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Business News of Friday, 25 December 2020

Source: 3 News

There are serious red flags in how Agyapa deal was set up – OSP Board Chair

Board Chair of the Office of the Special Prosecutor, Linda Ofori-Kwarfo, has said there are serious red flags in how the Agyapa deal was set up.

The Executive Director of Ghana Integrity Initiative (GII), the Ghana chapter of Transparency International said this in a petition the TI sent to the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to reject the Agyapa Royalties agreement if concerns about corruption in the deal are not “satisfactorily addressed.”

She said “There are serious red flags in how this deal was set up. Concerns have been raised by civil society actors around inadequate stakeholder consultation, transparency and the valuation of the deal.

“Other concerns bother on the way transaction advisors became involved in the process and a lack of public oversight over the company at the heart of the deal. It is crucial for Ghana that the western financial institutions and regulators involved in this deal take these concerns seriously.

“They must not facilitate schemes that may end up plundering Ghana’s mineral resources in the name of investment.”

TI wrote to the FCA to reject the application to list Agyapa Royalties Limited on the London Stock Exchange

The anti-corruption body on its website on Tuesday December 22, 2020 said it had forwarded a copy of its submission to J.P. Morgan, Bank of America Merrill Lynch International and law firm White and Case.

“Transparency International has urged the UK Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) to make detailed inquiries into the Government of Ghana’s application to list Agyapa Royalties Limited on the London Stock Exchange, and to reject the listing if corruption concerns are not satisfactorily addressed.

“The banks and lawyers involved in the deal have also been urged to withdraw their engagement,” excerpts of the post read.

Ghana’s legislature approved the controversial Agyapa Mineral Royalty Limited agreement Friday, August 14 despite a protest from the Minority.

Based on the agreement, Agyapa Royalties Limited (ARL) will trade shares on the Ghana Stock Exchange and the London Stock Exchange for private people to buy. But the Mineral Income Investment Fund(MIIF) will remain the majority shareholder.

But the deal has met stiff opposition from civil society groups and the main opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) who believe that the deal is bad.

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