Major Albert Don-Chebe (RTD), Head of Corporate Communications, Vodafone Ghana, on Friday denied knowledge of any Nigerian company called Telegennica, alleged to be employing local contractors to install masts for Vodafone.
Maj. Don-Chebe told the Ghana News Agency that Vodafone has awarded a contract to Huawei to install infrastructure across the country and Huawei was free to sub-let parts of the contract to any company it deems fit.
“As far as Vodafone is concerned we have a contract with only Huawei so we have no knowledge or dealings with any company that Huawei deals with in executing that contract,” he said.
Maj. Don-Chebe made the remark in response to an online publication on July 1, with the headline “Vodafone Gt, Huawei and Telegenicca Cheating Ghanaian Contractors”.
The publication, under the name of one Adumua Sam, alleged that a Nigerian Company, Telegenicca, hired by Huawei to erect masts in parts of the country, also used local contractors but refused to reimburse them after the local contractors had pre-financed the contracts.
It said when a local contractor ran out of cash and could not finish the contract, Telegenicca then hired another contractor to complete it and then refused to pay the original contractor the full amount spent.
Maj. Don-Chebe said it was erroneous for anyone to assume that because the masts were being erected on behalf of Vodafone then Vodafone was part of any games that the Nigerian company was alleged to be playing.
“Nobody has reported any such fraud to us. We saw it for the first time when it was published online,” he said.
The Ghana News Agency made attempts to reach Huawei on their only available office telephone fixed line number in Ghana, 021-782276, but the line was dead.
Further investigations revealed that the fixed line was in the name of Jack and Jill, care of IPMC and not Huawei.
Obama’s visit to Ghana expected to boost tourism earnings
Mrs. Juliana Azumah-Mensah, Minister of Tourism, noted on Friday that President Barrack Obama’s visit to Ghana this month presents a chance in a lifetime to push tourism to the third highest foreign exchange earner for the country.
She told journalists in Accra that last year tourism earning stood at US$1.4 billion, placing fourth to cocoa, gold and remittances.
“But with Barrack Obama’s visit and other tourism activities in the pipeline this year, the sector was expected to generate between 16 to 20 per cent revenue, more than it did last year and thereby take its rightful place as the third highest foreign exchange earner,” she said.
Mr. Azumah-Mensah made the remark at the launch of World Tourism Day, Panafest and Emancipation Day celebrations as well as the Tourism aspect of President Barrack Obama’s visit to Ghana.
She noted that President Obama’s visit, slated for July 10 to 12, promised to give the world a glimpse of Ghana’s golden culture through the eyes of the 300 international journalists coming to cover the visit.
“Our heritage and culture tourism resource will be given a massive publicity worldwide so Ghana must take advantage of it and hang out all her best wares to be captured by the cameras,” she said.
She therefore urged players in the domestic tourism industry to highlight the tourism opportunities that existed in Ghana to enhance domestic earnings for economic growth.
Mr. Kobby Acheampong, Deputy Minister of Tourism said, on the back of President Obama’s visit, Ghana would launch an aggressive sales campaign to attract wealthy black Americans to come, live and spend in Ghana, saying, “we will start town hall meetings in black communities in the United States to promote our tourism opportunities”.
He also said travel and tourism clubs would also be established in schools and churches as a way of boosting domestic tourism.
Just days after President has concluded his visit, Panafest and Emancipation Day would come off from July 16 to August 1, on the theme: “Our heritage, our strength.”
The occasion would be marked with activities such as wreath laying, durbars, a reverential night and Pan African Conference and Awards Night.
Mrs. Azumah-Mensah said the United Nations World Tourism Organization had also chosen Ghana to host this year’s World Tourism Day celebration slated for September 21 – 27.
She said the World Tourism Day would be on the theme: ”Tourism Celebrating Diversity- and would be marked with activities such as a tour for the local press and travel writers, tree planting along Lake Bosomtwe and a think-tank on the theme.
The minister urged Ghanaians to participate fully in all the events to ensure that Ghana took full advantage of the opportunities they offered to boost efforts at reaching the over one million tourists target by 2012.
She called on the media to support the ministry in publicizing the good image of the country during “this crucial and most opportune period”, in the history of the country.