Business in Ghana

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Posts Tagged ‘Oko Vanderpuye’

The Rains Came Down, and. Critical News, 11th October 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on October 11, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

This week, it rained. Two days of not what you would call relentless downpour, but it rained. I say for a country that is in the tropical zone, it was normal rain for two days.

But as if to test the drains and the waterways that E&P has fixed, and as if to give us a chance to expose more corruption, the rains came down and the floods went up; the rains came down and the floods went up, and the storm drains came tumbling down.

If you remember that well-aged nursery rhyme you can hum the words and understand how much these little childhood songs were meant to shape our world and remind us every time of the simple things we must do in life. A stitch in time saves nine? Rain rain go away? They are worded for a reason; reasons we have washed under waterways because we don’t see the wisdom in them any more.

Many advisory dance tunes, relevant in today’s Ghana, will be made political in a few months as we skate unwillingly to another euphoric December, when we should be lamenting our popularity contest through an electoral register with registrants from the ECOWAS fraternity.

Nkrumah Circle as usual, was flooded to the hilt together with all the flood prone areas, and this wasn’t a major storm. I was caught in it for an hour between The Times junction and Nkrumah circle. When I arrived at the small bridge over the Odaw River, it was rising and starting to rapid. Even as I longed for a dinghy to float to the confluence of the Korle Lagoon, the stench that told me “cholera” reined in my adventurism and stopped me numb in my car seat. Read the rest of this entry »

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Dear Tindana @ Tallensi. Critical News, 12th July 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on July 12, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

Dear Tindana, pardon my effrontery, my shirt is still on my back this morning, but I figure, since I am so far away from you, I am safe to keep it on. I am in Accra as I write. But you need to hear this.

Our city was not gay enough this past week, so the NDC party invited their cousins in the NPP to go and join them in far away and hitherto peaceful Tallensi. For the rest of us, we were not invited to the by-election party, which result would really have no impact on the balance of power in the country and to which purpose, nothing would change the corrupt elements in our society, so we weren’t expecting anything more than a victory of one sort or the other. Even the PNC party made voluble noises, to as it were “watch this space”. We didn’t think much of it and we would not have showed up if we were invited.

But they all went. Anyone whose name was something in the NPP and NDC was there. Of course, Afoko and Kwabena did not dare show their faces within ten miles of the place, they being extra-non-communicado in the vicinity.

So we remained in our regions, thinking this would not affect us in any way. How wrong we were. Before the date was up, Freddy Blay from the NPP side had fired verbal salvos of a boycott or court action if they did not know who was going to count the votes.

We listened on the side lines and continued with daily chores, watching, preoccupied with Oko Vanderpuye’s continued destruction of the finest slums of Accra. He moved on from Old Fadama, I still remember it as Sodom and Gomorra, but hey, we have to be sensitive to illegality these days.

We thought, naively, that this was the usual verbal spittle and “polytricking” so we went merrily along the way, sitting at the tables, sleeping, waiting for “dum” to “sor” in the middle of the night so we could do some reading.

And before we knew it, we were in a war zone. The plot was laid and they were both in election heaven, where they yell at each other, accuse themselves of all manner of nonsensical plots and evil doing and take advantage of all of us naïve followers to enhance their corruption. Read the rest of this entry »

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In A Political Rut. Critical News, 28th June 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on June 29, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

My world drifted afar from the many workers in line to receive a cash-out this month. Many persons believe that the cash trickle down economy is workable for as long as the ones who cash out from their bank accounts always have enough to pay out to those who don’t have as much. Even the IMF and World Bank plan this benevolence when they support pro-poor interventions and LEAP projects such as we have in Ghana.

But our economy is in a sorry state, and none more so than when we mis-locate persons from illegal squats to futuristic land sites designated for tourism and science.

The Korle Lagoon, which borrowed money from a Kuwait fund to build bridges over the foul-smelling water; bridges that would open up from each side and allow canoes and other small river craft to pass through with their oars pointed north and Asafo flags flying mast high, was a big secret until Nii Lante Vanderpuye came to tell us he was very sad for the lost opportunity, but could not remember a single thing about what happened to the fund’s money. He knew we took the money, but nowhere in his archival mind could he remember what happened with some sovereign country’s benevolence and who was responsible for the “lost money of the Korle”. And that makes a nice title for a children’s textbook for Ama Atta Aidoo.

So with a flourish and his team of bulldozing bullies, Mayor Oko Vanderpuye went ahead to ruin dozens of family lives, apologized in the after wake for going too far from agreed limits of destruction.

And then CHRAJ stepped in. Thirteen years after a court had decided that the families were illegally squatting, CHRAJ now wakes up to figure that the rights of children, women and the Kaya Yoo had been violated by a man whose beard is now the butt of Christian jokes. They call him Nebuchadnezzar. Read the rest of this entry »

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Ten Cedis And A Parliament. Critical News, 14th June 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on June 15, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

It is pouring down tears this morning. All day and at 6pm showing no signs of letting up. It is not a threatening thunderstorm or tornado or any such, it is just raining as it does every rainy season, a mild “Hurricane Tetteh”, not as wicked as “Hurricane Vanoko” from June 4. But Ghana’s current “rain phobia” has sent people cowering and even “Aglowians” are not in church.

Yet we are none the wiser. All the debris emptied from the large drains and gutters last week, piled along the edges, waiting to flow back in their settlement zone. And we have “ayariga-flexed” four fuel stations, as examples of waterway-blocking-unruly-recalcitrant owners determined to kill us by creating floods.

I heard one of our budding parliamentarians say we should all gather for prayer for the rains to stop and avoid death.

He was holding a bugle attached to a loud speaker with an in-built amplifier and with no regard for the noise level enshrined in our byelaw he was blurting out all sorts of prickly passages from the Christian bible and berating passersby for not donating tithes to his cause.

I listened for ten minutes and asked which he prefers. Death by rain, by fire or death from hunger? I didn’t get an answer so I donated ten cedis and walked away.

On to observe the count in the Awutu Senya West constituency where I had interest in George Andah’s bid for Hannah Tetteh’s seat. Hannah could not be there to hear the resounding victory when it was announced, a massive 282 of 539 delegates. And it was peaceful and friendly all the way to the end. She tweeted from South Africa, her apologies for being away on government business. Roll on 2016. Read the rest of this entry »

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Vulture Chronicles. Critical News, 7th June 2015

Posted by Business in Ghana on June 8, 2015

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

We had a very bad accident. Over one hundred and fifty dead and still counting. So far the security agencies have not been able to give us a final count and the total cost of damage to families and businesses.

Needless deaths by any standard and unnecessary, since it was all government-made and could easily have been avoided if only we fulfilled promises we make on both the campaign platform and time in between.

My heart broke when I saw pictures of the dead and the damage to cars, property and surrounding areas in Circle and other places.

I rushed home after lunch that afternoon, the rain held us up in Kanda for a few hours and we took the next best lull in the outpour to set off home, not because we anticipated a flood, but simply commenting “it is really coming down, we must get home before the traffic gets out of hand”.

And on this note I have to say the Ghana Police MTTU division has kicked up a notch in their services. If we still had the kind of traffic control we were being served three years ago, most of us would be kicking six feet under.

And here is my first vulture proverb in this story. “Live with vultures, become a vulture; live with crows, become a crow”. Where does Ghana want to pitch its tent in the flight of civilization? Read the rest of this entry »

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Enough Said, No More. Critical News, 2nd February 2014

Posted by Business in Ghana on February 2, 2014

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

On 31st January it rained.  Very hard for two hours.  Accra flooded, Ashaiman changed its streets to mud lanes, ditches and potholes sucked huge gulps of aqua divine and the trotros and taxis had a field day, breaking every road rule they have been stopped from executing with the recent police controls on streets and side walks.

Ashaiman has the enviable reputation of sneezing burning tires, terrorizing their Municipal Chief Executive, Okadas and energetic youth roaming the corners, picking and fleecing inattentive visitors who don’t understand the mixed culture of the community.

I wondered though if Lord nature had found a compassionate strand for Ghana this week, whether it was tears after hearing the truth from one of its apostles, Rt. Rev. Stephen Richard Bosomtwi-Ayensu, Methodist Bishop in Obuasi, and decided to irrigate Accra, not planning, like Mayor Oko Vanderpuye for the flood prone areas.

On a pulpit at the Obuasi Black Park to his congregants and fellow priests, Reverend Bosomtwi-Ayensu simply said enough of all this mess.  He was not angry at the town folk, he was angry at President folk.  The President is slow. It’s as if he and the Government are suffering from stroke. He seems so unconcerned about our suffering. Times are so hard and life is simply unbearable. He must wake up to realities and stop sleeping on the job”. Read the rest of this entry »

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Give Me My DCE, Mr. President. Critical News, 4th August 2013

Posted by Business in Ghana on August 4, 2013

Sydney Casely-Hayford, sydney@bizghana.com

It has been a very interesting week and Fiifi Kwetey, (I am not sure I understand his job yet) is flitting between media blitz’s and chameleon “ntoma” recycling the blame for the 2012 excesses back to 2009.  Now he points to the petition hearing for the economic downturn, which he admits.  Well, look back Mr. Kwetey, because we consistently heard that the economy was fixed, confidence restored and we were looking at the best financial turnaround in the history of this country.  And that was long before the NDC Government went gaga with election profligacy and tossed financial prudence out the window to perpetuate kleptocracy.  We have seen what GYEEDA was capable of, with just two companies, Jospon Group and the Agams Group.  There is a sanitized cyberspace version of the Youth and Sports ministry report, where most of the deals were signed, doing the rounds.  It is damning of the Government and points to the sheer conceit of the Youth and Sports ministers involved.  Rashid Pelpuo, Kofi Humado and Akua Sena Dansua.

But Mr. Kwetey says Investors are pleased with Ghana’s financial indicators and management.  Actually, if they looked at financial management they would brave Boko Haram in Nigeria.  Fortunately some other stuff makes them keep an open door to us.  They can see good democratic evolution and a far better return on their money than elsewhere in the world.  This country runs not on the fuel of cash and prudent borrowing, but on the peace of the Ghanaian, the very symbol in the Supreme Court which Mr. Kwetey condemns as a waste of time.  And if he is to be used as an example, he is not of that Ghanaian ilk, sporting one of the foremost fetid mouths in politics.  Outsiders see what we are doing, but savvy Ghanaians are fully on top of what is going down here.  We just can’t find redress to coral Government appointees. Read the rest of this entry »

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