General News of Friday, 13 October 2017
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, has reinforced his government’s commitment towards the strict enforcement of the new measures issued by cabinet Thursday to guide the operations of the petroleum industry.
To this end, a ministerial co-ordinating committee has been set up to ensure the strict adherence and implementation of the regulatory measures announced after a cabinet meeting Thursday following Atomic Junction gas explosion in Accra last Saturday.
The Committee is chaired by Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko, and has his two deputies, Minister for Environment, Science, Technology and Innovation; the Minister for Local Government and Rural Development; the Minister for Employment and Labour Relations as members.
It is to be supported a technical implementation committee chaired by the Chief Executive Officer of the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Hassan Tampuli.
Other members of the implementation committee are the Chief Fire Officer of the National Fire Service; the CEO of Standards Authority; the CEO of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA); the Director of the Land Use and Spatial Development Authority; and the Director of the Department of the Factories Inspectorate.
Speaking at the inauguration of the committees Friday, Nana Akufo-Addo said he would ensure the full implementation of the measures, noting he has the political will to enforce measures to protect the citizenry.
“The people of Ghana are looking up to us to protect them. I want to emphasise that, beyond the statement that was issued yesterday, there is a strong political will that something will be done about it. I have a clear mandate to change things in this country,” he said.
To the members of the Committee, President Akufo-Addo said the measures issued “cannot work and will not work if those of you implementing it are not on board, dragging your feet or not adhering to its implementation.” He, thus, urged them to co-operate and co-ordinate fully, and “get out of the practice I found, since coming into office, that the right hand and left hand don’t know what is going on in the same issue.”
The Committee members assured the President of their determination to enforce fully, the measures rolled out by government, to forestall the occurrence of any more gas explosions, and to co-ordinate effectively their actions.
The CEO of the NPA, Hassan Tampuli, said his outfit has since Friday commenced the immediate inspection of all gas stations and the vigorous enforcement of existing regulations by the NPA.
Additionally, his outfit has begun reviewing safety protocols and will from Monday begin the deployment of a task force to assess the risk that the current LPG infrastructure poses in terms of public health and safety.
He said 21 high risk stations have so far been closed down, in accordance with relevant law and without regard to any political or special interests.
The National Fire Service assured the President that a full report of the Atomic Junction Gas explosion will be ready in two weeks.