Business News of Saturday, 25 February 2017
The Chamber of Petroleum Consumers has registered its dissatisfaction with government’s replacement of the CEO of Ghana Oil Company (GOIL).
According to them, it comes as no surprise that barely a day after the political removal of a CEO that has clearly more than performed with only two years to retirement and fuel prices at GOIL has had to go up from the previous GHC4.140 to now GHC4.260.
“The danger signs are indeed on the wall now more than ever at a time when fuel prices keep going up by the day and the government seems unable to do much immediately though it has affirmed severally it will reduce the taxes,” the group said in a statement.
The statement signed by its Executive Secretary, Duncan Amoah, the group says it remains “optimistic about the future as our eyes and ears patiently await the 2017 budget come March 3.”
They are hopeful that the replacement would “not have cause to miss or regret this political tinkering that has gone on with GOIL anytime soon lest we lay the blames squarely at the appointing authority.”
Read the statement below:
THE DISMISSAL OF GOIL MD/CEO-MOST UNFORTUNATE DECISION
We read with utter shock and dismay, the dismissal of one of the most enterprising Chief Executive Officers in Ghana, Mr Patrick Akorlie, Managing Director of Ghana Oil Company (GOIL) by the government and immediate replacement of same by the Hon. Osei Prempeh a former member of Parliament for Nsuta kwamang and a Deputy Attorney General.
Ghana entered a very crucial phase of its downstream development on the 1st of July 2015, when price liberalization was introduced. This policy which not only is targeted at huge savings for the government in excess of $40 million /monthly in losses that it previously had to pay to the bulk distribution companies ( BDCS ) but also introduced with it the needed competition by the over 87 oil marketing companies.
The first six months of this new pricing regime saw very stiff competition by all the OMCs such that fuel prices continuously dropped from the regions of ghc17.055/gallon to ghc11.92/gallon until the introduction of the energy sector levies that pushed prices back up above ghc16/gallon following which fuel prices have never dropped to anything below ghc15 till date.
Ghana Oil Company (GOIL) through its hardworking team led by Patrick Akorlie had to work around the clock on a daily basis to ensure the other multinationals do not fleece the ordinary man on the street by realistic, efficient and reasonable pricing even at periods when prices have had to go up.
Akorlie prior to accepting of the CEO/MD position was the finance manager of the same company who had to take the mantle of leadership after the politicians realized it’s a lot technical than political.
From the time of assuming the role as the Ceo, GOIL has seen tremendous growth figures from under 190 service stations to over 300 and still counting.
The strong leadership of Patrick Akorlie has seen GO not only become the most preferred brand but also the benchmark for other Omcs across the country with the consumer as the number one priority even through difficult periods and times.
As a quasi-state petroleum company with other shareholders, Goil under Patrick Akorlie has recorded significant returns on their operations all through the period and can easily pass for a blue chip company doing very well.
Goil is not only crucial in Ghana’s deregulation programme but the over 20years experience of Mr Akorlie and his able team including the Chief Operating Officer Mr Alexander Adziw, and the head of GO Energy Mr Amankwaa seem to not to matter to the appointing authority who at this crucial period believes a political head will help matters whiles the contrary will most likely be the outcome as past records of same company will point to.
THE PLIGHT OF THE CONSUMER WITH A WEAKENED GOIL
Consumers across the country have always turned to a stronger GOIL for cheaper or realistic prices at periods when the many multinationals have adjusted prices way above reasonable, some of these other foreign OMCs will stop at nothing to make as much profit as available and that is where the experiences and steady hands of the now disbanded and demoralised Akorlie team came in handy.
A weakened GOIL not only becomes a danger to the unsuspecting public but serves to pave way for domination of the downstream by multinationals who will not only make super profits but repatriate same at the end of the accounting year.
A new head at this crucial time when he has to settle into the position and gain as much experience to drive GOIL the way it needs to and be positioned to compete as a benchmark with the consumer interests in mind is a dark grey area for the millions in the country as of this time per this new move.
The skill to manage over 300 real time outlets daily is not one of those skills that could ordinarily be acquired in a second and that is why it was our expectation that even if need be to replace it would have been from the management of same instead of a completely new head who now has to settle in.
It comes as no surprise that barely a day after the political removal of a CEO that has clearly more than performed with only two years to retirement and fuel prices at GOIL has had to go up from the previous GHC4.140 to now GHC4.260.
The danger signs are indeed on the wall now more than ever at a time when fuel prices keep going up by the day and the government seems unable to do much immediately though it has affirmed severally it will reduce the taxes.
We remain optimistic about the future as our eyes and ears patiently await the 2017 budget come March 3rd.
It remains our hope we will not have cause to miss or regret this political tinkering that has gone on with GOIL anytime soon lest we lay the blames squarely at the appointing authority.
( COPECGH )