Prime News Ghana

Breaches in the PDS concession deal an embarrassment to Ghana - Prof. Bokpin

By Justice Kofi Bimpeh
Godfred Bokpin
Godfred Bokpin
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Economist and Professor of Finance at the University of Ghana, Godfred Bokpin has described the breaches detected in the PDS concession agreement as an embarrassment to Ghana.

Speaking on Joy FM's news analysis programme 'NewsFile', Professor Bokpin said the reputational damage to Ghana in this agreement is very huge.

"This is an embarrassment, the reputational damage to us as a country is very huge."

Reacting to documents read on the programme which revealed that the condition precedent [Bank guarantee] has now been waived into an Insurance Bond a condition subsequent, Prof. Bokpin said the two are not the same and the government should have pulled out the deal realising the companies inability to pay the required money.

Local participation under the concession was 20% during the NDC administration but the NPP administration changed it to 51%.

Sharing his views on the change in percentage, Prof. Bokpin said the action which led to the withdrawal of most companies from the concession bid should have prompted the government to review the time periods to allow other companies prepare and participate than going ahead with the agreement.

According to him, the government had it wrong on counts of transparency and disclosure.

"The government got it wrong in terms of greater transparency and disclosure because companies have entered this agreement so when you varied it, it had implications.."

"We failed as a country to operationalised the clause we put in there to scale up local participation and I think we should accept the blame and apologise.."

"The outcome as we have it now doesn't justify any good intention on the part of the government and the outcome is such that there is no way we can substitute good intention for good accomplishment," he stated.

He added the Millennium Development Authority, MiDA tasked by the government to supervise the agreement with Meralco consortium has failed Ghanaians.

"If you look at how MiDA was set up the role it has to play in all of these things I think MiDA has failed us.."

Suspension of PDS concession deal

The government of Ghana on Tuesday suspended the concession agreement with PDS following some breaches detected in the deal.

After the announcement of the suspension the Energy Minister, John Peter Amewu said investigations conducted by the government had established that a document that was presented by PDS as a guarantee for the takeover was forged.

The Information Minister disclosed that a detailed probe will be done within 30 days to really know what went into the deal.

Addressing journalists at a press briefing on Thursday, the Minister for Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah said the government has put together a team made up of insurance investigation experts, officials of the Energy and Finance ministries and officials of the ECG and MIDA to look into the matter.