The Public Interest and Accountability Committee (PIAC) has urged government to disburse oil revenues earmarked for projects, rather than accumulating it over time.

According to the Committee, which has oversight responsibility over the prudent management of the country’s petroleum revenue, there are oil-funded projects that face funding challenges and it will be prudent to disburse the funds instead of accumulating it.

 The Chairman of PIAC, Noble Wadzah, made the recommendation after leading a delegation to inspect the construction of the Anomabo Fisheries College in the Central Region on July 15.

The project received petroleum revenues through the Annual Budget Funding Amount (ABFA) between 2012 and 2019.

In its 2019 Annual Report, PIAC noted that the ABFA available for spending in 2019 was Ȼ2.7 billion out of which Ȼ1.2 billion was utilised leaving a balance of ¢1.5 billion to be utilised and accounted for.

For the third consecutive year, the actual ABFA was not fully utilised or accounted for.

“It is worrying to know that the project suffered from irregular flow of funds. The period of our reporting indicates that there were unutilized petroleum revenues.

“If there are projects like this that have a track record of benefiting from oil revenue and still face funding challenges while there is evidence of accumulated revenue, it is problematic and it needs to be addressed,” Mr Wadzah said.

He added that PIAC continues to advocate for the use of petroleum revenues on legacy projects and projects such as the construction of the Anomabo Fisheries College, which is clearly a legacy project should not be stifled of funds.

“Stifling the project of monies when petroleum revenues allocated through the ABFA portions are still not utilized is contradictory and the Ministry of Finance must ensure that it is utilized.”

He, however, expressed satisfaction with work done on the project adding that “we have gone round and the work done is impressive but it would have been better if funds were made available consistently.”