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27 February 2017

Admit dumsor, publish timetable – ACEP tells gov’t

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Energy think tank, Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP) wants the government to admit that there is a significant shortfall in power supply and publish a timetable for load shedding that already ongoing.

Deputy Executive Director of ACEP, Ben Boakye, thinks there is an urgent need for a load shedding timetable to guide Ghanaians.

“There is dumsor. If we have a shortfall of around 150Megawatts and they [Electricity Company of Ghana] are shedding load, it is obvious that there is a gap that ought to be filled,” he said.

He told Joy News’ Raymond Acquah there cannot be any reliable justification for the hold up in the publication of the timetable.

“The timetable always exists, they just need to activate it so I don’t know why there is always a situation to always hesitate to actually activate it. They know when they are going to take off the light, so [they should] just tell us,” he said.

ACEP’s prediction last year that the dreaded load shedding, or dumsor, will return in the beginning of this year was dismissed by then outgoing National Democratic Congress (NDC) government as false.

Last year the think tank revealed its checks indicates dumsor would return due to a shortfall in power supply.

Then Deputy Power Minister, John Jinapor, rejected the forecast and insisted government had put in measures to forestall a return to the load shedding period.

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But the former Minister seems to have retracted his defence.

Like many others, Mr Jinapor has been experiencing power outages in his area lately and he took to Facebook to vent his frustration about the situation.

On Friday he posted the following his Facebook page:

“I am now convinced we are effectively in load shedding, technically transformers cannot go off every evening between 7 pm to 12 pm for 4 consecutive days which incidentally is the peak period. Managers of the power must come clean and provide us with a timetable so we can plan our lives. You cannot suppress a cork under water forever.”

Mr Jinapor was referring to an excuse by the current government two weeks ago that faults with some transformers were the cause of the intermittent power outages.

Meanwhile, ACEP’s Deputy Executive Director says it is uncertain when the power deficit can be filled.

“It depends on how long it takes to bring the gas back on stream,” he said.

According to him, the government needs at least €2 million to fix the current power shortfall.

The New Patriotic Party (NPP) government had campaigned fiercly on a promise to fix the perennial power challenge during the 2016 general elections, attributing the problem to poor management of the sector by the then NDC administration.

 

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