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Archive for Ghana

Newsline: The true story of the fake US embassy in Ghana

On Friday 2 December 2016, a curious story appeared on the website GhanaBusinessNews.com. “Ghana security authorities shut down fake US Embassy in Accra,” the headline declared. For a decade, the story went, there had been a fake US embassy in the Ghanaian capital. The fraudsters behind it had flown the American flag from their building and even hung a portrait of Barack Obama on the wall. The criminal network behind the scam had advertised on billboards and prowled the most remote villages of west Africa, searching for gullible customers. They brought them to Accra, and sold them visas for as much as $6,000. According to a US state department statement, which had been published in early November, the fake embassy was operated by “figures from both Ghanaian and Turkish organized crime rings and a Ghanaian attorney practicing immigration and criminal law”. The American authorities supplied a picture of an old, two-storey pink building with a tin roof, originally captioned: “The exterior of the fake embassy in Accra, Ghana.” The caption was later changed to: “One of several buildings used by the disrupted fraud ring.” Reuters reported that the Americans, with the help of the Ghana Detectives Bureau, had raided the fake embassy. Several people were arrested, and officials seized 150 passports from 10 different countries. The US state department said, the number of fraudulent documents coming from west Africa had gone down by 70% as a result of this and other raids, and “criminal leaders no longer have the political cover they once had”. But the story was fake. It might have started with a diplomatic cable – a classified memo – sent from the US embassy in Accra to the state department in Washington DC on 25 July 2016, titled “Ghana: Fake US Embassy Closed for Business.” When I asked the US state department for comment, an official simply told me that US Diplomatic Security Service officials work with Ghanaian authorities to uphold the integrity of the visa system. The state department declined to provide additional information in response to specific questions.

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/nov/28/the-true-story-of-the-fake-us-embassy-in-ghana

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Newsline: Liberia Embassy in Ghana says Ebola under control

The Embassy of the Republic of Liberia in Ghana has allayed fears that the country is nearing collapse as a result of the deadly Ebola epidemic. According the the Embassy, the epidemic “is under control” in the country. The Liberian Ambassador to the United States, Jeremiah Sulunteh in an earlier interview with the media, said Liberia was “close to collapse” as a result of the devastating Ebola outbreak. So for over 3,000 affected persons have been killed. But the Charge D’Affairs of the Embassy of the republic of Liberia in Ghana, Musu Ruhle in an interview with Citi News refutted the claims. She indicated that the situation has greatly improved, “There are patients leaving the hospitals now who have been treated and are going home and we have empty beds. Before, two three months ago, there were no beds, but now there are empty beds,” she indicated. Meanwhile, the World Health Organization (WHO) has revealed that health-care officials would need close to six months to tackle the Ebola outbreak in the worsely affected countries – Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone.

http://www.citifmonline.com/2014/10/12/ebola-in-liberia-under-control-liberia-embassy-in-ghana/

Newsline: Ghana’s Embassy in Burkina Faso spends more than $600,000 on fence wall

Ghana’s Embassy in Burkina Faso will soon be investigated for allegedly spending $656,248.48 on the construction of a fence wall. Bank of Ghana Deputy Governor, Millison Narh described the amount as outrageous and requires thorough probing. The revelation was contained in BoG’s 2013 foreign exchange receipt payment presented to the Public Accounts Committee of Parliament. Mr Narh could not justify the expenditure on the fence wall but indicated the matter would be investigated and answers provided the Committee.

http://www.ghanaweb.com/GhanaHomePage/NewsArchive/artikel.php?ID=326506

Newsline: US Embassy apologizes to Ghana president after critical tweet

The U.S. Embassy in Ghana is apologizing after a staff member sent what’s being described as “an errant tweet” criticizing the president from the official Embassy Twitter account. Ghanaian President John Mahama had tweeted about the country’s financial woes, saying that “as a people, we have had to make sacrifices” and that the results of those cutbacks would start to show soon. A post from the U.S. Embassy’s Twitter account later retorted to the president: “And what sacrifices are you making?” In an apology, the U.S. Embassy in Accra says it has apologized to Ghana’s president and is also apologizing to the Ghanaian people. It says that an embassy staff member mixed up a personal Twitter account with that of the embassy’s.

http://www.usnews.com/news/world/articles/2014/07/21/us-embassy-apologies-to-ghana-leader-for-tweet

Newsline: Ghana’s Ambassador to Japan recalled over gambling saga

Ghana’s Ambassador to Japan, Mr Edmund Kofi Agbenutse Deh, has been invited to explain the circumstances leading to the alleged letting out of part of a property belonging to the mission to a gang of Japanese gamblers. The Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs and Regional Integration, Mr Thomas Kwesi Quartey, told the Daily Graphic that the ambassador was expected to arrive in Accra. “The Ambassador has been invited home for consultation. We need to know what went on,” he said. Mr Quartey said Mr Deh’s predecessor, Mr William Mensah Brandful, had already been interviewed regarding his involvement in the renting of the property. He said investigations into the letting out of the property had gone far and indicated that interviewing the current Ghana’s Ambassador to Japan on the issue would facilitate the completion of the investigations. The deputy Foreign Affairs Minister declined to make any further comments on the investigations, insisting that any commentary would come only after the conclusion of the investigations.

http://www.citifmonline.com/?p=8371

Newsline: Ghana’s ambassador to Japan under investigation for operating illegal casino

Ghana’s ambassador to Japan Edmond Kofi Agbenutse Deh, is being investigated by the Tokyo police for his alleged involvement in the running of an illegal casino in the Japanese capital. The Tokyo Police are reported to have asked the ambassador to consent to questioning over an alleged lease contract made for a room in Tokyo operating the illegal casino. The report which appeared in some major Japanese newspapers including NHK World and Tokyo Reporter, said some ten employees working at the secretly operating casino at Shibuya, a suburb in Tokyo, were arrested for allowing customers to play baccarat – a gambling card game played at casinos. One of the suspects is quoted to have told investigators, “I thought diplomatic immunity was applicable through the Embassy of Ghana, and we would not be caught by the police.” The Tokyo reporter also said a rental contract previously in the name of the former ambassador was changed to that of the current ambassador, and the document signed at his official residence with diplomatic identification forms. The Police also seized more than one hundred thousand dollars in cash.

http://www.citifmonline.com/?p=7244

Newsline: Peru, Colombia agree to share embassies in Ghana and Vietnam

The governments of Peru and Colombia have formally agreed to share embassy offices in Vietnam and Ghana, as part of ongoing efforts to promote integration in the Pacific Alliance bloc, which also includes Chile and Mexico. The agreement was signed by Peruvian Foreign Minister Eda Rivas and her Colombian counterpart Maria Angela Holguin, on the sidelines of a Pacific Alliance meeting in Mexico City. The accord paves the way for Peruvian embassy representation at the Colombian embassy in Ghana, while Colombia will be allowed to use Peru’s embassy in Vietnam.

http://www.peruthisweek.com/news-peru-colombia-agree-to-share-embassies-101958