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07.01.2020 Business & Finance

Financial Crisis Puts Ghana Manganese Company To Dialogue Table

Financial Crisis Puts Ghana Manganese Company To Dialogue Table
LISTEN JAN 7, 2020

The Ghana Manganese Company (GMC), in Tarkwa in the Western region, which has been bleeding financially is seeking to dialogue with the government over its woes.

It would be recalled that GMC as a result of a directive from the ruling NPP government halted its operations in August 2019.

The development according to the Ghana Railway Workers Union and the Association of Railway Senior Officers is affecting their source of revenue which is from haulage of manganese ore from Nsuta to the Takoradi Port.

The Finance Manager of GMC, Emmanuel Appiah Kubi said the development affected the company’s mining projection of 7 million tons of manganese per annum.

Speaking to Citi News, Mr. Appiah Kubi further said they are collaborating with the Lands and Natural Resources Minister to address the issue.

“The situation we face now as a company is quite complicated because, at the beginning of the year, the plan was to mine and ship 7 million tons [of manganese]. This plan was approved by the Minerals Commission. We had just put in place logistics and resources to mine the 7 million tons and out of that 7 million, 2 million was allocated to the railway company.”

“But in the middle of the year we received a directive from the government to cap this target to 5 million and so we had no choice than to reduce the number of tons we'll hoard by rail. I believe this might have affected the cash flow of the railway company, hence, their inability to pay the workers their December salaries. It's a sad situation but as a company, we are engaging the government about it,” he assured.

Meanwhile, Citi News understands that the Lands and Natural Resources Minister, Kweku Asomah Cheremeh is set to meet the management of Ghana Manganese Company next week to work out modalities on resolving the issue. Background

The Ghana Manganese Company was shut down in August following allegations that it had short-changed government to the tune of GHc1.94 billion in taxes and royalties as well as price manipulation between 2010 and 2017.

The company had been under investigation since February 2019 after preliminary checks of its finances allegedly revealed several infractions.

About 2,000 employees were affected by the shutdown.

Meanwhile, the Ghana Railway Workers Union and the Association of Railway Senior Officers are appealing to President Nana Akufo-Addo to intervene in the matter as the issue is having a toll on the livelihood of employees.

“The company is for the state and so what it means is that the government has to come in and give us money to pay the salaries which we don't think is going to be sustainable so we think whatever impasse between the two should be resolved amicably and we start operation,” said the General Secretary of the Ghana Railway Workers, Godwill Ntarmah.