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Coronavirus: IMF, World Bank Tell Poor Countries To Suspend Debt Payment.

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With immediate effect and consistent with national laws of the creditor countries, the World Bank Group (WBG) and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) are calling on all official bilateral creditors to suspend debt payments from International Development Association (IDA) countries that request forbearance.

This follows a joint statement to the G20 concerning debt relief for the poorest countries in the world in the wake of the Coronavirus outbreak.

Ghana is a member of IDA and will, therefore, benefit from the directive from the two Bretton Wood institutions.

The statement added that the coronavirus outbreak is likely to have severe economic and social consequences for IDA countries with about a quarter of the world’s population and two-thirds of the world’s population living in extreme poverty.

“We invite G20 leaders to task the WBG and the IMF to make these assessments, including identifying the countries with unsustainable debt situations and to prepare a proposal for comprehensive action by official bilateral creditors to address both the financing and debt relief needs of IDA countries.

“We will seek endorsement for the proposal at the Development Committee during the Spring Meetings (April 16/17),” the statement said.

The World Bank Group and the IMF believe it is imperative at this moment to provide a global sense of relief for developing countries as well as a strong signal to financial markets.

The international community would welcome G20 support for this Call to Action.

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‘TOILET PAPER, GENTLY USED/ How Facebook Marketplace Has Become An Unlikely Platform For Comedy

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In the two days since he advertised “unprocessed toilet paper” for sale on Facebook Marketplace next to a photo of logs, David Traichel says the response has been better than expected. No actual buyers, just hundreds of views, laughs, and “you made my day” from other users browsing through the online classifieds.

“So many people are so freaked out about the idea of not having toilet paper,” says Traichel, 39. The aerospace technician and welder from Northford, Connecticut generally uses Facebook Marketplace to sell vintage car and bicycle parts. He decided to offer his oak and cedar woodpile (price, $1) to jog users out of their shopping panic. “Maybe those people would see the ad and think, ‘OK, maybe I’m overreacting.”

Homebound Americans have turned to scavenging on ecommerce sites like Amazon, eBay and Facebook Marketplace for the boring household goods that have become hot items during the coronavirus pandemic. The shortages have inspired some mercenary sellers to excessive pricing (say, hand sanitizer for $149) and prompted the tech companies to crack down on price gougers. The hoarding frenzy has also been catnip for armchair humorists, who have found an unlikely platform to yuk it up in the free classifieds of Facebook Marketplace.

On the social network’s 800 million-user shopping site, one Internet standup is offering “toilet paper, extra long roll” for $69,4202—it’s a CVS receipt wound around the toilet paper dispenser. Another wants to sell you the “last roll of toilet paper in the world,” marked at $10,000. As a last resort, yet another smart aleck is advertising $90 toilet paper alongside a photo of sandpaper. “Don’t go without during this crisis,” it reads.

In reality, there’s no toilet paper crisis. Unlike imports such as iPhones and flat-screen TVs, most U.S. toilet paper comes from domestic factories, buffering supplies from a drop in production in China, where the viral outbreak started. Georgia-Pacific, maker of AngelSoft and Quilted Northern, is boosting its U.S. production. Proctor & Gamble, which makes Charmin brand toilet paper, Bounty paper towels and Puffs facial tissue, says production at its U.S. plants is at record highs. “Demand continues to outpace supply, but we are working diligently to get product to our retailers as fast as humanly possible,” says P&G spokeswoman Loren Fanroy.

Which makes it all the more absurd that anxious shoppers stripped supermarket shelves of every last double-ply roll. Relishing the irony, Kim Marie, a 42-year-old naturopathic practitioner from Manorville, New York, decided this week to flog “vintage toilet paper” on Facebook Marketplace. For just $55,990, she’s showcasing a water-damaged and rotting roll mounted on a rustic wall, closing with the Craigslist battlecry of overpriced junker listings, “no low ballers, I know what I got.” Marie, who regularly sells vintage housewares on the site, says she has received no serious inquiries. Just as well, since the item listed isn’t actually in Marie’s possession— it was a funny photo texted to her by her husband. She threw it up on Marketplace “to lighten the mood.”

It was the “organic toilet paper,” a $10 baggie of leaves listed on Facebook Marketplace by her brother’s girlfriend, that inspired Liz Stoppiello, 27. The stay-at-home mom usually sells items like car seats and books on Facebook Marketplace. This week she’s offering “washable crochet toilet paper! Been used only a cpl times” for a cool $100. The advertised off-white crochet squares, wrapped around a cardboard tube, look worthy of an Etsy storefront. It took about 30 minutes to make. She just wanted to “get a good laugh” from people and to promote her crochet-oriented Facebook page. “You never know if anyone will start to desperately need handmade items in the near future lol,” she said via email.

Her fellow Marketplace posters might be in on the joke, but Facebook’s bots are not. The social network, which uses artificial intelligence to help monitor content and warned Monday that its systems may have removed some COVID-19-related posts in error, had flagged Traichel’s toilet paper ad for unprocessed wood as “under review.”

Facebook “must be so flooded they don’t know what to do,” Traichel emailed, adding an “lol.” He isn’t interested in making a profit, at least not on his firewood. “If people really need toilet paper, I’ll give ‘em a roll.”

–Helen A. S. Popkin, Forbes Staff, Innovation

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Absa Bank Ghana donates GHS 1 million to COV!D-19 Trust Fund and offers financial support to customers

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As a demonstration of Absa Bank Ghana’s commitment to help in the fight against the Coronavirus, the bank has donated an amount of GHS 1 million to the COVID-19 National Trust Fund set up by the Government. The donation is towards the procurement of test kits and Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) to support increased testing and the protection of our front line health workers.

Absa Bank Ghana, in response to the economic impact of COVID-19 on its cherished customers, is also offering repayment moratorium of up to six months to all personal and business customers who have been impacted by COVID-19.

Additionally, the bank has reduced its lending rate by 2% on qualifying Personal, SME as well as loans to other impacted industries. These measures take effect from 1st April 2020 and will be implemented across loans due in April 2020, subject to the necessary arrangements with the bank.

Last week, as a way of supporting customers, the bank waived charges on interbank instant transfers on its digital channels and also made mobile money transfers of up to Ghs100 daily free.

The bank in a statement indicated that, in the face of the challenges customers are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, it was only right that the bank offered some relief to help customers remain in business.

Speaking on the support from the bank, Mrs. Abena Osei-Poku, the Managing Director, said “We have been closely monitoring developments and the growing concerns on COVID-19 in Ghana and the rest of the world as well as reports from government and health institutions. This pandemic is nothing we have seen before and is very alarming to say the least. As a caring bank, it is important for us to support our customers who keep us in business. While doing that, we are also aware of the efforts government is making to bring the situation of COVID-19 under control in Ghana. We therefore found it dutiful to support the government towards the purchase of test kits to help curb the spread of the virus and PPE for the protection of our front line health workers”.

The bank further stated that, it will keep monitoring the developments on COVID-19 and take the decisions that will be in the best interest of customers and employees.

‘Our primary focus is on serving our customers in a safe environment while maintaining the health and well-being of our employees, their families and the general public. We have ensured that our customers will have access to secure and convenient service during this period through our digital channels, Cash accepting ATMs and our Relationship Managers’’, noted Mrs. Osei-Poku.

As part of the precautionary measures taken by the Bank against COVID-19, it has with effect from Monday, 30th March temporarily reduced its branch operations and encouraged customers to stay at home and use its digital channels for their banking transactions

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President Nana Akufo-Addo Hailed For Quote Made During His Last Speech To The Nation

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ACCRA, GHANA, March 30th, 2020/www.gbafrica.net/ – Ghanaian President, Nana AkufoAddo has all of a sudden become one of the world’s favourite men after his speech to address the nation of Ghana about the new Corona Virus update. The president stated “We know how to bring the economy back to life. What we do not know is how to bring the people back to life”.

After his speech, his team tweeted an image of the quote on his twitter page and since then he has received many applause from dignitaries all over the world.

This morning, Nana’s tweet was one of the things discussed on “Good Morning Britain” and host Piers Morgan stated that “I keep saying this, you’ve got to have a simple message that gets to the people……….. Now that to me right there! is what we are talking about.”

However, there are people who have bashed the president too, for plagiarism. This is because the quote was said earlier by one “Daniel W. Snare” on 29th March but I guess because of the way the president’s team went about with the tweet has got him all the credit.

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Cov!d-19: DeleteGhana Cuts Service Charges To Promote Cleanliness.

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DeleteGhana, a Waste Management company known for providing efficient cleaning solutions and waste management for commercial, corporate, industrial and residential clients has cut-rate service charges as part efforts to curb the spread coronav!rus.

The company which is a wholly-owned Ghanaian business is encouraging Ghanaians to practise both personal hygiene and environmental cleanliness as a measure to avoid the contraction of COV!D-19.

According to the management of the Company, they are reducing their charges on all of their services from now until the virus is defeated.

“We are offering discounts to clean and disinfect public and private places. It is important that we think through on thorough cleaning and preventive measures to keep everyone safe and hygienic. The measures to keep everyone at home and ban from social interactions is a laudable attempt by the government, these places should be sanitized whilst everyone is away to get our country clean and safe”

“Everyone should get involve to get this fight to a clean Ghana, clean citizens in the #DeleteCorona campaign to continue the Ghana growth agenda”

About DeleteGhana

DeleteGhana is a general cleaning and waste Management Company that specializes in general cleaning, fumigation, and many sanitary services. The company’s service is a fully integrated janitorial cleaning services company that provides comprehensive, high quality, reliable cleaning solutions to commercial, corporate, industrial and residential clients.

Our diligent management and work ethic are central to Cleaning Company service business philosophy and critical to delivering consistent, quality cleaning services. We pride ourselves on making our management accountable to the client through direct access and interaction with our managing director.

Source: Ghana/Starrfm.com.gh/103.5FM

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