Ghana Ports & Harbours Authority News
The management and senior staff of the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority has also held it end of year dinner dance.
The event was attended by the Greater Accra Regional, Ishmael Ashitey, Deputy Minister of Transport and MP for East, Daniel Titus-Glover, Deputy Minister for Trade and Industry and MP for Tema West, Carlos Ahenkorah and MP for Tema Central Kofi Brako.  
The chairman of the Senior Staff Union Association of GPHA, John Aseph pledged on behalf of the workers to provide a selfless service towards achieving a higher productivity in 2018 and the years to come.

“We want to give you the assurance that we would continue to give you the support to achieve much more than you achieved last year,” he promised.
The Director of Tema Port, Edward Osei lauded the contributions of management and senior staff of GPHA for the year 2017 and solicited their support for 2018.
The Director General of GPHA, Paul Asare Ansah entreated management and staff of the Port authority to plug all revenue leakages and put a stop to all unethical practices so as to safeguard revenue to the state.

“If we would be able to make enough revenue to make all our obligations that is expected, then all of us must join hands to fight revenue leakages,” he admonished. 
He also assured that in 2018, the Port will be made more efficient for stakeholders and all those who operate in the port.
Paul Ansah said the level of the paperless implementation would be uplifted beyond importation as it pertains currently and the Port Authority would mount a heavy crackdown on persons who forge invoices of the Port Authority and other agencies. 
“We are going to fight these fraudsters with all our strength to make sure that we stop it to redeem the integrity of the paperless project,” the Director General averred. 

The Tema Fishing Harbour has held it end of year dinner for the year 2017 to award stakeholders who have contributed immensely towards the development of the fishing harbour.
Addressing the gathering, the General Manager of the Fishing Harbour, Kumi-Adjei-Sam called for continues support of the stakeholders so as to create an enabling working environment for their businesses to thrive in 2018.
He revealed that management intends to improve the conditions at the fishing harbour to ensure high efficiency and generate the needed revenue for the state.
“We decided to hold this function to recognise the contribution of our stakeholders. You contribute so much to the fishing industry,” he said.

The Director of Tema Port, Edward Osei assured that a health post would be constructed in 2018 to cater for the health needs of all stakeholders that operate in the fishing harbour.
“We heard your cry about a health post and we are providing a health post to the fishing harbor,” he assured.

The Deputy Minister for Transport who doubles as the Member of Parliament for Tema East, Daniel Nii Kwatei Titus-Glover entreated stakeholders of the fishing harbour to ensure at all times that the sanitation situation at the place is improved.
“I want us all, as stakeholders to help ourselves by helping the General Manager and his team to make sure that the fishing harbour is very clean at all times,” he said.
Hard working and high performing stakeholders were awarded including all past General Managers of the Fishing Harbour and key stakeholders to encourage them contribute positively towards the development of the fishing harbour.

The Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority has waged a war against clearing agents and unscrupulous individuals who clone and inflate GPHA invoices to defraud importers.
The vigilance of the Port Security has led to the arrest of 4 alleged fraudulent clearing agents who inflated GPHA invoices in order to extort monies from importers.
The culprits are contracted agents tasked by the Catholic Secretariat which is a self-declarant organization to clear goods on their behalf. 
It emerged that the four culprits, without the knowledge of their employers, declared forged invoices to their customers and split the profits at the expense of the Port Authority and the Ghana Catholic Secretariat.
Their fraudulent activity was reported to have gone on for over a year with defrauded amount totaling GH¢20,000.  
The Finance Manager of Tema Port, Tebon Zumah stated that the alleged fraudsters are to pay a penalty of GH¢60,000 as per GPHA policy. 
“Once you engage in such fraudulent activity you are supposed to pay three times the defrauded amount. In this particular case, the total is GH¢20,000. So, we will multiply that by 3 and require them to pay,” he stated.
He lamented that the actions of the 4 arrested clearing agents go a long way to create the impression that the cost of doing business in Ghana’s Ports is expensive. 
“The most important and critical issue is the effect that these things have on the port. It makes the port look very expensive which is not right,” he added. 
Tebon Zumah revealed that GPHA is working assiduously on technical measures to create the atmosphere where customers of the Port have a very transparent access to clearance details to save them such undue cost and also protect the reputation of the Port Authority.
“We are looking at those alternatives to make sure that the consignees get involved, get access to the invoice so that if a clearing agent comes to tell you this is what I have printed from GPHA at least you can also verify,” he stated. 

Tema Port Security Manager, Joseph Punamane hinted that the alleged fraudulent clearing agents will also be banned from working in the Port to serve as a deterrent to others.
“So what we are going to do is to hand them over to the police and also fine them as per the rules here,” he said. 
This, according to him is required before prosecutorial measures at the police level would take place.

The year 2017 was principally fulfilling for Eye on Port, your Authoritative Port and Maritime Television programme. Unlike the year 2016 where the programme focused largely on complaints by most port users on fraudulent engagements with clearing agents as well as confiscation of imported items particularly cars which required Eye on Port to assist them to obtain their goods back or get compensated for their loss, 2017 was more towards the supply or service delivery policies advocated by the programme which caught the attention of policy makers.
Since its introduction, Eye on Port has sought to bring activities within the Port and Maritime Industry closer to people and bring people also closer to the Port. The Programme highlights pertinent issues that confront stakeholders in the Port and Maritime Industry and seek assistance from relevant institutions like the Ghana Shippers’ Authority, Ghana Customs, Ports and Harbours’ Authority, Maritime Authority, and their private partners in addressing such challenges. Relevant Ministries like Transport, Trade and Industry and Finance have also been very supportive in addressing the needs of Port users through the programme. 
In 2017, Eye on Port begun the year by considering the challenges confronting the Industry with the then heads of relevant agencies.
The programme had raised issues including presence of multiplicity of state agencies with physical presence in the Port, extortion from importers in the name of taking goods for sampling by inspection agencies. Issues of confiscated items and different exchange rates for foreign currencies in the Port were also raised on the program to the highest level of the presidency when the Vice President visited the Port in early part of the year 2017.
Not long after this, the Vice President held a Port efficiency conference to address inefficiencies in the Port and assured Eye on Port, he believes the directives will make a lot of difference in the industry.
Even after the directives, Eye on Port continued to probe other concerns like starting a debate on the charging of miscellaneous fees by clearing agents in spite of the paperless regime.
Stakeholders spoke vehemently against the miscellaneous fees and hoped it will be scrapped when the paperless regime establishes.
Eye on Port also embarked on a journey from Tema Port to Ghana’s Borders revealing that in spite of the directive by the Vice President, some transit routes like the Takyiman to Hamile stretch still had some customs barriers that were active. On this corridor, the Eye on Port team discovered about four Customs Check Points which appeared to be very active from Paga to Hamile and Hamile to Techiman alone.
The first Customs checkpoint was between Navrongo and Paga before the main Customs barrier at Paga. Here, Officers were seen very active and the team interacted with them. 
The next Custom barrier was the Kondioko Customs check point in Banu right after the Banu Bridge on the Navrongo-Tumu road. Here again, officers were seen very active there. The next Customs Check Point the EOP team found was at Kulmasa after Nyole close to Wa, the Upper West Regional capital. 
The team finally discovered the last Customs checkpoint at Bole in the Bole Bamboi District of the Upper West Region. 
Again, Eye on Port had earlier exposed coordinated relationship between Custom officers at the borders of Ghana and some individuals who claim to be agents collecting 1,000 CFA from transit importers before aiding them to cross the Ghana border to Burkina Faso. 
Again the Commissioner of Customs intervened and banned the collection of that money following additional interventions by other stakeholders.
Eye on Port further hit the Transit Corridor to ascertain the level of harassment by security officers on the corridor. We discovered that although the level of harassment had drastically reduced after we last filmed some officers extorting monies, some bit of it were still happening. But police officers on the corridor blamed that on the drivers for carrying fake driver’s license and vehicle worthy certificates.
We also exposed the bad conditions under which police officers on the corridor are working.
Eye on Port also exposed leaking and rusted pipelines belonging to the Tema Oil Refinery and located at the Valco berth near the Dry Dock in the port of Tema which posed serious threat to the port following some serious leakages.
 The pipelines are laid for the transmission of crude oil, liquefied petroleum gas, gasoline, among other highly inflammable products, to the refinery and other critical installations in the Tema metropolis.
Indeed for all these works and many more unmentioned earned the programme several recognitions from individuals and organizations as it was named the best maritime media programme at the maiden edition of the Ghana Maritime Awards and the Media programme in Shipping at the maiden edition of the Ghana Shippers Awards. It also earned the Port Authority PR Organization of the year in the manufacturing and Industry category by the Institute of Public Relations in 2017.

Tema Shipyard Services to Be Enhanced with Ultramodern Equipment
The Tema Shipyard has taken delivery of a state of the art 45tons mobile crane as well as two cherry pickers as part of GPHA's plans to help revive the dilapidated dry dock company to enhance efficient and effective work delivery in the dry dock yard.
Captain Francis Kwesi Micah, CEO of Tema Shipyard said the new machinery, is very essential to augment the needed radicalization at the shipyard. 
“This three equipment have come in very expensive but at the same time they come at a critical time that we intend to improve upon our turnaround time of vessels in the yard, and also to increase the number of vessels that we work on. And for start and for the records, currently, with reference to today, we have been able to work on 33 ships which is a vast improvement of what we did last year”, he mentioned.
The CEO said the new machines would replace the outmoded ones thus facilitate turnaround time of vessels who dock at the shipyard for repair work. 
“We have received a 45 tonner mobile crane state of the art, digital and complex in nature and two cherry pickers. Now the cranes would be very much important to augment facility of the 35 tons that we do have already in the yard. And previously as we indicated, the cranes and the facilities that had been in the yard had all been aged, dilapidated, delinquent and out of vogue and maintenance. It was in that direction that we requested GPHA to come to our aid and they did so well”, he elaborated.

Managers at the Tema Shipyard are optimistic the machines will improve efficiency.
“The cherry pickers would be used in sandblasting. It is a self-manipulated cherry picker so if the person is standing at the top, he would able to move it forward, move it up and down and then be able to do the sandblasting, hydro blasting or painting,” Engineer Otoo said.
The Human Resource Manager, Samuel Adjar said “the influence of GPHA itself with the Shipyard, being in the port enclave is more than sufficient to lift the yard and make it a very positive venture in the country.”
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