Stakeholders in the extractive industry are calling for the establishment of Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) in the mining industry.
This, they believe, will enable the country monitor how much revenue is being generated in the mining industry and also how the revenue is being utilized.
The call was made at the launch of PIAC 2018 annual report, in Kumasi.
Ghana per the report, has raked in close to five billion dollars in revenue since oil production started in 2011.
In 2018, an amount of 977 million dollars was generated from the petroleum sector.
A total of 414 million cedis was spent on free SHS out of the 827 million cedis utilized from the Annual Budget Funding Account (ABFA).
Two hundred and fifty-two million cedis out of the 1.08 billion cedis allocated for the ABFA was unutilized as at the end of 2018. When added to the 2017 unspent ABFA of 403 million cedis, total unspent ABFA as at December 2018 amounted to 655 million cedis.
This, according to PIAC, suggests budget non-compliance on the part of Ministry of Finance.
The committee wants Parliament to take steps to ensure that the Minister complies with the budget as approved.
Need for PIAC in the mining sector
At a forum to officially launch the 2018 annual report, some participants called for the establishment of PIAC in the mining industry for accountability and transparency purposes.
Former Ashanti regional chairman of the National Peace Council, Professor Seth Opuni-Asiamah, commended PIAC for policing how the petroleum revenue is being managed.
Chairman of PIAC, Dr Steve Manteaw, said the time has come for them to also police the mining revenue.
Ghana currently has a total of close to half a billion-dollar in the Heritage Fund.
PIAC wants government to focus more on the carried and participating interest when negotiating petroleum agreements since it gives the country more revenue.
While the Committee is satisfied with the quality of spending by GNPC Foundation, it has recommended to parliament to consider placing some restrictions on the proportion of GNPC’s budget that can be channelled to Corporate Social Responsibility.
This is expected to forestall any future excessive expenditure.
By Ibrahim Abubakar & Chelsea Effah Frempa|3news.com|Ghana