It is emerging that the office of the President has expressly directed the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) to provide funding or a financial guarantee to support the government’s plans to bring two power barges from Turkey to ease the nation’s power problems.
Although the request is believed to be outside the mandate of the state-owned oil giant, Citi News has seen a copy of an opinion written by the Ministry for Justice and Attorney General in support of the President’s directive.
The issue has provoked the Minority group in Parliament to begin making demands for the power agreement to be brought before Parliament for scrutiny.
The Minority Spokesperson on Finance, Anthony Akoto Osei, in an interview with Citi News’ Richard Dela Sky said, “I understand the Ministry of Finance has issued a comfort letter for GNPC to do the transaction. I can confirm further that ECOBANK has issued the first $50 million LC out of the $100 million needed.”
Anthony Akoto Osei who was not happy with the way government is handling the issue said “I find it disconcerting because there is no transparency” in the transaction.
He explained that with the way things are going “should ECG not be able to meet the payment obligation, government would have to pay GNPC. But I think because it’s an international economic business transaction that matter should be brought before Parliament so Parliament can also get a chance to review the agreement.”
He however called on the Minister of Power to ensure that the agreement is brought to Parliament adding that “We are all suffering from this energy shock so if its something proper that the government is doing I’m sure they will get support but the nontransparent nature of these agreements.”
He further lambast the President for making such an order saying “how does the president direct a board? He can only suggest not direct because we will hold the board accountable should they fail.”
The two emergency power barges is expected to generate about 450 megawatts (MW) of power to stabilize energy supply in the country.
The two power barges, each of which has 225 MW, are expected in the country by the end of the second quarter of 2015.
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