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US Court Slaps University Of Ghana With $165 Million Judgement Debt

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The University of Ghana has been slapped by United States Federal Court with $165 million judgement debt for wrongly terminating the Africa Integras Contract in 2018.

This was after Global insurer Chubb Ltd. asked a New York federal judge to confirm a $165 million arbitration award against the University after it defaulted on a flagship development partnership backed by the U.S. government.

According to the petition filed in the Southern District of New York, W.P Carey investment trust won the award in 2018 after the University of Ghana terminated an agreement to construct and maintain four new facilities and a dormitory on its campus.

The award reflects the value of rent income that the new campus facilities would have generated, Chubb told the court.

SEC reports show that the $64 million partnership was signed in 2016, with a mortgage financing agreement from the U.S. State Department’s Overseas Private Investment Corp. (now Development Finance Corp.) of up to $41 million. The project was insured with a Chubb corporate country risk policy. According to a public information summary filed with OPIC, the project would help meet a demand for higher education in Africa. University press releases said the expansion would help attract and accommodate Ph.D. students, transforming the school into a first-class research institution.

But UG was unable to procure a contractually required letter of credit, according to the Chubb petition, and moved to terminate the contract, triggering arbitration in 2018. The W.P. Carey trust settled with Chubb for $45.6 million later the same year — $10 million more than what it spent on the project — transferring its right to collect tenant default damages, according to company financial records.

While Chubb’s petition stated that the agreement was terminated because of the university’s failure to procure a letter of credit, the deal appeared to go sour earlier, when a new vice chancellor took office and openly voiced his opposition to the contract in a series of inflammatory letters and statements to the press. According to W.P Carey’s partner Africa Integras, the companies had already poured tens of millions of dollars into the expansion, and the project was only a year away from construction completion.

Andrea Pizziconi, founder and managing principal, told Law360 that new chancellor Ebenezer Owusu was “actually offered several options to obtain the letter of credit. However, against the strong advice of his own advisers, Owusu refused to proceed with any of the options presented to him.” Pizziconi noted that his actions seemed “personally motivated as even the Ghanaian government, at times, attempted to intervene to avoid the disastrous termination of the project that ensued.”

In a 2019 press release, the university denied being subject to any arbitration award. Meanwhile, Owusu personally attacked his predecessor and Pizziconi in the press.

The project would have expanded the university facilities by 60%, Pizziconi said. “As it stands today, I estimate that at least 20,000 additional Ghanaian students were prevented from enrolling at UG because those facilities were not finished,” she said.

The financial default also cast a chill over development projects across the region, “since UG was a flagship project for education public-private-partnerships in Africa generally,” Pizziconi added. “This impact exacerbated the losses felt across the continent with so many universities keen to access private finance to address their own infrastructure constraints.”

“Now, to make matters worse, if this claim is not paid, the entire insurance industry will become more reticent to insure key infrastructure projects in Ghana, which will impact the country’s entire development agenda,” she continued. “Also, with an unpaid insurance claim, the U.S. government’s Development Finance Corp. will struggle to proceed in financing other projects in Ghana that require government commitments, which could cost Ghana billions in development financing.”

The University of Ghana did not immediately respond to requests for comment. Counsel for Chubb declined to comment.
According to Chubb’s petition Thursday, the court has no basis to refuse confirmation of the award, which falls under the New York Convention.

Chubb is represented by Kurt W. Hansson, Joshua M. Bennett and Jonathon C. Drimmer of Paul Hastings LLC.
Counsel information for the University of Ghana was not immediately available. The case is Ace American Insurance Company v. University of Ghana, case number 1:21-cv-06472, in U.S. District Court for the Southern District of New York.

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Princess To Give Up Royal Title And £730,000 So She Can Marry University Sweetheart

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A princess is set to make a £730,000 payment to give up her royal status in order to marry her university classmate.

Japan’s Princess Mako, who is the granddaughter of then-Emperor Akihito, announced her engagement to college classmate, Kei Komuro, back in 2017 but the wedding has been delayed for years because of controversy over her fiancé.

Princess to give up royal title and ?730,000 so she can marry university sweetheart after her engagement to him caused controversy

The wedding was put off after reports of a financial dispute between Mr Komuro’s mother and her former fiancé.

It has now been reported that the government is set to agree that the princess foregoes the payment, worth up to 150 million yen, for royals giving up their status to marry commoners, according to Reuters.

Japanese public broadcaster NHK is reporting that the wedding date could be announced as early as next month.

Media have said the couple – who met while studying at the International Christian University in Tokyo – plan to live in the United States.

Under Japan’s males-only royal succession law, female members of the imperial family lose their status on marrying commoners.

Princess Mako of Akishino is one of Japan’s most popular and fashionable royals and has been likened to Kate Middleton.

In Japan, she is rarely out of the public eye, but for a year she disguised herself as a regular student at the University of Leicester.

Princess to give up royal title and ?730,000 so she can marry university sweetheart after her engagement to him caused controversy

Keen not to stick out, Princess Mako lived in halls of residence with other students while studying for a masters in Art Museum and Gallery Studies back in 2015.

The princess had previously studied at the University of Edinburgh on an exchange programme.

Her fiance, Mr Komuro is said to be an accomplished cook, skier and violinist and once worked as a “Prince of the Sea” to promote the beaches of Shonan in Kanagawa prefecture.

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We May Take Legal Action Against T’di Woman For Wasting Our Resources : Police

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The Ghana Police Service has betokened that it is likely to take legal action against the woman who faked her pregnancy and kidnapping in Takoradi, Josephine Mensah Panyin Simson.

The police might take this action because the woman led them (the entire security service) on a meaningless chase over a feigned abduction and pregnancy case, she wasted their resources.

Acting Director-General in charge of Public Affairs at the Ghana Police Service, ACP Kwesi Ofori made these statements in an interview on Accra based Citi FM.

However, said the woman’s prosecution might happen soon.

“We are looking at the development closely and there is a greater possibility that she might appear before the court because she manufactured all these things with a figment of her own imagination and put the police into business.

And we deployed a 40-member search team and even when we located her through public assistance, we took her to the hospital with policemen providing security and where she claimed to have attended antenatal clinics, it turned out to be false.

We went in for a second opinion and got a team of doctors to work on her.

The police also placed an Assistant Commissioner of Police who is a criminal phycologist at her disposal who travelled from Accra to Takoradi and our Head of Counselling Department also went to Takoradi to assess her and offer assistance.

So if you quantify all these things, it is a big investment, but the police will continue to offer good support to our people and offer assistance.”

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PL: Arsenal Beat Rivals Tottenham Hotspurs 3-1 With Brilliant First-Half Performance

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The north London bragging rights belong to Arsenal as they blew Tottenham away in the first half to seal a 3-1 win at the Emirates Stadium.

Arsenal went in at half time 3-0 up thanks to goals from Emile Smith Rowe, Pierre-Emerick Aubameyang and Bukayo Saka.

It was a fine performance from Arsenal but it’s Aubameyang’s goal that would have given fans the most pleasure.

After slotting Smith Rowe’s pull back home, the Arsenal captain celebrated on his knees in front of the travelling Spurs faithful, much like when Thierry Henry did at Highbury after scoring against Spurs in November 2002.

Henry was actually in attendance at the north London derby, which saw Heung-min Son bag a consolation goal for Spurs late in the second half.

Both sides are in a difficult period but Arsenal played like the superior team because they simply wanted it more.

Smith Rowe gave them a deserved lead on 11 minutes as he fired in Saka’s intelligent low cross.

Arsenal continued to apply the pressure and their lead was doubled on 27 minutes. Smith Rowe turned provider this time as he cut it back to Aubameyang, who put the ball past Hugo Lloris with his left peg.

Aubameyang’s knee slide will have irked the Spurs fans hugely but not as much as what happened on 36 minutes as Saka struck with his right foot on the counter-attack – the goal leading to some Spurs fans leaving the ground before half time.

The leavers missed an improved performance by their side in the second half with Harry Kane perhaps unlucky not to get a penalty after being clipped by Ben White.

Spurs did have something to show for their efforts with Son getting on the end of a low cross from the left, while an acrobatic save from Aaron Ramsdale prevented Lucas Moura from netting and making it a grandstand finish.

But Arsenal were more than good value for the win which takes them above Spurs in the Premier League less than a month after the two sides were at opposite ends of the table.

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