The Chairman of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), Professor Kwame Adom Frimpong, has urged government to formulate a long-term National Development Plan (NDP) on the utilisation of petroleum revenue for the country.
Such a plan, he said, would help sustain the revenue made from the petroleum sector as against losses recorded in previous years due to uncompleted projects funded from the petroleum revenue.
Professor Frimpongexplained that the current situation of abounding projects placed undue pressure on petroleum revenues, which weakens the potential impact of oil revenues on the socio-economic development of the country.
The Chairman of PIAC, addressing a public forum on use of petroleum funds at Akuapim South District Assembly in the Eastern Region yesterday, said petroleum revenues wastage could not be encouraged due to its volatile nature.
The country since 2011, MrFrimpong noted, had received petroleum revenues amounting to US$6.9 billion which had been utilised to support critical areas including education, agriculture, health and infrastructure, but most projects yielded no results.
He added that, due to the changes in government with their different policies, petroleum monies were going down the drain because, huge projects were left unattended to.
“We are advocating for a long term national development plan, because we are looking for continuous projects, not projects done half way,” he said.
Meanwhile, the chairman proposed for the implementation of laws that would hold government accountable for its use of funds for projects from the petroleum revenue.
“Lots of money have been pumped into projects which have been abandoned causing more loss in the petroleum revenue, and this has to stop if laws are made.”
MrFrimpongreiteratedthe need for stakeholders such as traditional rulers, district assemblies and local indigenes to be involved in the execution of government projects by been furnished with the necessary information.
This, according to MrFrimpong, would be essential as they could serve as watchdogs of the project on behalf of PIAC.
“During our inspection in the community, we noticed that some projects were ongoing but most people were not aware and it makes monitoring difficult because the PIAC committee are unable to know all the ongoing projects to inspect,” he said.
The Adontenman Kyiredomhene and Ahwerasehene of Akuapim South, Osabirima Professor Opare Addo II, expressed his profound gratitude to the committee for their efforts and work so far while he urged them to do more in order to keep government on their toes.
The ceremony was attended by personnel of the Information Service Department (ISD), Ghana Immigration Service (GIS), Akuapim South Municipal Assembly, civil society groups, Social Welfare and students from Aburi Girls School.
BY ANITA ANKRAH