The Volta River Authority’s (VRA) solar power projects currently under construction at Lawra and Kaleo in the Upper West Region of the Republic of Ghana has progressed steadily, energynewsafrica.com can report.
The President of Ghana, H.E Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, in February this year, cut the sod for VRA to commence the construction of 13MW and 4 MW solar power projects at Kaleo and Lawra.
This is part of the Authority’s vision to diversify its sources of power into clean and renewable energy generation.
The project is being funded through a loan facility from KFW, a German financial institution at the cost of 23 million euros. In addition the Government of Ghana through the Volta River Authority is contributing 8.12 Million Euros in Project Development and Management activities.
When energynewsafrica.com’s team visited the project sites, workers were busily working.
Speaking to Mateo Pèrez Camino, who is the Country Manager of Elecnor, he said the the Lawra project is 70 percent complete while the Kaleo project is 50 percent complete.
According to him, the outbreak of the novel coronavirus, which resulted in the imposition of restrictions, slowed activities at the sites, saying, “Whenever any of the expatriate engineers or Ghanaian workers travel outside the region and return, they are made to quarantine for 14 days to ensure that there is no importation of covid-19 to the project site.
“This has not been an easy task taking into consideration Covid-19. It has not helped at all but most of our workers decided to stay and work because we want to complete the project on time,” he explained.
He noted that there has been a technical improvement of the project, stating that any gains made would be used to enhance the scope of the project.
Mr. Mateo said the project, currently, has 128 workforce, five expatriates, 123 Ghanaians out of which 110 are locals from the Upper West Region.
He said the project is in two phases, saying the Lawra project will be completed in November 2020 while the first phase is expected to be completed by end of December or January 2021
Upon completion, the project will generate enough power to serve the entire Upper West Region.
In an interview with energynewsafrica.com, Wisdom Ahiataku-Togobo, who is the Director of Renewable and Alternative Energies at the Ministry of Energy, said he was impressed by the level of progress made so far.
“I’m so convinced having seen the level of progress of work done. This project will be completed as scheduled despite the coronavirus obstacle that came along the way,” he said.
He noted that all the control measures instituted had been adhered to by the contractor and commended them for that.
He further commended VRA, the implementing company and KFW for funding the project.