Vox Pop On Ghana's First Oil
Former President John Agyekum Kufuor: As Ghana has joined the oil-producing countries in the world, we should position ourselves to take full responsibility of the black gold by managing it judiciously for the benefit of all Ghanaians.
This is the time to ensure that very good policies relating to oil and gas are pursued and the revenue accrued made transparent and used to develop our dear nation.
The occasion is historic and we hope all stakeholders of the oil industry and Ghanaians in general would contribute their quota to let this national asset remain a blessing.
Moses Asaga, Chairman, Select Committee On Energy:
The first oil has united Ghana by bringing all political parties together in a bid to develop our nation.
It is going to improve government revenue for development and we shall also have a heritage fund to stabilize the economy.
It is our belief that the ruling government, in collaboration with the Jubilee Oil partners, is on top of issues to make this importance resource a blessing.
Nana Kobina Nketsia V, Paramount Chief of Essikado:
This is the people's oil and ever since Ghana attained independence, economic independence had eluded us, affected our political independence and thus we in a neo-colonial paradigm.
We have a second chance and this new resource in oil must allure us to assert our independence as a people to create greater unity in the country, enhance our identity and create a better Ghana.
My prayers are for President Mills and the country and so I urge Ghanaians to pray for the prosperity and prudent management of the oil revenue.
The president's decision will make or unmake this country, so he needs our prayers always.
Awulae Annor Adjaye III, President of Nzema
I find today's celebration a challenging occasion for Ghanaians and for all investors and civil society organizations in the country. For Ghanaians, it's a challenge because we are now facing the reality as to how the revenue stream from the oil will be managed.
It is also a challenge in making the 10 percent demanded by the chiefs and people of Western Region a reality, now that their demand had been confirmed by Vice President John Mahama in Saudi Arabia.
Civil society organizations and community-based organizations are also looking at the impact of the oil and gas on the environment, particularly the specific coastal communities.
The authorities concerned need to ensure that the oil companies put mitigate measures in place.
Hon. Mike Oquaye, Second Deputy Speaker:
Oil can be a blessing or a curse and can also be exhausted. We must look after our oil very well and that is why civil society and majority of the population are saying the oil should not be used as collateral for foreign loans.
Oil prices keep changing and every government has its tenure, so it will be suicidal for the ruling NDC government to collateralize our oil.
If we do not do proper planning, it would be a curse, but Majority in parliament has voted for our oil to be used as collateral for foreign loans, among others. NDC wants free hand.
They even want oil revenue to be put into the Consolidated Fund (which could easily be manipulated) instead of an Oil Fund.
From Sam Mark Essien, Takoradi