The Deputy Energy Minister has hinted that the Attorney General is reviewing a draft operations and maintenance contract between the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) and a private investor to commence the process of revamping the refinery.

According to Herbert Krampah, once the lawyers and engineers are done with the process, the government is hopeful that TOR will begin the refinery of crude in the country.

The Deputy Minister of Energy said this in an interview at the GNPC and BGP Bay, crew 2257 site where they joined the team to celebrate 3 million man-hours without major accidents at the camp.

The team led by the Deputy Minister and the Ag. Chief Executive Officer of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation, Opoku-Ahweneeh Danquah were in the Northern and Savannah Regions to assess the progress of work in the prospecting of oil in the Voltaian Basin.

The Voltaian Basin spans through about 460 communities in 13 MMDAs; 10 of which are in the Northern Region and three in the Savanna Region.

Mr Krampah said what TOR needs now is an investment to put it in shape, so it can bring back the benefits it accrues for the nation.

"Once the lawyers have ticked it, and the technical people have ticked it, we hope that we can see a revived TOR, to go back to refine crude for all the jobs it creates and all the impact it makes on the Ghanaian economy," he said.

Mr Krampah added that the Voltaian Basin project has the potential to change the fortunes of the country, especially in areas where the oil will be found.

"Jobs will be created directly and indirectly and even when the discoveries are made direct and indirect, the ancillary industries will be created out of that. The skills training that indigenous Ghanaian engineers and technical people are going to derive, the technology transfer, the cooperate social responsibility benefits that this project is going to bring, infrastructure and then, of course, the overall impact it will have directly on our economy will be huge," he stated.

He said that Ghana has seen great growth over the years following the discovery of oil onshore and believes that if oil is found offshore in the Voltaian Basin it would mean great achievement for the government.

The Deputy Minister said the President is passionate about the project and has tasked the Minister of Energy to supervise the work GNPC is doing on the Voltaian Basin to ensure it sees the light of day.

The Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) Ag. CEO, Opoku-Ahweneeh Danquah on his part said there was huge potential in the Northern and Savannah Region and this is a game changer for the country.

He said GNPC was working with BGP Bay to help in the exploration process. "This is a project done mostly by Ghanaians for Ghanaians and the hope is to find oil," he said

Mr Danquah said the commencement of the drilling of the walls will begin in 2024.

"The goal is to do this as quickly as possible because whenever you look at the time value of money the faster we can get the oil off the ground the better it is for this area and the country. So the goal is to drill Q1 2024 and we will try and meet that deadline," he said.

He thanked the Overlord of Dagbon and the people of the area for their cooperation and support.

The team also paid a courtesy call on the Northern Regional Minister Shaini Alhassan Saibu who assured the team of a peaceful environment to ensure the project moves without hitches.

“Let me assure you the Northern Region is very peaceful. Those days of chieftaincy things are over and I can assure you that we are ready to engage whoever is ready to bring prosperity to our people” the minister said.

Mr Saibu said the project will turn the fortunes of the region; adding that aside from agriculture which is a major economic venture, there is no other commercial venture.

"If we do this work properly you can imagine the number of people who stand to benefit from this," he added.

The Deputy Minister for Energy on his part said the Voltaian Basin stretches over seven regions and over 200 communities therefore it was important to get feedback from those in authority.

He said a lot of community engagement has been held; adding it was therefore important to continue in the right direction they have started and also pay attention to any issue that may arise.

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