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Sophia Akuffo takes on government over lithium lease

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Chief Justice, Justice Sophia Akuffo

Former Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo has expressed reservations about a 15-year lithium mining lease to Barari DV Ghana Limited, a subsidiary of Atlantic Lithium Limited at Ewoyaa in the Mfantseman Municipality of the Central Region.

The lease incorporates new and enhanced terms intended to ensure that the country benefits, optimally, from this mineral which include an increase in royalty rate, state and Ghanaian participation, as well as value addition to the mineral mined.

Madam Akuffo dismissed comments that the agreement is favorable to Ghana adding that it is not different from the previous “Guggisberg-type” of agreements.

To her, the colonial type of agreements have not yielded any benefit to Ghanaians.

Speaking as a Distinguished Scholar of the Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) in Accra on Tuesday, November 28, Madam Sophia Akuffo said “The Minister of Lands and Natural Resources and the CEO of Minerals Commission have touted as favorable to Ghana, surpassing all those other Lithium leases around the world.

“It is not different in principle in the substance from any of Ghana’s previous colonial times types of agreements, some call it the Guggisberg model, whatever description, all those agreements are colonial type of agreements, which over the years have yielded very little good to the overall benefit of the average Ghanaian,” she added.

The granting of the mining lease followed the completion of prospecting and feasibility studies by the company, as well as series of negotiations between the Government and the Company.

The lease covered an area of approximately 42.63 square kilometres, and grants the company the exclusive right to work and produce lithium and associated minerals in the area, in accordance with the mining laws of the country.

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