The Minority in Parliament has said President John Mahama can be cited for impeachment for failing to get parliamentary ratification for an agreement between the government of Ghana and the United States of America, in connection with the transfer of two ex-detainees of Guantanamo Bay to Ghana for a two-year stay.
At a press conference held Tuesday February 16, the Minority spokesperson in charge of foreign affairs, Mr Isaac Osei, said: “In diplomatic relations, you’d have verbal communication, but, at least, when the United States approached us, they did not come to us verbally, they must have issued a note verbal to our Mission there and that’s how the process started.
“So, there is a written agreement and we are demanding to see it,” the Minority said, adding that Article 75 (2) of the constitution makes it a necessary requirement for such agreements to be ratified by parliament.
The Minority said even though Article 75 (1) says: “The President may execute or cause to be executed treaties, agreements or conventions in the name of Ghana.”
75 (2) makes it clear that: “A treaty, agreement or convention executed by or under the authority of the President shall be subject to ratification by – (a) Act of Parliament; or (b) a resolution of Parliament supported by the votes of more than one-half of all the Members of Parliament.”
Per this provision of the 1992 constitution, the Minority said President Mahama breached the constitution by not seeking parliament’s ratification of the transfer deal.
Mahmud Umar Muhammad Bin Atef and Khalid Muhammad Salih al-Dhuby, both Yemeni, were transferred to Ghana on January 7, 2016. Their presence raised uproar among Ghanaians, with many Christian groups demanding their immediate return.
Foreign Affairs Minister Hanna Tetteh is billed to appear before Parliament, in-camera, on Friday over the transfer. The Minority has questioned why that hearing will be held in-camera.
When parents got word that their children were making terrorist propaganda posters in class, they demanded answers.
A teaching intern at Salem junior high in Salem, Utah, gave what she intended to be an innocent assignment to her students: create a terrorist propaganda poster to illustrate how terror organizations function.
The assignment did not sit well with some parents. Mother Annie Langston told CNN affiliate KSTU she immediately contacted Principal Robert Fleming.
“I feel that a different type of assignment or report could have been chosen,” Langston said.
The school’s facebook page reacted quickly and said the assignment was immediately withdrawn.
The intern apologized. She said her intent was to teach how extremists use propaganda to spread untruths and misunderstandings and garner support, according to Nebo school District public information officer Lana Hiskey.
“She did put upfront on the assignment that was handed out that if you were uncomfortable come meet with her for an alternative assignment,” Hiskey said.
The intern teaches two world civics classes and is in charge of 60 students.
Hiskey said, “The teacher was very apologetic. You know she is young, she is naïve and her intent was different than how it played out. She has apologized profusely, and talked to the students the next day.”
The teacher will continued to be trained with the overview from an assigned mentor who was aware of the assignment before Wednesday.
Gunmen who raided a Malian hotel shouted ‘Allahu akbar’ as they sprayed bullets on tables of people who gathered for breakfast, a witness said.
The attackers did not say a word to anyone as they opened fire Friday morning, employee Tamba Couye said.
They shot at “anything that moved” as terrified patrons dashed for cover all over the hotel, he said.
By the time Malian and U.N security forces rushed in and ended the siege hours later, bodies were scattered across the floors of the Radisson Blu Hotel in Bamako.
At least 19 people were killed in the attack, said Olivier Salgado, a spokesman for the U.N mission in the nation.
In addition, two attackers died, he said; but it’s unclear whether security forces killed them or they blew themselves up.
Dozens of worshipers were killed Thursday when suicide bombers targeted a mosque in the northeastern Nigerian city of Maiduguri, witnesses said.
“All the people in the mosque died. Not a single one escaped,” said Muhtari Ahmadu, a trader near the scene, while another witness said he had counted at least 42 bodies after the blasts.
Also the explosions was suspected to have been masterminded by dreaded members of Boko Haram suicide bombers who attacked various mosques and public gathering in Mai Borti and Kangaleri villages of Molai in Maiduguri metropolis living scores of worshipers and innocent people dead. Sources and residents said.
Molai is located south and just 10 kilometres drive to Maiduguri that had witnessed series of suicide attacks near military formations this year. The road linking the village from Maiduguri- Damboa – Biu had been closed to motorists in the past one year despite directive by the Chief of Army Staff, Lieutenant General Tukur Buratai to reopen the road.
The incident according to sources also left several others seriously injured as people scampered for safety on eve day of the swearing in of the newly appointed Deputy Governor, Alhaji Usman Mamman Durkwa who replaced Late Umar Zannah, who died in his hotel room in Adamawa state while on an official assignment a couple of months ago.
Various outskirts and some surrounding villages of Maiduguri had been witnessing series of suicide attacks in the last one month living hundreds of people dead and injured, even as the controversial deadline given to security operatives to end the six-year insurgency by President Muhammad Buhari still remain in December this year.
According to some residents who escaped from the scene said, “Male Suicide bombers detonated multiple improvised explosive devices (IEDs) in different locations while over 30 Muslims were in one of the mosque at Molai outskirts of Maiduguri metropolis observing their Magrib prayer around 6.10 pm Thursday evening”.
Another source who spoke to our correspondent in anonymity said” Muslim were just observing their magrib prayers in a mosque at Molai then a heavy loud sound echoed the air and next we heard lucky survivors shouting it is bomb blast.
“We started running up and down, motorists drove and rushed out of the area including keke NAPEP riders with their families, everyone was confused and panic took over the entire place.
“You need to see how residents were running, some even had to park their belongings and leave the area tensed and confused as nobody knows what will happen next, but we are yet to get the details of what happened and how many people were killed and how many were wounded.”
“Although security operatives have reached the scene with other humanitarian services as well as men of the police anti- bomb squad I am not in a position to give you the detail of casualties yet”. The source insisted.
A phone call put through to the Director Army Public Relations, Colonel Sani Usman Kukasheka to confirm the incident, directed our Correspondent to contact his Deputy of the 7 Division, Nigerian Army, Colonel Tukur Gusau whose phone lines were busy as at press time.
Discussion are underway between Ghana government and officials of Nigeria Gas Association to try and avert a possible cut in gas supply to Ghana.
The Nigeria Gas Association supplies Liquefied natural gas through the West African Gas Pipeline company limited (WAPCo) to power thermal plants in Ghana.
Former Chief executive of the Volta River Authority, Dr Charles Wereko Brobby told Joy News yesterday that Ghana owes the supplier $180 million.
He warned that the country would be plunged into darkness again from Thursday if urgent steps were not taken to meet a Wednesday deadline for Ghana to pay up the money or risk being refused any further supplies.
Ghana has a deal to receive a contractual volume of 120 million standard cubic feet of gas daily from Nigeria. But Nigeria has threatened to reduce the volume of gas it supplies through the 678 kilometer stretch of pipeline to Ghana if it does not get information on how Ghana plans to pay the money owed.
According to sources at the power ministry, Joy News has information that some progress is being made to resolve the pending crisis,the issue is being resolved at a “diplomatic level”. The debt ought to have been paid by the power generator, Volta River Authority. Ghana is already challenged with power supply and to forestall a worsening situation,the government has decide to step in.
According to NGA, Ghana needs to pay them so that they can also pay WAPCo to transport the natural gas to Ghana.
Joy News also learnt that West African Gas Pipeline Company Limited would hold a conference tomorrow to shed some light on the issue.
The federal government, Monday, threatened to cut gas supply to Ghana’s power plants over 100 million Ghana cedis indebtedness.
According to former chief executive officer of the Volta river authority, Dr Charles wireku-brobbey, Nigeria’s decision to cut gas supply to Ghana’s Aboadze thermal plant was occasioned by the failure of the government to settle its indebtedness to the Nigerian gas authorities and this might worsen power supply in Ghana.
Wireku-brobbey told a Ghanaian news medium that contrary to expectation, the constant power supply in the country is not dependent on the incoming barges from turkey.
He said,” the problem for us is not the arrival or non arrival of the power barges. As we speak, the government owes Nigeria over GHC 100 million, which we are yet to settle and that is the problem that should concern us”.
Currently, Ghana receives in excess of 140 million standard cubic feet per day of gas from Nigeria. The supply, although not enough, has greatly enhanced power supply in the country over the past few weeks.
Ghana had in November 2014, accused Nigeria of breaching the agreement to supply gas, a situation that has worsened the country’s power supply.
Mr. Edward Bawa, communications consultant at Ghana’s energy ministry had told a Ghanaian news medium that since the inception of the West African gas pipeline project, Nigeria, which is responsible for supplying, Ghana, Togo and Benin with natural gas, has proven to be unreliable.
“Since gas started flowing through the West African pipeline, Nigeria has demonstrated that they cannot be relied upon to give us gas” he said.
According to him, Nigeria was supposed to send 123 million cubic feet of gas to Ghana but was only able to supply around 49 cubic feet, saying the quantity is “woefully inadequate to enable us to power our generating plants”.
Bawa called for an increase in the sanctions to be meted out to Nigeria for breaching the contractual agreement, noting that only this will serve to deter Nigeria from continually breaching the terms of contract.
He said “the penalty, for the entire contractual period, if Nigeria fails to meet the supply requirement is $20 million dollars. That is peanut to them so they do not have the incentive to supply Ghana the required quantities of gas, especially since they have other thermal plants that are asking for gas. Simply they are not just respecting the contract”.
To this end, Ghana’s load shedding exercise took a worsening turn as the Ghana grid company, (GRIDCO) says it will have to reduce power supply to consumers further if Nigeria’s gas supply to the country continues to dwindle.
The country had in the first few months of 2014 received a compensation of $10 million, about N1.6 billion, from Nigeria over the failure of the latter to meet supply of gas agreement between the two countries.