President Akufo-Addo has sacked his Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko over a power purchase deal which critics say “makes no sense”.
Head of Communications at the presidency Eugene Arhin confirmed the dismissal in an interview with Joy News shortly after he had released a statement communicating the president’s decision.
According to him, the dismissal of Boakye Agyarko had everything to do with the controversial renegotiated AMERI deal.
He quoted the president as saying the decision to sack Agyarko was in the “best interest of the country as well as the administration.”
He said Mr Agyarko has accepted the president’s decision to fire him.
On the renegotiated AMERI deal which was brought to Parliament with an executive approval, Eugene Arhin said the government has taken a decision to withdraw it.
Before the sack
The action comes after a pro-government newspaper the Statesman reported the President was misled when he okayed the agreement for parliamentary consideration.
Mr Agyarko has been under growing public pressure to resign with workers of the Volta River Authority being the latest to call for his dismissal.
The workers say the Minister had demonstrated he “is absolutely not on top of his job” after he reviewed a 2015 deal entered into by the Mahama administration which the Akufo-Addo government promised to review because the $510 million deal was over-priced by $150m.
But with about two and a half years for the 5-year deal with Dubai-based company Africa & Middle East Resources Investment Group (AMERI) to run out, the Energy Ministry announced the deal has been revised as the government promised.
Under AMERI II, the deal is now a 15-year contract to be taken over by a new company Mytilineos. The ministry claimed the reviewed deal will save the taxpayer $405m, a claim which the Africa Center for Energy Policy has called misleading.
ACEP has said rather than making any savings, the new deal will cost the taxpayer $937.5 million. Critics have expressed shock at what they described as a blatant rip-off.
The minister “has paid the ultimate price” for a reviewed deal, Eugene Arhin said.
Boakye Agyarko becomes the first minister under the Akufo-Addo government to lose his job even though a Deputy Agric Minister resigned last year for making ethnocentric comments