FIRST LADY LAUNCHES CAMPAIGN TO ACCELERATE EFFORTS TO ELIMINATE MOTHER-TO-CHILD HIV INFECTIONS

In boosting efforts to eliminate Mother-to-Child HIV infections, Her Excellency the First Lady of the Republic of Ghana, Mrs. Rebecca Akufo-Addo, in the company of other stakeholders, has launched the Free-to-Shine (F2S) National Campaign in Accra.

The message behind the campaign is Prevention of Mother-To-Child Transmission of HIV: the Key to an HIV Free Generation and Keeping Mothers Alive. The First Lady says she is joining hands with the Organization of African First Ladies against HIV/AIDS, the African Union, and UNAIDS to speed up the elimination of Mother-To-Child transmission of HIV and to keep mothers healthy. “We seek to achieve zero HIV infections in children by the year 2020, and end HIV in children by 2030, keeping infected mothers alive at the same time” she indicated.

The Deputy Director of the Ghana Health Service, Dr. Gloria Quansah Asare,  UNAIDS Country Director, Ms. Angela Trenton-Mbonde,  the Acting Director General of Ghana AIDS Commission, Mr. Kyeremeh Atuahene, and other stakeholders also gave statements of support in endorsing the Free-To-Shine Campaign.  They also pledged their commitments to ensuring the elimination of new HIV infections in children.

The First Lady later unveiled a F2S plague to begin the campaign in Ghana.

The UN Condemns the Killing of Ghanaian Journalist Ahmed Hussein-Suale

Accra, 19 January 2019– The United Nations in Ghana, through its Acting Resident Coordinator,Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra, expresses its strong condemnation, following the death of Ghanaian Journalist Ahmed Hussein-Suale, in Accra, on Wednesday, January 16,2019.

The United Nations calls for a prompt, thorough and transparent investigation into Mr.Hussein-Suale’s death and full accountability for those responsible. Failure to bring perpetrators of human rights violations to justice, creates a climate of impunity,which perpetuates the cycle of violence against journalists.

The United Nations in Ghana reiterates the message of the UN Secretary-General, António Guterres, on the occasion of the International Day to End Impunity for Crimes against Journalists:“When journalists are targeted, societies as a whole pay a priceThis should not become the new normal.”

Protecting the fundamental right to freedom of expression also requires that journalists and media workers be protected, and action be taken to proactively promote their safety.

The United Nations in Ghana extends sincere condolences to Mr. Hussein-Suale’s family, friends and well wishers.

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Media Contact:

Ms. Cynthia Prah

UN Information Centre, Accra

Tel: 055 678 3033

Email: prah@un.org

ILO is 100 years

Accra, Ghana, 17 January 2019 –The International Labour Organization (ILO)  is commemorating its 100th anniversary with the launching of a new interactive website dubbed “Our Story, Your Story” (https://www.ilo.org/100/en/).The website takes browsers through the Organization’s past, present and future.  It also reveals a new chapter,each covering a world of work theme, from 9 January until 13 March.

The electronic communication tools, launched at the global level, is to engage the public with the priority issues of the world of work. Browsers will have the opportunity to undertake a global online tour of ILO across four continents within 24 hours at some point.

In Ghana, the ILO Projects’ Office will observe the centenary celebrations with a mini-symposium to bring into focus the national achievements of the ILO and its partners and reaffirm its position as the authoritative global organization for the world of work.  The symposium will be accompanied by a post-event photo exhibition featuring a photographic history of the ILO and policy documents developed with the support of the ILO in Ghana. Read more.

14th St. Jerome Translation Contest announced

Following up on the commemoration of International Translation Day, celebrated every year on 30 September, the Conference Management Service of the United Nations Office at Vienna is pleased to announce the launch of the fourteenth edition of the St. Jerome Translation Contest.

It serves to celebrate multilingualism within the United Nations and highlights the important role that translators and language professionals play in the work of the United Nations and in the world at large. Read more about the competition and eligibility requirement: https://languagecareers.un.org/dgacm/Langs.nsf/page.xsp?key=Outreach-StJerome-SJTC14 

Holocaust observed in Accra with student briefing

Accra, Ghana, 11 January 2019 – A student briefing has taken place at the Accra Academy for over 300 Senior High School students as part of the 2019 International Day of Commemoration in memory of the victims of the Holocaust in Accra. The event was organized by the United Nations Information Centre, Accra, with the involvement of Accra Academy, the host school, the German Embassy and the Israeli Embassy in Accra.

The theme for this year’s Holocaust remembrance activities is, “Holocaust Remembrance: Demand and Defend your Human Rights”. 

Introducing the programme, the National Information Officer of UNIC Accra, Ms. Cynthia Prah, said UNIC Accra is keen on sensitizing the youth to eschew hatred, discrimination and prejudice in society. She said such outreach events, supported by the Holocaust and the United Nations Outreach Programme, are very significant platforms to inform,educate and engage the youth on pertinent issues affecting us.

The Israeli Ambassador to Ghana, Her Excellency Ms. Shani Cooper-Zubida, shared and emotional personal story of the Holocaust, which captivated the audience.  She traced her experience from her grandmother,who at only six years old, was a second generation of her family lineage to be directly affected by the Holocaust. Ms. Cooper-Zubuda encouraged students to treat others equally. “Never judge people by their religion, gender or race.Always look at them as equal to you”, she said. She further advised the youth to have a conversation with their grandparents to understand and appreciate the experiences of their families.

The Culture, Press and Trade Officer at the German Embassy in Accra, Ms. Gudrun Haider, mentioned that discrimination should not be justified and entreated students to continuously strive for a better world.

US based Ghanaian poet,Cynthia Amoah, who is known for empowering listeners through her poems, presented a poem dedicated to the victims of the Holocaust.  She voluntarily participated in the event “to encourage the youth to use social media and their writing skills to inspire people rather than promote hate” she stated.

The Head of Accra Academy, Mr. William Garr, thanked UNIC Accra for choosing to observe Holocaust Remembrance at his school.  He appealed for educational materials to held the students gain better understanding of the Holocaust and other related events. 

The event took place in response to the need for education and awareness creation about the Holocaust among the youth. The students watched in total silence as the film titled, “the Path to Nazi Genocide” was screened.A second event involving high-level dignitaries is expected to take place later in the month.  Holocaust Remembrance falls on January 27 each year.

Applications invited for Journalism Fellowship at UN Headquarters

New York – The Dag Hammarskjöld Fund for Journalists is now accepting applications from professional journalists for its 2019 fellowship program. 

The fellowships are available to radio, television, print and web journalists, age 25 to 35, who are interested in reporting from New York during the 74th session of the United Nations General Assembly. 

Visit http://unjournalismfellowship.org/ for details. The deadline for application is March 1, 2019

IOM Ghana Celebrates Migration with Dignity on International Migrants Day

Accra, Ghana, 18 December 2018 – The International Organization for Migration (IOM) commemorated International Migrants Day and the 2-year anniversary of the EU-IOM Joint Initiative on Migrant Protection and Reintegration in Ghana with a football competition at the Kotobabi Wembley Sports Complex, Accra.

The safe migration football competition attracted about 1000 spectators from all the four communities as well as Government and non-government partners who have been integral in IOM’s work in Ghana.

The Chief of Mission, Sylvia Lopez-Ekra noted that the football competition is an opportunity to bring the youth together to highlight the dangers faced by irregular Ghanaian migrants during their journey. She added that “today we are taking the conversation on irregular migration out of the conference rooms and bringing it to the youth in the communities. We should not do anything for the youth without the youth. We should support them in taking ownership of the safe migration messages, make it their own and carry it forward”. Read more.

Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration: A driving force for progress and development

Accra, 17 December 2018 – On December 10, over 160 world leaders and representatives of Governments met in Marrakesh, Morocco to adopt the Global Compact for Safe, Orderly and Regular Migration. The Global Compact for Migration (GCM) for short, is the first-ever United Nations global agreement on a common approach on dealing with international migration in all its dimension.

Ms. Sylvia Lopez-Ekra Chief of Mission, IOM Ghana

There are over 258 million migrants around the world living outside their country of birth. This figure is expected to grow for a number of reasons including population growth, increasing connectivity, trade, rising inequality, demographic imbalances and climate change. Migration provides immense opportunities and benefits – for the migrants, host communities, communities of origin and destination. However, when poorly regulated it can also create significant challenges. These challenges include overwhelming social infrastructures with the unexpected arrival of large numbers of people and the deaths of migrants undertaking dangerous journeys. For the fifth straight year, IOM has witnessed the deaths of at least 2,000 irregular migrants seeking to reach Europe via the Mediterranean alone.

Movement from Ghana to other parts of the world has grown substantially in recent times. For instance, many young Ghanaians attempt to reach Europe in search of greener pastures by traveling irregularly through Libya because of mis-information and limited opportunities for safe and regular migration. Many of them either end up losing their lives trying to cross the Mediterranean Sea or live in deplorable conditions in Libya, suffering human rights abuses at the hands of smugglers and in detention centres. In 2016 a total of 5,636 Ghanaians (4,933 men, 170 women and 533 children, of which 499 were unaccompanied migrant children) arrived in Italy by boat in search of better opportunities and lives – making Ghanaians the 11th largest nationality to arrive on Italian shores.  Generally, there was a reduction in the number of arrivals on Italian shores in 2017 from all nationalities with the number of Ghanaian arrivals falling to 3,909. The situation in Libya however remains extremely difficult for stranded migrants. Read further.

UN4U High School SDGs Awareness Campaign at St. Martin’s Senior High School – Nsawam Adoagyiri

Accra, Ghana, 4 December 2018 – UN4U is one of the major means through which the United Nations Information Centre reaches out to the public about its activities and the Sustainable Development Goals. And since the beginning of the year, it has embarked on several of such activities reaching out to the youth. The most recent was held at the St. Martin’s Senior High School at Nsawam in the Eastern Region involving the United Nations Developments Program (UNDP) and Young Visionary Leaders of Ghana, a local NGO. About 1800 students were reached.

UNIC staff with SDGs club members.

The presentations dwelt on the history of the United Nations, its agencies and their respective functions, the SDGs, with emphasis on the 5Ps (People, Planet, Peace, Prosperity, and Partnership) and the specific mandate and scope of work of the UNDP.

At the end of the presentations, the team led the students to establish SDGs Club in the school to support understanding of the SDGs. The new SDGs Club at St, Martin makes about five, SDGs Clubs created by high schools under the leadership of the YVLG in partnership with UNIC Accra and UNDP. The aim of the Clubs is to promote the SDGs among students in high school.

16 Heads of UN Agencies and Diplomatic Missions embark on Social Media Campaign to End Gender-Based Violence in Ghana

Accra, Ghana, 28 November 2018 – Sixteen diplomats serving in Ghana are using social media platform to add their voices to the global campaign to end gender-based violence.  The campaign which began on November 25, will run for 16 days until December 10, 2018. The exercise is part of the United Nations 16 Days of Activism against Gender-Based Violence which takes place every year.

The diplomats include the UN Resident Coordinator, Ms. Christine Evans-Klock, the Heads of Missions of Germany, Canada, the UN Population Fund (UNFPA), the International Organisation for Migration (IOM), France, Australia, the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) and the European Union.

Others include the Heads of the UN Industrial Development Organization (UNIDO), Mexico, the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), the Netherlands, World Food Programme (WFP), the UN Development Programme (UNDP) and Italy. Read more.