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Dumsor: Put energy issues under NDPC - ACEP

Aug. 1, 2016, 12:46 p.m.

Energy think tank Africa Centre for Energy Policy (ACEP), has called for a holistic approach devoid of politics in finding sustainable solutions to the country’s power challenges.

For some years now, consumers have been saddled with unreliable electricity supply, which government has largely blamed on unavailability of crude to power some of the country’s power plants.

Speaking to Class News, Head of Policy Unit and Energy Policy Advisor at ACEP, Dr Ishmael Ackah recommended that plans to improve the nation’s energy sector must be put under the National Development Planning Commission (NDPC) for experts to address such issues holistically.

“Every politician wants to commission things within every four years so they will rather go for thermal plants and come and say I have added it, we are getting 5,000MW and say we have so much megawatt but how much are we producing from those megawatts? It’s less than 1,500MW; …that is why we say energy should be a national issue, probably, we should even put energy under the National Development Planning Commission that these are the plans we have for energy over the past five years, You cost it to see the financing gap and how much we need,” he stated.

According to Dr. Ackah, “Every year, when government is doing the budget, [they should] have experts there who are managing, who are seeing that investment is going [and] we have value for money [and say] these are the energy mixes that we are targeting every year [and ] we monitor to see, I think it will help all of us”.

“Right now, there are more emergency plants coming and when they come, they come with high capacity charges.

When you are not even using them, you have to pay because you promised them that you will give them fuel, you promised them that you will give them tax free, VAT free, everything free, but, meanwhile, we buy the power and it makes the cost of tariffs so expensive that at times you don’t know whether to put on your light or not, so that is the challenge we are facing,” he added.