Ghana: Press highlights briefing of Parliament on preparations for December polls by EC, others

The briefing of the Parliament on Saturday on final measures being taken by the Electoral Commission on the conduct of…

The briefing of the Parliament on Saturday on final measures being taken by the Electoral Commission on the conduct of the 2020 general elections and the activities lined up for the celebration of the Farmers Day are some of the leading stories in the Ghanaian press on Friday.The Graphic reports that the Electoral Commission (EC) is to brief Parliament on Saturday, November 7, 2020 on final measures it was taking to conduct the 2020 general elections, the Minister of Parliamentary Affairs and Majority Leader, Mr. Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, has said.

According to Mr Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, he has engaged members of the commission and they are now ready to come to Parliament to update legislators on preparations towards the elections on Saturday.

He explained the EC management could not appear in Parliament on Thursday as earlier planned because the invitation got to them late.

“Admittedly we were expecting her (EC Chairperson), but unfortunately the communication got to them very late.

Apparently, the letter inviting them to be here (Parliament) got to them, we were told after 5pm yesterday (Wednesday) and we were expecting them to come to brief us in a very structured way to relate to certain specifics, especially the procurement of the biometric verification equipment, the functionality of the equipment, we wanted them to relate to the integrity of the facilities.

The newspaper says that Today is Farmers Day and as part of activities to mark the event, a forum was held yesterday to afford shortlisted award-winning farmers the opportunity to have an interface with policy makers and other players in the agricultural value chain to share experiences in the sector.

It also offered the platform for all stakeholders to deliberate on issues pertaining to the agro sector and provide a feedback to enhance policies and programmes.

At the forum held in Techiman in the Bono East Region, where the farmers had gathered for this year’s National Farmers Day, the Deputy Minister of Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mr. Francis Kingsley Ato Codjoe, called on Ghanaians to change their taste for foreign products and rather patronise food items produced in the country to ensure the success of the various agricultural polices being implemented by the government.

He said the depreciation of the cedi could also be arrested only if the government spent less of its hard-earned foreign exchange on importing food items which could be produced in the country and patronised by Ghanaians.

Mr. Codjoe, who was contributing to discussions during the 11th National Farmers Forum which was held as part of the 36th National Farmers Day in Techiman yesterday, observed that policies such as Planting for Food and Jobs and Aquaculture for Food and Jobs being implemented by the Ministry of Food and Agriculture and the Ministry for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development were yielding results.

The Graphic also reports that the National Democratic Congress (NDC), has declared three days of fasting and prayer, starting Thursday, November 5, 2020.

The programme, which has the theme “The horse is prepared for the battle, but victory is in the hands of the Lord”- Proverbs 21:31, will see party members praying and interceding for the peace and stability of the country ahead of the December 7 polls.

A press statement signed by the National Chairman of the NDC, Mr. Samuel Ofosu Ampofo, on Thursday, November 5, 2020, said “The party deems it necessary to invite Ghanaians to join us in praying and interceding for the peace and stability of Ghana as our dear nation gears up for a crucial election.

“It is equally our belief that our nation requires God’s divine intervention to halt the recent spate of armed robbery, killings and other violent crimes that we are witnessing across the length and breadth of the country in the run-up to this year’s elections”.

He added that the NDC recognised that it is God Almighty who chooses good leaders for nations, “hence the party shall be fasting and praying for a resounding victory for our Flag-bearer and Parliamentary Candidates in the upcoming elections”.

The Times says that Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) has been adjudged the best university in Ghana by the US News and World Report rankings for 2021.

The US News and World Report is a multi-platform organisation that ranks and evaluates universities based on their research performance and rating by members of the global academic community.

KNUST, in a press release signed by the Dr Daniel Norris Bekoe, the Public Relations Officer of the University, said the university was also ranked 12th best in Africa beating over 40 Universities in Africa.

The statement noted that KNUST obtained a global score of 48.2 as against the previous years’ score of 42.4 allowed it to take the 12th position in Africa, beating the University of Casablanca Hassan in Morocco, the University of Makerere in Uganda and the Ain Shams University in Egypt which took the 13th, 14th and 15th positions respectively, with KNUST placing higher than the University of Ghana which took the 24th position.

“The University also made an improvement in research with a total of 1,075, an improvement on last year’s score of 1,044, a regional research reputation of 20 and 1,522 publications.

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