Agyapa is a ‘perfect plan to steal our national heritage’ – Kofi Bentil

Kofi Bentil6 Vice President of IMANI Africa, Kofi Bentil

Wed, 18 May 2022 Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Government hints at reintroducing Agyapa deal

Minority, CSOs vow to resist revised deal

Kofi Bentil insists deal is robbery of national heritage

Kofi Bentil, Vice President of IMANI Africa has reiterated his stance that the revised Agyapa deal is robbery adding that it is the perfect plan for anyone who robs Ghanaians of our national heritage.

He is particularly worried that the government is seeking to push through the deal as announced recently is seeking to collateralize mineral resources in perpetuity in a place where the revenue generated will be out of its control.

In an interview with Accra-based TV3 following hints by Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta that a revised deal will be submitted to Parliament, Bentil held that under the deal Ghana was not going to get value for money.

“We are not getting value for money for all that collateralization and in the particular case of Agyapa, our mineral resources are undersold and they are being put in a place where we don’t have control.

“And it is in perpetuity, for as long as the mines have a useful life and many mines are going to come on stream. If somebody wanted to steal our national heritage, this would be a perfect plan to use.

“So, I don’t see why anybody can do that especially when they cannot explain how we are going to benefit from this,” he stressed.

According to him, whoever gets ownership of the deal is going to be the sole beneficiary of the deal because Ghana will be the poorer for it. He also dismissed talk of the deal being a major income stream for the government.

“Agyapa is robbery, whoever is going to get the ownership of Agyapa is robbing this country of what God gave us with which we can survive even in the times of bad governance, that money will be assured.

Finance Minister Ken Ofori-Atta last week reiterated that the government will be resubmitting the Agyapa Royalties deal to Parliament for consideration, two years after it was abandoned following opposition by the Minority in Parliament and Civil Society groups.

Already, there is a groundswell of opposition from the same quarters with the Ranking Member on Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee, John Jinapor, warning that the revised deal will not be entertained.

The most recent to speak against it is John Dramani Mahama, the NDC’s 2020 flagbearer who said via a social media post: "We remain opposed to the Agyapa deal. The National Democratic Congress (NDC) will oppose it vigorously," Mahama captioned a post on his Facebook page.

Source: www.ghanaweb.com
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