Ghana may face complications over power cut to Burkina Faso – Kwabena Donkor

Source The Ghana Report

Former Power Minister Dr Kwabena Donkor is warning that Ghana could face economic and security complications due to a reduction of electricity exports to Burkina Faso.

According to him, despite Ghana’s contractual agreement with the neighbouring country, the country’s failure to meet the agreement may compel Burkina Faso to consider other alternatives.

If this alternative includes constructing a dam, he said it would have an effect on Ghana’s electricity production.

Speaking in an interview, he said “For example, Ouagadougou, the capital of Burkina Faso, other than solar, is totally dependent on power from Ghana 100%. If you give Burkina Faso and Sunnabel zero (power) whether peak or off-peak, it means they are in darkness.

“It has both economic and security implications as well as even strategic implications. Let’s take the strategic implication first. If I were Burkinabe or was in the leadership of Burkina Faso, one I will say supply from Ghana is unreliable, why don’t you look for alternate sources?

“And the alternate sources could be building more dams, mini dams in Burkina. Remember, the Volta takes its source outside Ghana. So if they begin to build more dams, it will affect our generation. So we must always have that in mind.”

His comments follow a directive to curtail the export of electricity to other countries until the country’s power crisis is resolved.

Chairman of the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament Samuel Atta Akyea hinted that reducing the export of power to other countries was a measure adopted by the government to address the erratic power supply.

Dr Donkor said that this approach is short-sighted and could lead to potential problems.

“And it was so short-sighted. Okay, in order to boost domestic supply, let’s breach our contractual obligations. [But wouldn’t that come with implications?] Absolutely,” he added.

He added that the erratic payment for power purchased by the Electricity Company of Ghana from the Bui Power Authority is threatening the continuous operations of the authority.

The former sector minister added “Bui, there was an overdrafting of Bui late last year till now, so Bui’s generation has to slow down and it’s slowing down because if it doesn’t slow down, then the reservoir will run out. So Bui’s contribution now, in terms of quantum, is going down.

“Well, Bui has a challenge. ECG is Bui’s only off-taker. And when ECG is unable to pay, in fact, there have been months when Bui has had to take a bank overdraft to pay salaries. Because ECG was unable to pay them.”

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