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Minority entreats Gov’t to come clean on the current power crisis

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The Minority in parliament has called on the Government to come clean on the current power crisis as a matter of urgency and desist from engaging in blame games.

According to Minority in Parliament, “shifting blame and providing conflicting information only goes to exacerbate the crisis which is threatening lives and businesses across the country”.

Since the beginning of 2021, many parts of the country have consistently been plunged into a state of darkness often without prior notice and the unfortunate situation keeps worsening by the day and many people are wondering as to what is going on in the power sector.

Speaking at the news conference in Parliament on Wednesday, April. 28th, 2021, the Minority spokesmen on Energy and Ranking Member, Mines and Energy Committee, John Abdulai Jinapor (MP), noted that, “while most Ghanaians have been witnessing intermittent power outages, others have been experiencing low current and occasional high voltages leading to damage of their electrical gadgets and valuable assets in some cases”.

He put the ongoing power crisis at the door step of the government and asked that “Government must cut down on wasteful expenditure and inject the much needed capital into the power sector especially GRIDCo to make up for the impaired cash flow of these utilities”.

The NDC Minority Caucus which anchored their media engagement on the recent unreliable supply of power popularly known as “Dumsor” which appears to be worsening despite several assurances from government officials and managers of the power sector, indicated that, the Energy sector players must be proactive and inform electricity consumers who will be affected by these outages in advance so that affected customers can take remedial steps to mitigate the effect of such outages.

According to them, Government must desist from political interference in the management of the Energy sector, “consequently, Government must refrain from engaging in political appointments especially within middle management levels when vacancies are declared”.

In a ten-point recommendations to the government as to how to restore power, John Abdulai Jinapor proposed that, Government and its communicators must desist from engaging in the propaganda on excess capacity and come out with a formula for absorbing capacity charges as part of operating cost.

Mr. Jinapor stressed the point that power sector managers have an obligation to ensure that they pursue Long term planning to ensure fuel security for generating assets at the least cost possible and to also allow Independent Power Producers (IPPs) to take the responsibility for their fuel supply requirements.

To him, “immediate steps must be taken to aggressively address ECG’s spiraling technical and commercial losses.

He said the Ministry of Energy must conduct a comprehensive reconciliation of the total indebtedness of all players including government and its SOEs including (GNPC, GNGC, VRA, GRIDCo, CENIT, ECG, NEDCo) in a transparent manner.

The Ministry of finance must take steps to utilize the $1 billion sovereign bond borrowed in 2020 to address the financial challenges of the Energy sector.

He said Government must ensure that Energy sector SOEs Publish details of their financial statements including details and ageing of their indebtedness as well as debts owed to them on time.

He said, the impact of yet another Energy crisis can have dire consequences on the already debt ridden, Covid 19 economy.

“Since the beginning of the year, GRIDCo alone has given six different reasons for the major national outages aside the intermittent localised blackouts”.

Story filed by Edzorna Francis Mensah

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