Deputy Energy Minister Andrew Egyapa Mercer has debunked claims that the Bank of Ghana (BoG) is pulling out of the Gold for oil policy.
His comments follow claims by former Member of Parliament (MP) for Nsuta Kwamang Beposo Kwame Asafo Adjei that the BoG is withdrawing from the deal following some debts incurred.
The former New Patriotic Party (NPP) MP, who argued that the deal is not transparent, added that he was slammed when he raised issues about the deal months ago.
“I raised it on several platforms that this policy is not sustainable. It will increase our inflation, and I was bashed, people were insulting me left, right and centre. I saw in one of the documents that the BoG was withdrawing from the Gold for oil policy. I also read that it was going to cost us $100 million in April because some people were smuggling the gold outside the country and were not passing through the right channel. And that the BoG was withdrawing, so I wanted to know why the BoG was withdrawing. That is my beef: why are they withdrawing? The deal is not transparent enough. They said there’s an agent in Dubai, who is this agent?” Kwame Asafo Adjei asked on the Eyewitness News on Citi FM, hosted by Umaru Sanda Amadu.
But responding to this allegation on Eyewitness News, the Deputy Energy Minister asserted that the MP’s claims should be treated with contempt, assuring that the BoG has not withdrawn from the Gold for oil policy.
He described the allegations as a move by some members of the NPP to “bastardize” the personality of the Vice President, Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, who has championed the policy and is also vying for the presidential slot to lead the party in the 2024 polls.
“It’s surprising to me that after the interrogation, he’s unable to provide any official documentation from the BoG to the effect that they are withdrawing from the Gold for oil policy. I’m inclined to assume that it’s probably because of the upcoming internal elections, that is why they are seeking to bastardize the personality of Vice President Dr. Mahamudu Bawumia, who has championed this policy. I’m completely scandalized. For the information of the general public, no such statement has been issued by the BoG. No such conversation has ever taken place.”
“I admit I don’t work with the BoG, but I can say on authority that the Gold for oil policy has not made any $100 million loss, for which it will renege on its core mandate of providing support for import cover and forex support. To hear this is unbelievable. I will urge with all due respect that this statement that is coming should be treated with the utmost contempt it deserves. And people should disregard it as being a palpable falsehood,” the MP for Sekondi noted.