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11.04.2007 General News


By Ghana Palaver

— Mills Booms

— NDC Stand-by Technical and Political Teams ready to assist NPP

NDC Presidential Candidate for the 2008 elections and former Vice President Professor John Evans Atta Mills declared his readiness to assume the mantle of governance and sent shivers down the spine of the NPP when he announced at his Press Conference held last Tuesday that he has standby Power Technical and Political Teams ready to assist the NPP to resolve the present power crisis.

Answering questions from the press at the end of his Press conference, Professor Mills named some of the members of his Technical Team as Dr. Oteng Adjei, former Director of Power at the Ministry of Energy, Dr. Yaw Akoto, former Managing Director of Tema Oil Refinery, Mr. Dokyi former Chief Executive of VRA, Mr. Moses Asaga, NDC Ranking Member for Energy, and Dr. Kwame Ampofo, an Energy Consultant and NDC MP for North Dayi.

Professor Mills was certain that Mr. Tsatsu Tsikata, who was out of the country, would join the team on his return even though he had not been informed yet and even though the NPP still had him on trial.

For the Political Oversight Team, Professor Mills mentioned Messrs Kwame Peprah, Fred Ohene Kena and Ato Ahwoi, all former Ministers of Energy. Later in a private interview with this reporter, he stated that he had forgotten to mention Mr. Appiah, first PNDC Secretary for Fuel and Power and an Energy expert who is very much a member of the Team.

Professor Mills announced that these two teams were ready to put their experience and expertise in the management of the energy sector at the disposal of the country and it was in that spirit that he was urging the President to focus on addressing the current crisis and stop blaming others unjustifiably.

In the Press Statement itself, Professor Mills recounted the failed promises of President Kufuor in his State of the Nation Address to address the energy crisis and outlined the NDC's strategy for the energy sector which, if it has been followed, would have averted the current crisis.

He catalogued the blatant abuse, sheer incompetence and suspected corruption that had characterised the NPP's management of the energy sector, citing in particular, the VRA's over US$35 million Strategic Reserve Plant which did not produce even one kilowatt hour of electricity, the initial mismanagement of the VRA, the failure to convert the Aboadze thermal plant to natural gas as planned by the NDC Government, and the bungled West Africa Gas Pipeline negotiations.

He characterised the decision to bring VALCO back on stream at a time of an energy crisis as a monumental mistake, and said President Kufuor should be held personally responsible for this decision which had resulted in an accelerated draw down of the Volta Lake.

Professor Mills asked that the energy situation be addressed as a national crisis, and in a seven-point notice, demanded that the NPP Government take all the necessary measures to alleviate the suffering of the people from the crisis situation in the energy sector.