Monday, April 22, 2013

Deputy Minister Designate for Energy and Petroleum, Mr John Abdulai Jinapor

The Deputy Minister Designate for Energy and Petroleum, Mr John Abdulai Jinapor, has assured that government would achieve its short, medium and long term measures instituted to address the energy challenges facing the country.

He said the shortage in generation of electricity would be completely over by 2016 when the government increased its generation capacity to 5000 megawatts.

Mr Jinapor said these when he appeared before the Appointment Committee of Parliament yesterday to be vetted.

He noted that, despite the current power crises, Ghana was still the second largest producer of energy in the Sub-Saharan Africa adding that, apart from South Africa, no country in Africa generated as much electricity as produced in this country.

Mr Jinapor said the power crisis had arisen as a result of the government’s inability to meet the country's peak electricity demand of 1750 megawatts.

He said though Ghana had an installed generation capacity of 2455 Megawatts, the damage to the West African Gas Pipeline last year, knocked out some of the country's electricity generation installations, including the Asogli Power Plant, which he said was producing 200 megawatts.

Mr Jinapor pledged to support the substantive Minister, Mr Emmanuel Armah Kofi Boah, to implement the president's short, medium and long-term solutions to ending the power crisis.

Mr Jinapor said the ministry would also explore the possibility of adopting renewable and nuclear energy as part of long-term efforts to solving the country's electricity problem.

Touching on the challenges facing the Tema Oil Refinery (TOR), Mr Jinapor said the government had resolved to resource the refinery with about $70 million.

He said government had released US$30 million dollars to the company and had earmarked an additional US$ 37 million be disbursed to the company soon.

He pledged to “push and support the Minister to ensure that, the monies are released immediately to put TOR out of its present predicament”.

He also suggested that, part of the shareholdings in the Tema Oil Refinery should be allocated to the workers of the company to serve as an incentive to motivate them to deliver their best to ensure the success of the refinery of this year

Mr Jinapor who was also the Spokesperson of President John Dramani noted that, it was imperative that, the government provided the necessary infrastructure and some working capital to enable the refinery become a viable profit making entity for the country.

Mr Benjamin Dagadu, a deputy minister designate for the same ministry who also appeared before the committee attributed the energy crisis to the failure by governments over the years to make the investment needed to add an additional 100 megawatts of thermal generation onto the national grade.

He promised to bring his expertise in the energy sector to bear to ensure that, the current energy challenges facing the country became a thing of the past.

Source: ISD (Gilbert Ankrah)

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