NDC, NPP Start Fresh PDS Fight

The
issue of whether or not the Power Distribution Services (PDS) Concession
Agreement should be cancelled by the government has started another ‘fight’
between the opposition National Democratic Congress (NDC) and the ruling New
Patriotic Party (NPP).

The
NDC has been firing in recent times, accusing the NPP government of trying to
‘loot’ the assets of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) through the PDS
concession agreement which it initiated when it was in government.

The
NPP has fired back saying the NDC is being mischievous by deliberately setting
the public against them when it knows about the facts of the matter but is
interested in doing propaganda in such a sensitive issue.

NDC Claims

The
NDC claims it has ‘intercepted’ a document which it says exposes the government
in the whole PDS saga and accused the government of giving out ECG assets to a
Chinese company, Meridian Power Ventures Limited, which it said was formed
barely a year ago.

According
to the opposition, the ‘intercepted’ document is a letter addressed to the
Chairperson of Millennium Development Authority (MiDA), Professor Yaa Ntiamoa-Baidu,
which is directing a secret process to restructure the shareholding of PDS.

Intercepted Letter

They
claimed the letter of Monday, October 14, 2019, was jointly signed by Ernio
Acuna of Meridian Power Ventures (MEIRDIAN), and Jorge Morgado of Aenergy part
of which allegedly read, “Since the negotiation for the turnover of the ECG
assets and facilities after the PDS Consortium was declared the preferred
bidder in the ECG concession, there had been several issues which have arisen
in connection with the governance and management of ECG Concession as well as
the board of PDS which unfortunately had not been fully addressed, including
the prolonged suspension of the license of PDS and the ECG Concession and the
issue on the Demand Guarantee.”

As
a result, the NDC through its MP for Yapei Kusawgu and former Deputy Minister of
Power, John A. Jinapor, was all over the place yesterday claiming the Meridian
Power Ventures Limited was incorporated in Hong Kong just last year June and it
was done without recourse to Parliament under the agreement.

He
also called for the cancellation of the PDS deal if found to be fraudulent, and
as a result, the NDC served what they called a 24-hour ultimatum on the Finance
Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, to make a full disclosure on the planned
restructuring of the supposed PDS shareholding.

Embarrassing Conduct

A
Deputy Energy Minister, William Owuraku Aidoo reacted to the NDC claims saying
the opposition party continues to embarrass the country because they are
refusing to read.

He
said on Oman FM yesterday that there is no iota of truth in the NDC’s claims
and said he was concerned that the NDC’s take on the whole PDS concession
agreement and the reassignment of shares from Meralco to Meridian Power
Ventures Limited is embarrassing.

Binding Agreement

The
Deputy Minister explained that the Meridian Power Ventures Limited is a
subsidiary of Meralco, therefore the agreement with Meralco still binds
Meridian Power Ventures Limited.

“Their
augment that Meridian was formed last year and government officials are
conniving with its owners to buy shares in PDS is false. Meridian is a
subsidiary of Meralco and this was stated in the document presented to Parliament.
They would have known if they have read,” he fired.

The
Deputy Energy Minister argued that it is either the opposition party wants to
deliberately lie to Ghanaians or they genuinely did not read the reports so do
not know.

He
also said he was worried about John Jinapor’s ability to interpret some of the
issues to the NDC.

“The NDC’s conduct in this whole issue is embarrassing, it is propaganda coupled with ignorance,” he said.

By Melvin Tarlue

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