Mr Inusah Fuseini, Minister of Lands and Natural Resources on Monday hinted government’s readiness to present the Mineral Development fund bill for Cabinet consideration in the coming weeks.
He said apart from providing transparency in the management of ceded royalties to mining communities, the approval of the bill would also help government to identify the infrastructural needs with accrued resources and supervise development.
Mr Fuseini gave this hint during the opening ceremony of the Revenue Watch Institute and the German Development Cooperation 2013 Summer School on Governance of Oil, Gas and Mining Revenues in Accra.
The two-week long programme attracted participants from the Media, Civil Society Organisations and natural resource experts from 12 African countries and Switzerland.
Some of the participating countries are; Ghana, Nigeria, Tanzania, Uganda, South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, South Sudan, Sierra Leone, Mauritania and Kenya.
They would discuss topics such as; Exploration, Development and Production, Political Economy and Extractive Industry, Development and Monetization, Metering in Oil and gas Sector, structure of Legislative Regime and authorization regime among others.
Mr Fuseini said the passing of the bill would help the mining communities to achieve development and grow the economies of their areas.
He said government, since 2003, had committed itself in displaying transparency and accountability by signing on to the Extractive Industry Transparency Initiative (EITI), which had enabled them to produce nine reports since 2004.
The Minister commended the organizers of the school for building the capacities of the people to be conscious of the oil, gas and mining sectors, to subsequently put politicians and other public office holders on their toes.
Dr Joyce Aryee, former Chief Executive Officer, Ghana Chamber of Mines, who chaired the function, attributed the misuse of funds from the extractive industry to bad governance and bad leadership, particularly by African leaders.
She appealed to African leaders to adopt measures that would make them accountable to the people and create wealth for all their citizens.
Mr Emmanuel Kuyole, Regional Coordinator of Revenue Watch Institute said the programme would equip the participants with the skills to analyse real contracts, legislations, fiscal policies and allow for comparisons among the African countries.
He appealed to the participants to maximize the benefits of the programme by replicating their skills in their various countries to check corruption and other malpractices in the industry.