(NPP-- Old Tafo): Mr Speaker, I beg to second the two Motions, which are numbered as 7 and 8 on the Order Paper. In so doing, I would just want to say a few words.
Mr Speaker, I would want to refer Hon Members to page 6 of the Committee's Report. The issue relates to the shortfall in the 2012 Annual Budget Funding Allocation (ABFA). The Committee Report says and with your kind permission I beg to quote:
“…allocation was the shortfall in production targets, as well as the non-realisation of corporate tax in
Mr Speaker, this was predictable so, as we indicated to the Ministry of Petroleum, they were advised that, because of our tax exemption laws, the corporate income tax for 2012 was not going to be realised. But they put it in the forecast only to come and say that corporate taxes were not realised, when they could have predicted ahead of time that it was not going to be realised. So we want to caution the Ministry of Petroleum to listen to their own technical people next time so that such mistakes do not occur.
You notice that when you go to the 2013 Report, the opposite occurs under predication because, now some of the exemptions have passed so we would exceed the corporate taxes. What happens is that, it brings some distortions in the amount of moneys that can go to the Stabilisation and Heritage Funds and this is something that we should pay attention to because it is very important.
Mr Speaker, if we go to page 10, one notices that, and with your permission, I would want to read:
“The Committee observed that, contrary to Clause 46 (2), the audited reports on the receipt and the utilisation of Petroleum funds for 2011 and 2012 financial years have not been submitted by the Auditor- General”.
Mr Speaker, contrary to the clause, the Minister is therefore caught in either to breach the Petroleum Revenue Management Act (PRMA) or to breach clause 46 (2). Now it comes to the Report from the Auditor General (AG). So, we do not really have sufficient information from the AG to comment on the Minister's Report. So we would want to find out from the Minister, as he or she closes the debate, to tell us what is causing the AG not to prepare the Report because it does not help us very much when we do not have the audited Report.
Mr Speaker, one of the issues that is troubling in the Report and with your kind permission I would want to refer to page 11 -- is Expenditure on Capacity Building:
“The Committee also noted that an amount of GH¢111,959,738 representing 14.1 per cent of the ABFA amount of GH¢516,834,831 for 2012 was spent capacity building”.
Mr Speaker, to date, it is not exactly clear whose capacity was built. We have requested the Ministry of Petroleum to come back and give us details but at the time of submitting this Report, those details were still not available.
If one looks at the Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) Report, that information is still missing, so I still want to find out from the Ministry of Petroleum about the GH¢111,959,738 capacity building.
Mr Speaker, whose capacity were we building? It appears there was also information that was given and I would want to remind the Ministry that they still have not told us what it is. We were informed that GH¢35,000,000 was given to Micro-Finance and Small Loans Centre (MASLOC). The MASLOC Executive Director says they are not aware of the GH¢35,000,000, so the Ministry was supposed to come back to the Committee with that information.
Mr Speaker, for Parliament to be talking about the Ministry spending GH¢111,959,738 on capacity building but not knowing exactly what it is, is not the best. I would want to urge you to direct the Ministry of Petroleum to come back to this House to give us the details. It is not in the PIAC Report either. The PIAD has requested and the Ministry is still not giving it. They promised to bring it back and they have not. We want to know exactly what is happening in the capacity building and you notice that, with time, those amounts going for capacity building have gone down a bit.
Aside this amount, the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) itself tries to spend some money on capacity building.
Mr Speaker, I think it would be most prudent for the Ministry to do that chore or GNPC be allowed to do that. If we have two different sources of capacity building, we would be duplicating a lot of activities. I think it would be useful, going forward, that before the Ministry brings its Report, they may want to do some reconciliation in the PIAC Reports. Otherwise there is a gap in information and even though the Committee has not submitted the Report from PIAD, I think we have to find a way to do all together, but we would be able to do some proper reconciliation.