To talk about elite capture was very painful for me : Africa Legal Associates is only a local partner- Finance Minister
Finance Minister, Ken Ofori Atta says he felt very pained when he read the letter from the coalition of civil society groups accusing the government of elite capture. According to him, he was very surprised that after several efforts made by the Akufo Addo administration to bring the economy back on track after inheriting a broke economy he would be accused of attempting to fleece the nation.
“The issue that really was very hurtful and made me discount the letter was when they ended that we are trying to prevent elite capture ,which essentially meant that we here are doing this for ourselves and we have some shares in it,so the mindset in which it was brought makes it difficult for us to see if it was genuine”
At a press briefing thursday to react to allegations by some sections of the Ghanaian public about the recent Minerals Income Investment Fund, between Government of Ghana and the Royalties Company,Mr Ofori-Atta said government will ensure the country gets the best part of the deal. Some critics including lawyer Ato Conduah have questioned the propriety of the GoG and the Ministry of Finance in entrusting such sovereign wealth into the hands of an off-shore company, who apart from its unknown track record, exposes its related-parties who seem connected to the Ministry of Finance and GoG.
Also reacting to the role of Africa Legal Associates, headed by his cousin Gabby Asare Otchere-Darku in the drafting of the entire deal and potential conflict of interest arising out of that, the Ministry said the involvement of the law firm as transaction advisors is only by virtue of the fact that it is a local partner of the English law firm that is being used,White & Case.
The controversial deal which was passed in parliament last week amid objections by the minority and some sections of the public aims to manage the equity interests of the country in mining companies, and receive mineral royalties and other related income due the country from mining operations to provide for the management and investment of the assets of the fund and for related matters.