We need to conduct forensic audit into the use energy sector levies-Minority

A former energy minister under the erstwhile National Democratic Congress (NDC), and member of Parliament for Elembele, Emmanuel Armah Kofi Buah, is calling for a forensic audit into the use  energy sector levies.

The audit he noted would inform the house on how government has utilised the sector levies.

According to him, the energy sector levies were  passed under a very difficult time with stiff opposition from then NPP Minority.

He also questioned why the GNPC had invested in about some 40 schools when it was in debt.

He said, investing in infrastructure was not bad but for the state owned company,  to invest in such venture despite the challenges confronting it, was not the best.

Mr Buah also indicated that Ghana gas’ indebtedness has risen to $700 million
with the Electricity of Ghana also losing an amount of 2 billion in 2018.

Commenting on what President Akufo-Addo said about the increase in gas production, he said this achievement was as a result of the journey undertaken by the NDC under former president Mahama , to put in place the needed resources to make the sector better.

The president is his state of the Nation Address said “I am happy to announce that gas production tripled during the year, from 100 to 300 million cubic feet per day. The Ministry of Energy is undertaking steps to remove the transmission bottlenecks, to ensure that Ghanaian gas can reach power plants located in the eastern part of the country, and I am confident that, by August this year, the situation would have been fully remedied to ensure Ghana uses locally produced gas for the bulk of its thermal power generation, saving substantial amounts of foreign exchange on imported fuels.”

But Mr Buah says the measures put in place by Mahatma has Lee to this feat.

The NDC government had introduced a bill to Parliament; that bill was informed by the restructuring that was to be done in respect of the loans that the energy sector was owing.

And the aim was to find a way by which the people of Ghana could contribute over a period of three to four years to enable us clear the debt. Now this resulted in us having to pass the energy levy bill which became an Act.

But Parliament in 2017 passed the Energy Sector Levies (Amendment) Bill, 2017 to reduce the energy sector levies imposed on consumers.

The Act, amended the Energy Sector Levies Act, 2015 (Act 899), and provided for a reduction in the levies for Public Lighting and the National Electrification Scheme on petroleum products.

It reduced the National Electrification Scheme Levy (NESL) from five per cent to two per cent and the Public Lighting Levy (PLL) from five per cent to three per cent per price of kilowatts of electricity charged on all categories of consumers.

The passage followed the presentation of the report of the Finance Committee, which recommended the passage of the bill.

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