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Govt charged to refund over $3m spent on maritime dispute to GNPC

Govt charged to refund over $3m spent on maritime dispute to GNPC

The decade-long maritime dispute between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, which was finally settled on September 23, 2017, cost the country (Ghana) in excess of 3 million dollars.

The amount, which included the legal services, was bore by the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC), Dr. Manteaw, who is the Chairman of the Civil Society Platform on Oil and Gas, has revealed.

There was a decade-long maritime dispute between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, which was finally settled on September 23, 2017, with Ghana being declared winner

Dr. Manteaw, who is also a member of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC), was contributing to a Media General News Lecture on Monday. The lecture, presented by Dr. Kofi Mbiah, the immediate Past Chairman of the International Maritime Organization’s Legal Committee, was on the theme “Making Sense of the ITLOS Judgement on Ghana-Ivory Coast Maritime Boundary Dispute.”

The lecture was to break down the ruling of the International Tribunal for the Law of the Sea (ITLOS) between Ghana and Cote d’Ivoire, which largely went in favour of Ghana on Saturday. The Public Interest and Accountability Committee Annual Report for 2016, released in June this year, said there was a 56% increase in the amount of money spent contesting the Maritime Boundary Dispute with Ivory Coast at the ITLOS.

Boakye Agyarko, Energy Minister,Ghana

A participant at the lecture therefore wanted to know how much the dispute cost the Ghanaian tax payer.

“I’m really sure we will be counting the cost. As at 2016, we had spent something close to 3 million dollars on this litigation, and this money has come from the GNPC’s allocation for exploratory activities.” Dr. Manteaw answered, “something I found problematic”

Expression of joy after Ghana was declared winner of the case

He explained, “it means monies that could have gone into exploration have been spent on litigation. “In my view, to the extent that this is litigation between two states, the financing should have come from the government’s own resources.”

Dr. Steve Manteaw is a member of PIAC

 

 

 

Dr. Manteaw therefore charged the government to refund the money spent on the litigation.

“Indeed, even if GNPC was advancing money, it should have been on the basis of an agreement to refund the money to GNPC so they can use the money for purpose to which it was approved by Parliament and was allocated to it.”

He later told TV3 Midday Live that government should have taken the money from it shares of the oil revenue, instead of falling on GNPC.

 

Credit:

3news.com| Ghana

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