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General News of Tuesday, 22 January 2013

Source: Daily Post

GNPC Mafia Still After Sipa Yankey

Anytime anyone reads a story about Dr. Sipa Yankey and the Ghana Gas Company in the Public Agenda, he can be sure he is reading a smear campaign material engineered by a mafia in Ghana’s oil industry ensconced in the offices of the GNPC who want to lay their greedy and itchy fingers on Ghana’s gas for their own parochial interest.

In Sipa Yankey they see a standing block between them and their greed as a result of which they have embarked on a vicious smear campaign, with the ‘Public Agenda’ newspaper and the Civil Society Platform on Oil & Gas (CSPOG), an NGO as willing allies. Their collective aim is to hoodwink and confuse not only Ghanaians but President Mahama into believing that all is not well with the Ghana National Gas Company (GNGC) under Dr. Yankey so that ultimately, the President will make the one big mistake of his life by handing over the GNGC to them.

Daily Post’s intelligence picked up signals sometime ago that the mafia sponsored Dr. Steve Manteaw’s appearance at the IEA-organized Evening Encounter with President John Mahama last October . During question time, Dr. Manteaw, who is the Chairperson of the CSPOG, levelled unfounded allegations at Dr. Sipa Yankey.

The intention of the mafia was obvious; with the President at the IEA Evening Encounter, the attention of the populace was on the programme. What better time it was to soil the image of their nemesis.

But, after Prof. Kwesi Botchway, Board Chairman of GNGC set the records straight and exposed the CSPOG’s mischief, the NGO has gone into hibernation. However, the Public Agenda has failed to take cue from the NGO and instead, continues to try to tarnish the image of Dr. Sipa Yankey, throwing a lot of dirt at him and hoping that some will stick.

In furtherance of its invidious acts therefore, the newspaper yesterday ran a screaming front page banner headline again aimed at tarnishing the image of Dr. Sipa Yankey. The headline read, GHANA GAS CHOPS GH20MILLION? Though the headline is queried, the subsidiary headline, “Sipa Yankey To Account For Money’ exposes the sinister motive behind the publication.

The story accompanying this banner headline is based on a so-called REPORT ON MANAGEMENT OF PETROLEUM REVENUES FOR THE PERIOD

1ST JANUARY 2012 TO 30TH JUNE 2012 by the PUBLIC INTEREST AND ACCOUNTABILITY COMMITTEE (PIAC).

Even in this report, one can descend the sinister hand of the GNPC mafia since a major part of the report on the GNGC is an affront to common sense.

Under the sub-heading, ‘Main Recommendations’ the PIAC states that “Ghana National Gas Company must account for GH ¢20,000,000 it was allocated by the Ministry of Finance and Economic Planning for capitalization and establishment”.

This is the portion the ‘Public Agenda’ was coached to use to attack Dr. Sipa Yankey and create the perception in the minds of Ghanaians that he has “chopped” as stated in the headline, GHANA GAS CHOPS GH ¢20 MILLION? However, a little investigation which is required of every responsible newspaper will reveal that the PIAC itself may be up to something sinister because the GH¢20 million was allocated to GNGC in December 2011 to enable it finance its establishment and also take care of its administrative cost and other expenses. Since the PIAC’s report is to cover the period1ST January 2012 to 30th June 2012, why will anyone expect a company which has not operated for even a year submit its account to the relevant authorities? What is more, investigations show that no entity has approached GNGC and asked for its financial statement. So, it is mind boggling that this will be captured in the report of the PAIC.

The attacks on Dr. Sipa Yankey are not expected to end anytime now because the greedy Mafia at GNPC are bent on simply taking over GNGC. It is instructive to note that in its petition to the President, the amorphous CSPOG stated among other things that “The Ghana National Gas Company must be restructured as a subsidiary of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) “

This sums up the motive behind all the attacks on Dr. Yankey by CSPOG and the Public Agneda.

Obviously, the newspaper prefers to be on the side of a few greedy Ghanaians at the expense of the public good. Why a newspaper worth its name will be up to such sickening agenda lives much to be desired. For Sipa Yankey, it seems the desire by some to always tarnish his image is a cross he has to bear.

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