he Ministry of Energy has launched an electrification project to connect over 16,000 households in the Northern Region to the national grid within the next 24 months.
Dubbed “Tropical Cable and Conductor Electrification”, the project is in line with the ministry’s agenda to enhance the reliable supply of energy in all its usable forms to all households and businesses, and to bring the access rate of about 70 per cent in the region to the average rate of 85.17 per cent.
It is also aimed at widening the access of energy to all households, productive sectors and social infrastructure in order to facilitate the implementation of the Growth and Poverty Reduction Strategy, which was a poverty reduction strategy for Ghana based on one of the then Millennium Development Goals (MDGs).
The project will bring to three the number of electrification projects being executed in the Northern Region.
The others are the Hunan Construction Group Corporation and the Ministry of Energy’s Self-Help Electrification projects.
At the launch of the project in Tamale last Wednesday, a Deputy Minister of Energy in charge of Power, Mr William Owuraku Aidoo, said the government was committed to enhancing access to reliable and affordable energy to accelerate growth and reduce poverty in the country.
He said as a result of the vision, the Ministry of Energy had been implementing the national electrification scheme since 1992 to extend electricity to all parts of the country as part of interventions for poverty reduction in the rural areas.
Mr Aidoo said before the inception of the National Electrification Scheme, only 478 communities in the region were connected to the national electricity grid, but as of now, over 11,000 communities had been connected in the region.
The deputy minister said the contract had been awarded to Tropical Cable and Conductor Limited, which was expected to use locally manufactured electrical materials such as conductors, energy metres, transformers, poles, among other things, for the project as part of the government’s effort to support local companies.
The Northern Regional Minister, Mr Salifu Saeed, commended the government for extending the project to the region.
He said the beneficiary communities were selected through a scientific approach that involved experts who toured the region in the course of their work.
Mr Saeed said the regional ministry would closely monitor the contractors to make sure that the project was executed on schedule and in accordance with specifications to ensure value for money.