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13.03.2007 General News

Government urged to encourage usage of solar energy

By : GNA

Dr Sam Kweku Asiamah, Director of School Forests for West Africa, A Non-Governmental Organization (NGO) based in Germany has called on the government to encourage the use of solar, now that the country is facing an energy crisis.

He suggested that import duties on solar lamps and its parts should also be waived to enable many Ghanaians to import solar panels to ease the pressure on the Akosombo Dam, which continue to dry up.

Dr Asiamah was speaking at the closing ceremony of a two-week intensive trainers of trainees workshop on the assembling of solar lanterns for some selected school children, teachers, chiefs and assembly members from the Agona District at Agona Nyakrom in the Central Region.

The workshop was organised by the School Forests for West Africa and the Youth and Environmental Club an NGO based in Ghana.

Dr Asiamah who is also the Executive Director of the Club, said the present situation where importers of solar lamps pay huge sums of money as duties, swell up the cost of the product, making it impossible for disadvantage people to buy.

He appealed to the government to encourage every Ghanaian home to use solar lanterns, since the generation of electricity has not reached every village in the country.

The Director stated that about 50 Senior and Junior Secondary Schools without access to electricity are ready to use the solar lanterns to reduce the use of kerosene lamps, if they come by the solar lamps.

Mr Ben Mensah, Agona District Chief Executive on his part said, the workshop on solar lanterns was timely as Ghana was facing an energy crisis.

He commended the organizers of the workshop and appealed to them to organize more for other schools to enable them learn about the assembling of solar lanterns.

Mr Ekkehard Barchewitz, Director of Solux Solar Energy in Germany, said there is enough sunshine in the country that could help in the use of solar energy and was not happy that the people are not making good use of it, but rather rely heavily on electricity energy.

Mr Barchwitz said the energy sector in Ghana is now facing some difficulties hence the need to adopt effective ways of using solar lanterns.

Mr Robert Kingful Yamoah, Nyakrom Circuit Supervisor of the Ghana Education Service said the school children would stand to benefit immensely from the workshop.

He said the remote parts of the country have not been reached by the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) and hoped the use of solar would be beneficial for them.

Mr Fred Andrews, Headmaster of Nyakrom Secondary/Technical School who presided, called on participates to make good use of the knowledge they have acquired for the benefit of others.

Source: GNA