PIAC calls for sanctions after Gov’t fails to provide data on ABFA expenditure

Tracking revenue use

The Public Interest and Accountability Committee, PIAC, is demanding sanctions for institutions that delay in submitting data for its reports.

The Committee which has oversight responsibility in the management of petroleum revenue maintains that the development impacts adversely on its operations.

The Chairman of the Public Interest and Accountability Committee, Dr. Steve Manteaw in an interview with Citi News admitted to the delay in the submission of data by the various institutions at various times.

A classical case is the Ministry of Finance’s failure to submit data on expenditure for the Annual Budget Funding Amount (ABFA) after several alerts from PIAC.

According to Dr. Manteaw, a possible review of the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA) should address the concern.

“One would have thought that the various reporting entities would have complied with the provisions of the Act without an obviously set of sanctions. But as it is and like I pointed out, there have been several occasions on which certain agencies have failed to provide data on timely basis and which has affected PIAC’s ability to meet its timeline,” the PIAC boss stressed.

He added: “So I think the institution of sanctions will actually go a long way in ensuring compliance with respect to the provision of data.”

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PIAC accused the Ministry of Finance of failing to respond to requests concerning the whereabouts of an unspent portion of the 2017 ABFA.

The committee chairman Dr. Steve Manteau stated in a press briefing, October 2018, “We requested for the data on July 17, 2018 to enable us put together our half year report. The Ministry has failed to release data on expenditure.”

Provisions of the Petroleum Revenue Management Act require that institutions that are involved in the petroleum revenue management system, provide details on their operations for the year under review.

Such institutions include; the Ministry of Finance, Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, Ghana National Gas Company Limited as well as other allied agencies.

Per law, PIAC is expected to produce its semi-annual for a particular year in September of the same year.

But the full year report is expected to be published in March the following year.

By implication, now that PIAC has failed to publish its semi-annual report in September 2018 as expected, it is likely its 2018 full year report may extend beyond the March timeline.

Meanwhile other issues raised by PIAC in the semi-annual report are the failure by Ghana Gas to make payment to GNPC in respect of gas supplied.

By Gideon Sarpong | iWatch Africa |

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Gideon Sarpong

Gideon Sarpong is a media practitioner with over six years experience in data, investigative and policy journalism. Gideon is currently the Policy and News Director at iWatch Africa. His major role includes developing news strategy for correspondents across Ghana, as well as designing project and policy focus for the organisation. He is an author with over eight publications; a fellow of the Young African Leaders Initiative (YALI), Thomson Reuters Foundation (Wealth of Nations Program), Commonwealth Youth Program (DYLP) and Bloomberg Data for Health Program. Gideon holds a degree in economics from the University of Cape Coast and PgD in Policy Journalism and Media Studies from the University of Zambia. He is a firm believer in the use of data journalism and technology for development and is committed to promoting transparency and accountability in Africa.

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