates that three people die prematurely every hour due to air pollution or 28,000 people annually.

Dr Westervelt thinks the current number may be much higher.

Until now there has not been much concrete evidence establishing the links between deaths, health and economic burden in Ghana.

Experts say that is needed to draw the attention of decision makers in Ghana, and Africa generally, and encourage them to take bold steps to improve air quality.

The problem extends across Africa, according to Madam Seneca Naidoo, Regional Technical Advisor for Air Quality Southern Africa. Naidoo observed the trend whil
e working with mayors from major cities in Africa.

‘This becomes difficult to identify the major sources of air pollution in order to flag it for priority action,’ she says.

There are devices that help monitor air pollution levels. However, of the African Union’s 55 member states, only 17 countries do any air quality monitoring, according to the latest report from the Health Research Institute, a non-governmental research organisation.

Seneca says for a start, leaders, especially mayors, need funding to acquire monitoring devices to gather data on air quality.

Ghana has been on the forefront of efforts to measure air quality. The country currently has 64 sensors. Kenya and South Africa have also made efforts. But most other countries on the continent have none.

Cost is a factor. The higher quality sensors, or ‘reference grade’ monitors, can range in price as high as $US40,000 depending on the brand and functionality.

Low-Cost Sensors (LCS), which perform similar function, can range in price between $US5
0 and $US3,000.

Representatives from various African countries attending the workshop in Accra, expressed concern and called for donor support to acquire sensors.

‘Liberia has developed Air Quality Regulation and is expected to be validated and published,’ said Mr Rafael Ngumbu, Manager, Environmental Research and Radiation Safety, at Liberia’s Environmental Protection Agency, for example.

‘The challenge for validation is lack of data to inform standards. However, we have no air sensors to collect baseline data so our work has stalled.’

He is appealing to development partners to support them acquire sensors gather data, process it to inform decision makers and educate the public.

Kenya’s Nairobi also lacks enough sensors according to Mr Teddy M.Mutisva, an Air Quality Technical Instrumentation Specialist from Kenya who also attended the workshop,

‘I lost a dear friend who was a bank manager to a respiratory condition linked to air pollution. Governments need to do more to improve air quality,’ Mr Mutisv
a says.

He is of the view that the burden of air pollution is huge and Nairobi should have over 100 sensors in its central business district.

Sensor data collection efforts in Ghana

Mr Desmond Appiah, Country Lead for the UK-based nonprofit body, the Clean Air Fund, says access to clean air is a fundamental human right that everyone must enjoy.

But it’s a challenge as long as there is no data to measure the size of the problem. He says his organsation has commenced initiatives with stakeholders to bridge the gap.

The Breathe Accra Project is being supported by funding from the Clean Air Fund to collect data using low cost sensors to identify air pollution trends, assess effectiveness of air pollution control strategies, and inform policy decisions.

The project has installed low cost sensors in 12 municipal areas in the Greater Accra Metropolitan Area.

The project, which builds on the work of Professor Kofi Amegah’s Ghana Urban Air Quality Initiative, hopes to educate the public and provide them with re
al time data to enable them to take action to improve air quality in their neighborhoods.

‘This is augmenting the effort of the Environmental Protection Agency’s work and that of other developmental partners who have set up air quality monitoring networks in Accra, Tema and some regional capitals to collect real time air quality data,’ he says.

Prof. Amegah, having realised the health and economic burden through a series of studies, began buying low cost sensors to help data collection.

Ensuring data correctness amidst scarcity

The use of low-cost sensors has been criticised by some researchers who say they are not reliable enough. But the UN Environment Programme and other organisations are leading the deployment of some of these monitors and proactively assessing the viability of fusing satellite and ground observations.

Dr. Allison Felix Hughes, Senior Lecturer at the Department of Physics, University of Ghana, says the best way to improve data from low cost sensors is through evaluation.

Together wi
th a group of researchers he has set up an Air Sensor Evaluation and Training Facility (Afri-SET) currently hosted by the Department of Physics, University of Ghana, to appraise sensors from different manufacturers globally.

The facility is evaluating nearly 30 sensors produced by manufacturers from the United States, Spain, Poland, Thailand, Kenya, India and Uganda.

Afri-SET is comparing the results of low cost sensors against the results from the more expensive reference grade monitor mounted at the same location at its center, to assess their effectiveness.

With funding from the US Department of State and Clean Air Fund, Afri-SET is aiming to train about 300 air quality professionals and students on low cost air sensors, installation, management and usage.

Dr Hughes and his team aim to set up a second Afri-SET in either East or Southern Africa to serve those parts of the continent.

The facility’s mission, he says, will ignite innovation among researchers and programmers to build low cost sensors to be
deployed in the nooks and crannies of the continent to get useful data everywhere and save lives.

Source: Ghana News Agency