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Freddie Blay justifies 150% allowance hikes and per diem for GNPC management

Freddie Blay, Chairman of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) Board, has affirmed the recent increments in allowances for the management of Ghana National Petroleum Company Limited (GNPC) as justifiable.

Freddie Blay

Blay, also a former National Chairman of the New Patriotic Party (NPP), rebuffed allegations of excessive increases, stating that these adjustments were initiated two years prior.

He countered assertions made by Samuel Okudzeto Ablakwa, Member of Parliament for North Tongu, suggesting otherwise.

It has been revealed that despite the financial difficulties that the country is currently facing, the management and Board members of the Ghana National Petroleum Company Limited (GNPC) have increased their allowances by up to 150%.

Ablakwa in an X post disclosed that in 2022, when Ghana's economic crisis worsened, Freddie Blay, the Chief Executive, Board Members, and External Committee Board Members approved new rates as per diem and hotel rates, contrary to the government's assurances to Parliament of a general pay-cut.

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Ablakwa revealed that the allowances for a day's hotel rate have been raised from $400 to $1000, €400 to €1000, or £400 to £1000, depending on the travel destination.

Additionally, the daily hotel rate allowance has been raised from $400 to $1000, €400 to €1000, or £400 to £1000 for all members.

Furthermore, per diem for the Board Chairman has increased from $500 to $850, €500 to €850, or £500 to £850. For the CEO and other board members, the per diem has increased from $500 to $700, €500 to €700, or £500 to £700, based on the travel destination.

Ablakwa argued that it is necessary to regulate the discretion of boards and CEOs of State-Owned Enterprises to determine their own salaries and allowances without parliamentary approval.

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But Freddie Blay countered the claims, stating that any modifications in allowances were deemed reasonable and were collectively agreed upon by GNPC.

He further disclosed that the increases were not extravagant and were made taking into account the prevailing circumstances.

He said "GNPC agreed across the board to increase allowances and it wasn’t fantastic. It was not outrageous. It was reasonable and it was in 2022. So if somebody was complaining of it and made it look like this is 2024, he was only taking advantage of such reasonable increases and capital out of it."

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