Ghana’s Petroleum Revenue Management Law should be reviewed to not only to address challenges inherent in the petroleum and mining sectors but also deal with public financial management issues, energy consultant with the Natural Resource Governance Institute (NRGI), Mr Emmanuel Kuyuole has recommended.
According to Mr Kuyuole, even though the law had succeeded in affording citizens’ oversight of the country’s petroleum revenues, there was a lot more that it could do.
The law which had its power from the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA) was meant to provide a framework for the collection of, allocation and management of petroleum revenue in a responsible, transparent, accountable and sustainable manner for the benefit of the citizens of Ghana in accordance with article 36 of the country’s constitution.
“The law has delivered some transparency and accountability; seven years down the line, we know how much we have gotten from the sector, however in terms of helping us address issues of public financial management which obviously wasn’t part of the objectives from the start, we are at a disadvantage,” he said.
Mr Kuyuole was speaking to some selected journalists undergoing training to enhance the role of the media in promoting oil and gas transparency.
The project is under the aegis of extractives training hub, Penplusbytes and the Ghana Oil and Gas for Inclusive Growth (GOGIC).
Citing an example in Uganda, Mr Kuyuole said that country had one public financial management law which also dealt with petroleum revenue management.
According to him, Ghana has fashioned out a very good law to oversee just about 10 per cent of total government revenue, leaving the 90 per cent to be subjected to the same challenges that “our budgets over the years have faced.”
He was therefore against the call for a separate mining revenue management law to oversee the use of revenues coming from that sector.
“I’m of the view that we have come to point where we need to review the Petroleum Revenue Management Law, keep the good things that are in the law but broaden its scope to bring on board other key sectors such as the mining sector and its revenue management,” he submitted.
He called for a linkage of the Petroleum Revenue Management Law with the Public Financial Management law “in a more robust way so that when it comes to the issue of borrowing for example on the back of petroleum revenues we can manage that better.”