A former Managing Director of Enclave Power Ghana, one of the Independent Power Producers in the Republic of Ghana, Ing Norbert Anku, has called on political party activists and civil society organisations who always blame successive governments for the woes of GRIDCo, ECG and other utility companies to ‘rethink’.
According to him, he feels worried that many a time when politicians and CSOs in the energy sector are talking about the problems facing the energy sector, they leave out energy institutions and begin to play politics by accusing the government of the day.
Some parts of the West African nation have been witnessing intermittent power supply since the beginning of 2021.
This, the power transmission company, GRIDCo, has blamed on a number of issues including ongoing upgrading of its transmission network.
However, some politicians and CSOs who have shared their thoughts about the power situation in the country argue that the current situation would have been prevented if the government had given GRIDCo funding to undertake some intended projects.
Speaking in an exclusive interview with energynewsafrica.com on a number of issues, Ing. Norbert Anku called for a shift, saying politicians should not make it look like it is the government that is always supposed to provide funding for the utilities.
“The other day, I heard one of institutions saying that the government has not provided funding to GRIDCo. Nobody seems to care about the efficiency side of GRIDCo. Most of the times, the interest is to say things that rather go to put the government on the edge as if the utilities were doing well.
“People talk and it’s always political, “he said.
He said as part of the mandate of the utilities, they are required to make investments in energy infrastructure, stating that government’s interest only comes in because it is a state entity.
He questioned whether Independent Power Producers go to the government for funding if they want to undertake projects.
“If IPPs want to execute projects, do they go to the government?” he quizzed.
“If you isolate the utilities, their job involves investments so let’s not make it look like the government always has to finance them before they can function,” he said.
“So if ECG wants to buy transformers, they should go to the government? If VRA wants to buy transformers, they should go to the government? Then what are ECG, VRA, and GRIDCo set up to do?” he quizzed.
Giving empirical evidence of what happened when Volta River Authority (VRA) extended electricity to the Northern regions, Ing. Norbert Anku, who is a former staff of VRA, said the authority did not go to the government for funding but sourced for funding on their own.
According to him, the only thing the government did was guaranteeing for them.
He underscored the need for politicians and CSOs to rather put the utilities on their toes by demanding that they put strategies in place to make them efficient in their operation.