The flagbearer of the People's National Convention has revealed he will review all the existing contracts in the oil and gas sector.
Speaking at the second IEA Presidential debate, Mr Ayariga lamented the failure of government and its agencies to benefit from the proceeds of 3 years oil production.
In his opinion, "the recent doscovery of oil and gas in commercial quantities was greeted with joy and enthusiasm by Ghanaians hoping that their living conditions will change. Unfortunately, three years after oil production, nothing has changed."
He noted that this was because the production agreements entered into were not favourable to both the country and its residents.
"This is robbery, corruption. This is outrageous and unacceptable," he noted.
Referencing the achievements of Ghana's first democratically elected President, Hassan Ayariga noted that he was going to employ the tactics of President Rawlings to "review all agreements on oil production to favour Ghanaians."
On his plans for the oil and gas sector, he pointed out that he intended to expand the exploration of oil and gas along other coastal areas and ensure that communities in the cachment areas benefit more from the oil find.
On his part, Dr Abu Sakara, flagbearer of the Convention People's Party, noted that there was a need to "use the exisiting opportunity of the oil income to gather capital resources to have different contracts in the subsequent oil fields were are exploring."
"In the kind of contracts we have been writing with foreign investors, we have not asserted this claim to its fullest. It appears as if we are rather borrowing those natural resources. I believe that we must assert our ownership over those resources."
Dr Abu Sakara noted that Ghana needed to bridge the existing technological gaps that existed in the oil and gas sector and also ensure the passage of the local content law.
He promised that a CPP led adminstration "we will implement these with a sense of urgency because we cannot be exploring an industry without a framework to govern it."
The Presidential candidate of the New Patriotic Party, Nana Addo
Dankwa Akufo-Addo on his part insisted that the decision to "entice people to bring their capital to find the oil" was a good one and noted that it was necessary to move away from exporting the nations's natural resorces in their natural forms.
He opined that critical decisions with respect to the oil and gas sector needed to be fast tracked in order to ensure the delays were elimanated to increase productivity.
In his view however, "the most equitable manner in which our nation and our people would benefit from the oil revenues is to ensure they are used on the two most critical aspects of our national life; our education and our healthcare."
President Mahama, Presidential candidate of the National Democratic Congress revealed that since 2009, "16 new discoveries" of oil had been made.
He noted that it was important to "strengthen negotiations of what we, as country, get out of our oil resource" and put in place the the legislative environment that makes the industry predictiable and attrative to investors."
By: Philip Kofi Ashon/citifmonline.com/Ghana