The Minister of Petroleum, Mr Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, has stated that the government intends to increase the distribution of gas cylinders to 100,000 under the Rural LPG Promotion Programme.
The communities include Agona-Nkwanta in the Ahanta West District; Enchi, Bodi, Sefwi Akontonbra and Sefwi Wiawso.
Addressing various communities in those areas, he underscored the need for the public, especially rural folk, to shift from the use of wood fuel (firewood) to LPG which was cleaner, safer and healthier.
Mr Buah also observed that the continued use of wood fuel was having a toll on the nation’s forest reserves and the environment, as well as causing respiratory diseases to firewood users.
He said among African countries, Ghana was the first in initiating laws to govern the oil industry, citing the Petroleum Revenue Management Act which regulates money accrued from the oil industry.
“The Public Interest and Accountability Committee has also been set up to monitor the use of funds from the oil industry, which is good progress,” he said.
He indicated that next year a bigger FPSO would arrive in the country which would provide about 180mscf of gas a day to power 100 megawatts of power.
Mr Buah also touched on the Local Content Law that would ensure that Ghanaians had a higher representation in the oil and gas Industry, adding that since the passage of the law, almost GHc1 billion worth of contracts had been given to Ghanaians.
“Moreover, statistics from the Petroleum Commission show that about 7,000 people are working in the oil and gas industry, with 5,500 being Ghanaians who also occupy top positions in the industry, indicating that Ghanaians are gradually taking the lead in the country’s oil and gas industry,” he explained.
He touted various achievements of the government and the Petroleum Ministry, saying there was more to be done but that any future development would only be possible when the NDC government and President John Dramani Mahama were retained in power.