Saturday, 31 August 2013

Ghana Gets Three Million Sanitation Support From Japan

The Government of Japan is providing support to help upgrade sanitation and hygiene in four districts in the Northern Region of Ghana with a grant facility of $3 million.

The four districts namely, Saboba, East Gonja, West Gonja and some peri-urban areas in the Tamale Municipality were selected because of their low sanitation coverage as compared to other districts in the region.

The Northern Region of Ghana was selected over the other nine regions because of the comparatively high prevalence of water and sanitation related diseases like diarrhea, buruli ulcer, and intestinal worms. Final selection of target communities and schools will be based on factual performance data on sanitation and hygiene as well as local priority as perceived by key district and regional actors.
The aim is to reach 75 communities with an estimated total of 112,500 individuals, including 4,000 school children in 16 schools, over a period of 3 years.

To end, an agreement was signed between the World Bank, and the SNV -Netherlands Development Organization, which are administering the fund to Ghana implement the project.

The objective of the Project is to improve the sanitation and hygiene practices of an estimated 112,500 poor and vulnerable persons in the four districts of northern Ghana, Noriaki Sadamoto, the First Secretary of the Japan Embassy explained.

He stated: "It will involve the provision of improved sanitation facilities to households and schools within the selected region. For sustainability, the project will involve the development of low cost sanitation technology options, creating and strengthening existing sanitation supply chains, through the promotion of social marketing techniques."

The project will have include components: stimulating demand for sanitation and hygiene services through behavioral change communication (BCC) under the community led total sanitation concept in communities; direct investment from project funds into school sanitation and hygiene facilities in 16 schools and Monitoring and Evaluation, and Knowledge Dissemination and Project Management and Administration as well as strengthening private sector participation.

Mr. Sadamoto hoped that the collaboration effort will bring sanitation and hygiene improvements in a sustainable and efficient management to the beneficiary communities.

On his part, the Country Director of the World Bank for Ghana, Yusupha Crookes said not only would SNV Ghana be held accountable on what results were promised as against what was achieved, but also changes the various facilities in the households and schools make on the reduction of diseases and improvement in the general welfare of the people.

By Masahudu Ankiilu Kunateh, Dated: 30 August 2013

Paulina says: Very good news...


Friday, 30 August 2013

Business: PZ Cussons the profit

Title: PZ Cussons Ghana Gains to Record on Profit Outlook: Accra Mover

  Dated: August 27, 2013
PZ Cussons Plc (PZC)’s Ghanaian unit, a distributer of consumer goods, rose to the highest on record on speculation the shut down of a manufacturing unit in the West African nation will cut costs and boost profit.

The stock gained 10 percent to 55 pesewas by the close in Accra, the highest since April 1995 when Bloomberg began compiling data on the company. It was the best performer today on the Ghana Stock Exchange’s Composite Index. PZ shut a factory in the port city of Tema in December, Charles Janney, director of human resources and corporate affairs, said by phone.

The shut down is “expected to cut overhead and operational costs, Randy Mensah, a stock trader at Ecobank Development Corp., said by phone. ‘‘Profit is expected to increase as the company imports the goods for sale in Ghana.’’

PZ’s net income jumped to 7.9 million cedis ($3.7 million) in the financial year to May 31 from 763,610 cedis a year before, the company said on Aug. 2. Revenue climbed 16 percent to 95.7 million cedis.

Credit: Bloomberg

Thursday, 29 August 2013

29/8/2013 The Verdict is in.................... President Mahama to stay....

Title: NPP petition thrown out! Supreme Court upheld John Mahama’s presidency as valid.

Ghana’s Supreme Court on Thursday August 29, 2013 upheld John Mahama’s presidency as valid.
The nine-member panel of Justices gave Mr. Mahama a clean ‘gavel of health’ by a majority decision.
The Bench’s final verdict means Mr. Mahama can see through his full four-year term as President.

Petitioners’ case
The Petitioners in the case – the 2012 Presidential candidate of the main opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo; his running mate Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia and the party’s national chairman Jake Obetsebi-Lamptey – resorted to the Court to challenge the results of the December 2012 presidential poll on grounds of alleged serious infractions, which they insisted, could not have gone investigated.

They prayed the Court to declare Nana Akufo-Addo as President with reasons that unpardonable malpractices and irregularities at 10,119 polling stations justified the nullification of 3,931,339 “invalid votes” which, the Petitioners argued, would have beaten down the President’s votes and overturned the declared results.

Petitioners’ permutations
According to the petitioners’ pleadings, over-voting occurred at 1,722 polling stations, while voting without biometric verification occurred at 2,020 polling stations.

They claimed Presiding officers did not sign electoral records (pink sheets) at 1,638 polling stations, while the use of duplicate serial numbers on pink sheets affected 8,987 polling stations.

The Petitioners argued that if the results of the 10,119 polling stations were annulled, President Mahama’s votes would have reduced by 2,622,551, which would have, in turn, beaten down the results declared by the Electoral Commission in his favour, to 41.79 per cent.

By that same principle, the Petitioners said though Nana Akufo-Addo’s votes would have, in like manner, been reduced by 1,233,186, he would have nonetheless secured 56.85 per cent, per their permutations, to cross the 50 per cent mark for victory.

According to the petitioners, Article 63 (3) of the Constitution insists that only valid votes be taken into account in the determination of the validity of the election of the President and therefore urged the court to uphold the clause in the Constitution.

They said per their analysis, President Mahama’s 5,574,761 as declared by the EC on December 9, 2012 should have been 2,952,210, representing 41.79% since votes totaling 2,622,551 out of the figure announced were invalid.

“The declaration made on 9th December 2012 by the 2nd respondent and set out in the Constitutional Instrument of the President Elect Instrument, 2012 (C. I. 80), made under the hand of the Chairman of 2nd respondent, was therefore made wrongfully and this Court is respectfully invited to hold his election was invalid and to set aside same as null and void.”

In the same vein, the petitioners submitted that the 5,248,898 declared by Dr. Afari-Gyan for Nana Akufo-Addo should have been 4,0157,12 representing 56.85% since 1,233,186 of the votes were invalid and should be annulled.

Beside President Mahama, the other respondents were the country’s Electoral Commission (EC) and the governing National Democratic Congress (NDC).

The initial writ of the petitioners was filed at the Supreme Court on December 28, 2012, and the court, on January 22, 2013, allowed the National Democratic Congress (NDC) to be joined to the writ after an application to that effect.

Live telecast
Ahead of the start of the hearing on April 17, 2013, there was a heated national debate about carrying the hearing live on national TV.

That debate was sparked by the Executive Director of policy group Danquah Institute (DI), Mr. Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko.

Chief Justice Georgina Theodora Wood eventually decided on a televised hearing as part of measures to enhance transparency and strengthen Ghana’s democracy.
National broadcaster, Ghana Broadcasting Corporation (GBC), nearly pulled the plugs on the hearing half-way through when its new Director General, Major Don Chebe (rtd) revealed that the live coverage was draining GBC’s kitty.

Don Chebe said the broadcaster made a total loss of Ghc3.5 million in revenue, within the period of the live court coverage.

The key witnesses were Dr. Bawumia; the NDC’s General Secretary Mr. Johnson Asiedu-Nketia; Chairman of the Electoral Commission Dr. Kwadwo Afari-Gyan and a representative of international auditing firm, KPMG, Nii Amanor Dodoo.

KPMG offered its services, pro bono, to the apex Court when the need arose for an audit of the electoral records (pink sheets) tendered in evidence by the petitioners.
The firm submitted its report to the court on June 24, 2013.

Contempt cases
In the course of the hearing, a few Contemnors were hauled before the Court for criminal contempt.
They included a Deputy Communications Director of the NPP, Mr. Sammy Awuku, who had, during the hearing, described the panel of Justices as “hypocritical and selective”.

Mr. Awuku was not given a custodial sentence despite his conviction for criminal contempt. He was nonetheless strongly reprimanded by the Court and banned from attending the hearing thereon.
Subsequent to Mr. Awuku’s contempt hearing, the Managing Editor of the Daily Searchlight, Mr. Ken Kuranchie and a member of the communications team of the NDC, Mr. Steven Atubiga, were jailed for 10 and three days, respectively, for the same offence.

The Court took judicial notice of Mr. Kuranchie’s justification of Mr. Awuku’s description of the Bench as “hypocritical and selective”.

He was given a harsher sentence for what the Court saw as his belligerence and unremorseful posture.
Mr. Atubiga, who had threatened on radio that President Mahama will not hand over to Nana Akufo-Addo even if the Court ruled to that effect, was, on the other hand, given a lighter sentence, after displaying abject remorse both outside the Court prior to his appearance as well as when he appeared before the Bench for his hearing.
The gavel of contempt also fell on the NPP’s General Secretary Kwadwo Owusu Afriyie, popularly known as ‘Sir John’ for using unsavoury words against the President of the Bench, Justice William Atuguba.

Sir John was however spared custodial sentencing but fined Ghc5,000 in addition to a harsh scolding and signing of a bond to be of good behaviour for six months.
Also, fellow NPP Communicator, Hopeson Adorye, who threatened on radio, to decapitate supporters of the NDC if the Court ruled in favour of President Mahama, was fined Ghc2,000 and also made to sign a bond to be of good behaviour.

Bench and Bar
The nine justices who sat on the case include Justices William Atuguba, Julius Ansah, Sophia Adinyira, Rose Constance Owusu, Jones Victor Dotse, Anin Yeboah, Paul Baffoe-Bonnie, N. S. Gbadegbe and Vida Akoto-Bamfo.
Mr. Philip Addison led the team of Counsel for the Petitioners.
The respondents lead Counsel were Tony Lithur for the President; James Quashie-Idun for the Electoral Commission and Tsatsu Tsikata for the NDC.


Paulina says: I am beyond exhausted but believe things are as they should be… My prayers are…. …as the NDC have been given another chance ……… dot, dot, dot, dot –that they curb all that spending, borrowing and bring the public purse back in line… Our Economic situation is direr and needs sorting out. It is apparently the worst in West Africa right now, can you imagine……..and that is not acceptable in 2013 --when you consider that it was only two years ago that we were the toast of the continent; a beacon of hope –a ray of light. Oh my how times change….. Really this is a very  shameful indictment of our times and actions -me thinkssss.

Anyway, we are watching……… dot, dot, dot, dot. We the Ghana’s peoplesssssss are watching the public purse……… dot, dot, dot, dot stringsssssss……………  

29/8/2013 Ghana’s Supreme Court Verdict

Paulina says: I am watching ABN TV, UK’s Sky channel 290 --and like you, am awaiting the results. I will endeavour to update you as and when the verdict is reached; in the meantime those of you also in the UK can watch ‘Ghana’s Supreme Court Verdict’ right now via UK’s Sky channel 290…

One Ghana, One People, One Country…



Paulina x

Wednesday, 28 August 2013

Are you Delay’s new ‘Afia Schwarzenegger’?

Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah, President of the Ghana Actors Guild (GAG), has started an open and rather nasty fight with Delores ‘Delay’ Frimpong Manso over her upcoming auditions to find an actress to play lead role in the phase three of her ‘Afia Schwarzenegger’ television series.

After some two weeks of radio and television adverts in search of an actress to play the lead role, Nii Odoi Mensah last Thursday said on Peace FM that Delay has no right to hold auditions to search for an actress to play the role because she is neither a member of the Ghana Actors Guild nor the Film Producers Association of Ghana (FIPAG).

He accused Delay of fraudulently charging for her audition forms and said she was only exploiting the public.
In what appeared to be a rather sexiest statement, the GAG president noted: “This time, she will not get it easy. If she thinks she knows big men and so she can find her way through, we would also tell her that we are the Ghana Actors Guild. We have been quiet for some time now because we want sleeping dogs to lie but this time if you want to touch us, we would touch you because it is becoming too much…You see, when people come to small limelight, then they want to use it against others. It is not right. It is not right at all.” Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah But Delay, sounding very confident, told NEWS-ONE she would go ahead with her auditions and dared Nii Odoi Mensah to go ahead with his threats.

“There is no law in Ghana that states I must be a member of the Ghana Actors Guild or FIPAG before I hold auditions to pick actresses for a TV series for which I write the script, direct the production, select the cast, pay for airtime, pay the cast and crew and even decide which TV station I air it on… “Mr. Odoi Mensah is an adult and should know that when he says I think I know big men so I can have my way through, it is an insult not only to me, but to the female members of his Actors Guild as well. Who said a woman must know big men before she becomes a success story? If that is his mentality, I wonder why he thinks I must belong to his group… “In any case, the Ghana Actors Guild is not a statutory body that gives license to actors or actresses.

He can ask his members not to come for my auditions but he cannot ban any Ghanaian from acting for my series and I wonder how to select a cast without holding auditions. So you see? Instead of keeping quiet and pretending he is focusing on the welfare of his members so we continue to respect him, he is embarrassing himself with a battle he cannot win; a battle that at the end of the day, would push us all to test the laws of Ghana on whether or not the Actors Guild is a statutory body established by a legislative instrument or a parliamentary act.
Any group of actresses can easily come together tomorrow morning to form another group. So let him secretly go for his interlocutory injunction to stop us. Then we take it from there and see what the law says about freedoms of association. I’m not a film producer to belong to FIPAG,” Delay explained. On the question of selling the audition forms, Delay said it was normal practice: “Don’t mind him. Truth is, some people are only envious of successful young people who are not under them and do not come begging them for anything. Ask all those who go for pageants and auditions if they do not pay for the forms.

I am renting the entire conference room of the Errata Hotel, providing food, renting audio visual equipment and paying the operating crew, paying cost of radio and television adverts, paying consultants and you say I should make the forms free because Odoi Mensah says so? Things of value don’t come cheap. I am not a fraud. He should go and fight those who have nothing to show yet hold auditions. I have a production to show and he should be congratulating and supporting me rather than hating and insulting on radio.”

She said the auditions for a new ‘Afia’ will be held on Saturday August 31, at the Erata Hotel, and whoever emerges the ideal candidate would take over from Nana Hemaa….

Paulina says: TV presenter/producer/entrepreneur Delores Frimpong Manso aka Delay is one of those big Accra girls you just have to admire –no? You have to admire her ability to bounce back after that Wanlov hullabaloo –no?  

Not the usual Ghana Rising material, she is noooo socialite, but I was searching for the latest images of TV persona Nana Aba, yes I know she is not the usual Ghana Rising subject either but I’ve been seeing some really lovely photos of her lately and stumbled upon Delay’s Facebook page, read the above piece concerning her looking for another, another, another ‘Afia Schwarzenegger’ and just had to share. Plus said piece talks about a tiff with Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah, President of the Ghana Actors Guild (GAG) who I find to be an elegant man –and goodness knows we need all the elegant people we can find in Ghana…and gives as an insight into the inner working of Ghana’s big boy club mentality.. You have to admire Delay for having the stomach for the poli-tricks that is Ghana TV.

I digress small….. but did I ever tell about a friend of a friend of a friend of a friend who went back home under another regime ---sorry under another government with more sika than I care to think about to start his own Television station and was asked to give that ‘government’ a ridiculous percentage of his business mafia styleeee??? Well he disappeared back to where he came from and that was that…
So I kind of know a little bit about what goes on behind the scenes of Ghana TV and it’s not for the fainthearted. But I agree somewhat with Delay and believe that a virtuous woman with sika and talent can pay for her own show/production/airtime with out some ‘big bellied satellite dish head big man’ behind you etc etc but the truth is you also need to be pretty connected in Ghana –and that’s when it get very ‘spiritual-underground-games’…and I think that’s what Samuel Nii Odoi Mensah, President of the Ghana Actors Guild (GAG) is talking about. The sad truth is no industry in Ghana that has a level playing field and if you a woman who wants to make it without the big boys –you need God, your own money and the ‘Blood of Jesus’….

Anyway, could you be the next ‘Afia Schwarzenegger’? No nor could I. But if you are the next ‘Afia Schwarzenegger’ make sure you are at Erata Hotel on the 31st August 2013. To keep up with all of Delay’s daily happenings visit her official Facebook page via:

Monday, 26 August 2013

Introducing the Johnjay Experience

Credit:  all photos come courtesy of Johnjay Fitih

Every once in a blue moon life throws you a gift, well the blue moon is upon us. The gift we present to you is a rare talent with a multitude of experience expanding across continents. His body of work in film, print and stage will solidify and cement his versatility in our industry.

We are overwhelmed with pleasure to present to you Johnjay Fitih, actor/model. With a rare set of skills which includes the power of flipping his authentic English accent to American, Jamaican, African, or Australian. This natural born actor with athletic abilities, that includes kickboxing, mixed martial arts, free based jumping and Capoeira (Brazilian martial arts), that adds to his chameleon abilities.

Johnjay is from London, England with Ghanaian ancestry, which is obvious visible by his high cheek bones, dark chocolate skin that layers over his sculpted supremely defined arms, shoulders, and abdominal.

Improve the Star power of your new Movie production, TV commercial, film, print or stage is by injecting that all important rare talent to bring it to the forefront of the industry, please contact Rita Kidd."  Johnjay Fitih

 Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: It’s amazing…. I just stumbled upon actor/model/voiceover king Johnjay Fitih and just had to share. Uber new to La Ghana Rising blog radar –I will endeavour to keep my radar firmly on him as he rises in the ever competitive world of films.  I wonder if he has plans for the Ghanaian film industry. For more info or to book actor/model Johnjay Fitih visit:

OMgoodness Retail Spaces in Ghana’s soon-to-be most prestigious address, the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City Accra are now available for rent/lease……………

Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: The most covet, most anticipated, sexiest retail /commercial spaces in Accra’s chicest postcode, the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City Accra, the soon-to-be most prestigious hotel in Ghana and probably the whole of Africa are now available for rent and the competition is fierce and I feel dizzy!!!!   

Those in the know have had their beady eyes on said hotel website and certain industry websites forever ---awaiting the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City Accra, which is due to open in early 2014 to publish its list of rentable retail spaces and we’ve now been rewarded ----the layout and available space are out now!!  

These must-have retail spaces come guaranteed with the promise of the most stylish, most glamorous readymade customers/clienteles and footfall in Ghana and those in the know –know and want these spaces -now!!!!
For more info about the various rentable retail/commercial spaces available in the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City Accra visit:
For more info about the Kempinski Hotel Gold Coast City Accra visit:

Lifestyle/Going out: Raja Owusu-Ansah’s The Republic bar makes waves outside of Ghana and breathes new trendy life back into local Akpeteshie brew…

Title: In Ghana, old-school liquor becomes the new craze during cocktail hour for young professionals

Ghana's traditional liquor akpeteshie tastes like fire to the uninitiated, burning all the way down the throat to a nervous stomach. But at The Republic, a bar in the nation's capital, it comes garnished with mint and brown sugar for young professionals just getting off work.

It's part of a new drink movement in Ghana that some hope will spread across West Africa — bringing old-school drinks out of the countryside and into capital nightclubs. While many of the liquors remain popular in the bush and among the poor, putting them under the flashing lights and bass-thumping rhythms of popular bars is still a shock to many coming across them for the first time.
"We are able to make our own form of caipirinhas, our own form of white Russians, our own form of martinis," said Raja Owusu-Ansah, co-owner of The Republic. "There's a host of cocktails we have here that utilize cane spirit base — i.e. akpeteshie — and it's a success."

Akpeteshie (ak-PEH-teh-she) is a traditional liquor in Ghana, a West African nation known more for its cocoa and goldfields than its drinking culture. Akpeteshie can be made from distilling either palm wine or sugar cane, creating an almost moonshine concoction that looks clear but carries a heavy punch.

The liquor's name in the local Ga language roughly means "hide," a throwback to when colonial British authorities banned it from being made, forcing Ghanaians to take shots of it on the sly. Today, mourners pour the liquor into plastic bottles for the nation's rowdy funerals, while others drink it at roadside bars, downing it in shot glasses.

"In Ghana, everybody drinks it," Evans Narh Tekper, a palm wine tapper in the rural Ghanaian town of Koforidua, said in the local Akan language. "The akpeteshie goes round."

But now, Ghana's middle and upper classes are beginning to enjoy the drinks in cocktails familiar to anyone who has stumbled into a bar anywhere in the world. Forget rum in your mojito — instead add akpeteshie. The same goes for other favourites.

At The Republic, revellers relaxed after working a full day at white-collar jobs around Accra. It offered a very different vision of those who typically enjoy the drink, as well as a foil against the vision of the Western view of an Africa where "everyone is starving and unhappy," said Dr. Nicole Cooper, a paediatrician who grew up in Ghana and now practices in Miami, Florida.

"It definitely has put a new, contemporary spin on a very old, traditional drink," she said.
West Africa has other traditional liquors, including the many different kinds of "ogogoro" seen in nearby Nigeria. Bar-goers said they hoped this would start a new trend throughout the region of using their own liquors, a point of pride.

Even Owusu-Ansah went as far as to say: "It's alcohol that's not giving you hangovers."
The jury, however, is still out on that.

Lekan Oyekanmi can be reached at


Paulina says: I don’t know who is responsible for the PR at The Republic but they are doing a fabulous job.  –So hot is The Republic, an aspirational high-end bar in Accra that the likes of Fox News are talking about them.
The Republic which helped to launch uber trendy fashion outfit ‘Vintage Ghana’ this year is at the very forefront of all things hip and happening in Accra, and them endorsing and celebrating ole time local brew ‘Akpeteshie’ is helping to put said liquor back on the map!!!
For a fabulous night out in Accra head to The Republic on your next visit to Ghana…  For more info about The Republic visit:

Black Gold/Entertainment: New Hollywood film set to explore greed in Ghana oil exploration............

Title: Brad Pitt-Produced ‘Big Men’ Explores Greed in Nigerian and Ghana Oil Exploration
Dated: Thursday, 22 August 2013

A movie executive-Produced by Brad Pitt -‘Big Men’ Explores Greed in West African Oil Exploration specifically Ghana and Nigeria. This Documentary premieres at the 2013 Tribeca Film Festival.

Producer and Director Rachel Boynton first went to Africa in 2006 to research her documentary Big Men. Six years later, she had a film that takes an expansive, yet focused, look at how oil makes its way from deep in an ocean off the coast of Ghana to the U.S. stock exchange, and the ensuing complications.

The film explores the connections between the Ghanaian company who finds the oil field, the small Texas oil company who drills, the Wall Street private equity partners who invest, and the Ghanaian government officials who manage the contracts. The glitch, depending on your seat, comes when Ghanaian leadership changes, the justice department is called in to investigate allegations of corruption on the part of the U.S. firm and credit contracts due to the financial crisis.

The film’s backdrop is the increasing violence in Nigeria, where militants are stealing from and blowing up foreign gas pipelines in an effort to siphon off profits from the corrupt Nigerian government who isn’t sharing the riches. The doc simultaneously looks at the process and implications of western companies investing in foreign oil ventures, profiles an African country trying to profit after centuries of exploitation and watches as everyone navigates how to slice the billion-dollar pie.

Boynton also looks at the psychological motivations for the individual players, all striving to be masters of the universe, or in West African parlance, “big men.” Rolling Stone spoke with Boynton about her cautious optimism for Ghana, the legacy of Milton Friedman and working with Brad Pitt and Sebastian Junger.

Click to read her full interview with
See snippets below:

RS: You explore the fallout from oil exploration in Nigeria. Do you think that the same thing could happen in Ghana? Rachel: Well sure. The same thing can happen anywhere where oil is discovered. But I’m cautiously optimistic about Ghana. They are asking for advice from all sorts of people and there is really a vibrant press there, and people who are asking questions of the government, watchdogs basically. The problem is there is just so much money involved. And there’s just a lot of practical things that need to be addressed, like you have to teach your ministry of finance how to do the accounting properly. I’m optimistic about Ghana but there is a danger that it could become Nigeria, just as there is a danger that anywhere where a massively valuable resource is found can become a hotbed for corruption.

RS: It seems like everyone is trying to be the “big men,” the Texas landmen, the Nigerian militants, the Ghanaian people, the politicians. . . .
Rachel: The tag line on the poster is ‘Everyone wants to be big.’ And it’s funny because the term ‘big man’ or ‘big men’ is a very common term in Nigeria and in Ghana. There it’s an every day phrase. But it’s not just everyone in Nigeria or everyone in Ghana. It’s Milton Friedman. Everyone wants to be big, everyone wants more for his own people. And so then the question becomes how do we define who our own is?

RS: Speaking of big men, Brad Pitt executive-produced the film. What was his involvement?
Rachel: I was traveling with Sebastian Junger in the Niger Delta, he was writing an article for Vanity Fair, and he had had some correspondence with this guy called Jomo Bomo, who was basically the publicist for the militants. He had written Jomo Bomo saying, hey, can I get access and Jomo Bomo had written back saying, I don’t know who you are, you are out of luck. And then apparently Jomo looked him up on the internet and read about The Perfect Storm. Once he figured out who Sebastian Junger is he said, ‘Oh, no problem, I’ll give you access, just give me a signed copy of your book.’ So I thought, I need to bring on an executive producer that means something, and I went home and I asked Brad Pitt to executive produce the movie, and he read the pitch and he got really excited.


Paulina says: I wonder if the supposed Ghana clips are filmed in Ghana or in East Africa and if the supposed Ghana’s people speak any recognisable local dialects or Swahili (laughter)!!!

I wonder if any known Ghanaian actors are in it!!! I would research for more info but I can’t be bothered to google ….sorry!! I’m afraid you are going to have to do it yourselves…… But do share info as and when you find it…  

I wonder if this film will end up like that ‘Blood Diamond’ film –exposing some darkness!!!!! I’m guessing we’ll just have to wait and see. My goodness I’m full of wonder for this film.


Black Gold: Tullow Oil Set to Sell 50% stake in Tweneboa-Enyenra-Ntomme oil project………..

Title: UK Tullow Starts Process to Sell Stake in $4.9 Bln Ghana TEN Oil Project
Tullow is aiming to reduce its exposure to hefty development costs.

“LONDON--U.K.-listed oil and gas explorer Tullow Oil PLC (TLW.LN) has begun a process to sell part of its 50% stake in the $4.9 billion Tweneboa-Enyenra-Ntomme oil project off the coast of Ghana as it seeks to focus more on exploration and limit its development costs, the company said Wednesday.

Through the sale, Tullow is aiming to reduce its exposure to hefty development costs, which had become a growing concern to its investors, while retaining a material interest and operatorship of the oil production, which is planned to commence mid-2016.” The Wall Street Journal

Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: To be honest I don’t understand anything I’ve read above –Bless me!!! Is it good, bad or indifferent for Ghana?  I’m just not clever enough to understand ooOOo!

What does it mean to reduce their development cost? I hope those west coast/central region chiefs aren’t selling and un-selling ‘ancestral’ land 'in the sea' back and forth to Tullow Oil ganster styleeee (laughter).. Or do they keep discovering more and more oil and need more sika to develop them? Or are Ghana's creative but needy millions ---sorry, errrm few and some its special walking dead --asking them for sponsorship money wink, wink, wink ---making them run away…sorry –want to sell half their stake in said oil project (Laughter)!!!
I must take this opportunity to say how intrigued/ awed I am by ‘international’ multi nationals/big and small brands that venture into Africa-ca-ca-ca to do business, how on earth do they do it with all that jagger-jagger-ness? I always think of Virgin!!!!!!

With our special time-keeping, special handshakes, special underground spiritual games, special taxes, special chiefs, special big boys clubs, special ‘transparency’ issues, special red, gold and green tape, special corruption issues, special business practises, special banking (mostly off shore), special infrastructural issues and special governments ---you have to admire them and then some (think bush mentality)!!!!  (Laughter)…  

To continue reading the above text visit The Wall Street Journal and subscribe via:

Lifestyle/Luxury Homes/Business: Are the Russians set to build a town in Ghana?

A Ghost City in Angola, Built by the Chinese

Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: I was nosing about and doing some research on uber multi, multi Lebanese-Nigerian property developer Gilbert Chagoury, founder of Nigeria's Chagoury Group with regards to the colossal Island-in-the-sea he is building just off Lagos Nigeria shore called ‘Eko Atlantic City’ when I stumbled across the following info……
Wonders shall never cease, did you know Russia’s ‘big boys’ are planning on building a city for around 62’000 or sooo people just outside of Accra??  Nor did I, but now we know.
I don’t know how I feel about this. But if it does happen I hope it will an inclusive, high-end development that will also be available to the Ghana’s peoplesssssssssss…and not land that was sold to said developers  via some back-door-underground-spiritual-game-money-for-some-nothing-for-the-people-of Ghana-jagger-jagger-ness if you know what I mean..

"Renaissance Capital Financial Holdings Ltd. of Moscow plans to build a city for 62,000 people on a coffee farm outside Nairobi, Kenya, and a similar-size project on a pepper field near Ghana's capital of Accra. The coffee farm in Kenya is still just that, as Renaissance works out a dispute with shareholders. The project in Ghana is mired in a disagreement between local chiefs over who owns the pepper field."  The Wall Street Journal
Very interesting –me thinks!!! Any way you can read all about the above quote and be inspired by the colossal multi, multi property developer  Gilbert Chagoury –the last of Nigeria’s hidden mega, mega rich (the rest are out and enjoying their bolly) via:

Which big events organiser is finding it difficult to pay back the kind Ghana based businessman who stepped in to save his show?

Tourism: Nzulezo Village, Western Ghana…. The Next Big Tourist Destination……A must for all connoisseurs of travel………

Paulina Opoku-Gyimah says: Nzulezo Village is a “UNESCO world heritage site - one of the last remaining stilt and platform settlements in the world” and is most definitely on my must-visit list.
I truly believe that Nzulezo Village which is a thriving village in Beyin, in the Jomoro District of the Western Region of Ghana, and “roughly 90 kilometers west of Takoradi, -overlooking the Lake Tadane, and is entirely made up of stilts and platforms” has the potential to be the tourist destination du jour for true travel connoisseurs and must be marketed as such.

We also need professional help to make this site a real working eco-tourist destination. The amount of travellers must be contained and vetted, and no one such be allowed to leave their rubbish especially carrier bags.

We must also start to see a trickling down of prosperity and opportunities for its people. My prayer is that this next big tourist destination isn’t left in the hand of a few unworldly chiefs –because we all know what will happen. You can read all about Nzulezo Village via:

More Info:
Nzulezo is a village built on stilts in the marshy Amansuri Lagoon. Similar in looks to Genvie in Benin but much serene environment and good atmosphere.

It is a unique little fishing community, far from the hustle and bustle of daily Ghanaian life. You can only reach it by renting a canoe, available from the village of Beyin (about two hours drive from Axim).

It takes about an hour or less to reach the village. Simple accommodation is available in a stilt house with modern decorations and hospitality, the Ghana Wildlife Society can help you make arrangements. If you are juts planning to go for a day trip, leave early to enjoy for long.

The settlement of Nzulezo, the “Village on water”, is located 90 kilometres west of Takoradi in the Jomoro District of the Western Region of Ghana. Nzulezu is a Nzema word which refers to “surface water”. This very unique village is built on stilt in the Tandane Lake. Nzulezo is one of the Amasuri Wetland, a ramsar site and the largest inland swamp forest in Ghana. The Wetland is a habitat for a variety of animals like monkeys, crocodiles, marine turtles and fishes. Nzulezu also represents an outstanding interplay between man and the environment.

Oral history has it that the village was constructed some five (500) hundred years ago by migrants from Walata, a city in prehistoric Ghana Empire which was the earliest of the Western Sudanese States. It is believed that the the early settlers or the ancestors were led there by a snail. The snail is therefore a totem and revered by the people of Nzulezo. The only other people in the West African Sub-region who live on a stilt village are the Ganvie people of the republic of Benin.

The Nzulezu stilt village has a total population of about 600 people. The main occupations there are farming, fishing and the brewing of local gin (Akpeteshi). The village is ruled by the chief and elders who set out rules and regulations to guide behaviour in the village. The chief preside over criminal offences and other unruly behaviours in the community. Nevertheless, felony crimes are referred to the formal courts system for adjudication. The tribe at Nzulezo are very conservative and do not accept intermarriages with other tribes.

Since the year 2000, the commencements of tourism activities in the Amanzuri wetland, a number of infrastructural developments have been carried out which though have been designed for tourism growth, have turned out to be public goods. These include the construction of 1.4 kilometre of a 2 kilometre canal from Beyin to Nzulezo; a paved landing bay of granite stones, grassed banks and a 140 metre wooden walkway from the main road to the landing bay. In addition, these facilities facilitate school attendance and transport of goods from and to the market. The re-construction of the 312 meter main walkway in the stilt village using durable timber including Borassus palm and Kussia and the creation of nature trails in the wetland are other developmental efforts undertaken. The Nzulezo Village Amansuri Conservation and Integrated Developemt (ACID) Project currently functions under the auspices of the Ghana Wildlife Society and Ghana Tourism Authority.

Key Features Of The Village
Nzulezo stilt village is linked by a canal which opens into a lake. The banks of the canal are made of different trees and the lake is covered with lilies and fringed with raffia palms and lush jungle. The Nzulezo community is a purely indigenous one where everything including the buildings, mode of transport etc. is made from natural materials

The Most striking feature that catches the eye at Nzulezo are the wooden accommodation facilities hanging some five feet above the lake level. These accommodation facilities are constructed from bamboo (very had rainforest wood) with thatch roofs. The houses are supported by strong wooden pillars which are buried deep in the basement of the lake. Accordingly, these wooding pillars are changed after every eight years.

The buildings within the village are connected to one another by a number of walkways which enable residents and visitors to freely move from one end to the other. Another thing that will catch your attention is the many canoes floating on water. Almost every household has a canoe which is used a major mode of transport to the Beyin. This canoes or “water cars” bear inscriptions like “Nyame dea” meaning “God’s own”, “To God be the Glory” etc. It will not be surprising to see pregnant women paddling their canoes to go and access medical care. Little children can be seen swimming in water and never get drowned – amazing! You may also see these children playing football or ‘hide and seek’ on this facility. The serene ambience of the surrounding land cover in addition to the general activities of life attest to the dynamic union between man and nature.

The Nzulezo stilt village is now connected to electricity but what do you see? There are a significant number of television poles attached to almost every home in the village.

There is a traditional court which also doubles as community centre for gatherings. Visitors to the village are welcomed by the chiefs and people in this facility. Tour guides also use the facility to interact with visitors who will have the opportunity to relax in plastic chairs while enjoying a cool breeze from the lake. All activities pertaining to normal life chores such as pounding of “fufu”, schooling, worship and burials are done on the lake – unbelievable! There is also a basic school in the village for the kids to attend. Like every other society, the Nzulezo community is not homogenous per say but made of different religious affiliations including Christians, Muslims and Traditionalists. Each of these religious sects freely carries out their worships in the community. For the Christians, you will have the occasion to see the Roman Catholic Church and the Pentecostal church. You will see sign boards showing directions to any of these communal facilities in the hamlet.

Are you interested in bird watching or going fishing with a local fisher man? At Nzulezu you will have the opportunity to watch different kinds of bird species as the ramsar site attracts them. You may also see different fish species especially when you decide to go fishing. You can stay overnight at Nzulezo, have a feel of how the night looks like on a lake and also have the occasion to interact with the local community. A guesthouse gives you the opportunity to stay overnight. Home stay accommodation facilities are also available for those who wish to interaction with a host family. Food can be provided at affordable rates if ordered in advance.

It is very important to note that visitors (both locals and foreigner) are not allowed to visit the stilt village on Thursdays as the day is revered as a sacred day for the gods of the lake which day settle on. The Lake is believed to be preventing natural disasters like flood and storms as well as fire out breaks. The Lake has always served as a pivot for the community’s togetherness. New born babies are baptized in the Lake.

Admission Fees
For tickets, you can buy your tickets at the reception centre in Beyin on the mainland. Canoe trips run from 8am to 3pm. But those staying in the guesthouse can have their time extended. Boat rides for foreign adults cost GH¢20, foreign students GH¢15, Ghanaian adults GH¢10 and Ghanaian students GH¢5. For those who would wish to have a detailed history of the place, you are entitled to pay GH¢7 only. For your safety on the lake, you are given a lifejacket. Gin and other tips are welcome as by community leaders. You may also give a tip to your tour guide after a tour.

How To Get To Nzulezo
To get to Nzulezo is one easy task. It is just about 90 kilometres west of Takoradi in the Western Region of Ghana. You can get there by a rented car, taxi or tro tro from Takoradi. From the capital Accra, you can get the STC, Metro Mass Transit or Ford bus to Takoradi. You can also get a direct tro tro or taxi to Beyin in just two hours. Be part of this terrific experience! And have the occasion of rowing your own canoe.







Sunday, 25 August 2013

Elikem best bits in the Big Brother Africa house is finally upload after Dillish’s own!!

Funny enough …….it took BBA some time to upload our Elikem’s best moments –weird or what. Maybe they were still deliberating whether to let him win or not as the votes dictated.. He was robbed… Any way you can watch our Elikems best bits in the Big Brother Africa House via:

The End of big Brother Africa: Our Elikem is out.....................................But he is still our winner

And there ends my journey with Big Brother Africa forever… Elikem who captured the imagination of Africa is out –coming in in third place. But he is still my winner….


To Elikem

Ghana and I are proud of you.. The sad truth is -no Ghanaian is ever going to win this game soooooooooo its no biggie.

Numerous opportunities are coming your way Elikem, way beyond Africa, thus you will win and prosper beyond this game… 

Remember Africa loves you and you have made millions of friends. Elikem God Bless you and give you your hearts desires.. There will never be another Big Brother Africa like this again, you alone ok along with Selly and Sulu made it watchable, plus as we Ghanaian become wise to the trickery that is Big Brother Africa, we will stop participating and watching… So Elikem we salute and say that we will support you as you use this platform and fly.


Lots of Love
La Ghana Rising Blog….

OMGoodness Beverly and Melvin are Out!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Omgoodness my hands are shaking..........................................

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Mario Balotelli makes the cover of Sports Illustrated…

Photo: Jeffery A. Salter/SI

“He's eccentric, unpredictable and immensely talented: Mario Balotelli is a force to be reckoned with, he's just fundamentally misunderstood, writes Grant Wahl in this issue of SI. Balotelli, the international star, graces the cover of Sports Illustrated for the first time as the 23-year old striker begins the new soccer season with A.C. Milan.” Sports Illustrated

Paulina says: like a lot of women I have a very soft spot for footballer Mario Balotelli, thus I get the fascination and intrigue with him. Loved, misunderstood and probably the most polarising Ghanaian on the planet - Mario Balotelli who is viewed as both villain, baby mamma and mafia stories –and saint, he is celebrated for his generosity and has some pretty impressive fans, both Pope Francis and former Italian prime minister Silvio Berlusconi are fans, –has made the cover of uber sexy Sports Illustrated’s magazine..

Touted as the most “interesting man on the planet” –Mario is photographed walking on water (laughter) and  I just love it…but then it’s soo easy to.... I love Mario and wish him the best. For more info visit:

Which former uber loaded, uber powerful, uber connected big girl of Accra is now in prison for drug trafficking???

Tuesday, 20 August 2013

It’s Time to Vote for Elikem Folks……………………………..

Omgoodness because our Elikem Kumordzie the tailor and actor is still in the Big Brother Africa House I’ve been caught up in that all-consuming-whirlwind called Big Brother Africa....and I just can’t step off…

I wish I had enough money to pay Ghanaian wannabe-future-big –brother-contestants to not go into that house…..can a Ghanaian ever win? And as others not only Ghanaians start to ask the same question –Big Brother Africa suddenly starts to lose its appeal!!! I can’t imagine next year being as exciting as this unless Elikem/Ghana wins…and I’m not being biased here…it’s a fact.   

The thing is…….if Big Brother Africa was transparent, just and unbiased -which it is not right now,  only Nigeria (headlining sponsors) and South Africa (host nation) ever win, --then Elikem will win and win outright. But as Big Brother Africa is all about the aforementioned countries, I believe the ever pedestrian, ever dull but agreeable Melvin will win.

The sad truth is that there is an ‘unspoken history’ – a ‘white elephant’ in the room hingy that exist between Ghana and Nigeria and while BBA is all about its main sponsors, surly no Ghanaian no matter how fabulous they are, and Elikem is pretty fabulous -will ever win BBA and that’s such a big shame.

Still I have my fingers crossed and I’m hoping this year is different and that folks, regardless of where they hail from will vote for the most entertaining, most enthralling and most captivating contestant in the house…  Elikem is my winner –regardless. Let’s get behind our Elikem –we all want him to win!!!

To vote for Elikem visit:

Do Like Elikem’s fashion label FB fan page and check out his fabulous designs via:

Monday, 19 August 2013

Fashion: Supermodel Iman in Gwyneth Shoes…………….


Paulina says: Gwen Frempong Boadu’s Gwyneth Shoes have always been must-haves but now that Queen Bee, super model extraordinaire Iman is wearing them…they have gone stellar!!!  For a pair of the above visit Gwyneth Shoes at:

Entertainment: Rita Marley is made an honorary citizen of Ghana......


Title: Rita Marley honoured by Ghana govt

Sunday, July 28, 2013

KINGSTON, Jamaica -- Rita Marley, widow of pop icon Bob Marley, will be made an honorary citizen of Ghana on August 1, that country's celebration of Emancipation Day.
A statement from the Marley Foundation says Marley will also receive a Ghanaian passport from the government.

His Excellency, Dr Erieka Bennett, Head of Mission for the African Union's Diaspora Africa Forum, says the recognition is worthy.
“We are thrilled to see the Ghana government recognising the tremendous contribution Nana Rita has made to Ghana socially as well as economically. This is a historical day for those of us from the Diaspora."

Ambassador Kwesi Quartey, Ghana's deputy minister of foreign affairs and regional integration, agreed: “Indeed Mrs Rita Marley continues to leverage her unique name recognition to showcase Ghana and talk up Ghana’s pan-Africanist role and tourism potential at every opportunity,” he said.
The Marley family have lived in Ghana for almost 20 years. Rita Marley has been involved in numerous charity projects, as well as operating a recording studio and helping to organise the Africa Unite concerts.

Read more:

Paulina says: I love Rita Marley and the passion she has for Ghana’s people and feel that this honour is long overdue… Rita Marley has been doing charity work in Ghana for years via her Rita Marley Foundation –RMF at:  -and this honour hopefully goes some way to thank her for all the hard work she continues to do for Ghana especially her Konkonuru Healthcare Center and Ganette Miriam Home for the Aged facility. You can read all about it and donate via:

Did you know Rita who was born Alpharita Constantia Anderson is actually Cuban? Yep you can read all about her via: -this lady is soooooo fascinating…

Business: Forbes Best Countries for doing Business 2013…….Ghana come in at number 82

Number 1 is New Zealand….
UK is number 10
USA is number 12
Switzerland is number 15  
Israel is number 27
Mauritius ---Rank 28th Position
GDP Growth (%) - 4.1
GDP/Capita ($) - 8,797
Trade Balance as % of GDP -11.8
Population (mil) -1.3
South Africa ---Rank 39th Position
GDP Growth: 3.1%
GDP/Capita: $8,070
Trade Balance: -3.3%
Population: 48.8 M
Public Debt as % of GDP: 34%
Unemployment: 24.9%
Inflation: 5.0%
Rwanda ---Rank 53rd Position
GDP Growth (%) -8.8
GDP/Capita ($) -583
Trade Balance as % of GDP -11.1
Population (mil) -11.7
Botswana ----Rank 59th Position
GDP Growth (%) - 4.6
GDP/Capita ($) -8,680
Trade Balance as % of GDP -2.7
Population (mil) -2.1
Namibia is at number 71
Brazil is at number 72
Morocco comes in at number 75
Zambia is at number 78
Jamaica comes in at 79
Cape Verde is ranked at number 80
Ghana --- Rank 82nd Position
GDP Growth: 13.6%
GDP/Capita: $1,570
Trade Balance: -7.4%
Population: 24.7 M
Public Debt as % of GDP: 36%
Unemployment: 11.0%
Inflation: 8.7%
Read more at:  -Note these figures are really for 2011..
Egypt ---- Rank 89th Position
GDP Growth (%) - 1.8
GDP/Capita ($) - 2,781
Trade Balance as % of GDP -2.4
Population (mil) - 83.7
Liberia --- Rank 100th Position
GDP Growth (%) -6.4
GDP/Capita ($) -281
Trade Balance as % of GDP -65.3
Population (mil) 3.9
Nigeria ---- Rank 110th Position
GDP Growth: 7.2%
GDP/Capita: $1,452
Trade Balance: 5.0%
Population: 170.1 M
Public Debt As % of GDP: 18%
Unemployment: 21.0%
Inflation: 10.8%
**All economic data for 2011. **Stock market performance based on return for 12 months through October 15. Sources: Heritage Foundation; World Economic Forum; Transparency International; Freedom House; World Bank; Central Intelligence Agency; Property Rights Alliance.
Paulina says: the figures used here really represents how Ghana fared in 2011 and truth be told our Ghana is a different country today with regards to our errrmmm economy –thus I will not be reading this list next year –so let’s celebrate the above position of 82 whilst we can…goodness only knows where we will land/rank next year…