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Opinions of Thursday, 13 May 2010

Columnist: Quaye, Stephen A.

National Electrification Progrmme Or Problems?

Part [1]

From: Stephen A. Quaye, Toronto-Canada.

Various forms of responses that have been given to calls on the current government about the energy crisis seems to portray as if those making the complaints about the energy crisis are being manipulated by the opposition parties to put pressure on the government in order for it to fail in delivering good governance that it has promised the country.
But far from that thinking that the ordinary Ghanaian who is currently suffering from the serious load shedding that has been affecting lives in many ways has been a propaganda strategy of any opposition party in the country to derail the incumbent government in developing the country.
Anyway are the complaints to the president and the NDC government to resolve the energy crisis genuine? Yes the complaints are genuine because of the problems it is causing in the country as far as running businesses and provision of good security are concern the complaints are genuine.
What many readers and that of those who are reading politics into the complaints of the current energy crisis do not know or are refusing to know is that this is not the first time the country is suffering from energy crisis thereby receiving numerous complaints as well as calls on the government to help resolve the problem for the people to live comfortably.
Since the construction of the Akosombo Dam by the late Osaagyefo Dr.Kwame Nkrumah, in the 1960’s, there has been periods where the country has suffered energy crisis because the Hydro Electric Generation Dam, depends on rainfall to generate electricity to supply the nation, anytime there is draught automatically there would be energy crisis due to short of water to turn the turbines to generate the needed electricity.
So you remember during the administration of the late president Ignatius Kutu Acheampong ,the country recorded one of the serious draughts that made the people to accuse the president which he responded,” ME YE NYAME NA MA NSU ATO”, to wit,” AM I GOD TO CAUSE RAIN TO FALL”, and this response from the sitting president angered the people very well.
Readers may also recollect the serious draught that visited the country in 1983, that dried all the rivers and other sources of water including the Akosombo Dam so the energy crisis was recorded where people were made to sleep at certain time.
There are the possibilities that these draughts might have caused some energy crisis but it might not be so serious because of the population at that time and the number of institutions that were dependent on the Dam for electricity supply as compared to population figures and that of consumable institutions of electricity as at now.
Here one can see that the problem has not existed only these two years for the people to be on the neck of the president for others to see it as an attempt by certain faceless persons to put pressure on the president to lose focus as some politicians are saying now.

People should not lose sight of the fact that former president John Agyekum Kufuor, had a serious headache about how to solve the problem when it occurred during his term of office where anytime the power went off people shouted “ Oh Kufuor Daben Na Preso Preso ye Be Gyae” to wit, “Oh Kufuor, when are we going to get out of this energy crisis?”.
But all of the past and present complaints made about the energy crisis, the one which was made by Mr. George Hagan, an attendant to 2007 Koforidua Peoples Assembly held on Juary22, 2007, appealed to then president J.A.Kufuor to negotiate with the Burkina Faso president Mr. Blaise Campaore the better way of using water from the Volta River without one country suffering shortage.
Once again as I try to recollect how this gentleman appealed to president Kufuor, let me reproduce what I filed as reportage for publication in the Chronicle as Eastern Regional reporter for readers to judge.


From: Stephen A. Quaye-Koforidua.
The president Mr.John Agyekum Kufour, has been urged to negotiate with the Burkina Faso president Mr. Blaise Campaore the better way of using water from the Volta River without one country suffering shortage.
\ Mr. George Kwawdo Hagan, shared the idea when he participated in the Koforidua people assembly on January 22, 2007.
According to him, when Osaagyefo Dr.Kwame Nkrumah, constructed the Akosombo Hydro Electric Dam to generate electricity to feed industries in the country in the 1960s there was a free flow of water in the river throughout the year without any blockade.
Immediately Burkina Faso government constructed an irrigation dam on the Volta River it caused the blockade thereby shortage of water to turn the turbines to generate electricity from the Akosombo Dam creating the load shedding he observed.
Meanwhile, many residents have expressed their sentiments about this electricity load shedding and suggested ways and means to solve it once and for all.
Some people have complained about their businesses collapsing due to this load shedding exercise especially cold store owners who have closed down their stores.
Many are those who have complained of burglaries during days of power outage as thieves have been taking advantage of the exercise.
In a community called Adweso Kwakyea near Koforidua, thieves managed to break into peoples houses and made away with various items worth millions of cedis.
They either used craw bars, car jacks to expand iron curtains or use master keys to break into peoples homes deep in the night or day time where they have gone to work.
On January 16, 2007, they attempted stealing one Madam Margrette Amoako, but did not succeed because of hard burglar proofs in her window frames.
Three days later they attempted another house but could not succeed in stealing but went to another house where they succeeded in stealing a retired educationist called Mr. Gilbert Kwame Nyampong two days later. Items they made away with included a J.VC. super multi 21 colour T.V. with remote control, Panasonic sound system, eight yards male clothe, female purse containing medicine and money,. Skirt and blouse, female uniforms and left the main gate of the house a jar when they were bolting with their booty.
Whiles residents in the community were finding solutions to the rampant stealing that have been going on there in recent times another incident occurred where this time the thieves after stealing other items opened the victims refrigerator and consumed his soup he was preserving in the fridge and bolted.
The Eastern Regional Police Commander [DCOP] Felix Asare Darko, reacting hinted of security measures taken to clamp down on these suspected criminals including day and night patrols.
So complaints about national energy crisis has transcended from past governments to present government with some of the complainants trying to share idea as to how the problem can be solved and not just complaining.
Let president Mills allow the people to make their complains as well as suggestions as to how the problem can be solved after his opinions and that of the people together when applied can develop the country.