Monday, November 13, 2006

What's in the News?

I thought I would inform you about some things that have been going on in Ghana since my arrival in August.
P.S. New pictures are up on the Ghana webshots link to the right.


Graduate Teacher’s Strike
In September, the graduate teacher’s of Ghana went on strike. Graduate teacher applies to those who graduated from university, not a teaching college. These teachers teach Senior Secondary School (High School). The strike is an appeal for higher wages (they make less than $200 a month). Last year the nurses and doctors went on strike, but the strike didn’t last long because people are dying. The government quickly complied with the doctors (bought them some cars, too) but the compliance is much slower with the teachers. Its really only hurting the students, who are in public school and missing classes but will still have to take the entry exams for university at the end of the year whether they had class or not. Classes are still held at public schools and some teachers are having private night classes for a hefty sum. Those who can’t afford either of these options are not going to school at all. It’s a sad story.

The Cocaine Scandal
This particular story has dominated the front page every day since August. It all begins with a ship that came into port with 17 kilos of cocaine. When they inspected the ship, all the cocaine was gone. People who have been accused/suspected range from the police and security guards at the port, sailors and even the Asantehene’s name has come up.
Rawlings’ Attempted Coup
President Kufour accused former president/military dictator JJ Rawlings of attempting to stage a coup against the current government. He said that Rawlings was in cohorts with an un-named oil rich country to get funding to stage the coup. Rawlings called Kufour an idiot for thinking that he would do something like that. They don’t like each other. Hopefully Rawlings doesn't stage a coup...although he is really liked in certain regions of the country, despite is human rights violations when he was in power and his lack of democratic rule until 1992.

China’s New Imperialism
If you have been following international news, you would note that last week China had a series of meetings with African leaders about absolving debts, investments, and development endeavors. Ghana was one of these countries, where China has promised to participate in a number of development projects and invest in technology development. Hopefully, this isn’t a one-sided exchange, where Ghana gets nothing and China gets everything.

1 comment:

Anna said...

Thanks for the news Justine...you are definitely in tune with political and local issues. It's too bad about the graduate teacher strike...the poor students who cannot afford to pay for the private classes are at a great disadvantage. I hope that there is some avenue of learning they can pursue in order to pass their tests.