John Mahama: Ghana Gold Company After Mills Death

John Mahama: Ghana Gold Company After Mills Death

It has emerged that the National Democratic Congress (NDC) were very close to establishing the Ghana Gold Company (GGC).

However, the party lost direction following the death of the late former President John Evans Atta-Mills.

Some staff at the Ministry of Finance who were privy to the happenings at the Ministry during the time of Mr. Atta-Mills have reliably informed DGN Online about the NDC plan to set up the GGC which would have been similar to what the President Nana Akufo-Addo’s Government is doing with the Agyapa Minerals Royalties Limited.

It would be recalled that
the processes for the establishment of a gold royalties company for Ghana were started by the NDC.

The NDC as far back as 2010, began the process to create a gold royalties company for Ghana similar to the Agyapa Minerals Royalty Company Limited being established by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) Government.

But the GGC could not see the light of day due to what sources say was gross “incompetence” by the Mahama’s administration following the death of Prof. Mills and replacement of Dr. Kwamena Duffuor as Finance Minister.

Seth Terkper took over as Finance Minister from Dr. Duffuor and staff at the Finance Ministry who were part of the arrangements for the establishment of the company said the then Government of Mahama lost direction subsequently.

One staff who pleaded anonymity recounted in an interview with DGN Online that “in 2011, the NDC planned to do an even more encompassing deal with all our share of gold proceeds and the only thing that stopped it was their incompetence in how best to structure it and the processes got eaten away by time and the elections came in and Dr Duffuor was not returned to MoF.”

In October 2010, Mr. Mahama’s Economic Management Team okayed the setting up of Ghana Gold Company, it got Cabinet approval on November 11, 2020 and was announced in the 2011 Budget read on November 18, 2010.

The NDC Government subsequently set up the Ghana Gold Company and a committee to champion it and spent the next two years working on it with parliamentary select committees Finance, Energy and Mines and presented a Bill to Parliament that could not be laid on time before the 2012 elections happened.

Transaction advisors for GGC were Togbe Afedi himself and his SAS Securities, Alhassan Andani’s Stanbic Bank, Jude Kofi Bucknor and his Bucknor & Associates and Kofi Agyei of then Macquarie Bank and later MD of UTT.

Whiles NPP opted to create a Fund, the Minerals Income Investment Fund (MIIF) and Agyapa Royalties, the NDC way was to create a limited company which they wanted to use control all royalties and 10% carried interest from all gold concessions with the intention of listing in at least the Ghana Stock Exchange and the powers to set up subsidiaries in other countries, including the Channel Islands.

The NDC’s plan was to trade all incomes from gold.

DGN Online has gathered that when the Bill which the NDC Government later on drafted to Parliament to give the Ghana Gold Company the mandate to control all of Ghana’s gold, was discussed by the parliamentary subcommittee in 2011, they recommended that in order to make it attractive to investors it must be given greater independence from government control.

The Bill was even more opaque because it gave more powers than expressed, a source said.

The NDC Bill said in Section 3 that “without limiting the generality of its objects and functions, the company shall:
(a) Manage a portfolio of all mineral royalties and interests;
(b) Acquire existing mineral royalties and interests;

(c) Provide finance to minerals companies in exchange for royalties;…
(f) ensure that the shareholders obtain the greatest possible benefits from the royalties and equity interests etc.

Section 3: “The Minister, with the approval of parliament, shall transfer all of the country’s mineral interest to the Company.

Section 4 Powers of Company

“The Company shall for the attainment of its objects under Section 2 exercise the following powers:
(a) With the approval of the shareholder(s), form subsidiary and affiliate companies, branches or agencies in or outside Ghana to undertake;*
(b) Execute service or work contracts or
consultancy agreements with firms or individuals, either citizens of Ghana or otherwise;

(c) Do any other things and perform any out its activities.”

Section 5: Company set up as a commercial venture.

Source: – By Melvin Tarlue

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