General News of Tuesday, 23 October 2018
President Akufo-Addo yesterday dispelled rumours that he was rushed to 37 Military Hospital after collapsing.
Social media was awash with what appeared to be an orchestrated propaganda on Sunday afternoon that the President had been rushed to the 37 Military Hospital for emergency treatment.
The message, which went viral within a few seconds read “Breaking News: President Nana Akufo-Addo has collapsed a moment ago and currently on admission at the special ward of the 37 Military Hospital.”
Even before the rumours could get to the President, one of his confidantes, Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, came out to completely deny them.
Gabby wrote on his Facebook timeline and Twitter handle “So, the President cannot visit a hospitalized in-law at 37 without false speculations? Visit is done. He is home. Doing what he knows best: preparing for work in the morning.”
It later turned out that President Akufo-Addo apparently went to the Military Hospital to visit his brother in-law, one Captain Pius Spencer, a former director at the defunct Ghana Airways.
Gabby’s response was not enough to debunk the vile reports by his political opponents since another propaganda later popped up that the authorities were about fly him out of the country for further treatment.
On Monday morning President Akufo-Addo, who was full of life, attended a programme at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping and Training Centre (KAIPTC) at Teshie in Accra to launch the national Cyber Security Awareness Month.
He took the opportunity to refute the ill-fated claims, saying “as you see me standing here hale and hearty, it appears that hospitals, even the Military Hospitals, are toxic areas for the commander-in-chief.”
“My presence at the 37 Military Hospital yesterday to visit my brother in-law, the famous pilot, Captain Pius Spencer, who is unfortunately there for a hip operation, has been translated into my collapse on social media in preparation for my evacuation abroad,” he told the audience, who burst out laughing.
President Akufo-Addo, who was unperturbed, said “all I can say is that those whose political fortunes depend on my ill-health and degeneration; all I can say is that, we are all in the hands of the Almighty, Amen!” to a rapturous applause from the gathering.
Ahead of the 2016 election, Africawatch Magazine, which was allegedly working to help the NDC to retain power, published a story about Akufo-Addo afflicted with cancer.
The Magazine has gained notoriety for peddling falsehood about President Akufo-Addo.
Speaking at the event, the President acknowledged the present dangers that technological advancement poses to the security of the state, reiterating his government’s determination to provide adequate funding to secure the country’s cyber space and establish what he described as ‘a cyber security culture in Ghana.”
President Akufo-Addo said as Ghana scales up e-connectivity as part of government’s digitalization agenda, we will certainly witness an upsurge in criminal activity if precautionary measures are not put in place to forestall such eventualities.
“With 10 million Ghanaians connected to the Internet, of which 4.9 million are Facebook users alone, the impact of any cyber-attack on our e-business platforms or on mobile telephony will impact negatively on businesses and on the lives of Ghanaians,” the President said.
He said his administration has been animated to “increase public sensitization, capacity building and investment in a-fit-for purpose cyber-security infrastructure to help make our digital experience safe and secure.”
The development of Ghana’s National Cyber Security Policy and Strategy in 2011 was necessitated by actual and anticipated threats from cybercrime, which have the potential of undermining the gains from the country’s digitalization efforts.
Recognizing the need to scale up cyber security readiness in view of the escalating cybercrimes and cyber security issues, the Government of Ghana directed the Ministry of Communications to work with other ministries, agencies and international partners to develop national responses to address cyber security issues.
Consequently, the Ministry established the National Cyber Security Secretariat to coordinate national efforts toward addressing Ghana’s cyber security challenges.
A National Cyber Security Inter-Ministerial Advisory Council (NCSIAC) and a National Cyber Security Technical Working Group (NCSTWG) were established to support the ministry in securing Ghana’s cyberspace.