ISODEC DECRIES “I SCRATCH YOUR BACK, YOU SCRATCH MINE” IN THE OIL AND GAS INDUSTRY
The Integrated Social Development Centre (ISODEC), has decried the precedence for political cronyism and opacity in the oil and gas industry as in “I scratch your back, you scratch mine” that is going on in the political terrain lately.
According to the Centre, Ghanaians recall numerous assurances from the President and the Minister for Energy that Ghana’s petroleum resources will be governed with utmost transparency, honesty and integrity. Unfortunately this seems not to be the case. Stressing on the need for transparency and truth, the Centre stated categorically that they are unenthused about this situation because there are a plethora of other cases that may not necessarily be in the public domain but have all become the creeping monsters threatening Ghana’s oil resources.
Indicting the Minister of Energy in his role in the EO Group Saga and possible reparation, ISODEC agrees with the Oil and Gas Platform and other CSOs concerning the too many discretionary powers of the Minister for Energy stated in the oil and gas sector bills which have been confirmed too soon.
Speaking to the media on Friday, 5th August in a press interaction, the Centre mentioned events running up to the EO Group’s reparation deal as lacking in transparency and truthfulness. Again, they asked, “how transparent was the deal considering that the President, may have endorsed the deal without consulting the Attorney General who is supposed to advise the President on issues of this nature.” What is worrying, they noted, is the indecent unilateral haste pursued by the Minister of Energy to push the deal through without due process.
In addition to this, the same issues that came up with the patting of party members’ back with shares in the oil bloc in the previous government, the New Patriotic Party is being endorsed by the NDC government who is in turn perpetuating the same “crimes”.
The solution to all these party cronyism and endorsement of “underhand deals” and carving out of oil blocs to party members, ISODEC noted, is to hold a national consensus, with input from all stakeholders in the country, including the political parties to bind governments to the approved management of Ghana’s oil find.
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