General News of Wednesday, 21 August 2013
The Ministry of Lands and Natural Resources has admitted that Parliament signed a bad deal with Newmont Ghana Gold that allowed the company to retain all its earnings outside Ghana without retaining part with the Bank of Ghana (BoG).
According to the Mining and Minerals Act, mining companies are to surrender a percentage of their earnings to BoG to be lodged into the country's foreign exchange account to bolster the nation's foreign reserves and stabilize the cedi as well.
The Public Accounts Committee (PAC) of Parliament is investigating circumstances under which Newmont was not made to comply with this law.
The sector Minister, Inusah Fuseini in an interview on Eye Witness News admitted that Parliament did not do due diligence.
“Our Parliament failed to live up to its responsibility because our Parliament had a duty through its work and committees to look clearly at the terms of the agreement and probably disagree with some of the provisions if they had cause to disagree.”
He stressed that Parliament has a responsibility to make good deals and sign agreements which will benefit the country saying, “it is not for nothing that Article 257 talks about ratification because the mineral resources of this country are the property of the people.”
Alhaji Fuseini stated that even though Parliament is at fault, “we need to look at the majoritorian regime that we are running here and that members of Parliament can be whipped into line and understand the circumstances through which this thing can happen.”