Government has advertised the sale of at least a majority stake in specified thermal plants owned by the Volta River Authority (VRA). This revelation has been characterize by attacks and discomfort among concern Ghanaians.
Human Right Activist Mr Adongo Asampua, has disclosed that the sale of the thermal assets to private individuals is the sale of sovereignty of Ghana and security of Ghanaians. According Mr. Adongo, the VRA is a strategic state assets which the government cannot attempt to privatize. He added that, if that happens it means the security of Ghanaians has been sold to private individuals.
Mr. Adongo added that, a feasibility study committee report has it that hydro generation was dependent on natural water /rain and, in times of drought it affects hydro generation and that called for urgent need to diversified power generation into thermal assets to supplement hydro generation during droughts.
He further alleged that, if the asset is sold to private individuals which may be foreigners and that can put security of Ghanaians in limbo because power generation rest solely on those foreigners which can pave way for external attacks.
“If authorities are considering the profit margin of these thermal assets as the reasons why they want to sell, then the security of Ghanaians is also big profit to the Nation,” he told Rite FM.
The Advertisement, which was placed in the Daily Graphic indicated that the sale forms “part of government‘s efforts to restructure the energy sector.”
‘’As part of government’s effort to restructure the energy sector and optimizing the operational efficiency of the power SOE’s, a number of policy measures are being explored. Key among these measures is government’s consideration that separating VRA’s thermal operations from its hydro operation will improve their ability to favorably compete with other power generating companies significantly and return it to profitability,” the advert said.
Meanwhile, the Finance Minister , Ken Ofori Atta had given indications of involving the private sector in restructuring the VRA when he presented the 2017 budget in parliament, saying a new entity will ‘’hold’’ the VRA’s thermal assets.
‘’Mr. Speaker, as a government, we are committed to achieving a least-cost power generation infrastructure through accelerated private sector participation. This will partly involve the restructuring of the power sector by bringing all hydro generation exclusively under the Volta River Authority (VRA) and creating a separate thermal market…A new entity will hold the thermal assets which are currently held by VRA and make available a significant part of this entity for private sector investment in pursuit of its private sector participation policy’’, said the minister.
He re-affirmed it in the mid-year budget, saying “Mr. Speaker, one key intervention that Government promised in the 2017 budget statement was the restructuring of the Volta River Authority to bring about increased operational efficiency and private sector investments in the power. Government has approved the VRA restructuring agenda submitted by the Ministry to cabinet and processes towards the implementation of the restructuring agenda have begun under the coordination of the Finance Ministry.”
By: Joyce Bedeley/ritefmonline.org