Franklin Cudjoe
Franklin Cudjoe

Franklin-Cudjoe_3The Western Regional Youth Wing of NDC says?Franklin Cudjoe of IMANI does not understand the happenings of the energy sector in Ghana, hence his call on the Minister of Energy,??Hon. Emmanuel Kofi Buah to resign.

It could be recall that?Franklin Cudjoe of IMANI says the Energy Minister?has failed to initiate any policy guidelines to address the crunching energy crises.

In a response from the NDC Youth Wing, it noted that the Energy Minister has made a lot of strides aim at resolving the energy deficit in the country, with reference to a recent commissioning of the 132 MW of T3 at Aboadze, the 400 Mega Watts of the Bui Dam Project and the 2.5 megawatts of solar energy at Navrongo, the first ever in the history of Ghana.

The group also stated that?the Minister has adapted innovative strategies towards deployment of more renewable sources of energy in the country especially in areas of solar.

Read the full statement in response to IMANI is position:

The Western Regional Youth Wing of NDC attention has been drawn to the populist and partisan call by Franklin Cudjoe of IMANI-Ghana for the Minister of Energy and Petroleum, Hon. Emmanuel Kofi Buah to be sacked. We considered the reasons adduced to back his call as mischievous and populist to say the least. The power deficit in Ghana is an accumulated challenge passed on to the current government by successive governments. If the previous governments had invested adequately in the electricity generation and diversified our energy mix, this unfortunate crisis would have been prevented.

To say that the “Energy Minister has failed to initiate any policy guidelines to address the crunching energy crises”, implies that Franklin Cudjoe of IMANI does not understand the happenings of the energy sector in Ghana. To your information, the minister is rather one of the most proactive Energy Ministers Ghana has ever produced. The records are available to support this assertion.

Within a short period in office, he has made a lot of strides aim at resolving the energy deficit in the country. Recently, under the leadership of Hon. Emmanuel Kofi Buah, President Mahama commissioned the 132 MW of T3 at Aboadze, the 400 Mega Watts of the Bui Dam Project and the 2.5 megawatts of solar energy at Navrongo, the first ever in the history of Ghana.

These giant initiatives and strides, in no small way, have boosted the country’s energy mix. We therefore, wish to put on record that the ministry within a short period of time has added 534.5 MW to the national grid ever since he assumed office as the Minister of Energy and Petroleum. A feat which is unprecedented in the history of the ministry. It is instructive to know that the ministry achieved its generating target in 2013. The fact that the country is currently generating 2800 megawatts of electricity, higher the annual 200 megawatts needed every year indicates the able leadership of the Minister of Energy and Petroleum.

Furthermore, the Minister has adapted innovative strategies towards deployment of more renewable sources of energy in the country especially in areas of solar.

The coming into the electricity industry of the Nzema Solar Project, a subsidiary of Blue Energy, to construct 155 MW in Ghana (which is considered the largest in Africa) is the policy in the right direction. It is hoped that this will increase the mix for renewable energy from the current 1% to 6%.

Under his stewardship, sound guidelines and investment climate have been initiated and provided that gave birth to the following intended investments by independent power producers:

He has also given the fullest support and pursued with determined effort the proposed building of a 700MW coal-fired power plant in Ghana by Shenzhen Energy Group (SEG), the mother Company of Sonon Asogli.

More independent power producers have also expressed interest and readiness to invest in the thermal generation both at Aboadze and Tema. For example, TAQA Group will partner Ghana to operate additional 300 megawatts of power at Aboadze.

These policies and initiatives do not come to fruition over night, they take time to mature. If all these initiatives come to fruition, 1,155 MW will also be added to the national grid in due course. These will augment our reliance on the hydro and thermal sources of electricity.

The energy minister’s recent visit to China was aimed at putting icing on the proposed investments into power generation from Shenzhen Energy, Heyuan Power Plant and Sino Hydro Group Ltd. Such a hard working minister should be commended rather than condemn.

The reference to late completion of the Atuabo gas pipeline as one of the reasons for his partisan call to please his “godfathers” lacks merit and among chain of his weak reasonings. Turn key contracts are capital intensive and risky. Hence, time is required for all safety concerns associated to the project to be addressed.

For instance, the groundbreaking ceremonies for the West Africa Gas Pipeline Project were held at Sekondi-Takoradi, Ghana, on 3rd December 2004 and construction dully started in 2005. The offshore pipeline was completed in December 2006 and was scheduled to start operating on 23rd December 2007 but was delayed after leaks were detected in supply pipelines in Nigeria. The second delivery deadline was scheduled on 13th February 2008, but regular deliveries were delayed again.

Gas deliveries were expected by the end of 2009 after commissioning regulating and metering stations in Takoradi and Tema, Ghana, Lagos Beach, Nigeria, Cotonou, Benin, and Lom?, Togo in May 2008. However, deliveries were postponed again due to an irregular amount of moisture found inside the onshore gas pipeline.The commercial operating finally started on 1st March, 2011 after 7 years of the groundbreaking ceremonies.

Therefore, the delay of the completion of the Ghana Gas Project is not unusual. The projected mechanical completion of the gas project would be on March 31 and the first gas from the Jubilee Oilfield for test-run is expected to be conducted on April 28. And by June, 2014, the commercial operating of the gas project will begin. Thus, if the current time lines are achieved, it will be the record time of the project of this nature.

We want to remind Franklin Cudjoe that the recent “dumsor” phenomenon is due to unavailability of gas from Nigeria, increasing usage of gas in Nigeria and breach of contractual obligations. Thank God, the obstacles have been eased as a result of the minister’s visit to Nigeria. The pipelines have witnessed increase in volume of gas. But it has to be emphasised that the Ghana Gas Project will provide light at the end of the tunnel even though it might not resolve the problem completely.

It is appalling that the recent strategy of Franklin Cudjoe is attacks of high profile personalities including His Excellency, President John Dramani Mahama to please his “partisan stakeholders.” No wonder, IMANI-Ghana is losing its relevance. We therefore, call on him to speak with facts and be decorous when it comes to important national issues. We also appeal to all “Think Tanks” in Ghana, who are supposed to be development partners, to engage in constructive criticisms devoid of partisan coloration in their national discourse.

We however, want to make a passionate appeal to all Ghanaians to bear with the ministry of energy and the government in particular as they put pragmatic measures in place to resolve the energy crises once and for all. It envisage that when the repair works of T3 are completed in two weeks time, the power situation will be normalised. The Minister of Energy and Petroleum, Hon. Emmanuel Kofi Buah, is noted for his “less talk, more action policy.”

SIGNED

Darlington Daniel Atitso

A Deputy Regional Youth Organiser

Western Region

(0208111271)

 

 

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