A youth group with sympathies for the ruling NDC has accused policy think tank African Center for Energy Policy (ACEP) of pursuing an anti-government agenda over the energy crisis in the country.
The group, in a statement issued today, claimed ACEP, through its leadership, is consciously downplaying the efforts of government in fixing the three-year old crisis.
Below is a copy of the statement by the Group
The youth campaigners supporting the re-election of President John Dramani Mahama, hereby express our worry over the deliberate attempt by the African Center for Energy Policy (ACEP) to demonize efforts of government aimed at permanently ending Ghana's electricity shortfall.
We have read a news story with a screaming headline: ACEP AGAINST SECOND KARPOWER published by the media, and after digesting the arguments put forward by the think-tank and noticing the half-truths therein, we firmly conclude, that ACEP is engaging in politics to score cheap political points for the NPP flagbearer, in this election.
ACEP's contention that Ghana does not need the second KARPOWER barge, is not only wrong in logic, we see it as a well calculated error committed by the energy think-tank to inject a message of hopelessness and apprehension among the Ghanaian populace, as far as electricity distribution is concerned.
The Deputy Executive Director of ACEP, Mr. Ben Boakye in that news story was reported as saying: "We don't need the second Karpowership" and quizzed: "For what?" He went on to repeat the NPP's old propaganda message, that the three year power crisis that has rocked the country is more of a financial and fuel supply issue than the lack of generational capacity.
Such argument has been put up by ACEP, who know very well that both the first and the second KARPOWER barges do not operate on gas or light crude, hence the operators cannot be bothered about the availability or otherwise of the two types of fuel.
Challenges with FPSO Kwame Nkrumah and in Nigeria have combined to unduly deny Ghanaians our much needed gas and light crude oil, for electricity generation. Yet, ACEP says it is a finance problem. Be that as it may, ACEP knows too well that the second KARPOWER barge which is expected to arrive in Ghana by October is built to generate electricity using Heavy Fuel Oil (HFO) and not light crude or gas. KARPOWER barges will as a result, continue to produce electricity for Ghanaians, without consequence to the availability of light crude oil and gas in Ghana. Challenges in Nigeria and technical faults on the FPSOs in Ghana, will have no effect on the operations of the second KARPOWER ship. ACEP is therefore wrong. On the allegation that the initial lack of light crude and gas in the country was as a result of the lack of financial capacity, we wish to remind ACEP that the supply of HFO to the KARPOWER barges is the responsibility of the Ghana National Petroleum Corporation (GNPC) who has not failed to discharge that responsibility.
ACEP is aware that GNPC has contracted Trafigura, the reputable oil trade firm to supply the HFO to KARPOWER, and that there has not been a single day in which KARPOWER shut down because of the lack of HFO. Obviously, the ACEP argument that there is lack of funds and consequently lack of fuel supplies, does not apply to KARPOWER. It therefore makes sense for the government to bring in the second KARPOWER barge to come help relieve Ghanaians from the perennial electricity shortfalls.
From the above, we are convinced that ACEP is deliberately putting out such falsehood to scare Ghanaians and poison their minds against the John Mahama government. We know that the Executive Director of ACEP, Mr. Mohammed Amin Adam is an NPP party member and a former Chief Executive of Tamale.
We however expect him to separate his politics from the official policy think-tank role that ACEP is supposed to play in Ghana. #iChooseJM therefore appeal to Ghanaians not to trust any statement that ACEP will make on government's programs to resolve our energy challenges.
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