The launch of the new round of the Global Fund Grant which will make available $204 million to support Ghana’s efforts to deal with malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB) in the next three years by President Akufo-Addo is one of the trending stories in the Ghanaian press on Thursday.The Graphic reports that President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo has launched a new round of the Global Fund Grant which will make available $204 million to support the country’s efforts to deal with malaria, HIV/AIDS and tuberculosis (TB) in the next three years.
President Akufo-Addo gave an assurance that government would also bolster the investments made by the Global Fund by fulfilling its counterpart financing of $45 million over the period to ensure that the grant, New Funding Model Three, was implemented in Ghana.
At Wednesday’s launch in Accra, the President said the government was working to increase domestic financing to ensure Universal Health Coverage for all.
Ghana, the first recipient of the Global Fund, has received disbursements from the fund to the tune of $804 million since 2002.
From the investments, the fund is expected to support Ghana to achieve 85 per cent reduction in HIV incidence, and zero discrimination for marginalised groups to access care, support and treatment under what is called 90-90-90 target.
This is to ensure that 90 percent of all people living with HIV know their HIV status; 90 percent of all diagnosed with HIV infection receive sustained antiretroviral therapy, and 90 percent of all receiving antiretroviral therapy have viral suppression.
It also hopes to attain a 35 per cent reduction in TB deaths, 25 per cent reduction in TB incidence and 90 per cent multidrug-resistant (MDR)-TB treatment success rate; get a 90 per cent reduction in malaria mortality, 50 per cent reduction in incidence; and malaria pre-elimination in seven districts.
The newspaper says that the United States (US) Embassy in Ghana has presented 100 very high frequency (VHF) hand-held Motorola phones and 10 repeaters to the Ghana Armed Forces (GAF).
The repeaters are imbedded into a network capable of covering a wide area in terms of space or scope and will complement the operations of the GAF at the Bundase Training Camp.
The donation falls within the partnership framework between the GAF and the US Embassy and the Global Peace Initiative (GPOI) programme and aims at enhancing communication at the Bundase Training Camp.
With the donation, VHF communication at the camp will be lengthened from the current 12-kilometre radius to 35-kilometre radius.
The US Department of State and the GPOI programme funded the equipment at $300,000, including the cost of installation and training of GAF personnel on the use of the equipment.
At a ceremony at the Bundase Training Camp to hand over the equipment, the US Ambassador to Ghana, Mrs Stephanie S. Sullivan, said it was expected to improve pre-deployment training at the camp ahead of United Nations peacekeeping missions and also support regional stability initiatives and peacekeeping endeavours.
The Graphic also reports that the Kumasi Centre for National Culture (CNC) has launched a programme to train all cultural officers and directorate staff from the metropolitan, municipal and districts assemblies in the Ashanti Region to bring them up to speed with the history and “cultural effectiveness” of the organisation.
It is aimed at “polishing up cultural officers to let them know their duties as well as their subject matter in the changing world.”
The officers were taken through the importance of culture, proposal writing, customer care within the cultural business and working effectively with Nananom to help equip them with the requisite skills and knowledge.
The Kumasi Cultural Centre, now rechristened the Centre for National Culture, was established in 1951 through the instrumentality of Dr. Alexander Atta Yaw Kyerematen, father of the Minister of Trade and Industry, Mr Allan Kyerematen, to project and promote the Asante culture ahead of the Europeans.
As a beneficiary of an Asanteman Council scholarship to obtain a PhD in Anthropology at the prestigious Cambridge University, Dr Kyerematen returned to Ghana with the desire to have Asante’s history and culture told and taught by Ashantis and not Europeans.
The Times says that the Minister of Trade and Industry, Alan John Kyeremanten, has assured the business community that the country will not become a dumping ground for foreign goods, following the implementation of the Africa Continental Free Trade Area (AfCFTA).
He said trade remedies and safeguard measures would be effectively implemented to protect domestic industries from such unfair trade practices, while the Ghana International Trade Commission (GITC) would be supported to undertake anti-dumping strategies and other critical issues.
In a speech read on his behalf at the Graphic Business/Stanbic Bank Breakfast Meeting in Accra yesterday, he said those efforts were to complement the several trade facilitation measures already in place to enable the private sector to get maximum benefit from the single continental market.
The event, on the theme “Leveraging AfCFTA — The critical success factors”, brought together members of the business community, investors and policy makers to deliberate onthe crucial success indicators of the free trade area agreement, which commenced in January this year.
Mr. Kyerematensaid the tradefacilitation measures instituted by the government included the reduction in the inspectorate bodies at the port and the harmonisation and simplification of customs procedure under the Integrated Customs Management System (ICUMS).
Others, he said, were improvement of access to funding, fiscal incentives through reduction in taxes, capacity building of private and public sector organisations and upgrading of trade infrastructure.