The Alliance of Civil Society Organisations working in Extractive, Anti-Corruption and Good Governance says it will continue to kick against the Agyapa Gold Royalties deal despite a move by the Special Prosecutor to get the implementation process suspended .
Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu has written to the Finance Ministry to pull the brakes on the issuance of the Initial Public Offer (IPO) as he is yet to receive crucial documents to assist him with a corruption risk assessment of the deal.
Applauding the Special Prosecutor for his efforts, leader of the Alliance, Dr. Steve Manteaw hinted that other avenues will be explored to address their grievances.
“I think his main concern as the Special Prosecutor has to do with the corruption risk we have raised, issues around cronyism and procurement irregularities. So he is going to look at issues within his own mandate based on the status of his establishment. So those other issues that do not fall within the remit of the Special Prosecutor’s mandate are issues we will find other ways of dealing with. Let me say that, the Alliance of CSOs are not going to bed because the Special Prosecutor has indicated a certain interest in the matter. We will continue with our agitation and engagement with government all with the intention to assist the government to improve on the transaction on the table,” he said.
The Office of the Special Prosecutor has stated that the non-submission of all information and documents on the Agyapa Royalties Transaction from the Ministry of Finance is impeding his ongoing corruption risk assessment on the deal.
In a letter addressed to the Minister of Finance and sighted by Citi News, the Special Prosecutor indicated that despite the fact that the Ministry had already submitted some documents to the office, critical information that concerns the launch of the Initial Public Offer (IPO) for Agyapa Royalties remain outstanding.
The Special Prosecutor had earlier written to Parliament to furnish his office with the necessary documents regarding the deal.
The request was in line with the mandate of the office to exercise the functions and powers of prevention of corrupt activities.
About the deal
In 2018, Parliament passed the Minerals Income Investment Fund Act 2018 which establishes the Fund to manage the equity interests of Ghana in mining companies and receive royalties on behalf of the government.
The purpose of the fund is to manage and invest these royalties and revenue from equities for higher returns for the benefit of the country.
The government then, through the Minerals Income Investment Fund (MIIF), set up Agyapa Royalties Limited to monetize Ghana's gold royalties.
This was after Parliament on August 14, 2020, approved the Agyapa Mineral Royalty Limited agreement with the Government of Ghana despite the walkout by the Minority.
In exchange, the company plans to raise between $500 million and $750 million for the government on the Ghana and London Stock exchanges to invest in developmental projects.
The deal, however, has become a topical issue following concerns from members of the opposition.
Civil Society groups in Mines and Energy have also described the Special Purpose Vehicle as one which is not transparent and must be suspended .
But the government insists the deal is in the best interest of the country.