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Top Breaking News in Ghana this Afternoon Tuesday, 21st of July, 2020

1. Akufo-Addo will beat Mahama - EIU Report

Despite the negative effects of the Covid-19 pandemic on the economic achievements of the ruling New Patriotic Party (NPP), the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU) has again predicted that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo will defeat the leader of the main opposition party, ex-President John Mahama, in the December 2020 presidential election.


According to the July report which forecast closed in June, Ghanaians still do not trust former President John Mahama under whose presidency, between 2012 and 2016, the economy suffered serious battering.


It said the crucial 2016 election was dominated by public concerns about the faltering economy which many Ghanaians still associate with Mr. Mahama and his poor handling of the economy, and it is still fresh in the memories of the public.

According to the EIU, ahead of the 2020 general election, the Akufo-Addo administration, with hindsight of the effects of Covid-19, has focused on industrialization and infrastructure development, as well as outlining ambitious growth plans for the mainstay of the economy, agriculture, with a view to boosting rural incomes.


“The government’s industrialization push and moves to strengthen the banking sector will benefit non-oil economic growth, although the cost of capital will remain a constraint,” the report said.

“Despite the negative economic impact from the pandemic, the Economist Intelligence Unit believes that it will be difficult for the NDC under Mr. Mahama to portray itself as the better custodian of Ghana’s economy. We, therefore, expect Mr. Akufo-Addo and the NPP to secure re-election,” the report added.


The EIU said following a rise to 7.8% of Gross Domestic Product (GDP) in 2020 as a result of lower oil prices, the current account deficit will narrow in 2021 to 2024 as external conditions and hydrocarbon exports recover.

Ahead of this election, the NPP has focused on industrialization and infrastructure development, as well as outlining ambitious growth plans for agriculture to boost rural incomes.


“Following a marked weakening of the economy in 2020, reflecting a deteriorating current-account position and investor nervousness ahead of the elections, the pace of cedi depreciation will slow in 2021-24 as the hydrocarbons sector ramps up production and rise in prices” the EIU said, adding that after inflation increased to 11.3% in 2020, owing to currency weakness and pandemic-related disruption to supply chains, price rises will slow to an average of 8.8% in 2021-24.


The EIU, however, noted that if the NDC can present a coherent challenge and hold the NPP administration to account on its unfulfilled campaign promises—such as faster progress on infrastructure development—the 2020 elections could be closely contested.


2. Bullets were flying like planes - NDC Parliamentary candidate for Awutu Senya narrates

NDC’s parliamentary candidate for Awutu Senya constituency, Miss Naa Kroyo has narrated what she witnessed at the registration centre in Kasoa, where the incumbent Member of Parliament, Mavis Hawa Koomson, fired a warning shot.


According to her, it was an unbelievable sight to behold as bullets flew several kilometres and landed into people’s shops.

“She stood there and watched as things were bad. What I saw was not easy. Bullets flew as far as for instance, from Abeka Junction to the Achimota overhead. That was the distance. She burnt people’s motorbikes and had her goons splash pepper spray in people’s eyes. All these perpetrators alighted from her car,” she stated on the Ade Akye Abia morning show.


Reacting to Hawa Koomson’s act of firing gunshots at a registration centre in Kasoa on Tuesday, Madam Kroyo stated that the constituents are fed up with her and cannot wait to kick her out of power.

“She cannot boast of doing anything good for the constituency. Kasoa is not even counted as part of Ghana because nothing has happened since she took over. Apart from John Mahama’s achievements, she has done nothing. All she knows and breathes is violence. Everybody is tired of her. The people of Kasoa have already decided,” she established.


3.Staunch member of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP) Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko has claimed that former President John Mahama will soon implement some policies he had intended to implement but lost power to the NPP in 2016.

The said policies, he said, include youth in grass cutting and women in stone picking.

Taking a dig at the former President and his government, Mr Asare Otchere-Darko suggested that an old video in which Rashid Pelpuo, then Minister of State in-charge Public Private Partnerships, is heard saying that employed teachers and nurses could resort to picking and selling stones as a form of employment, gives a sneak peek into the 2020 manifesto of the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC).


“A little peak inside the 2020 NDC manifesto and some of the mistakes that JM has learnt and wishes to correct if elected, like implementing policies his Govt suggested but never had the chance to implement. Some of these policies Ghanaians should look forward to include: Youth in Grass Cutting; Women in Stone Picking. Three trips of stones a day from the bush solves all your unemployment problems,” he reacted to the video of the former Minister.


For him, going back for Mahama is going back for trouble.

Dr Rashid Pelpuo, then Minister in the erstwhile government of John Mahama suggested unemployed nurses and teachers who were demanding posting at the time and had been denied due to a ban on government employment could engage in stone picking or cutting grass for sale to prospective buyers.


At the time, his suggestions angered many unemployed nurses and teachers who unanimously condemned his suggestion.


4. I fired the gunshots myself - Hawa Koomson admits shooting at a registration centre

Mavis Hawa Koomson, the MP for the Awutu Senya East, says she fired a gun at a voters registration centre in her constituency.

“None of my men had guns on then when we got to the centre. I fired the shots myself,” the MP, who is also Special Development Initiatives Minister, told Adom FM.


She added that the gunshot was a way of protecting herself at the registration centre since her police escort had not started working that day.

The MP indicated she went to the place because she heard her opponent had bussed people from other places to the registration centre.

“I’m a Member of Parliament, I need to protect myself. It was at dawn, my police escort had not started work yet. So that is a mechanism I have adopted in his absence,” she said.


On Monday the Kasoa Peace Town Top Hill Down polling station was closed down by the officials of the Electoral Commission after gun-wielding men stormed the premises.

Some armed men of the MP numbering about 15 arrived at the registration centre around 8 am and tried to sack some prospective voters.

The NDC Parliamentary Candidate Naa Koryoo Okunor then accused the sitting MP of being the mastermind.


Meanwhile, the police say four persons have been arrested in connection with the incident.


5. Sack Hawa Koomson if she doesn't resign - Kwesi Aning to President Akufo-Addo

Security Expert, Prof Kwesi Aning, has called for the dismissal of a Member of Parliament who fired gunshots at a registration centre in Kasoa if she fails to resign herself.

“It is my hope that the President will ask Hawa Koomson to step aside or probably dismiss her,” Prof Aning said on Joy News TV’s PM Express.

According to him, the warning shots fired by the MP for Awutu Senya East and Minister for Special Initiatives were unacceptable, premeditated and put the lives of her constituents at risk.


The Director of Faculty of Academic Affairs and Research at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre said the incident brings to the fore the ease of acquiring guns in Ghana.

Mavis Hawa Koomson admitted on Monday, July 20, 2020, that she fired a gun at a voters registration centre in Kasoa.

“None of my men had guns on then when we got to the centre. I fired the shots myself,” the MP, who is also Special Development Initiatives Minister, told Adom FM.


She added that the gunshot was a way of protecting herself at the registration centre since her police escort had not started working that day.

The MP indicated she went to the place because she heard her opponent had bussed people from other places to the registration centre.

“I’m a Member of Parliament, I need to protect myself. It was at dawn, my police escort had not started work yet. So that is a mechanism I have adopted in his absence,” she said.


6. Akufo-Addo has not fulfilled his promises well enough to deserve re-election: poll

More than half of Ghanaians surveyed in the Ghana Election Poll do not think President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has fulfilled his promises well enough to deserve re-election as President of Ghana in the December 2020 presidential election.

The first wave of results of the Ghana Election Poll conducted online via the renowned market research firm MSI-ACI from May 1 through to June 30 finds 52% of the respondents against the view that the president deserves another 4-year mandate based on fulfilled promises.


Meanwhile, 32% of Ghanaians who took part in the poll are of the view that the president has fulfilled his promises in the past 4 years and deserves to be re-elected. However, 16% are undecided. The data further reveals that both males and females representing 51.8% and 52.2% respectively do not think the president has fulfilled his promises well enough to deserve re-election.


Across the ages, a lot more are undecided about whether the president has fulfilled his promises well enough to be re-elected. Those who are 40 years and above think he has fulfilled his promises well enough to be re-elected.

Results for the full sample have a margin of sampling error (with finite population correction) of plus or minus 3.482%. A representative sample of the Ghanaian population was achieved by weighting (matching) the data according to age and gender demographics of the 2010 population and housing census and the Ghana Living Standards Survey (GLSS 7).


Seven questions were asked in the first wave of the Ghana Election Poll and their corresponding results would be published within the next three weeks. The questions include:


• Do you plan to vote in the 2020 election?

• If the December 2020 elections were to be held today, which party do you feel will win?

• Do you think Akufo-Addo has fulfilled his promises well enough to deserve re-election?

• Do you think former President John Mahama deserves to return as President of Ghana?

• Do you think it is time to vote another party into power apart from the NDC and NPP?

• Do you feel there is a possibility of vote-rigging in the 2020 election?

• Who are you planning to vote for if the 2020 elections were held today?


The Ghana Election Poll is powered by GhanaWeb and the Africa Consumer Panel which is a partnership between the digital publisher Africa Business Communities and renowned market research firm MSI-ACI.

The online poll is conducted every month and the results are published at the beginning of every other month on GhanaWeb.com. It is devoid of spam as the respondents can take the survey only once. The MSI-ACI platform that hosts the survey records the device on which the respondent takes the poll and does not allow for a second attempt from the same device.


The Ghana Election Poll is different from the open-access poll which is running on GhanaWeb. The latter allows participants to self-select into participation and its results cannot be generalized because it is a representative of only the participants of the poll.


7. It’s too early to call for Hawa Koomson’s dismissal - NPP MP

Issah Fuseini, the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Member of Parliament for Okaikoi North has labeled calls for the dismissal of the Minister of Special Initiatives, Mavis Hawa Koomson as knee jerk in nature.

He said such calls are too early at the moment since the police are yet to start investigations into the shooting incident involving the Minister at Kasoa.

Speaking on TV3’s New Day, Issah Fuseini opined that the calls for her sack can be justified after full investigations.


The MP said “…with what transpired at the registration, I don’t think the minister will exercise first option by pulling a gun without a cause or a defect. The details are still coming in and we must be circumspect.”

“It think it’s too early to make those calls, let’s find out what actually transpired.”


8. NPP communicator takes on Agyinasare over comments on banking crisis

A member of the communications team of the governing New Patriotic Party (NPP), Edmund Kyei, has said although jobs have been lost following the closure of some troubled banks by the central bank, the decision was inevitable.

Edmund Kyei, who is also the First Vice Chairman of the party in the Asokwa Constituency said past governments should have acted earlier to close the troubled banks to reduce the effect on jobs and the entire financial sector.


“For some time now some banks in Ghana have been closed down following poor management and some other factors. We accept that jobs and properties have been lost but the harm of allowing these banks to be in operation would have been greater than this,” Mr Kyei stated in a press release.

Presiding Bishop of Perez Chapel International, Bishop Charles Agyinasare, during a sermon recently asked whether locally-owned uniBank, GN Bank and UT Bank could not have been salvaged by the Bank of Ghana during its financial sector cleanup exercise.

In his virtual sermon on Sunday, July 19, 2020, which was themed: ‘Getting rid of envy’, Bishop Agyinasare said the same “demons” that possessed politicians in the days of old to collapse local businesses were still lingering and causing havoc.


He said they are “still at work today and we must exorcise this nation from that demon otherwise we are far from going forward”.


“I have been asking myself: So, for Dr Kwabena Duffuor, under whose time as Minister of Finance, we had the best economic growth rate of 14 per cent, there was nothing we could do with his bank?”

“What about Dr Papa Kwesi Nduom, who introduced or expanded susu banking and had branches than any commercial bank with more customers?” the Perez Chapel International founder asked.

“Then, my own Amoabeng, who helped me grow my money to my first $100,000, which I withdrew and gave out for the building of the Dome, as part of my contribution. Could nothing have been done to salvage some of these great institutions?”

But reacting to Bishop Agyinasare’s sermon, Edmund Kyei said that the government did not really close down any of these banks during the clean-up exercise, but only took over their management.


“I plead with Bishop Charles Agyinasare to speak about the benefits customers and potential customers will receive which surpasses the close-down,” he urged.

Content created and supplied by: Ghanahotnews (via Opera News )

EIU Economist Intelligence Unit Ghana John Mahama Nana Addo Dankwa

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