Stop GNPC from securing unlawful loan – Gabby

Gabby Otchere Darko 07Oct2010

Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko of Global Dynamic Consult has accused the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) of attempting to obtain a loan without Parliamentary approval.

He has, therefore, asked the government to prevent the GNPC from securing the $1.2 billion loan.

In an interview on Eyewitness News, Otchere-Darko explained that when the law which created the GNPC was enacted, the nation had no Parliament, therefore, PNDC Law 64 expressly stipulated under Section 15(2) that “The power of the Corporation to borrow money shall be exercisable only on the recommendation of the Secretary and with the approval of the Secretary responsible for Finance as to the amount, source of the loan and the terms and conditions under which the loan may be effected.”

But, according to him, Ghana currently has a Parliament and so it is unlawful for the GNPC to continue contracting loans using the old law.

“GNPC is using a law that this is no more effective which is the PNDC law 64 where when a loan is contracted, the people of Ghana will be tied to a 1.2 billion and where $700 million has already been procured for the next 5 years will pay with our oil without bringing it to Parliament,” he said.

He disclosed that the Corporation already has over $200 million which was brought to them by Parliament through the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA).

Mr. Otchere-Darko, therefore, advised the government to be cautious in using the country’s oil resources.

“GNPC is saying that it needs $1.2 billion in the next 12 months for exploration and production while we know that when it comes to production, the cost element that GNPC has to bare is pre-financed by the other equity partners within the oil crude arrangement for GMPC to pay back with its share of crude oil,” he remarked.

He mentioned that the latest development is a move undertaken by government to use GNPC to borrow money without Parliamentary scrutiny.

“It appears that the purpose of which the loan is been contracted is no clear,” Mr. Otchere-Darko alleged.

“There is absolutely no way that if we have indeed a responsible government in place that this arrangement can go because unless of course what the government is doing is to use GNPC as a vehicle to raise money without it being seen,” he added.

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