Petition to investigate Agyapa Royalties deal opportunistic and populist – Amidu tells STRANEK

Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu has chastised Civil Society Organisation, STRANEK for petitioning his office to investigate the controversial Agyapa Royalties deals.

While describing their action as opportunistic and populist, Mr Amidu said, “it is also a notorious matter of public knowledge and notice that this Office on 10th September 2020 invoked its mandate pursuant to Sections 2(1), 29, and 73 of Act 959 and Regulation 31 (1) and (2) of L. I. 2374 to examine any issues arising.”

The Agyapa Royalties deal since its approval by Parliament on August 14, 2020, has generated massive debate on social media with the opposition NDC and its Minority in Parliament calling for its suspension.

The government has argued that the agreement which is geared towards monetising the country’s mineral, will help to develop essential sectors of the economy including education, housing, health, and infrastructure.

But a cross-section of the public and some civil society organisations has questioned the transparency that characterised the arrangement while demanding full disclosure on the part of the government.

Subsequently, ASEPA, led by its Executive Director Mensah Thompson threatened to hit the streets to express its displeasure at the move which it says does not have the interest of the citizenry.

To support this stance, STRANEK, on Tuesday, September 22, petitioned the Special Prosecutor to investigate and bring finality to the matter.

The CSO alleged that the “Agyapa deal is shrouded in illegality, secrecy and issues of conflict of interest, and is inimical to the interest of the good people of Ghana.”

But responding to the letter, Mr. Amidu described it as unnecessary.

Find the full statement from the Office of the Special Prosecutor below:

The Agyapa Royalties Agreements and related issues have been matters of national interest since they were approved by Parliament on 14th August 2020.

It is also a notorious matter of public knowledge and notice that this Office on 10th September 2020 invoked its mandate pursuant to Sections 2(1), 29, and 73 of Act 959 and Regulation 31 (1) and (2) of L. I. 2374 to examine any issues arising therefrom.

(See “Special Prosecutor demands information on Agyapa deal from Parliament, September 11, 2020” and “Parliament to furnish Special Prosecutor with documents on Agyapa deal today, September 14, 2020″ — citifmonline.com and radio; Modern Ghana; Ghana Web; and other media houses also carried the same news with different headlines) It is further in the public domain that Parliament and other public institutions have already responded to this Office’s request for information and documents.

Your letter under reference, therefore, appears to this Office as an opportunistic and populist enterprise on your part to take credit for processes already independently commenced by this Office. In any case your letter containing mere speculations without more, does not present any reasonable basis for this Office to commit further resources to your request from the public purse.

Kindly accept the assurances of the Special Prosecutor of the highest consideration.

Source: myjoyonline.com

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