Ghana Vets Proposal To Select Strategic Partner For Tema Oil Refinery

Ghana is currently reviewing proposals from strategic partners for its ailing premier Tema Oil Refinery, which can confirm.

A committee made of officials of the Public Enterprise, State Interest and Governance Authority (SIGA) and Ministry of Energy vetted the proposals to select the best out of them.

The 45,000 barrels per stream refinery, established by Ghana’s first president Dr Kwame Nkrumah, is not in the position to refine crude, thereby forcing the oil-producing West African nation to rely largely on imported petroleum products.

The refinery currently rents its storage tanks to Bulk Distribution Companies for a fee.

Since 2017, the refinery has had four Managing Directors with the current being Mr Jerry Kofi Hinson who assumed the post earlier this month.

In October 2021, Ghanaians were shocked following the massive rot uncovered by a three-member Interim Management Committee (IMC) at TOR.

The IMC was constituted by the Energy Ministry after the dismissal of the Managing Director, Mr Francis Boateng, and his deputy Mr Ato Morrison.

The IMC discovered the disappearance of a BDC client’s 105,927 litres of gas oil on September 4, the disappearance of another 18 drums of electrical cables worth ¢10.4 million from the Technical Storehouse of TOR discovered in April 2021, the wrongful loading of 252,000 litres of Aviation Turbine Kerosene (ATK) instead of regular Kerosene into BRV trucks at the loading gantry between September 21 and 25, the disappearance of the product (LPG) belonging to a client between 2012 and 2015, as a result of which TOR was indebted to the client to the tune of $4.8 million, as confirmed by an Ernst and Young audit and loss of Naphtha to a BDC client.

In the process, fourteen top management executives were interdicted and are under investigation by the Economic and Organised Crime Organisation (EOCO).

Speaking at a press briefing last week, Energy Minister Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh told Ghanaians that “as a country, we must collectively make every effort to put our refinery back to work.”

The Energy Minister, unhappy about the current state of the refinery which was refining crude between 2008 and 2012, added that “every effort must be made to ensure that TOR comes back to work.”

In his view, if TOR had been refining crude, the benefits to the Ghanaian economy would have been huge.

Apart from guaranteeing job security for the workers, the Minister said Ghana would have gotten residual products like kerosene, naphtha and bitumen from processing the crude.