Agyapa Deal: Focus on prospects of deal during debate – Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu

Tue, 30 Mar 2021 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu, the Minister for Parliamentary Affairs and Majority Leader in Parliament has said that it is immaterial all the many criticisms being made against the Agyapa Royalties deal.

He explained that the prospects the deal holds for the country is what should be of concern.

“For now, because we have passed it already, it’s something that has been concluded. If the president says that because of public sentiments, this thing is nullified and I have to repackage it and send it to Parliament, then we come on board to probe, we interrogate, and to the extent that it will be useful to us as Ghanaians to me that will be the better way to go.

“Other than that, it’s about who owns it and who did what, and as far as I am concerned, it is no material to what dividends that should be coming to Ghana. The issue should be, have we done sufficient study to arrive at $200 million every year? That is where we should be taking the debate,” he said in an interview on Citi News, reports citinewsroom.com.

Members of Parliament on the minority side have criticized the Agyapa Royalties deal after indications were made by the Osei Kyei-Mensah-Bonsu during the reading of the 2021 budget.

They explained that the deal remains a bad attempt by the government to inappropriately use the resources of the country and one that will not serve the interest of the populace should it be passed.

Already, they have indicated that should the deal return to Parliament without any proper changes, they will kick against it.

About Agyapa deal

Parliament in 2018 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 Investments Fund (MIIF), set up Agyapa Royalties Ltd to monetize Ghana’s gold royalties. This was after Parliament approved the Agyapa Mineral Royalty Ltd agreement in the name of the Government of Ghana on 14 August 2020 despite a walkout by Minority members of the House.

In exchange, the company plans to raise between US$500 million and roughly $1 billion for the government on the Ghana and London Stock Exchanges to invest in development projects. However, the deal has become a subject of hot debate after concerns expressed first by the opposition National Democratic Congress, leading up to the December 2020 general election.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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