Energy Minister greeted with ‘dumsor’ at Meet-the-press

There was an unusual power outage at the Ministry of Information as the Minister of Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, took his turn to address the media at the weekly meet-the-press in Accra yesterday.

As if to offer the Minister a “baptism of fire”, the lights went off at about 9:52 a.m. immediately the heads of agencies under the Ministry of Energy entered the main press centre at the MOI, throwing the whole conference room into prolonged laughter.

It took more than five minutes for the light to be restored.

Interestingly, the light was restored immediately the Mr Kwasi Obeng-Fosu from the Public Relations Unit (PRU) of the Ministry of Energy took the podium to explain why the lights went off, and that threw the room into laughter again.

For many in the auditorium, it was important that the managers of the country’s power experienced at firsthand what the ordinary Ghanaian goes through with such outages.

Dr Opoku-Prempeh, when he mounted the podium, jokingly said this was a “Baptism of fire”, stressing that the light out was as a result of some of the challenges being addressed currently.

He explained that there was a power trip at the Achimota Bulk Supply Point because one of the substations was down.

He, however, assured that workers were on site working to address the challenge and to restore power to all affected areas.

Parts of the country, over the past few weeks, have been experiencing some intermittent power outages, raising the fear that the dreaded phenomenon of “Dumsor” was back into the country.

However, Dr Opoku-Prempeh parried that assertion and assured that the country was nowhere near that phenomenon.

He explained that the current outages were as a result of some technical challenges in the transmission sector which was being addressed.

“You know last year, GRIDco and the ECG announced a schedule for “Dumsie Sie” to work on our transmission line to ensure efficiency and stability.  We have to defer that programme in December to enable Ghanaians to enjoy their Christmas. It is that schedule that has started and kicked off on April 9,” he emphasised.

He said it was the commencement of the schedule and a few other challenges that accounted for the recent outages, stressing that “this has nothing to do with generation capacity.  The country has more than enough in the area of generation.”

BY CLIFF EKUFUL

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