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Politics

CPP’s Amadu Yahaya to work in the spirit of party’s ideology

Newly elected Member of Parliament (MP) for Kumbungu Constituency Amadu Moses Yahaya is expected to work within his party’s ideology.

“We expect to see him work in the spirit and letter of the party’s ideology and be guided by the will of the people in the constituency for change.”

In a statement to thank constituents, the Electoral Commission (EC) and security services at post during last Tuesday’s by-election, the Convention People’s Party (CPP) did not hide its joy at seeing its candidate win a seat in Parliament and noted: “The Party would support and demonstrate its commitment by helping him achieve the overall political goal.”

“The Party believes that the election of Amadu Moses Yahaya is a bold statement on strengthening parliamentary democracy in Ghana and to cause change in the one-way pattern of Ghana’s two-party political system,” the statement said.

Mr Yahaya emerged winner of the Kumbungu by-election to become the only CPP Member of the Sixth Parliament.

He polled 13,029 votes to beat closest contender Alhaji Imoro Yakubu Kakpagu.


Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Akufo-Addo consoles victims of Kantamanto fire disaster

The 2012 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has expressed his deepest condolences to the victims of Sunday morning’s fire outbreak at the Kantamanto market, which, according to reports, affected a greater part of the market.

Nana Addo described it “as a very sad day in the history of Ghana” and charged the relevant authorities to put in place the necessary measures to forestall the occurrence of such disasters.

Nana Akufo-Addo bemoaned what appeared to be a high frequency of fire outbreaks, especially occurring in markets in the country in recent times, calling for immediate steps to arrest the problem, adding that this “calls for a standardised strategic plan in designing markets in the country to prevent the incessant fire outbreaks.”

He said aside the major role entrepreneurs in such commercial markets played in the growth of the economy of the country, they were also the major bread winners of their various families and that when such disasters occurred, they tended to have serious repercussions on both the economy and families.

He suggested that the Ghana Institution for Engineers, Ghana Institution of Architects, Architectural Engineering Services Limited (AESL) and the Ghana National Fire Service must come together in designing the markets in order to prevent such outbreaks which had caused damage to property, lives and loss of livelihood to many entrepreneurs in these markets over the years.

“There have been too many fire outbreaks in our markets lately, and it is high time we took serious steps to bring the situation under control. I am making a passionate appeal to the relevant authorities, especially the Institutes of Engineers, Architects and Planners, to come out with innovative plans for the construction of modern prototype markets that will make it difficult for the recurrence of these fires,” Nana Addo noted

Nana Addo consoled victims of the Kantamanto fire disaster on the loss of their wares and prayed that the Almighty God would see them through.

Source: NPP Communications Directorate

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Politics

Election council to audit vote in Venezuela

Venezuela’s electoral council announced Thursday night that it would audit the 46 percent the vote not scrutinized on election night in a concession to opposition candidate Henrique Capriles, who said he believes it will prove he is the president.

“We are where we want to be,” a satisfied but cautious-looking Capriles told a news conference after the announcement. “I think I will have the universe of voters needed to get where I want to be.”

Capriles had demanded a full vote-by-vote recount but said he accepted the National Electoral Council’s ruling, which marked a surprising turnaround for President-elect Nicolas Maduro, whose government had a day earlier looked to be digging in its heels.The late President Hugo Chavez’s heir is being inaugurated on Friday and was in Lima, Peru, on Thursday night for an emergency meeting of South American leaders to discuss his country’s electoral crisis.

The meeting began late and it was not clear whether any of the continent’s other leaders — Brazil’s President Dilma Rousseff wields the most influence — had pressured Maduro to accept the audit.

Capriles ducked the question when asked by an Associated Press reporter for his explanation of the concession.

Maduro had never rejected it publicly, and it was possible that pressure from the military or more moderate members of his ruling clique were a factor.

The so-called Chavistas controls all the levers of power in Venezuela, so the electoral council’s decision can only be seen as having the government’s imprimatur.

A petition to halt Maduro’s inauguration had been rejected earlier Thursday by the country’s highest court.

Opposition supporters waxed optimistic, even triumphant, on social networks, hoping this could lead to national reconciliation in a bitterly divided nation where half the people have just rejected Chavismo without Chavez, who endeared himself to the poor but who Capriles argued had put the country with the world’s largest oil reserves on the road to ruin.

“Maduro isn’t sleeping tonight,” tweeted Rocio San Miguel, director of an independent group that monitors Venezuela’s military.

Capriles, 40, called on his supporters to back down from confrontation and play music, preferably salsa, instead of banging on pots, as they have been nightly all week since the council ratified Maduro’s victory to protest what they considered a stolen ballot.

That man who had been calling Maduro illegitimate and belittling him as incompetent was now saying go ahead with the inauguration.

“We know where the problems are,” Capriles said, referring to the votes cast in the 12,000 voting machines that council President Tibisay Lucena said would be audited beginning next week and would take a month to complete.

The opposition has been battered for years by Chavez and many of its members say political repression has only increased under Maduro, including the arrests of more than 300 protesters this week for staging marches against Sunday’s alleged election theft.

Capriles said he will insist that every single vote receipt be counted and compared to voter registries as well as to voting machine tally sheets.

In announcing the audit, Lucena did not say whether authorities would do that. But a council spokesperson, speaking on condition of anonymity because she was not permitted to be named, said the audit would be done as Capriles specified.

Venezuela’s electronic voting system emits receipts for every ballot that are boxed up with the tally machines. The government says the boxes are in warehouses, guarded by troops.

Maduro was declared the winner of Sunday’s election by a slim 267,000-vote margin out of 14.9 million ballots cast. That did not include more than 100,000 votes cast abroad, where more than 90 percent were cast for Capriles in elections last October.

He had squandered in less than two weeks a double-digit lead in the polls as Venezuelans upset by a troubled economy, rampant crime, food shortages and worsening power outages turned away from a candidate they considered a poor imitation of the charismatic leader for whom he long served as foreign minister.

Capriles maintains the vote was stolen from him through intimidation and other abuses and presented a long list of abuses including using the threat of violence to force opposition monitors from 283 polling stations, in some cases at gunpoint.

No international election monitors were scrutinizing the vote and Capriles has said that some members of the military were arrested for trying to prevent abuses.

Lucena’s announcement seemed a sharp turnaround from a government that has a stranglehold on all state institutions and waged a crackdown on protests all week. On Wednesday, the Supreme Court chief had announced that the full recount Capriles demanded was not legal.

But Capriles said the government would need to prove its sincerity by carrying out the audit in good faith and without subterfuge.

All week, Maduro had been accusing him of trying to mount a coup by dispatching “neo-Nazi gangs” allegedly bankrolled and directed by the United States. His government blamed Capriles for eight deaths and 70 injuries it said were caused by right-wing thugs.

The 50-year-old former bus driver and union leader who was sworn in as acting president after Chavez died last month after a long fight with cancer. He has served Chavez as foreign minister for six years.

“I am not going to be a weak president,” Maduro said before flying to Lima. “I am going to be a president with a firm hand against coup plotters, against inefficiency and corruption.”

But a leading human rights lawyer said Thursday that Venezuela had this past week seen its worst political repression in six years with the beating by National Guard troops in the western city of Barquisieto of dozens of opposition supporters inside a barracks for refusing to recognize Maduro’s victory.

 Source: AP

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Politics

Justice Kpegah’s suit against Nana Addo dismissed

A suit filed by Justice Francis Yaonasu Kpegah against the 2012 Presidential Candidate of the New Patriotic Party (NPP) has been dismissed.

The retired Supreme Court judge had filed the suit against Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo accusing him of illegally holding himself out as a lawyer.

Documents available at the General Legal Council prove that Nana Addo had been called to the bar. That happened on July 8, 1975.

An extract of Roll Book of the Council states that “William Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, BA (Hons), of the University of Ghana, of Peduase Lodge, Aburi, Ghana, the first son of Edward Akufo-Addo, of Ghana, aforesaid President of Ghana was specially admitted to the Middle Temple on the thirteenth day of January one thousand nine hundred and sixty-nine. Called to the Utter Bar on the twenty-second day of July One thousand nine hundred and seventy-one and published in the common dining hall of the said Society on the same day. And that he hath paid all duties which were owing by him to the Society and the officers thereunto belonging.”

Justice Kpegah had failed to appear on the first day of hearing, citing ill-health.

He had promised to make an appearance at Thursday’s hearing to prove beyond all doubt that the former Attorney-General and Minister of Justice has not been called to the bar. He also called for a live telecast of the suit.

Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Prez Mahama commended for nominating Hohoe MP as minister

Hohoe Constituency branch of the National Democratic Congress (NDC) has commended President John Dramani Mahama for the honour done its Member of Parliament, Dr. Bernice Adiku Heloo, who was appointed a Deputy Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation.

Addressing a press conference at Hohoe, Constance Tumawu, the Constituency Chairman, said Dr Bernice Adiku’s appointment came as no surprise to them as a result of the positions she has held in the past.

The Constituency chairman expressed the confidence that Dr Adiku would live up to expectation.

He said this is the first time since the inception of the Fourth Republic that the Constituency has had a ministerial position.

Therefore, they pledged the party’s support for the Deputy Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation Minister, whom they believe will bring honour and respect to the municipality.

The constituency Women’s Organizer, Mary Ofori, was optimistic that the elevation of the MP is a sign of good things to come to women in the area and her position will spur other women on to strive to climb the political ladder.

The Deputy Organizer, Alhadji Yusif Abdulai, pointed out that the party is solidly behind Dr Bernice Adiku and will back her to succeed to confirm the confidence reposed in her by the President.


Source: TV3 News|Ghana

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Politics

Pro-NDC group questions NPP’s democratic credentials

Inside Ghana, a pro-National Democratic Congress (NDC) group, has raised doubts over the democratic credentials of the main opposition party, New Patriotic Party (NPP), saying its double standards regarding the credibility of the Electoral Commission (EC) in organizing free and fair elections leaves much to be desired.

A statement issued by George Spencer Quaye, Convener of Inside Ghana, said NPP’s accusation of EC in the conduct of the 2012 Elections and their subtle campaign for the parliamentary candidate of the Convention People’s Party, Ahmadu Yahaya, in the April 30 by-election held in Kumbungu Constituency “smacks of hypocrisy”.

Below is the unedited statement;

GHANAIANS MUST QUESTION NPP’S DEMOCRATIC TENETS

The New Patriotic Party has publicly accused the Electoral Commission of Ghana of lacking credibility and hence boycotted all parliamentary bye-elections in support of their bastardization of the constitutionally mandated body tasked to organize elections. In furtherance to this action, leading members of NPP have labeled the EC as being in bed with the ruling NDC government and therefore cannot be trusted to organize any free and fair elections.

It is therefore surprising to hear that regional and constituency executives of the party asked their members to vote for CPP’s candidate Moses Yahaya in the just ended bye-elections in Kumbungu. In one instance the NPP will not contest the bye-elections because the electoral commission lacks credibility and in one breadth the same party is aiding another party to win elections being organized by the same electoral commission. Inside Ghana wants to know the rationale behind such irresponsible conclusion?

Some members of the NPP have on different platforms also congratulated Mr. Amadu Yahya, MP elect for Kumbungu Constituency who won on the ticket of Convention Peoples’ Party. Inside Ghana believes that such double standards smacks of hypocrisy and calls for a serious scrutiny of the democratic tenets of the New Patriotic Party. One wonders if the NPP is not shooting itself in the foot and if indeed they understand and appreciate the democratization process in Ghana. Ghanaians will recall in anguish the violence perpetuated by the NPP after losing the Presidential elections in 2012 fair and square as recently acknowledged by star witness Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia during cross examination. Attacks on media personnel and supporters of the ruling NDC and the failure of Nana Akufo-Addo to state publicly that he will respect and comply by the ruling of the Supreme Court is a grave threat to our democracy. Nana Addo’s seeming silence on war chants by leading members of the NPP is equally worrisome and Inside Ghana believes these are traits of anti-democracy and anarchy.

Inside Ghana therefore calls on Ghanaians to question the democratic tenets of the New Patriotic Party. These pseudo democratic traits have no room or space in a democracy. The deliberate attacks on the EC and NDC built on falsity and atrocious concoctions only retard the progress of our democracy and must not be allowed to thrive. Nana Akufo-Addo is yet to apologise for his ‘all die be die’ chant, a situation that can no longer be swept under the carpet.

Inside Ghana will like to take this opportunity to congratulate Mr. Amadu Yahya and the entire CPP family for this feat. They have demonstrated that hard work indeed pays. To Madam Samia Nkrumah we say more grease to your elbow and hope to see the CPP becoming a second force to the National Democratic Congress in the years to come

We would also like to commend the Electoral Commission for upholding the high standards they have set and once again demonstrating to the world that Ghana is indeed a democratic State where elections are free, fair and transparent. In other countries, an incumbent losing a bye-election is unimaginable and in the face of all these baseless accusations from the NPP, the electoral commission has not fragmented and Ghana is still the winner.

Signed

George Spencer Quaye


Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

NDC salutes Ghanaian workers

The National Democratic Congress (NDC) wishes to extend its warmest greetings to Ghanaian workers on the occasion of May Day.

The NDC congratulates Ghanaian workers and commend them for their sacrifices and commitment to the socio-economic development of the nation. Indeed, the toil, dedication and selflessness of the Ghanaian worker, even in the wake of surmounting socio-economic and political challenges hampering their efforts, has kept the wheel of productivity and development moving.

We believe that your tolerance, discipline and efforts in nation building have sustained the labour environment prevailing in the country. The NDC government’s recognition for the Trades Union and affiliate labour institutions is unflinching, an indication of the party’s endless bond of working relations with progressive forces towards building a better Ghana.

The NDC reiterates that, as allies, we uphold collaboration, fair wages and the respect for workers’ human rights and dignity. We shall therefore not relent on our resolve to stand for workers rights, unlike the ideological foes of the working class who at a time in the nation’s history tried to disband Trade Unionism in this country.

On this auspicious occasion, we urge all Ghanaians to reflect on our resolve to sacrifice and be committed towards increasing productivity and contribution to economic development.

The NDC salutes Ghanaian workers on this special day of workers day.

Long Live Unionized Labour

Long Live the Ghanaian Worker

Long Live Ghana.


Source: Johnson Asiedu Nketia, General Secrtary-NDC

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Politics

CPP wins Kumbungu by-election

Candidate of the Convention People’s Party (CPP) in the Kumbungu by-election held on Tuesday, Moses Amadu Yahaya, emerged victorious.

The by-election was instanced by the abdication of the seat by Alhaji Mohammed Mumuni, who was appointed earlier this year to serve as the Secretary-General of the African, Caribbean and Pacific (ACP) Group of States.

Yahaya, 61, polled 13,029 votes to beat favourite Alhaji Imoro Yakubu Kakpagu of the National Democratic Congress (NDC).

Alhaji Kakpagu polled 11,896 votes out of a total of 39,478 registered voters in the Constituency.

A third candidate, Ahmed Nasiru Mohammed, represented the People’s Progressive Party (PPP). He polled 228 votes to come third.

Rejected ballots numbered 634.

Voter turn-out was 55 per cent.

Source: 3news.com|Ghana

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Politics

Bawumia raises doubt over letter

Dr Mahamudu Bawumia, the second petitioner on Tuesday raised doubts about a letter tendered by Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, Counsel for NDC purported to have been written and signed by Nana Akufo-Addo, the first petitioner in the ongoing election petition hearing.

Dr Bawumia said though the signature and letter head appeared to be that of the first petitioner, it was curious that a letter written on December 5, 2012 would be received by the Electoral Commission (EC) on December 3, 2012.

He raised the suspicion when Mr Tsatsu Tsikata, Counsel for the National Democratic Congress (NDC) continued his cross-examination of the witness on the ninth day of hearing.

Dr Bawumia said there was inconsistency with the date on the letter received by the returning officers and that the petitioners had asked the EC to explain the contradiction.

He said he was not initially aware of the presence of the letter but his attention was later drawn to it, adding that there was something interesting about the letter.

Earlier, Mr Tsikata asked the witness whether CI 75 provided for what happened when there was a breakdown of the verification machine. Dr Bawumia answered and said he was aware that when a machine breaks down, voting must stop and the machine replaced.

Mr Tsikata also asked if the “no verification no vote” saying by the witness and the petitioners meant that people should not be allowed to vote if their hands had not been passed through the verification machine. He added that there were several other processes of verifying a voter so the understanding of the law by the witness was flawed.

Dr Bawumia said per the instruction by the EC, which had been clearly emphasized in the CI 75, one would have to pass through all the processes of verification, including biometric verification before voting.

He named two polling stations in the northern region where the entire results were annulled because two people did not go through the process of biometric verification.

Dr Bawumia further explained by saying that even by law, disabled persons still have to be biometrically verified.

Mr Tsikata asked the witness if the terms of reference of the Committee set up to investigate the alleged irregularities, was to ensure that the first petitioner becomes the president.

Dr Bawumia said the Committee was to ensure that there was justice to all Ghanaians.

Mr Tsikata asked again if it was the wish of the Committee members to make the first petitioner, President and he Dr Bawumia the vice president.

Dr Bawumia said he did not asked members of the Committee whether it was their wish to make Nana Addo President and him the Vice President.

Mr Tsikata also asked the witness that as the Chairman of that committee did he give directive to his members to pick out everything in C3 and use that as evidence of irregularity. He further asked how the witness came about with irregularity on the alleged duplication of serial numbers.

Dr Bawumia said they had knowledge on the various irregularities and so they coded the irregularities and the computer did the rest.

Mr Tsikata picked another set of pink sheet exhibits for further cross examination and said on those pink sheets there were no exhibit numbers and asked the witness if it was a mistake on the part of the petitioners.

Dr Bawumia conceded but said it might be a problem for the Commissioner of Oath.

Mr Tsikata said it might well be an error and that human beings are fallible.

Dr Bawumia insisted that though human beings could make mistake that was different from violations of the law.

Tsikata also presented to the court several other pink sheet exhibits in which some spaces for exhibit numbers have been left blank, others have been filled; some left unstamped by the Commissioner of Oath. He then asked Dr Bawumia what accounted for the anomaly.

Dr Bawumia said the exhibit numbers were generated electronically and manually, adding that those that have not been labeled and unstamped were supposed to have been done by the Commissioner of Oath.

Mr Tsikata further presented a list of pink sheets exhibits for the witness to check and to confirm if they were mislabeled.

Dr Bawumia confirmed they were mislabeled but insisted that they were entered once in their analysis of evidence.

After an hour recess, Mr Tsikata continued with his cross examination and brought out a new set of pink sheet exhibits and asked witness if he could confirm that two of the pink sheets were from the same polling station.

Dr Bawumia confirmed they were separate pink sheets from the same polling station.

Mr Tsikata asked the witness if it was a mistake that the exhibits did not have the stamp of the Commissioner of Oath.

Dr Bawumia said if that was what was supposed to happen then it was a mistake.

Mr Tsikata then asked if any of the petitioners were present when the Commissioner of Oath was packaging the exhibits and whether or not they saw all the exhibits being tendered.

Dr Bawumia said the other two petitioners were not present when the exhibits were being packed by the Commissioner of Oath but insisted they looked through every single pink sheet before they were tendered.

Mr Tsikata also asked the witness if he admitted that there was an error in not filling the space for the labeling of pink sheets exhibits.

Dr Bawumia admitted it was an error but ironically said those errors must not affect “somebody’s presidency.”

Mr Tsikata presented another list of pink sheet exhibits to be checked by the witness.

At that juncture, Mr Philip Addison, Counsel for the petitioners raised an objection and said the exhibit being tendered by the counsel of the third respondent was struck out in the amended petition and so counsel could not ask the witness questions on exhibits that were no longer before the court.

Mr Justice William Atuguba, the Presiding judge upheld the objection and asked Mr Tsikata to find other ways to continue his cross-examination.

Case adjourned to the Thursday May 2, 2013.


Source: GNA