Special Prosecutor Stops TOR, Tema Energy Deal

Kissi Agyebeng


The Special Prosecutor, Kissi Agyebeng has instructed the management of the Tema Oil Refinery to suspend its proposed partnership with Tema Energy and Processing Limited.

The anti-graft office said it was assessing the risk of corruption in the proposed partnership. The directive follows agitations from staff of the Tema Oil Refinery over the partnership deal.

Im a statement from the OSP dated November 21, 2023, addressed to the Managing Director of TOR, Daniel Osei Appiah, it stated that “It has commenced an analysis of the risk of corruption in respect of the proposed partnership.”

“You are directed to immediately suspend the proposed partnership agreement, ongoing negotiations, operations, and all other ancillary activities arising out of and consequent upon the proposed partnership agreement until you are otherwise advised by the Special Prosecutor.”

This directive follows agitations of staff of the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR) expressing their concerns to the partnership deal with Torentco Asset Management Limited now Tema Energy and Processing Limited.

The General Transport, Petroleum, and Chemical Workers Union of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) Ghana on Monday, 20th, November 2023 petitioned the Special Prosecutor to investigate the lease agreement between the Tema Oil Refinery and Torentco Asset Management Limited.

Reports suggest that civil society groups and experts in the downstream petroleum sector have also called on the government to halt the lease of the refinery.

For instance, the Chamber of Oil and Petroleum Consumers said Torentco Asset Management lacks experience running a refinery.
However, some workers at the refinery are in support of the deal and have backed the moves by the government.

Torentco is expected to refine up to 8 million barrels of oil annually and pay $1 million annually to the state as rent under the deal.
Company with better offer ignored

The General Transport, Petroleum and Chemical Workers’ Union claimed an American company had a better offer than Torentco but was sidelined.

The American company in question is called Falcon American Oil.
The union thus called for the deal to be reassessed because of the red flags it said it had noted.

However, the Workers Union in the petition said, “We wish to request that your highly esteemed office investigate and intervene in the ongoing lease arrangement of Tema Oil Refinery to Torentco Asset Management Limited, now Tema Energy and Processing Limited, with the same individuals involved.”

They also believes “the actions of the individuals behind Tema Energy and Processing Limited seek to induce workers of TOR with 20% of its shares through misrepresentation of workers in an entity by the name “TOR Workers Charity Trust” that never existed nor heard of at TOR, apart from the five individual directors and direct beneficiaries of this trust.”

The Union further expressed that “We are tempted to believe the BoDs have been compromised to shortchange the country, Ghana. Otherwise, why will the BoDs be adamant in the face of all these red flags? Even when entities such as Falcon American Oil and Legacy Capital have also approached the management of TOR with very lucrative and compelling proposals, the BoD and Management have been resolute in ensuring that regardless of all the red flags, they will lease TOR to Torentco /TEPL for six (6) years.”

“In the spirit and letter of the whistle-blowers’ Acts, we want to officially petition your outfit as our last option, having written to the Ministry of Energy, the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy, SIGA, the Public Procurement Authority, the Ministry of Justice and the Attorney General department and the Ministry of Finance for their respective intervention for the prevention of a possible replica of ECG/PDS scandal’’ the Petition added.



-BY Daniel Bampoe