Business News of Thursday, 9 February 2017
The Minister of Energy and Petroleum, Mr. Boakye Agyarko, has disclosed that the immediate past National Democratic Congress (NDC) government bedeviled his ministry with a whopping $2.4 billion in debt.
According to him, this is a huge challenge, and in order to tackle it head on, he needed civil servants who are not politically biased to work with.
Mr. Boakye Agyarko has, therefore, suggested to the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government, of which is he is part, to retire civil servants who are found to have affinity towards the National Democratic Congress (NDC).
Those who are below their retirement age, he suggested, should be widely dealt with to the line of the state and government of the NPP.
“It is important for us, as a party, to work hard and expose and shame any NDC civil servant who will dare do any dubious thing to make the NPP government unpopular,” he said, adding: “What do you think will happen to me and the state, if I should continue to have some NDC civil servants in certain critical positions?”
Promising that his Ministry would tackle the debt head on, Mr. Agyarko said he had plans of negotiating some of the contract agreements the NDC government entered into with the government’s partners, In order to save the state from any form of judgement debt.
Principal agencies subset of the Ministry of Energy and Petroleum are the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), Bulk Oil and Storage Transport (BOST) and Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), and going forward, Mr. Agyarko said he would hold constant checks and surveillance on all those agencies, to prevent some of the dubious contractual arrangements that went on there.
In view of this, Boakye Agyarko vowed not to make himself a prey to cronies who think they can use his sector to satisfy their financial greed and personal desires.
The NPP government, he said, would ensure that it has protected and preserved the sovereignty of the State, through prudency and contracts that would bring value for money.
Appearing on Oman FM’s night political talk show – Boiling Point – on Tuesday this week, Mr. Agyarko said the NPP should safeguard the interest of its loyal party faithful, by getting them to occupy the positions, such as those of the civil servants whose party ideologies and beliefs are divergent from that of the NPP government.
“Most of our loyalists in the civil service were humiliated by the administrations of Mills and Mahama, and so for me, we have to urgently cater for such victims. We can’t disregard the vigorous efforts of the grassroots who have given us the power,” he noted.