Two parliamentarians of the opposition National Democratic Congress(NDC) has dragged Minister for Energy, before parliament to explain as to why rural electrification projects works stalled in their constituencies since January till date.
According to the two lawmakers, Dr Clement Apaak for Builsa South and Edward Bawah for Bongo, the Self Help Rural Electrification Projects (SHEP) which were at various levels of connectivity to be hook onto the national grid have been stalled since the current government took over in January this year.
Asking questions on the floor of parliament, Dr. Apaak wanted to know from the Minister for Energy the reasons for the delay in extending electricity to communities in Builsa South captured under SHEP 4, as most of the communities have been without electricity despites been captured as beneficiaries.
Mr Bawa also wanted to know from the Minister for Energy when the Rural Electrification Projects in communities including Taraongo Awaah, Sapeeba Ayelbia, Tankuo, Tankuo Nayiri, and Yekine Dabuure would be completed.
Additionally, the Bongo MP wanted to know from the Minister for Energy when the Rural Electrification Projects in Yekine, Akondo, Akondo Chief Palace, Adaboya Tindanboko, Awia Doone, Vea Zangongo, Kulipeelga, Kulipeelga, Bongo Kunkua and Taraongo Awaah communities would be completed.
In response to the questions, a Deputy Minister for Energy, Mr. William Owuraku Aidoo said, “the Ministry is currently working in thirty one (31) communities in the Builsa South District of the Upper East Region under the SHEP- 4. The works have been grouped into five (5) different project packages.”
According to him, Installation works have substantially progressed in one of the packages which comprises seven communities including Jiningsa, Nyaakasa/Piisa, Samsa, Kunyinsa, Siakba, Zogsa and Luisa.
He told parliament that, the outstanding works in the package are completion of Low voltage (LV) works and meter installation, stating, “the project in this package has been scheduled for completion by the end of first quarter 2018.”
The remaining communities of about 24, Mr. Owuraku said, works are yet to commence and the reasons for the delay in extending electricity to the mentioned communities are as result of shortage of key materials including poles, conductors and other accessories.
Nonetheless, he said, “the Ministry is in the process of procuring these materials to allow for the completion of works in the communities by the end of third quarter, 2018.”
But Dr Apaak expressed dissatisfied of the answers provided on grounds that, communities within the Builsa South District that were earmarked for the project with the high hope of getting power have been disappointed since.
He said, the delay in completion of the rural electrification work has dumped the spirit of hope of the constituent and questioned the Deputy Minister to explain the causes of shortage of materials.
Dr Apaaak also demanded the list of contractors awarded contracts for the rural electrification projects.
Again, the Deputy Minister said, the delay and shortage was as a result of bureaucratic procurement process and assured the MP that, work would be resume in the third quarter of 2018 to provide power supply to the communities.
He however listed the contractors as Codams Electrical Services, Abatara Electrical Services, Adda Electrical Services, Abiu Electrical Services and Ahasana Electrical Services.
On the Bongo Constituency, the Deputy Minister stated that, communities like Taraongo Awaah, Sapeeba Ayelbia, Sapeeba Ayelbia, Tankuo, Tankuo Nayiri and Yenkine Dabuure form part of the on-going Self-Help Electrification Program (SHEP-4) being implemented by the Ministry.
He told parliament that, all the High Voltage (HV) poles required for the project have been supplied and planted in all the communities, nothing that, “HV works and transformer installation have been completed at Yenkine Dabuure community.”
Again, Mr Owuraku said, Low Voltage (LV) poles have been supplied and planted at Sapeeba Ayelbia and Yenkine Dabuure communities, but attributed the delays of the completion of works to shortage of some electrical materials.
He said, the Ministry is in the process of procuring materials to allow for completion of works by the end of the second quarter of 2018, pointing that, “Tankuo Nayiri and Tankuo communities were however completed and connected to the national electricity grid in the year, 2016.”
The Deputy Minister said the Ministry checks have revealed that the transformer serving Tankuo community was faulty and has since been replaced, but yet to be energized and as a result the community has therefore been temporarily hooked onto the transformer of the nearby community, Tankuo Nayiri until the transformer has been energized.
Touching on Yekine, Akondo, Akondo Chief Palace, Adaboya Tindanboko and Awia Doone communities which form part of the on-going Self-Help Electrification Program (SHEP-4), Mr Owuraku said, High Voltage (HV) poles for the project have been supplied to the communities,
Headed that, HV and LV network construction and transformer installation works have been completed at Awia Doone and Adaboya Tindanboko communities and are waiting for customer service connection.
The Awia Doone and Adaboya Tindanboko communities, the Minister said have also been earmarked to be completed and connected to the national electricity grid by end of first Quarter, 2018, but associated the delays of completion of works in the remaining communities to shortage of some electrical materials.
“The Ministry is in the process of procuring these materials to allow for completion of works by the end of the second quarter of 2018. Yekine community is benefiting from intensification (expansion) works under the above-mentioned electrification program.”
“The required Low Voltage (LV) poles have been supplied and planted at the project site. Conductor stringing in the community has commenced with 46no. Out of 71no. Poles strung so far. Works in the community are earmarked to be completed by end of second quarter of 2018.
On the Vea Zangongo , Kulipeelga, Kulipeelga, Bongo Kunkua and Taraongo Awaah communities, Mr Owruaku said formed part of the ongoing Self- Help Electrification Program (SHEP-5) being executed by the Ministry.
Similarly, he said High Voltage poles required for the project have been supplied and planted in all the beneficiary communities, while Low Voltage poles also been supplied and planted at Vea Zangongo and Bongo Kunkua communities.
He told parliament again that, the delay in completion of the project was as a result of shortage of some electrical materials but assured that the Ministry is in the process of procuring those materials for completion of works by the end of the third quarter.
Source: therepublicnewsonline.com/Felix Engsalige Nyaaba