The Minority in Parliament is cautioning government against payment of high premium insurance on an €81.3 million loan facility to finance the expansion of the Secondi-Takoradi water expansion project.
According to the Deputy Minority Leader, James Kluste Avedzi, the payment of over 15% premium on the facility is high, hence the need to tread cautiously with the agreement.
The loan facility, which is between the government represented by the Finance Ministry and Commerzbank Aktiengesellschaft seeks to secure funds for the construction of the new treatment plant for residents within the Secondi-Takoradi catchment areas.
But sharing his opinion, Mr. James Avedzi who also doubles as Chairman of PAC questioned why the current administration is engaging in such transactions at the detriment of taxpayers.
“If we look at the amount being mentioned, the original facility is about €70.7 million then the commission on the facility is about €10.5 and if you put the two together it gives you €81.33 euro.
“The contract sum itself is a total of €70million so the difference which is €11.233 million is going into insurance premium. That is an interest of 16.04%.
“This is a project for water supply and I do not think the kind of risk involved such as the premium to be paid should give you 16% so the Ministry of Finance and the Ministry of Works and Housing when going for such facilities should take note of the amount of premium being paid by this government for a facility of this nature,” he cautioned.
But the Chairman of the Finance Committee, Dr. Mark Assibey Yeboah who was presenting the report argued that the completion of the project will bring relief to residents of the area.
“Sekondi-Takoradi is the administrative and regional capital of the Western Region and the existing water supply system supplies water to the twin city and surrounding town and villages.
“The existing ones were built in 1958 and 1958 respectfully and they take their source from the Pra River.
“The quantity of water currently produced is far from meeting the demand of one hundred thousand cubic metres per day.
“It is against this backdrop and keeping with the country’s aim of achieving the sustainable development goal of providing water for all that the need for the immediate expansion of the water supply system has become even more compelling.”
Majority Leader, Osei Kyei Mensah Bonsu on his part expressed concern over the quality of water from the Pra River especially since it is being treated to supply the selected communities.
The Minister of Parliamentary Affairs who was unhappy over activities of miners along the Pra River and Ofin River urged the Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources to clamp down on activities of mining in the water bodies.
The House later approved the €81.3 million euros loan facility to finance the expansion of the Secondi-Takoradi water supply rehabilitation and expansion project after the debate.
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