Religious groups in Ghana have vehemently spoken against the Lithium mining agreement between Ghana and Barari DV Ghana Limited, a subsidiary of Atlantic Lithium Limited.
The Christian Council if Ghana and the Office of the chief Imam, have concluded it’s a complete rip-off and has nothing beneficial to Ghana as a corporate body.
According to the 15-year lease agreement, which is expected to be presented to Parliament for consideration and possible ratification, Barari DV Ghana Limited, shall commence the construction and mining of lithium at Ewoyaa in the Mfantseman Municipality of the Central Region.
The deal includes a 10% royalty and 13% free carried interest by the state, surpassing the existing 5% and 10%, respectively, for other mining agreements.
But critics including the Minority in Parliament, former Chief Justice, Sophia Akuffo, Member of the Council of State, Sam Okudzeto among other prominent Ghanaians who have openly condemned the agreement, insist there is the need to pile pressure on government and by extension Parliament of Ghana to ensure that the contract is reviewed or abrogate it completely.
Speaking at a stakeholder engagement by the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA), representatives of the Christian Council of Ghana and the Office of the National Chief Imam of Ghana, concluded the deal is not in Ghana’s interest.
Some of the members of the Christian Council said that the Lithium resources of the country should be left in the ground if the government can not get a deal that would be in the interest of Ghanaians. Presiding Bishop of the Methodist Church of Ghana, Most Rev. Dr Paul Kwabena Boafo, said that Ghanaians should not sit down and allow this to happen.
“We cannot as a nation sit down and let this also go down the drain and let people take it away for us to suffer, for our people to suffer.
“I think that what we ought to do is take this agreement, look at it critically, come out with what we would need… 100% should be on the table, that this is what Ghanaians need. It should ensure to the benefit of Ghanaians,” he said.
When he took his turn, Sheikh Aremeyaw Shaibu, Spokesperson for Ghana’s National Chief Imam, Sheikh Osmanu Nuhu Sharubutu said that all stakeholders in the country should have been engaged before the deal was signed.
He called for the contract to be abrogated for more consultation.
“The mineral resources of our country do not belong to us alone. It belongs to the children unborn. Those who negotiate it must do it in our interest.
“Let us stop the contract, go into it and ensure that it is done in a manner that benefits Ghana,” he added.