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General News of Tuesday, 9 November 2010

Source: Enquirer

EPA Boss Flees From Kosmos ‘Wahala’

Following his culpability in the negligent spillage of toxic substances into the country’s marine waters by Kosmos Energy, the Executive Director of the Environmental Protection Agency, Mr. Jonathan Allotey, has voluntarily retired from his position, in a desperate bid to escape punishment and shame. The ministerial committee tasked to investigate Kosmos’ negligent spill of toxic substances implicated Mr. Allottey for the role he played in the spillage and thus recommended that the Board of EPA should take appropriate actions against him.

But the EPA Boss, getting wind of his impending punishment, quickly put in his voluntary retirement letter in order to flee from sanctions and public ridicule. Worse still, Mr. Allottey is not satisfied with his dodgy moves but conveniently plays the victim, as he goes round gossiping that his deputy, Mr. Daniel S. Amlalo, has connived with the Minister of Environment, Science and Technology, Ms. Sherry Ayittey, to ensure his exit from office.

The ministerial committee’s recommendation to the EPA Board was based on the fact that Mr. Allotey had disrespectfully defied the order of the minister not to renew the environmental permit of Kosmos until the Ministry of Environment, Science and Technology “had received a report, and was satisfied with measures put in place by Kosmos Energy to prevent reoccurrence.”

The minister’s directive to the EPA boss was given after the American oil drilling company had initially spilled an estimated total of 698 toxic substances ‘negligently’ into Ghana’s marine waters on December 26, last year. Mr. Allotey made nonsense of the minister’s directive, with the explanation that Kosmos’ second environmental permit was granted in ‘good faith,’ in the sense that the EPA was satisfied with the investigation report issued by Kosmos. This was contrary to the minister’s order.

Mr. Allotey’s defiance of the ministerial directive eventually led Kosmos to ‘negligently’ spill more toxic substances into the country’s marine waters on two different occasions. These were on March 23 and May 26 this year. Meanwhile, his deputy, Mr. Daniel S. Amlalo will act as the Executive Director of the EPA until a substantive boss is appointed.

The ministerial committee, after completing its investigations, slapped Kosmos with a fine of GH¢40 million (¢400 billion) for negligently spilling a total of 706 barrels of toxic substances into the country’s marine waters.