The Board Chairman and CEO of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) are currently engaged in a tangle over who to hire as the Corporation’s Procurement Manager.
The Board Chair, Freddie Blay, and the CEO, Dr K.K. Sarpong, are currently in disagreement over who to hire for the position.
Mr Blay initially issued a directive for the manager to be employed but Dr Sarpong questioned why the order was given in his absence and without his consent.
Joy News reports that in a leaked letter, the GNPC CEO chastised Mr Blay, saying he overstepped his bounds by ordering the Chief Finance Officer to recruit a Procurement Manager.
Dr Sarpong said the responsibility for hiring personnel lies within his purview, and not the Chief Finance Officer.
“GNPC's operative organogram gives direct supervision of the procurement function to the General Manager (Administration) who reports, however, to the Chief Finance Officer. Having oversight of the procurement function does not make the Chief Finance Officer the appointing authority under the rules and regulations of GNPC,” Dr Sarpong said.
“I wish to reiterate that the responsibility for hiring personnel lies within the purview of the Chief Executive and not the Chief Finance Officer. I have already advised Mrs.Comfort Aniagyei, Chief Finance Officer that she has no mandate to recruit personnel, notwithstanding your directive unless I expressly instruct her to do so.”
He further stated that Mr. Blay meddled in what he shouldn’t have, adding that the directive will be “nullified, your directive notwithstanding.”
Dr Sarpong said in line with good corporate governance practices a Board Chairman's contact with an organisation is through the CEO, the Board Secretary and the Internal Auditor.
He, therefore, stressed that it is wrong for a Board Chair to be dealing directly with subordinates of a CEO.
The statement added: “By such conduct, the Chairman festers parallel authority in the organisation making governance and management extremely difficult. This is exactly the situation you have created in GNPC.”
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“…I will humbly advise that you desist from issuing out instructions to my subordinates and rather deal with me as Chief Executive on matters relating to the Corporation.”
“…Your role as Chairman of the Board does not extend to executive functions including the recruitment of employees.”
Responding to this, Mr Blay also described Dr Sarpong’s allegations as baseless, while questioning the CEO’s integrity.
“The day-to-day management role and business of GNPC, delegated by the Board of Directors to the Chief Executive Officer, cannot and does not cease when the CEO is temporarily absent from the country or on vacation,” Mr Blay said in his own letter.
“Indeed, best corporate practice worldwide, enjoins a good and competent CEO to have a management succession plan within that context, the CEO hands over to a Deputy, who continues with the day-to-day corporate management functions m his or her absence.”
He said the accusation that he is using his position in the governing party to influence decision making at GNPC is “malevolent as it is mischievous.”
“It is deftly calculated to damage my name and reputation, impugn the independence of the Board and its decisions. I seriously take great exception to it,” he added.
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