Friday, 22 September

Transfer JOHL shares to GNPC without delay – Minority to gov’t

Dr Cassiel Ato Forson

The Minority in Parliament has served notice it will file an urgent question upon assumption of parliament for a clarification of the intended divestment of Ghana’s stake in Jubilee Oil Holdings (JOHL) to the Petroleum Gas Corporation of South Africa (PetroSA).

It has been alleged that the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) under the Chairmanship of Mr Freddie Blay, is working on a transaction to relinquish about 50% of shares of JOHL to PetroSA.

Mr Blay has, however, denied any wrong doing.

Reacting to this claim, the Minority said apart from filing an urgent question for clarification of this saga, it is concerned with the manner in which the JOHL assets are being held and managed.

The Minority in a statement signed by its leader, Dr Cassiel Ato Forson claimed that the JOHL revenues are currently being used as “slush fund” to pursue all manner of business that has not been approved by Parliament under the usual GNPC budget approval process.

“The recent lodgment of $100 million of oil revenues in the accounts of JOHL which sparked concerns about the state being deprived of taxes accruing from these revenues leads credence to our concern,” the statement stated.

Even more troubling, according to the Minority, is the Energy Minister’s references in his letter to the Executive Secretary to the President, an attempt to try to refinance GNPC’s current debts by using JOHL’s asset to do so with LITASCO.

The Minority noted that it can presume that the intent is to forward sell JOHL’s production share to raise money.

To this end, they are calling on the Akufo-Addo-led government to transfer the shares held by JOHL to GNPC without delay, in order that Ghanaians can be assured that appropriate oversight is being exercised on these assets by parliament and other stakeholders.

This they say will ensure proper accountability and effective monitoring of the revenues accruing from the country’s petroleum resources.

Read details of the statement below:

Source: Mensah