Ghana: Press focuses on first jabs of AstraZeneca vaccine taken by President Akufo-Addo, others

The report that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his wife, Rebecca Akufo-Addo have taken the first jabs of the…

The report that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his wife, Rebecca Akufo-Addo have taken the first jabs of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine dominates the headlines of Ghanaian press on Monday.The Graphic reports that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and his wife, Rebecca Akufo-Addo have taken the first jabs of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine.

The President took the jab at about 9:25am on Monday, March 1, 2021 at the 37 Military Hospital in Accra.

The President after the vaccine was issued with a special card, bearing a unique number, indicating that he had gone through the vaccination process.

Other dignitaries, including the Chief of Defence Staff (CDS), the Minister of Health, the Minister of Defence, and Service Commanders are also expected to take their vaccines today.

Ghana on Wednesday, February 24, 2021, took delivery of 600,000 doses of the AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine made by the Serum Institute of India (Covishield).

It made Ghana the first country to receive the vaccine from the COVID-19 Vaccine Global Access Facility (COVAX), which has 92 beneficiary countries signed on to it, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said.

The newspaper says that effective today, Monday March 1, the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA) will begin the implementation of new tariff for services rendered to shipping lines at the seaports.

The new tariff regime applies to containerised cargo for port dues, stevedoring, cranage and terminal handling (empty container).

They are to increase on an average of 15.74 per cent for 20-footer container and 16.81 per cent for 40-footer container.

Targeting only shipping lines, the tariff adjustment, the GPHA explains, is to help generate more revenue to settle loans secured to build the Terminal Three of the Tema Port and other port infrastructure.

However, the trading community, led by the Ghana Union of Traders Association (GUTA) and Ghana Institute of Freight Forwarders (GIFF), have petitioned the government, through the Ministry of Transport (MoT), to suspend the proposed review immediately for further consultations.

Their bone of contention is that most of the shipping lines have already mooted a plan to pass on the tariff to their clients (the trading public), by increasing their local fees and charges between 70 percent and 110 percent.

The General Manager in charge of Marketing and Corporate Affairs at GPHA, Mrs. Esther Gyebi-Donkor, told the Daily Graphic last Friday in Tema, that the Authority was ready to implement the new tariff today.

The Graphic also reports that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has said same-sex marriage will not be legalised in Ghana under his watch.

“I have said this before and let me, in conclusion, stress again that it will not be under the Presidency of Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo that same-sex marriage will be legalised in Ghana. It will never happen in my time as President.

“Let me repeat, it will never happen in my time as President,” he emphasised.

President Akufo-Addo, who described himself as “a devout Anglican”, said this at the installation and enthronement of Most Rev. Dr Cyril Kwabena Ben-Smith, as the Archbishop of the Anglican Church in Ghana at Asante Mampong in the Ashanti Region last Saturday.

He succeeds Archbishop Daniel Yinka-Safo who retired recently.

President Akufo-Addo first gave the clearest indication that the government had no plans to change the existing laws of the country to legalise same-sex marriage on Thursday, August 9, 2018, at the Synod of the Global Evangelical Church in Accra.

“And let me assure that this government has no plans to change the law on same-sex marriage. We have no authority, and we will not seek any authority to do so,” he added.

Recently some people believed to be same-sex marriage practitioners supported by diplomats of some European countries, opened an office in Accra to offer support to Lesbians, Gay, Bi-Sexual, Transgender, Queer and Intersex (LBGTQI) persons.

The Times says that Mr. Alex Neequaye Kotey, Referees Manager of the Ghana Football Association (GFA) has been appointed as TV Technical Assessor for the 2020/21 CAF Champions League game between Moroccan club Wydad AC and Horoya AC from Guinea.

The game fixed for Saturday, March 6, 2021, at Complexe Mohammed V Stadium in Casablanca would be officiated by Mehdi Abid Charef from Algeria.

He would be assisted by compatriots Bouabdallah Omari (Assistant Referee I), Brahim El Hamlaoui Sid Ali Assistant Referee II) and Loutfi Bekouassa (Fourth Official).

Mohamed Abdatt Bilal from Mauritania would serve as Match Commissioner.

Other officials are Mady Diallo from Mali – General Coordinator and Said Zakini from Morocco – COVID-19 Officer.