Energy Commission urged to ensure wiring professionals charge approved rates

Electrical Wiring ghana
Electrical Wiring

Dr Matthew Opoku-Prempeh, Minister of Energy, has urged the Energy Commission to ensure that Certified Engineering Wiring Professionals (CEWP) and Certified Engineering Wiring Inspectors (CEWI) charge their services in accordance with the approved rates.

He said: “Owing to the complaints from some rural folks on the high fees charged by some CEWPs/CEWIs, we also caution that for rural consumers, only the applicable rates commensurate with their social circumstances should be charged.”

The Minister made the call at the 19th Edition of the Electrical Wiring Certification Awards Ceremony organised by the Commission in Accra.
The CEWP Certificate examination is to increase professionalism in the work of electrical contractors and reduce the spate of fires that are caused by electrical faults.

Dr Opoku-Prempeh said without the appropriate codes of practice and regulations, no industry could function effectively and efficiently in the evolving global economies.
He said in response to this demand, the electricity supply industry had seen the development, update, and implementation of several codes such as the National Electricity Grid Code developed in 2012 and the National Electricity Distribution Code.

The Minister said in compliance with the law on wiring regulations, the Ministry had since 2012 made it mandatory for its contractors under the National Electrification Scheme and the Self-Help Electrification Programme to engage only CEWPs and CEWIs for certifications of household wirings prior to the connection of rural consumers to the electricity grid.

Mr Oscar Amonoo-Neizer, Executive Secretary of the Commission, said this year’s the Electrical Wiring Programme (EWP) celebrated its 10th Anniversary, stating that in the last decade, the Commission had, with the support of the Energy Ministry and other stakeholders in the sector successfully implemented the L.I. 2008.

“It was worth noting that the intervention of the EWP had gone a long way to reduce the spate of fires in our homes, markets and other facilities, thus making the wiring industry in Ghana a much safer venture,” he added.

Mr Amonoo-Neizer said the Commission received complaints from the practitioners and the public about electrical materials on sale in the country that do not meet Ghanaian standards, and which, in some cases, could even expose the public to fire and electrical hazards.

He said the Commission had, therefore, developed Electrical Wiring Cables and Accessories Regulations to ensure that only electrical cables and accessories, which met the Ghanaian standards were available for sale in the country for use in electrical wiring.

“The key electrical accessories of concern include plugs, sockets, switches, lamp holders, extension boards, and circuit breakers,” he added.

The Executive Secretary said the Regulation was currently in Parliament, awaiting approval, expressing the “it is hoped that the Regulation will rid the market of sub-standard electrical wiring cables and accessories.”

He, therefore, urged Ghanaians to accept the recommendation of wiring practitioners certified by the Commission to use Ghana Standards Authority-approved electrical wiring cables and accessories.

Mr Anthony Bleboo, Director, Electricity and Natural Gas at the Commission, said the Programme had empowered thousands of individuals with the knowledge and skills needed to drive progress and safety in electrical wiring systems.

He said over the past decade more than 14,000 electrical wiring practitioners had been certified, and in the 2023 May/June examination alone, a total of 796 candidates passed, demonstrating the widespread impact of the programme across the country.

The Director said the programme’s dedication to producing qualified professionals extended far beyond Accra, indicating that in Tamale, 226 individuals passed, with 204 being CEWPs and 22 inspectors.

“In Takoradi, 106 candidates passed, of which 104 were CEWPs and two were inspectors, in Kumasi, 197 individuals passed, with 195 being CEWPs and two inspectors and in Accra, 267 individuals passed, with 260 being CEWPs and seven inspectors,” he added.

Mr Bleboo said these statistics not only highlighted the programme’s reach, but also its commitment to producing skilled graduates across various regions.

He said going forward they would be using the Police Service to arrest recalcitrant uncertified electricians due to the threats they caused, and they would continue with our community engagement activities to encourage the public to use certified electricians.
Professor Ebenezer Oduro-Owusu, Board Chair of the Commission, entreated the graduates to keep pushing to develop themselves and exhibit their skills with their potential and capabilities.

He advised them to ensure that they worked according to the rules and guidelines of their profession and to seek continuous improvement in their chosen areas.

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