Posted on: www.dailyguideghana.com
By William Yaw Owusu
Thursday, August 03, 2017
The troubles of Ibrahim Mahama, brother of former President John Mahama, have deepened, as he has been dragged to court a day after the Northern Regional Minister abrogated a road contract awarded to him.
Firebrand Brong-Ahafo Regional Youth Organizer of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), Kwame Baffoe aka Abronye DC, has filed a suit against Mr Ibrahim Mahamar over the bauxite concession granted to him a few days to the exit of his brother from power.
Ibrahim, who is linked to Exton Cubic Group Limited, is to face Abronye at the Supreme Court over the huge bauxite mining lease granted the firm for 21 and 18 years respectively.
He is challenging the legitimacy of the concessions.
The suit also cited the Attorney General as respondent and Abronye wants the Supreme Court to declare that the mining lease agreement between the then National Democratic Congress (NDC) government and Exton Cubic Group Limited required parliamentary ratification under Section 5 (4) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703).
The NDC government, acting through then Minister of Lands and Natural Resources Nii Osah Mills, on December 29, 2016, entered into and granted Exton Cubic Group Limited mining leases to mine bauxite in different concessions for 21 and 18 years respectively.
Abronye wants an order setting aside the mining lease agreements because they violate Section 5 (4) of the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703).
Abronye is also seeking a perpetual injunction restraining Exton Cubic Group Limited and its assigns from prospecting, exploiting or mining bauxite in Ghana pursuant to the mining lease agreements being ratified by parliament.
In his statement of claim prepared in Sunyani, Abronye said he was bringing the action pursuant to Articles 2 (1) (b) and 130 (1) of the 1992 Constitution and was invoking the jurisdiction of the highest court for interpretation.
According to the plaintiff, Exton Cubic Group Limited has started “mining/exploiting bauxite in Nyinahini pursuant to the purported mining lease agreements.”
He averred, “the plaintiff’s case is that the activities of the 2nd defendant (Exton Cubic Group Limited) are illegal as same are against the Minerals and Mining Act, 2006 (Act 703).”
According to Abronye, he would argue in court that the power of the minister responsible for mines to grant mining rights is governed by Section of Act 703, saying “What is germane to the plaintiff’s case is Section 5 (4) of Act 703.
“The language of Section 5 (4) of Act 703 is clear, plain and calls for no conflicting interpretations. The plain and unmistakable import of the provision is that any contract that involves the grant of a mining right for the exploitation of mineral in Ghana is subject to ratification by parliament.”
He averred that “there is a plethora of cases in which the Supreme Court has authoritatively held that any transaction that requires parliamentary ratification is null and void and creates no rights, unless it has been ratified by Parliament.
“It is in the interest of the public that mining agreements are subjected to parliamentary approval and ratification. Any mining agreement purportedly entered into without parliamentary approval or ratification is null and void.”
He pointed out that “the overall kernel of the plaintiff’s case is that the two impugned mining agreements were entered into in violation of the express provisions of Section 5 (4) of Act 703 as same were not laid before parliament for approval and ratification.”
There is no indication that Exton Cubic Group Limited has been served with the processes of the Supreme Court.
NDC minority leader, Haruna Iddrisu, also believes that the concession granted to Ibrahim’s company must be ratified by parliament.