20.05.2005 General News

350 million needed to implement SHEP-4 - Minister

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Accra, May 20, GNA - Professor Michael Ocquaye, Energy Minister, on Friday said 350 million dollars was needed to connect communities to the national electricity grid under the Self Help Electrification Programme-Four (SHEP-4) for the whole country.

He said so far only 15 million dollars of this figure was available under a credit facility to carry out the first phase of SHEP-4. Prof. Ocquaye was responding to a question from Ms Akua Dansua, NDC-North Dayi, as to when communities under SHEP-4 in the North Dayi Constituency would be connected to the national electricity grid.

The Minister said about 60 percent of communities in the North and South constituencies have already benefited from previous self-help electrification programmes and currently 27 communities in the North Dayi constituency have been programmed for the second phase of SHEP-4 but this would depend on availability of funding.

Prof. Ocquaye, who touched on some plans to source for funds to extend electricity, said a 25-million dollar and a 10-million dollar facility for rural electrification and solar energy respectively was expected from India under a facility.

In answer to a question from Mr Edward Salia, NDC-Jirapa, as to what was being done about communities, which were yet to benefit from electricity under SHEP-3, the Minister said it these communities would be taken care of under the SHEP-4, but this would depend on the availability of funding.

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