Gov’t Won’t Be Rushed Into Taking Short-Term Measures To End Energy Crisis- Jinapor

Government says it will not be rushed into taking short-term measures to solve the energy crisis facing the country “just for the politics of it”.

According to Deputy Minister for Energy and Petroleum, John Jinapor, although government admits to challenges in the supply of uninterrupted power to consumers, “we are determined to fix those challenges”.

There is an estimated short-fall of between 80-150 megawatts in the supply of electricity as the about 1,850 megawatts generated and supplied at peak times fall below the expected 2000 megawatts in demand.

Electricity consumers for the greater part of last year had to depend on other sources of power due to insufficient supply and the resultant load shedding, until December, when supply was normalized.

Parts of the country have been suffering interruptions in power supply over the past weeks in what the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) termed as “emergency load shedding”.

According to the distributor, the situation has been necessitated by shortage in supply of power from the producers, the Volta River Authority (VRA) and transmitters, Ghana Grid Company Limited (GRIDCO).

Speaking on the Super Morning Show on Joy FM, Tuesday, Hon. John Jinapor hopes the situation would return to normal by end of year, based on current projections of adding more megawatts to the existing power generated.

Hon. Jinapor, however, failed to give explicit timeline by which government expects the situation to improve, when pressed by host of the show, Francis Abban.

“I wish I had the magic wand to do that especially, when you are working with machines…I can give you some projections in terms of what we expect:

“The ultimate objective is that if we can bring on the 660MW, we are working on Kpone thermal plant, SEND Power and expansion of TICO plant]…by the end of the year, we should have a fair amount of stability,” he assured.

Losing credibility

Meanwhile, Energy expert and former Chief Executive Officer of the Volta River Authority (VRA), Dr. Charles Wereko-Brobbey says government should rather focus on providing immediate solution to the problems in the energy sector rather than proffer future projections.

“Instead of making promises that always create a credibility gap between the politicians and the people, the question we should answer now is that…what we should do now…to ensure that we can deliver 2,000 megawatts reliably and consistently.

“You lose the people and you lose everybody, when we always talk about what we are going to do in the future and then in the same breadth, talk about how we’ve lived the problem…”, Dr. Wereko-Brobbey, who is also the Chief Policy Analyst of Ghana Institute of Public Policy Options, cautioned.

Dr. Wereko-Brobbey said governments have not done much to end the energy crisis that has troubled the nation over the last two decades.

“The load shedding has been with us 20-25 years and if the more, and each time we get these promises, which are founded on future capacity rather than looking at the current peak demand, the available capacity, the fuel to make it run and how you will operationalize it”.