- August 26, 2020
- Posted by: admin
- Category: Press Releases
CSOs Response to the Implementation of the Minerals Income Investment Fund and Matters Arising
Date: 25th August, 2020
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Press,
We, members of the Alliance of CSOs Working on Extractives, Anti-corruption, and Good Governance, have been following keenly, the raging disquiet among sections of the Ghanaian population about the government’s decision to leverage Ghana’s present and future mineral royalties for international credit to finance the country’s development programmes.
While the intention of government may be genuine, and aimed at optimising the benefits of gold royalties to the state, we are of a firm conviction that, the lack of, or inadequate consultations on the bill that eventually passed into the Minerals Income Investment Fund (MIIF) Act, (2018), Act 978, with its 2020 amendments is responsible for the lack of public support for its implementation. A consultative process that respects the views of Ghanaians on such an important decision would have been useful in shaping government’s policy and potentially exploring other investment options that could achieve greater impact for citizens.
The opaque manner in which the Act is being implemented: the relatively weak transparency and public oversight arrangements, and the haste with which the government is running to the market, in spite of concerns being raised by a broad spectrum of the Ghanaian populace, do not engender public trust and consensus building around matters of public policy. This approach rather raises moral and governance questions. The assumption that, once everything goes through parliament, it is above board and represents the interest of all Ghanaians is deceptive, and turns democracy on its head. It makes the elected, the only relevant stakeholders in policy making, and as former U.S. president, Barack Obama once indicated, it wrongly assumes that democracy is a transaction executed between leaders and the people only at elections.
We note that, within the context of good governance, such an important decision requires consultation even with the poor woman in Tarkwa, Daamang, Obuasi, Kenyasi, and other communities, who have lost their livelihoods to mining, and continues to bear the negative consequences, in a language she will understand. The Chiefs and Queen mothers who have given their lands and continue to engage government with the hope that one day, at least, the requirement of the Mineral Development Fund Act to cede 10 percent mineral royalties to develop their communities, will be respected in full. Any assumption that the people will not understand such policies is very disrespectful in a democracy. In fact, the people do not only understand “vote for me”.
Click to read full statement: Press Statement MIIF Agyapa Final