VRA memorialises 3 past chief executives with busts

BY: Ezekiel E. Sottie
The busts of Ing. Dr Emmanuel Laud Quartey & Ing. Dr Louis Casely Hayford
The busts of Ing. Dr Emmanuel Laud Quartey & Ing. Dr Louis Casely Hayford

The Volta River Authority (VRA) has honoured three of its past chief executives (CEs) who steered the vision of the company and made significant contributions to its growth since its establishment in 1961.

The VRA unveiled busts of the three former CEs, Dr Emmanuel Laud Quartey (1966-1980), Dr Louis Casely Hayford (1980-1990), both deceased, and Mr Erasmus Alexander Kwabla Kalitsi (1991-1998).

The life-sized busts have been located at vantage areas at Akosombo and Akuse. That of Dr Quartey has been located at the dam site at Akosombo, Mr Kalitsi’s at the roundabout leading to the offices of VRA at Akosombo, while that of Dr Casely Hayford has been erected at the dam site at Akuse.

According to the power generator, their illustrious leadership and commitment to duty shaped and sustained the development, growth and transformation of the VRA over the years.

A fourth bust would be erected at Aboadze in the Western Region later, all as part of the 60th anniversary celebration of  the VRA. The unveiling ceremony, which was also used to celebrate the personalities, attracted top management and workers of the VRA and the families of those being honoured.

In attendance was Mr Kalitsi, the only surviving chief executive among those honoured.

The Minister of Energy, Dr Matthew Opoku Prempeh, unveiled the life-sized busts of the past chief executives, whose names stand tall in the annals of the VRA.

The minister commended the VRA for the honour done its forebears, saying their contributions had made the organisation stand the test of time since independence.

Acknowledgement

Dr Opoku Prempeh said the VRA’s 60 years in the power sector was worth celebrating as there might be individuals, past and present, who had contributed to the formation, development and growth of the institution, adding that “I am therefore, pleased that the current management of the VRA has the foresight to acknowledge contributions of four former chief executives’’.

The minister appreciated the selflessness of the chiefs and people within the VRA catchment areas for accepting to relocate and contribute their lands for the Volta River Project.

He said for the past 60 years, the VRA had been critical in the government’s economic and industrialisation agenda.

Dr Opoku Prempeh said the authority remained healthy and strong and could boast of a skilled workforce that had maintained the Hydro and Thermal Plants as well as other VRA Power installations by themselves.

“This is a proud achievement and a reflection of the ‘’can-do’’ spirit which the authority must maintain into the future,” the minister added.

The Energy Minister said the role of Ghana as the host of the African Free Trade Agreement (AfCTA) set-up was an important step in the government’s industrialisation agenda to open up our economy.

The VRA, therefore, was a significant player in the power supply chain and should not fail to play its expected role to enable the government realise its objectives.

Sustainable

The Chief Executive of the VRA, Mr Emmanuel Antwi-Darkwa, indicated that the organisation had not only sustained its operations since the commissioning of the Akosombo Generating Station, but had evolved from hydro power generation to diversify its portfolio to include thermal and solar generating plants.

He said the diversification was consistent with the global energy industry, in the light of climate change, and more significantly, harnessing the abundant indigenous supply of solar and natural gas resources for the benefit of all Ghanaians.

“Our energy transformation agenda also aligns with the government’s policy on power sector development, especially with regard to reducing Ghana’s carbon footprints,” Mr Antwi-Darkwa said.

He lauded the former CEs for playing significant roles in the expansion and transformation programmes of the authority which included the expansion of the transmission system, the export of power to Togo/Benin and Burkina Faso, the inter-tie with Cote d’Ivoire, the development of the Kpong and Bui Hydro Power Stations, the Takoradi Thermal Power Station as well as the expansion of the national grid to the Northern regions, among others.

Busts

“We are immensely proud to install their busts at our generation facilities in appreciation of their contribution to the growth of the authority and also the power sector in Ghana,” the chief executive stated.

Response

The only surviving former CE, Mr Kalitsi, on behalf of his former colleagues and their families, thanked the management of the VRA for recognising their efforts in contributing to the power generation in the country.                                 

He said as the authority celebrated the 60th anniversary, it was important for management to recognise and remember not only the four of them, but also all other workers who equally demonstrated their commitment and hard work towards the VRA’s success story.