Reopening of AngloGold: Mine workers will be worse off – Minority
The Minority in Parliament has criticized government over the current AngloGold Ashanti deal that led to the reopening of the Obuasi mine on Tuesday, 22 January 2019 as they say Ghana will be worse off per the deal.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo on Tuesday led a high-powered delegation to officially open the mine with an assurance that domestic content policy will be followed through to the letter to ensure indigenes get jobs.
But the Minority in Parliament, who joined their counterparts on the majority side to grant close to $300 million tax concession to AngloGold Ashanti Ghana to restructure and revamp the mine say the deal in its current state will leave Ghanaians worse off.
Speaking to Class News, Adam Mutawakilu Ranking Member on Parliament’s Mines and Energy Committee said: “The most critical thing that we should have asked is what are we gaining from that development agreement, that is very critical for everybody.
“We shouldn’t just concentrate on we have reopened it when in actual fact, the agreement is not that standard that we should boast about. You’ll realize that technically they all avoided talking about the fiscal regimes. What does the government or the people of Ghana stand to gain from this development agreement?
“They Mine Workers Union raised issues with respect to what we call contract mining and that it will make the workers worse off and that government should relook at it, but the government refused. So, the people who will be engaged will be far worse off than the old AngloGold.”
Meanwhile, with an estimated 2,500 jobs to be created, the government is confident that Obuasi, a once vibrant town, will be brought back to life again, with an improvement in the living circumstances of its residents.
Additionally, Nana Akufo-Addo noted while opening the mine that the government is expected to rake in some $2.16 billion in revenue over the next 22 years, in royalties and corporate and withholding taxes.