President Akufo-Addo, appears to have cleverly pushed Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko to Ghanaians to be mauled over his fishy handling of the AMERI Power Novation agreement with Greece-based Mytilineous International Trading Company, while covering up the massive raid on the energy sector by his family.
The Herald, has picked up interesting signals suggesting that the activities of Edward “Bumpty” Akufo-Addo, a younger brother to the President at the Ghana National Petroleum (GNPC) and the renegotiated Karpower contract leaves much to be desired.
In the case of the Karpower agreement, which the Akufo-Addo government’s extended by ten more years, a company by name LETASCO is making the rounds as the only supplier of fuel to power the Turkish Plant.
One Hans Djaba, who is a friend of Bumpty Akufo-Addo is said to be the owner of LESTACO. It is unclear how LESTACO won the oil supply deal from the government.
Details of the LESTACO contract in terms cost and duration is also unclear as the sacked Energy Minister, did not make the renegotiated and extended Karpower contract and related matters for scrutiny to determine value for money.
Hans Djaba, said to be a senior brother of Otiko Afisa Djaba; Minister for Gender, Children and Social Protection, has mentioned as a bosom friend of the President‘s younger brother.
In the GNPC case, this paper picked up signals that recently, things got to a head and some state officials drafted their resignation letters ready to leave the state-owned organization, because they were unable to deal with the pressures and frustrations from the Flagstaff House to enable Bumpty, have his way at GNPC.
The Herald’s findings are that, a respected traditional ruler, had to intervene to enable the GNPC officials remain at post.
Mention has been made of GNPC’s 12-year multibillion dollar agreement with a Russian gas giant, Rosneft, signed on Friday, May 24, 2018.
It is to the supply natural gas to Ghana through the GNPC. They demanded a thorough investigation into the deal, the role of Bumpty and the obligations on the state institution.
The signing took place on the sidelines of the 26th St. Petersburg International Economic Forum, St. Petersburg, Russia, with Board Chairman and New Patriotic Party (NPP) acting National Chairman, Freddie Blay, appending his signature on behalf of the Corporation according to a press statement from the GNPC.
Strangely, the Chief Executive of the GNPC Dr. K K. Sarpong was not at the signing ceremony. The Herald’s information was that he was not in Russia at all, and that the agreement was signed on his behalf by the NPP chairman Freddie Blay.
The GNPC insiders, have questioned why there wasn’t a competitive bidding process for the gas supply contract to ensure that Ghana, got value for money, insisting that simply saying, “Gazprom’s supply obligations under the GSA, have been assumed by Rosneft, an affiliate” leave room for suspicion. Bumpty has many times been linked with Gazprom, also a Russian oil company.
These come amid concerns that Mr Agyarko was sacrificed by the First Family as others were also involved in the deal.
Indeed, Nana Damoah, the Communications Director at the Energy Ministry, has threatened to release some emails confirming Mr Agyarko did not act alone.
Nana Damoah, has since lodged complaints at the East Legon Police Station against government Spokesperson on Legal Affairs, Herbert Krapa.
Giving details, Mr. Damoah said: “Krapa sent me a message that I should stop spreading falsehood against Mr Gabby Asare Otchere Darko, and if I do not, there will be a showdown.”
The Director of Communications at the Presidency, Eugene Arhin on Monday, said President Akufo-Addo, was acting in the best interests of the country by relieving Mr Agyarko of his appointment.
“In a nutshell, it [the dismissal] is to do with the issue of the controversial AMERI deal. That is why the President has relieved the Minister for Energy of his position.”
“We all know the circumstances. We all know the story that has panned out as a result of the deal and the President believes that in the interest of the Ghanaian people, in the interest of the country and in the interest of his own administration, the Minister for Energy, Hon. Boakye Agyarko should be relieved of his position,” Eugene Arhin told Citi News.
In the meantime, John Peter Amewu is to act as Minister for Energy, until a substantive appointment is made.
The Akufo-Addo government took the Ameri revised deal to Parliament last week under a certificate of urgency.
But the House deferred its deliberation on the contract, due to concerns over the cost and value for money.
The new agreement was to extend the current five-year deal of AMERI Energy, which is currently operating a 300MW emergency power plant in Ghana to 15 years and bring onboard a new company from Greece, Mytilineous International Trading Company, to manage the plant for the period.
Interestingly, Ghana takes ownership of the plant in two years after meeting all the financial requirements.
Analysis from observers indicates that, the proposed amendment to the AMERI agreement will see a cash flow of $1,125,007,380 to Mytilineous. They suggested it was a cooked deal by Mr Agyarko and members of the Akufo-Addo family.
Nana Asante Bediatuo, who signed the Executive Order, instead of a Cabinet approval, has been left off the hook. Many see the President as protecting his family’s interest by only firing Boakye Agyarko, who hopes to give more perspective to his dismissal as the Energy Minister soon.
“When the dust settles my side would be heard,” Mr Agyarko, said in a post on social media, perhaps sounding a warning that he did not mislead President Akufo-Addo as claimed by Gabby Asare Otchere-Darko, a cousin of President Akufo-Addo in his Daily Statesman newspaper last week.
“Boakye Agyarko may be on the lower end of the food chain. I think we have people who are on the higher side,” the Bongo Member of Parliament (MP), Edward Bawa, remarked following Mr Agyarko’s sacking.
“As a minister, you bring out a document, you give it to the President for approval or Cabinet for approval. The moment you hand it over to either or Cabinet or the Presidency for approval, the document ceases to be your document because you would have made a case as to why that document must be approved or rejected.”
“On the strength of that, anything that then comes out of Cabinet or comes out of the Presidency by way of executive approval is the work of the President or is the work of Cabinet,” Mr Bawa explained further.
The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers (COPEC) is also demanding the investigation and prosecution of all other persons complicit in the botched Ameri novation and amendment deal.
This follows the dismissal of Boakye Agyarko. President Akufo-Addo, was reportedly misled into granting executive approval for the deal to be laid in Parliament.
The Executive Director of COPEC, Duncan Amoah, however, believes Boakye Agyarko, could not have acted alone.
“The President has taken a very bold step, we commend him and we think that if Mr Agyarko indeed did not work alone in this agreement and there are other persons connected, the onus will lie on him, to come out to say that indeed he had no hand and that things were put on him to do.
“Anything other than that, some of us believe that Ministers do take the oath to office, and per this oath, if you lie in the law, it is known as perjury and so if perjury has been committed and some legal action could also be taken, the Ghanaian public is all for it to ensure that we do not get here ever again where certain public interests are overridden for appointees’ personal interest.”
The Institute for Energy Security (IES), is also calling on the President to sack all three Deputy Ministers of Energy, following the removal of the sector minister.
According to the IES, the deputies, Dr. Mohammed Amin Adam Anta, William Owuraku Aidoo and Joseph Cudjoe, also worked with Mr Agyarko on the said AMERI novation deal that cost him his job.
In a statement sent to the media, IES said “Boakye Agyarko doesn’t work alone.”
“It is common knowledge that the Energy Minister, Mr. Boakye Agyarko doesn’t work alone. The Honorable Minister, in addition to his three deputies, worked with a 7-member committee comprised of representatives from the PURC, Ministry of Finance, VRA and the Attorney-General who recommended the Novation Amendment Agreement to the Minister who in turn forwarded same to the President,” it said.
“IES calls on the President to sack all the three Deputy Ministers of Energy, namely; Dr. Mohammed Amin Adam Anta (in charge of Petroleum), Hon. William Owuraku Aidoo (in charge of Power), and Hon. Joseph Cudjoe (in charge of Finance and Infrastructure). IES will be very shocked if any of these persons is given the opportunity to become the substantive Minister of Energy. We also ask that the Committee should not be left off the hook,” the statement said,” IES added.