Stories written by Jamila Akweley Okertchiri

Creating Beauty and Worth from Bamboo Enhances the Livelihoods of Ghana’s Artisans

Yaw Owiredu Mintah from Ghana has been working as an all-round processor of bamboo and rattan trees since the 1980s. And while he says that he can do most things with bamboo like weaving, framing and finishing, he admits, “I need to improve my skills and designs because all of us are, most of the time, doing the same things.”

How Ghana’s Rapid Population Growth Could Become an Emergency and Outpace Both Food Production and Economic Growth

Paul Ayormah and his fellow farmers make their way home after hours spent manually weeding a friend’s one-acre maize farm in Ghana’s Eastern Region.“Tomorrow it will be the turn of my maize farm,” he tells IPS.

Making it Compulsory to Have Women in Ghana’s Parliament

Beatrice Boateng, a member of parliament with the New Patriotic Party, Ghana’s official opposition to the ruling New Democratic Congress, has earned her place among the country’s lawmakers.

Autism “Relegated to the Sidelines”

At first glance Nortey Quaynor looks like any ordinary 29-year-old Ghanaian. If you spend a little time with him, though, you soon realise that something is different.

Gladys Otabil holds her son Gabriel as he receives the pneumoccocal vaccine at La General Hospital in Accra.  Credit: Jamila Akweley Okertchiri/IPS

Major Effort to Reduce Child Mortality Not Enough

Ghana has taken a major step towards reducing its under-five mortality rate by becoming the first African country to introduce two new vaccines for rotavirus and pneumococcal disease.

GHANA: Need to Recognise Mental Illness as a Health Concern

The incessant buzzing of mosquitoes was the first sign that there was something wrong. While Bernard Akumiah could clearly hear the small insects, there were none within his vicinity.

Sixty-seven-year-old Mariana Sayitou sells kola nuts and beans on the edge of Old Fadama.  Credit: Paul Carlucci/IPS

GHANA: No Pensions for Majority of Elderly Women

On the grubby edge of Old Fadama, Accra’s infamous illegal slum settlement, 67-year-old Mariana Sayitou sits under a parasol and tends to her livelihood – selling several dozen kola nuts and a few piles of bagged beans to passers-by.

Mercy Hlordz (l), Akos Matsiador (centre) and Mary Azametsi (r) are all victims of climate change.  Credit: Jamila Akweley Okertchiri/IPS

GHANA: The Woes of Women Amid Climate Change

As streams dry out, groundwater levels dwindle, and forests and other vegetation yield to droughts or sever storms, women who live their lives in the rural areas of Ghana have to spend more time and energy finding water and food for their families.

Emmanuel Joseph lies on a piece of cardboard in Accra Central. Paralysed from the waist down, he comes here every morning at 7am to beg. Credit: Paul Carlucci/IPS

GHANA: Woes for Disabled Persist Five Years After Act

Emmanuel Joseph and George Amoah, two disabled Ghanaians, occupy different ends of the spectrum. The former lies on a piece of cardboard in Accra Central, his half-naked body twisted and mostly paralysed, the sun beating down on him while he waits to collect three dollars, the average proceeds of a day's begging.