EITI Report shows discrepancies in mining revenue in Ghana
A glaring plunder of Ghana’s mining revenues has been revealed in the Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative (EITI) aggregate report of Ghana. The aggregated audit report meant to collect, analyze and reconcile payments made by mining companies to the government and to reconcile mining companies’ submissions of mining benefits payments to those received by the government was made known in Ghana at an EITI – Dissemination Workshop held in Kumasi. The audit report’s reconciled payments and receipts from 2006 to 2008 revealed several discrepancies. In 2006 and 2007, there was a discrepancy of GH¢511,660 and GH¢2,753,111, respectively, between mining company payments and government receipts. In 2008, there was a discrepancy of GH¢370,697.
Mining payments were for mineral royalty, property tax, corporate tax, dividends, ground rent and mineral right licenses made by about 11 mining companies including Anglo Gold Ashanti (Obuasi and Iduaprim), Gold Fields (Ghana) Ltd, Abosso Gold Fields, Chirano Gold Mines, Newmont Ghana Gold Ltd., Ghana Manganese Ltd., Ghana Bauxite Company, Central African Gold, among others. The findings of the report showed that the reasons behind the distortions in mineral revenues were because mining companies generally paid royalties without providing adequate documentation of production and prices.
Again, pre-production costs were not stated by the mining companies on the advice of the Minerals Commission, and the amount payable as concession ground rent to landowners was not as significant as expected. With weak institutions, payments go unrecorded, the EITI report stated.
In March 2006, according to the aggregated report, a dividend payment of GH¢830,928.06 by AngloGold Ashanti was not captured as a part of government receipts. Exactly where the money went still remains a mystery.