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A governance expert has faulted the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, over the appointment of a new Managing Director (MD) for the Ghana Oil Company (GOIL).
Professor Albert Puni emphasized that GOIL as a listed entity on the Ghana Stock Exchange, there are laid down procedures to appoint and dismiss the MD and not by the President’s sole decision.
The President fired the former MD Patrick A.K Akorli and appointed Mr. Kwame Osei Prempeh to replace him. The decision has been opposed by the board chairman of GOIL; Prof. William Asumaning, who is accusing President Akufo-Addo of sidestepping the due process in removing and appointing the company’s chief executive officer.
Sharing his views on the dismissal of the former MD, Prof Puni explained “because they are listed, they are guided by the stock exchange so I will go with what the board is saying the President erred because if we are not careful, it will set a very bad precedent in the country”.
Prof Puni added that “you [President] represent the country and the country has given you the mandate to manage our assets but the president will have to go through the due process to appoint an MD”.
The governance expert further explained “Some people are involved so you don’t have absolute power over GOIL.
The share holders also have rights so that rights must be respected.” Prof Puni has therefore called on the board to reject the President’s appointee arguing, “the board have the power to reject the President’s appointee because he cannot take that decision alone.
The MD was appointed by the Board and it is the board that should remove the MD and not the President”.
Challenges to government entities Prof Puni noted that “anytime there is change in government they [government] want to change the MD of public entities they have majority shares and it is worrying government companies.
It is not the right thing”. He observed that “the President is a lawyer, he embraces the rule of law so he knows that he does not have a sole prerogative to dismiss the GOIL MD”.
He called on the government to list most of the public companies on the stock exchange because it follows strict rules.
“That is why we must list most of the state assets so that we can follow a strict procedure to ensure continuity. What is collapsing government companies is because of the fact that they change whoever is in position when they assume power which is not very good”.
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