Power project should lead to more bilateral cooperation

BY: Daily Graphic
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo

President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, on Friday, October 5, 2018, inaugurated the 225-kilovolt Bolgatanga to Ouagadougou Power Interconnection Project.

The project, on completion, will see the country supply up to 100 megawatts (MW) of power directly to Burkina Faso.

President Akufo-Addo said the execution of the project was one of the priority projects of the West African Power Pool.

The Daily Graphic has observed that the power sharing relationship between Ghana and Burkina Faso is not something new.

Ghana has been supplying power to Burkina Faso in a smaller quantity of 0.5MW since 2003. The figure shot up to 9.2MW in 2013.

In November 2017, Burkina Faso’s Minister of Energy, Professor Alfa Oumar Dissa, paid a courtesy call on then Minister of Energy, Mr Boakye Agyarko, who hinted that the country would supply 100MW of power daily to Burkina Faso to complement that country’s development agenda.

Although the completion of the Bolgatanga to Ouagadougou Power Interconnection Project will see the fulfilment of the assurance given by Mr Agyarko last year, the trajectory of events attests to the fact that both countries have a successful history to share as far as power trading is concerned.

The Daily Graphic thinks the project is a good one because it will increase Ghana’s installed generation capacity, which currently stays at 4,577MW.

It will also enhance its exports, which translates into a favourable balance of payment, aside from improving our energy stock and guaranteeing uninterrupted supply.

Equally important is the fact that the initiative will deepen the bond that exists between the two countries, as well as set the tone for much more partnership programmes geared towards ensuring the welfare of their citizens.

It is always commendable for countries in the sub-region and Africa at large to support one another on matters relating to growth and development to enable the continent to become a better place for its people.

The Daily Graphic, however, thinks that beyond business, the collaboration between Ghana and Burkina Faso should mark the initiation of pragmatic measures between them to find a lasting solution to the perennial disaster suffered by residents of the north as a result of the spillage of water from the Bagre Dam in Burkina Faso.

The annual spillage of the dam results in the loss of lives, displacement of families and destruction of properties, including farmlands  of individuals and businesses in the Upper East, Upper West and Northern regions.

When the President of Burkina Faso, Mr Roach Marc Christian Kabore, visited Ghana recently, the two leaders discussed ways to find a lasting solution to the problem, among other issues that were tabled for discussion.

The dam spillage is a matter very dear to Ghanaians because of the losses, as a result of which they are anxious for a permanent solution to it.

With the strong ties that exist between the two countries, there is no better time than now to seek a permanent solution to the spillage.