ECOWAS Court President Launches Electronic Case Management System

The President of the Community Court of Justice, ECOWAS, Hon. Justice Edward Amoako Asante, on Friday officially opened the sensitisation and training programme for lawyers on the Electronic Case Management System (ECMS) of the Court in Praia, Cape V…

The President of the Community Court of Justice, ECOWAS, Hon. Justice Edward Amoako Asante, on Friday officially opened the sensitisation and training programme for lawyers on the Electronic Case Management System (ECMS) of the Court in Praia, Cape Verde.

The programme, holding from June 20 to 25, 2024, aims to enhance the digital proficiency of legal practitioners from Cape Verde and Guinea Bissau, the Lusophone member states of ECOWAS.

In his opening remarks, Justice Asante extended warm greetings from Abuja, Nigeria, and highlighted the Court’s recent sensitisation missions in Lomé and Accra.

He expressed his gratitude to the President of the Supreme Court, the Minister of Justice of Cape Verde, and the Cape Verdean government for their hospitality and support.

Reflecting on the history and mandate of the ECOWAS Court of Justice, Justice Asante noted its establishment under the Lagos Treaty of 1975 and its operational commencement in 2001.

He emphasised the Court’s expanded jurisdiction to adjudicate
human rights cases since 2005, underscoring its role in upholding fundamental rights, the rule of law, and good governance in the region.

Justice Asante discussed the Court’s digitalisation initiatives, which were expedited due to the COVID-19 pandemic, including the adoption of 2020 Practice Directions on Electronic Case Management and Virtual Court Sessions.

These measures have significantly reduced litigation costs and enhanced access to justice, he noted.

The new ECMS, he explained, supports electronic filing, service, and management of cases, streamlining judicial processes and making the Court more accessible.

The ECMS features an external user portal for litigants and lawyers, and an internal interface for judges and judicial staff, accessible 24/7 in English, French, and Portuguese.

This system facilitates real-time access to case information, court notifications, and virtual hearings, enhancing transparency and accountability.

The training in Praia marks the final phase of a comprehensive progr
amme to equip lawyers

from all ECOWAS member states with the skills needed to navigate the ECMS.

Previous training sessions were held in Lomé and Accra for Francophone and Anglophone lawyers

respectively.

Justice Asante concluded by sincerely thanking all participants and organisers, urging everyone to actively participate in the training programme to create a more accessible and efficient justice system for the ECOWAS community.

Source: Ghana News Agency

National House of Chiefs urges youth to stay away from violence

The National House of Chiefs has implored the Ghanaian youth to desist from getting involved in any activity that could spark violence ahead of the 2024 general elections.

They should be civil and play to the electoral rules rather than allowing the…

The National House of Chiefs has implored the Ghanaian youth to desist from getting involved in any activity that could spark violence ahead of the 2024 general elections.

They should be civil and play to the electoral rules rather than allowing their youthful exuberance to lead them into trouble as electioneering campaigns gather momentum.

Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II, President of the House, who gave the advice at its meeting in Kumasi, reminded the youth and all other stakeholders that they only had one vote, which they could exercise on the day of the election.

He said nothing prevented anyone from campaigning for their preferred parliamentary and presidential candidates, but no one had the right to take the law into their hands by molesting and preventing others from doing the same.

Any such act he said, amounted to the violation of rights of citizens to exercise their franchise as enshrined in the 1992 Constitution.

He counselled Ghanaians to embrace peace to consolidate the gains made under the Fourth
Republic, which had been the longest period of democratic rule in the history of Ghana.

The President also entreated chiefs to be circumspect with their utterances when politicians call on them during this political season to protect the image of the chieftaincy institution.

They should not be seen openly endorsing candidates as traditional leaders whose subjects belong to different political parties.

Ogyeahoho Yaw Gyebi II also announced that elections at the Regional Houses of Chiefs would be held between August and September, with the National one scheduled for either October or November.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Tema Market women sensitised on climate change adaptation – Horticulturist

Market women in the Tema metropolis have been educated on climate change adaptation measures to enable them to cope with its impacts.

Ms Mary Kupualor, the Head of the Horticultural Department, Tema Metro who is also the Tema Metro Landscape Designe…

Market women in the Tema metropolis have been educated on climate change adaptation measures to enable them to cope with its impacts.

Ms Mary Kupualor, the Head of the Horticultural Department, Tema Metro who is also the Tema Metro Landscape Designer, said the move was to equip the women with knowledge and information on how to adapt to the impact of climate change, which posed a significant threat to the various aspect of socio-economic development, especially the growth of the agricultural sector.

She told the Ghana News Agency in an interview that the market women and traders in Tema Community One and Nine markets, as well as some traders in the various communities, were targeted for sensitization.

She said the women also received training to start container gardening in their various homes.

Container gardening is the practice of growing plants, including edible plants, in containers instead of planting them on the ground.

Ms Kupualor mentioned that her outfit held the training in collaboration with
the gender, youth, and sports committee of the assembly, which comprises all departmental heads and assembly members, among others, with the aim of educating the public on various issues concerning national development.

The horticulturist said the women were taken through how to choose the right containers, pick suitable plants, plant watering, regular maintenance, sand preparation, application of fertilizers, and others to create and maintain a sustainable food system in the metropolis.

She said the continuous impact of climate change on the agriculture sector required much more effort and innovation to critically increase food production in the country for both local consumption and exportation.

She said that last year was dedicated to the intensification of sensitization and education, as well as the provision of more seedlings to traders, adding that monitoring would be done to ensure that the traders took care of the vegetables to survive.

Ms Kupualor explained that it was also part of activities und
er the government’s Green Ghana project, which seeks to preserve and protect the ecosystem.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Safeguard your innovations for sustainability- Scientists urged

Scientists, especially those in the agriculture sector, have been advised to safeguard their innovations through Intellectual Property (IP) to ensure sustainability.

Dr Daniel Dzidzienyo, the Deputy Director, Administration, Teaching and Learning, t…

Scientists, especially those in the agriculture sector, have been advised to safeguard their innovations through Intellectual Property (IP) to ensure sustainability.

Dr Daniel Dzidzienyo, the Deputy Director, Administration, Teaching and Learning, the West Africa Centre for Crop Improvement (WACCI), University of Ghana, who gave the advice, said the processes involved in innovations required much resources and painstaking investigations hence the need to protect them to reap the benefits.

‘If a researcher develops a seed variety to meet a need, it should be protected so others will not take undue advantage of it. Once that is done and the person is paid royalties, it can be plough back to researching periodically,’ he said.

Dr Dzidzienyo was speaking at the opening of a two-day workshop as part of the University’s celebration of the Day of Scientific Renascence of Africa (DSRA).

He stated that the royalties could also be used to develop new varieties to meet other needs.

Each year, DSRA is marked to rec
ognise and celebrate the vision, sacrifices, investments, tenacity and hard work of scientists in the nuclear and allied sciences.

The workshop sought to engage industry stakeholders to provide input to improve curriculum to train students with requisite skills and knowledge to address the complex challenges of modern agriculture.

The event also aimed at creating awareness among researchers and students on the importance of intellectual property for agricultural innovations.

Participants would be equipped with tools and knowledge to navigate the complexities of intellectual property to drive growth of innovative agricultural businesses.

Dr Dzidzienyo said protecting and managing intellectual property was crucial for fostering creativity and ensuring that innovations could be effectively commercialised and brought to market.

‘IP’s are becoming a big deal now globally. However, some researchers are often not knowledgeable in IP and do not take it seriously in our part of the world. We need to embrace this
era of research and development, so we benefit from whatever is associated with it.’

Dr Dzidzienyo urged scientists to seek assistance from professionals to safeguard their innovations.

The Organisation of Africa Unity (OAU), now African Union (AU), in 1987 passed a resolution for the celebration of the Day of Scientific Renaissance of Africa (DSRA) on 30th June each year.

The core objective of the celebration is to remind African governments and people about the critical roles played by Science and Technology in national development.

This is also done in remembrance of the continent’s great contribution to the rise and development of modern Science and Technology.

Source: Ghana News Agency

National Service clarifies GHc40 online activation enrolment fee

The National Service Scheme (NSS) has dismissed media reports that suggest the Scheme is extorting monies from prospective national service personnel with the GHc40 being charged for PIN codes activation.

It said the GHc40 charge for PIN codes is no…

The National Service Scheme (NSS) has dismissed media reports that suggest the Scheme is extorting monies from prospective national service personnel with the GHc40 being charged for PIN codes activation.

It said the GHc40 charge for PIN codes is not a recent development.

In a release issued by Mr Armstrong Esaah, the Corporate Affairs Director, NSS, and copied to the Ghana News Agency in Accra, the Scheme explained that since the NSS introduced the online registration system in 2006, all perspective service personnel had been paying the fee for essential ICT infrastructure and other services to ensure operational efficiency.

The Scheme, therefore, provided the breakdown of the GHc40 fee as follows -It uses GHc10.00 for electronic NSS ID cards, GHc10.00 for National Service Personnel Association (NASPA) dues and GHc20.00 for online (Internet) services, paid to the service providers.

‘This covers the cost of NSS certificates awarded upon service completion, facilitates the monthly upload of assessment for
ms and supports the ongoing maintenance and upgrades to the NSS online registration system,’ the statement added.

The statement said it also covered hosting of the NSS ICT infrastructure and the management of the central ICT system for optimal performance.

‘The online system further streamlines the registration process, reducing waiting times and minimising errors, thus ensuring a hassle-free experience for all applicants,’ it added.

‘We reiterate that the GHS40 charge is a well-established practice that supports the essential ICT infrastructure and services necessary for the efficient operation of NSS,’ the statement emphasised.

‘It is important to note that despite the rise in the cost of delivering these ICT services since 2015, Management has chosen not to pass this additional cost onto the service personnel. Instead, they have maintained the fee at GHc40.

‘Management wishes to state that the NSS remains dedicated to the continuous improvement of our processes and services.’

The Scheme expressed its
commitment to enhancing transparency, adding that it was always open to constructive feedback from the public and stakeholders.

‘We believe that together, we can uphold the values and objectives of the National Service Scheme, fostering a seamless and supportive national service experience for national development,’ the statement read.

Source: Ghana News Agency

Fisheries Minister calls on fishers to show interest in aquaculture

he Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mrs Hawa Koomson has entreated fishers and those in the value chain to show interest in fish rearing as an alternative to the over-reliance on the sea.

She said the Ministry in collaboration wit…

he Minister for Fisheries and Aquaculture Development, Mrs Hawa Koomson has entreated fishers and those in the value chain to show interest in fish rearing as an alternative to the over-reliance on the sea.

She said the Ministry in collaboration with R and B Farms was training interested applicants in aquaculture, after which the fingerings and the needed resources were funded by the Ministry as a start-up capital for the fisher folks.

‘Please, show interest in this alternative livelihood and that a team from Liberia have come to Ghana to be trained on the concept of how much more we Ghanaians.

‘We need to take advantage of this, and I mean particularly the youth amongst you to create more jobs and kill poverty in our communities,’ she noted.

The Minister was speaking at an engagement with canoe owners, fishermen and chief fishermen on plans concerning the First July to the 31st of July close fishing season for artisanal fishers.

Turning attention to bad practices at sea, the Minister said the pollution
of the ocean with waste and plastics was becoming a major threat aside from the use of illegal, unregulated, and unreported fishing methods employed by some unscrupulous fishers at sea.

She encouraged them to avoid selfish and deadly fishing practices which contributed to the depletion of marine resources.

The Minister said, ‘Don’t allow yourselves to be arrested. Let us comply with all fishing rules, particularly the close season because if for nothing at all, and you are asked to pay even one hundred cedis, there is a cost meanwhile that money could be invested.’

Mrs Koomson said the Moratorium on Canoe still existed but that there was room for replacement should one apply.

She said the Ministry would support them throughout the close season and encouraged all communities to comply with modalities for the distribution of relief items, adding that the Ministry would make available outboard motors in the coming months at cheaper rates to ensure that fishers could purchase them.

The fishers suggested a ba
n of two years for offenders at sea, collaboration with traditional rulers along the coast to ensure sanity on the sea and devices to test the quality of the catch.

Other concerns were the effects of illegal mining on the sea and the need for recycling plants along the beaches.

Source: Ghana News Agency