Just like starting a business is hard, maintaining, and ensuring due diligence can be quite tough when certain regularities are not strategically put in place.
Thus, the organized efforts and activities of individuals are essential to ensure the survival of an entity.
Below are some major business fails in Ghana this year:
Agyapa Gold Royalties Deal
The gold royalty deal could be labelled as the most controversial of the year as the content of the agreement received several resistances from Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) and well-meaning Ghanaians.
Following the backlash, former Special Prosecutor, Martin Amidu, did a corruption risk assessment which concluded on some anomalies not favourable for Ghana.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo then ordered the Finance Minister, Ken Ofori-Atta, back to Parliament for Members to take another critical look into the deal after the assessment by the Special Prosecutor.
However, the Chairman of the Civil Society Platform on Oil and Gas, Dr Steve Manteaw for one, described the Agyapa Royalties agreement as bad and thus should be canceled.
At a press conference in November, Dr Manteaw said the abrogation of the deal will open up a more consultative process that will protect Ghana’s mineral resources.
While commending the president for acting on the deal, the activist noted that “we hold the view that the action directed by the president is inadequate and not sustainable. The deal is defective beyond repairs. There are potential breaches on various laws, the Public Procurement Act and Financial Management Act.”
Neoplan Ghana Limited
Neoplan Ghana Limited company, although had faced challenges over the years, saw its near-collapse at the beginning of the year.
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A memo sent to staff of the coach manufacturing firm announced its closure which it [the memo] stated was as a result of the lack of contracts and the recurring monthly losses.
According to the company, the last time it received a contract from government – which saw the production of 450 DAF/VDL buses for the Metro Mass Transit Ltd – was in 2002 which lasted until 2010.
But for the intervention of government, the Company was scheduled to shut down on January 31, 2020. The Managing Director of Neoplan Ghana, Mr George Nassar, in an interview with Citi News disclosed that management had a meeting with the Trade Minister, Alan Kyeremanten to help resolve the challenges of the company.
“We had a meeting with the Ministry of Trade and they are very concerned about what is happening and they wanted to find a way to fix issues. They are working to solve the issue and the Minister himself was concerned about the issue. So I strongly believe that they can assist us. They asked us to wait for a while to see what we can do to solve the issue. Yesterday’s [January 28, 2020] meeting was very fruitful. The Ministry is doing a perfect job in terms of how to handle this matter,” Mr Nassar said in the interview.
Although some workers are still going about their duties, management is tight-lipped about the company’s current situation.
Neoplan Ghana Ltd was established on December 12, 1974.
Cocoa farmers decry low prices
Despite cocoa being one of the major income-generating commodities for Ghana’s economy, farmers do not seem to have hope in the sustainability of the cash crop.
Ghana, together with the Ivory Coast grows 60 percent of the world’s cocoa, but farmers are displeased about the income generated despite investing largely into labour and chemicals to maintain their farms.
According to cocoa farmers in an interview with AfricaNews, returns over the years have been meager, adding that they [farmers] are struggling to break free from poverty.
“Cocoa’s future is very poor. It’s very poor. It’s very poor. We don’t like it. We want the government to just increase everything for us because we spend time, our energy mostly on the side of the cocoa business, but after all, we get nothing,” said Bensil Aryetey, a farmer.
Watch the interview below:
Payboy Company Limited
Alleged to be affiliated to the collapsed gold firm Menzgold Limited, Payboy was the company selected by Menzgold to settle debts owed its customers.
However, investigations by the Economic and Organised Crime Office (EOCO) revealed that the said company was neither licensed by the Bank of Ghana (BoG) nor the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Following the information made available to EOCO, Payboy was an entity that posed as a marketing agency and promotion of financial technologies.
EOCO, in a statement, disclosed the arrest of officials of Payboy Limited to assist with investigations.
Although SEC has not officially announced closure of the company, EOCO admonished the public to be circumspect when dealing with companies or individuals if it involves financial commitments.