Work on Ofankor-Nsawam Road Project 50 per cent complete – Resident Engineer


Construction work on the 33.4km Ofankor-Nsawam Road Project is about 50 per cent complete and will be done as scheduled, Mr Kwabena Bempong, the Chief Resident Engineer for the project, has said.

Work on the stretch, which forms part of the Accra-Kumasi road network, commenced in 2022 and expected to last for two years, ending in July 2024.

The stretch serves as a major arterial road for communities in the Ga West Municipal Assembly, Pokuase, Amasaman, Medie, and Sarpeiman, among others.

It also serves as a vital link for trade between Ghana and its neighbouring landlocked countries – Burkina Faso, Mali and Niger, and for transit cargo to move from the country’s ports to those destinations.

Mr Bempong, addressing the Minister of Roads and Highways, Mr Kwasi Amoako-Atta, during an inspection tour, said work on the project was progressing as expected with the contractor on course to deliver the project on time.

‘Presently, our progress is about 50 per cent and we are hoping that by the end of the year, we
would have gone substantially complete,’ he said.

Giving details of work done so far, the Chief Resident Engineer said a lot of concrete works were done, indicating that construction of foot bridges were about 50 per cent complete.

Additionally, he said they were in the process of completing the two overpasses and an underpass at Medie, Pobiman, Amasaman, adding that, construction work on the three-tier interchange at Nsawam was 20 per cent complete.

‘Nsawam is where we have the three-tier interchange, we are currently about 20 per cent complete, with the Pobiman, we’ve done about 70 per cent, Medie is also about 40 per cent and then the railway bridge, that is not an interchange but then, that is also about 50 per cent complete,’ he indicated.

Again, Mr Bempong indicated that all cross culverts were almost complete while 40 per cent of all longitudinal drains had been completed.

With regards to relocation of utility lines, the Resident Engineer said with the exception of the high tensions, which would b
e removed in the coming days, all electrical pillions had been relocated.

‘With regards to the water lines, that also has started. The first 2km, they have done quite substantial work and then, wherever we have emergency situations we have done work,’ he added.

Funded by the Government at an estimated cost of GHS342.48, the Ofankor-Nsawam road when completed would have three lanes, service roads, one interchange, two overpasses and an underpass.

The construction is being undertaken by Maripoma Enterprise Limited, a local construction firm.

Mr Amoako-Atta, the Minister of Roads and Highways, expressed contentment with the progress of work so far, indicating that Government would ensure that quality work was done.

While urging the Contractor to take all measures to reduce the dust emanating as a result of the construction work, he appealed to motorists and residents to bare with the Contractor, be cautious and reduce speed on the stretch to ensure the safety of all.

The Minister also toured the Flowerpot
Flyover which is 70 per cent complete and the yet to commence dualisation of Adentan-Dodowa Road.

He was accompained by some engineers from the Ministry and the Ghana Highways Authority (GHA), including Mr Stephen Jalulah, Deputy Minister of Roads; Mr Abass Awolu, Chief Director of the Ministry; Mr Collins Donkor, Acting Chief Executive, GHA; Mr Samuel Akuaku, Acting Deputy Chief Executive in charge of Administration, GHA; and Mr Lawrence Lamptey, a Deputy Chief Executive in charge of Maintenance, GHA.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Africa Monologue Challenge season two heats up as final eviction begin


The second season of the Africa Monologue Challenge (AMC) is entering its final stage as the number of contenders dwindles towards the grand finale in Uganda on May 26, 2024.

A statement issued by the organizers of the AMC led by Mr Mawuko Kuadzi, Chief Executive Officer of M.K. Casting said the competition from an initial pool of 2,000 submissions, it has shortlisted and nurtured 50 finalists through online challenges and bi-weekly evictions.

‘Only 10 finalists will ultimately make it to the grand stage in Uganda, representing the diverse voices and acting talents across the continent,’ it stated.

The statement said the 50 shortlisted finalists have been showcasing their talents and skills through various monologues, which were judged by a panel of professional filmmakers from Africa, Europe, and America.

The AMC is powered by M.K Casting, Ghana’s premium casting agency, and partnered by the African Chamber of Content Producers.

This year’ event is also supported by the Uganda Communication Commission
and the AMC is aimed at promoting and celebrating African storytelling and acting, as well as to provide opportunities and exposure for the participants.

The winner of the AMC would enjoy several benefits, including hosting the next season of the event in their country, starring in a pan-African film produced in their country, and receiving cash prizes and other rewards.

The statement said this year’s Ugandan location for the AMC reflected the victory of last year’s champion, Rachael Nduhukuri, a Ugandan actress.

‘As part of her prize package, the next edition of the AMC unfolds in her home country, along with the production of a Pan-African film featuring Rachael Nduhukire as the lead character. Additionally, she received a cash prize and other benefits,’ it revealed.

Mr. York-Fabian Raabe, a film maker based in Germany, and one of the jurors of the AMC also had this to say, ‘For me it is the second time with the AMC, and I do not get tired watching all these talents. What stands out the most for me is t
hat they are not only good actors and actresses, but they are also genuine characters.

‘And again, out of these personal characters, they explore new characters for each story. It is fascinating to watch this process and it is fascinating to watch these talents grow and an honour to be part of the AMC.’

Ms Tory Thompson, an evictee from Nigeria told the GNA that the event organizers cared about the goals of the participants and helped them shape their craft.

‘They are very fair, they give everyone one a role, and you are supposed to play it to the best of your ability, they even do eviction shows, they remind you…, like they really care about your goals. I just wish I had gone further because I really missed out It’s a wonderful show,’ she stated.

Mr Agumu Mark, a finalist from Uganda, said that the AMC has improved his time management and acting career, stating; ‘I have learned a lot from the feedback and the challenges. I am very excited to still be part of the AMC and I hope to continue to learn and gr
ow.’

Ms Esther Wanjiru, a finalist from Kenya, said her journey with the AMC had been incredible and transformative, adding that; ‘Every time I take the stage, I discover a new aspect of myself and refine my skills as an actor.

‘The competition has helped me overcome fear and embrace vulnerabilities. Every moment in the AMC has been a step forward in my personal growth.’

Source: Ghana News Agency

Cyber Security Authority cautions public amid Valentine’s Day celebration


The Cyber Security Authority (CSA) has cautioned the public to exercise caution and due diligence in their online activities amid the Valentine’s Day celebration.

Valentine’s Day is an occasion when people show their affection for others by sending gifts or items with messages of love.

The Authority said malicious cyber actors also used the celebration to defraud unsuspecting victims through various schemes.

It added that of the total losses recorded for 2023, at least GHC 3,558,940.00 was lost through online shopping and romance scams.

In a press statement issued by the Cyber Security Authority and made available to the Ghana News Agency, it said malicious actors created fake websites or online shops or impersonated existing businesses on social media, offering heavily discounted packages and items.

It added that victims were enticed to send money for these items which they never received, or they received in substandard forms.

The statement also said malicious actors created fake business listings or
profiles with their contact details on Google Maps mimicking legitimate businesses or brands and used search engine optimisation techniques to manipulate search results for the targeted brand to divert legitimate inquiries to the scammers’ contact numbers.

‘After the unsuspecting victims engage and pay, usually to a mobile money wallet for products, the scammers block them from making further contact, and the expected delivery does not materialize,’ the statement added.

It said malicious actors send unsolicited emails or messages claiming to be from a romantic partner, or a company offering Valentine’s Day deals.

The statement said these messages contained links or attachments that when clicked, install malicious software, known as malware, or steal personal information.

It said malicious actors created fake online profiles to deceive victims into believing they were engaging in a trusting relationship, using the relationship to persuade the victims to send money, provide personal and financial informatio
n, or purchase items for them.

The statement advised the public to be cautious of ‘too good to be true’ deals on Valentine’s Day packages or gifts, and to use a reputable online marketplace or retailer when purchasing Valentine’s Day gifts.

It added that individuals should look for reviews and customer feedback before making an online purchase.

‘While search engines provide convenient access to information, they can also display manipulated or misleading results, check on the official websites or with reliable sources to validate the contact details of shops rather than relying solely on search engine results,’ it stressed.

The statement advised the public to be alert for fake online shops and hyped adverts, especially on Facebook, Instagram, and Telegram, where in most cases, individuals should request a physical location to enable the validation of legitimacy of the business.

‘Insist on payment only after delivery and inspection, be wary of unsolicited messages or emails claiming to be from a romantic
partner, especially those that make requests for money or other sensitive information,’

‘Do not share personal information such as your Ghana card number, credit card information, or bank account details with anyone, ensure that mobile money payments are made to wallets in the name of the online shop you are dealing with,’ it said.

The statement said the CSA has a 24-hour Cybersecurity or Cybercrime Incident Reporting Point of Contact (PoC) for reporting cybercrimes and for seeking guidance and assistance on online activities.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Nkwanta South traders cry to Interior Ministry to review curfew


The Nkwanta South Traders Association has called on the Interior Ministry to review the curfew imposed on the township.

Mr Richard Owusu Ansah popularly known as Paa Rich, secretary of the Association said, the current curfew from 1700 hours to 0600 hours was affecting their business activities resulting from the ethnic conflict.

Business activities in the Nkwanta South and adjoining communities have been affected since November 2023 due to inter-tribal conflict, which has resulted in the deaths of over 14 people, with many properties destroyed.

The traders explained that the conflict in the area had affected the once vibrant business centre in the region.

They stressed the need for review of the curfew to enable business to return to normalcy.

The traders made the request when they presented food items to the security agencies as part of their support to ensure peace in the Nkwanta South Municipality.

Chief Superintendent Michael Asiedu, the Nkwanta South Divisional Police commander, receiving the ite
ms, commended the traders for the gesture.

He assured the traders that the police and other security agencies would work assiduously to restore peace in the municipality.

Chief Supt. Asiedu urged residents to cooperate with the police by providing the necessary support that would quell the conflict in the area.

Source: Ghana News Agency

RMU signs MoU with DMI to improve maritime education, training in Africa


The Regional Maritime University (RMU) on has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Dar Es Salaam Maritime Institute (DMI), Tanzania as part of measures to deepen collaborative efforts towards improving upon the standards of maritime education and training on the continent.

The MoU signing ceremony climaxed a three-day working visit by DMI delegation to the RMU in Accra.

The MoU according to the Ag. Vice Chancellor of the RMU, Dr Jethro W. Brooks Jr., would among other things, see the RMU offering tuition-free scholarships to two female students of the DMI to study both nautical and marine engineering courses.

He said, they would also collaborate in research activities adding that the RMU was committed to the spirit of the MoU for the mutual benefit of the two institutions.

‘It has been a long period of interaction with the DMI. The RMU has strengthened its visibility in collaboration, cooperation, and teamwork with other institutions in the industry, and the DMI is one of those institution
s.

‘We are grateful to have variety of areas of collaboration and bring finality to interactions that started seven months ago,’ he stated.

He said, the fact that the two institutions intended to combine forces was an indication that Africans could work together to achieve a common goal.

On her part, DMI Rector, Dr Tumaini S. Gurumo added that, they would be working together in research and publication as well as the upcoming International Blue Economy Conference to be held in Tanzania in July.

‘The conference had been going on since 2021 and the third edition would be held this year. Because of the collaboration, starting this year, we will run the conference together with RMU. It would be rotated every year, with this year’s event happening in Tanzania in July and the next in Ghana in 2025,’ she explained.

‘We would also have reviewers from the RMU to assist with the Journal of Maritime Science and Technology at DMI in addition to exchange programmes for lecturers and students. We believe this collabor
ation would be one-of-its-kind and urge all to be committed to the course.

‘This is the first institution in Africa we are entering into an MOU with since we started in 1978 and certain that it would be fruitful to show that Africans can move together and achieve results,’ she added.

‘We want to see Africa grow through its own resources, and this will be part of the collaborations to ensure that we develop within,’ she stressed.

The two institutions exchanged gifts with the delegation also touring the facilities of the RMU, hoping to replicate the state-of-the-art infrastructure to improve upon maritime education in their country.

Source: Ghana News Agency

2023 AFCON final: African coach to conquer again?


By Muluh Alfred

The past two editions of the Africa Cup of Nations have been won by African coaches, a pattern which still has a possibility to continue in the 2023 AFCON.

As much as the Super Eagles led by Portuguese coach Jose Peseiro are considered favourites of the final against Ivory Coast, a win by the hosts will maintain the trend.

Since Belgian tactician Hugo Broos lifted the trophy with Cameroon in 2017, only coaches of African origin have emerged champions over the past two editions.

Djamel Belmadi won with Algeria in 2019, while Aliou Cisse gave Senegal their first title in 2021.

A total of 24 coaches participated in the AFCON 2023, with 13 out of the total being of African origin while the rest were foreign coaches.

Surprisingly, of the 13 African coaches who led their teams in the AFCON, 10 of them made it to the round of 16 including coaches from Morocco, Cameroon, and Egypt, Sénégal while six teams led by foreign coaches made it to the round of 16.

As the competition progressed to the q
uarter-finals the numbers evened out, Six home-based coaches and two foreign coaches were eliminated, leaving four of each group going into the quarter-finals.

In the semi-finals, only one home-based coach, the coach of Ivory Coast, qualified. In contrast, three foreign coaches led their teams to the semi-finals, including the head coaches of Nigeria, South Africa, and DR Congo.

Now, as the tournament comes closer to crowning a champion, the exciting final of the AFCON will be contested between coach Jose Peseiro of Nigeria, a foreign coach, and coach Emerse Fae a home based coach who took over Ivory Coast after the group stage.

This tense battle between two respected coaches from distinct backgrounds will add another layer of excitement to the already thrilling tournament as the final match determines this year’s champions of Africa.

Source: Cameroon News Agency