Minority: Bring Equatorial Guinea, Ghana gas deal to Parliament for ratification

Adam Mutawakilu

Adam Mutawakilu

The Minority in Parliament is demanding for government to submit the recently signed agreement between Ghana and Equatorial Guinea for the supply of Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) to Parliament for ratification.

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo with his Equatorial Guinean counterpart, Teodore Obiang Nguema Mbasogo, on Tuesday reached a 15-year gas deal, renewable every five years, for the southern African country to supply LNG to Ghana.

Per the agreement, the oil-rich Equatorial Guinea is expected to supply between 150 and 200 million standard cubic feet of the commodity on a daily basis so as to sustain the stability on the energy front.

Speaking, however, in a telephone interview with the Ghanaian Times in Accra yesterday, the Ranking Member of Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee, Adam Mutawakilu, said the deal was null and void until it is ratified by the Parliament of Ghana.

According to the Damango Member of Parliament, the deal constitutes an international agreement between the two countries and needed to be approved by the people’s representatives.

He said their demand was in line with a recent Supreme Court ruling which declared the habitation of two Guantanamo bay detainees in Ghana as unconstitutional because it constituted an international agreement and needed a Parliamentary consent.

“Per the Supreme Court ruling, we expect government to bring the deal to Parliament for approval,” he stated.
He said transparency and accountable governance was a cardinal point of President Akufo-Addo’s message in the run-up to the 2016 polls and expects the President to live by his words.

“During the campaign, President Akufo-Addo made transparency and accountability one of the thematic areas of his government if he was voted into power. Of course, transparency and accountability in governance is important for the development of every country and we demand that when Parliament resumes, government would table the deal before the House for ratification.

“We want to know the nitty gritties of this agreement. We have to scrutinise this deal and see if it inures to the benefit of the Ghanaian. We also want to know who the off-taker of the gas is and what agreement exists therein between the government and the off-taker,” he added.

He said should government fail to bring the deal to Parliament for approval, the minority will seek legal interpretation of the Supreme Court ruling on the ‘Gitmo Two’ and how that is applicable in other government-to-government agreements.

BY JULIUS YAO PETETSI        

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