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General News of Thursday, 19 December 2019

Source: citinewsroom.com

Minority wants Energy Minister summoned over legacy debts

The Minority in Parliament is pushing for the Minister of Energy, John Peter Amewu to be summoned before parliament over the legacy debts in the energy sector.

According to the Minority Leader, Haruna Iddrisu, the house must be updated in terms of results achieved in the government’s quest to settle the debts in the sector and new debts that may have been accrued especially from 2017.

Haruna Iddrisu made the call during the approval of the 2020 budget estimates of the Ministry of Energy.

“The Energy Minister will have to come and brief this house. Beyond the legacy debt of GH¢2 billion, what has been accrued between 2017 and 2019 as energy sector-related debts because the IMF has taken a position that they will add all that debt unto our national debt and that will have implications in the computation of debts as a percentage of GDP,” he said.

The operations of State-Owned Enterprises within the Energy Sector like ECG, VRA, GRIDCo have also been constrained largely due to the massive debt overhang.

In 2015, the Government of Ghana, during the administration of John Mahama passed the Energy Sector Levy Act (ACT 899) to bring under one umbrella, taxes and levies collected for the settlement of Ghana’s energy sector debt.

The ESLA was introduced to among others bring together energy sector levies for their efficient utilization; defray the country’s energy sector legacy debts and other liabilities within the energy sector and serve as a source of funds to facilitate sustainable long term investments in the energy sector.