General News of Thursday, 29 January 2015
Source: Graphic Online
A leading member of the People’s National Convention (PNC), Atik Mohammed, has stated that the government lacks ideas to solve the power crisis that has bedeviled the country.
Speaking on Accra-based Peace FM’s ‘Kokrooko’ Thursday, Atik crticised the government for engaging in what he described as lies and propaganda instead of working to fix the power challenge.
He said the government had made several unfulfilled promises to end the power crisis – popularly known as ‘dumsor’.
According to him, the government claimed that completion of the Bui Dam would help end the ‘dumsor’.
Later, he said, the government claimed the completion of the Atuabo Gas Plant would add five hundred megawatts to the national grid and save the country $500 million annually.
All these, the PNC man, said had failed to end the ‘dumsor’.
Instead, Atik noted, the situation was getting out of hand.
“It tells you that this government is only interested in propaganda,” he stated.
Atik added that the 1200 Megawatts deal Ghana recently signed with General Electric and the $7 billion gas deal signed with ENI would add to Ghana’s installed electricity capacity but would do nothing to improve generation.
According to him, the current crisis was caused by the country’s inability to power some of its plants due to lack of fuel.
He said Ghana had an installed generation of 2,800 megawatts but could not generate the 2000 megawatts the country needed.
Atik questioned why the government had not purchased light crude oil to power the country’s power plants which he said were sitting idle due to lack of gas from Nigeria.
He said it was clear that the government was broke and could not afford to buy the fuel.
“Tell us that you don’t have money.. stop telling us that it’s [the crisis] due to maintenance, low water levels and so on,” he said.
Atik went on to criticise the government’s decision to introduce a petroleum mitigation levy to apparently cushion the country against crude oil price increases in future.
“Ghanaians are suffering today [and] you are talking about the future,” he said.