The Ghana Institute of Management and Public Administration (GIMPA) and Public Utility Regulatory Commission (PURC) have jointly inaugurated the Centre of Excellence in Public Utility Regulation (CEPUR) themed, “Professionalism in the utility sector, key to Africa’s Development”, at a colourful ceremony on the campus of GIMPA in Accra.
The primary purpose of the Centre is develop competencies and expertise in regulation and governance for the electricity, water, natural gas value chain and other related public utility service sectors.
In addition, the Centre will deliver programmes and award certificates in diverse courses related to regulation and the management of the electricity, water and natural gas sectors and engages also in cutting edge research for investment and policy decision making in the sectors of interest.
Speaking at the event, the Minister of Energy, Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh commended PURC and GIMPA for the initiative and described it has timely and very relevant as a result of the emerging dynamics in the public utility service space and the energy sector.
He however challenged the Centre to develop innovative and breakthrough research on utility regulation across Africa and beyond and explained that Africa have been the consumer of research findings and emerging ideas.
The Minister therefore urged players of the Centre to find innovative and effective ways of collaborating with captains of industry and the corporate world to engage in quality strategy studies aimed at finding practical solutions and actualize research findings to develop and support the economy.
The inauguration of the Centre will provide the needed support to develop the skills and workforce to position Ghana and Africa to secure sustainable outcomes for future generations.
The Minister in these regard urged CEPUR to develop a comprehensive framework and programmes to meet contemporary trends in utility regulation as his ministry have taken the lead in developing and implementing a roadmap for energy transition for the country.
For his part, the Board Chair of PURC, Mr. Ebo Quagraine said the collaboration between PURC and GIMPA will enhance capacity development efficiency and innovation among regulated entities as well as strengthen regulation in the country.
“The Commission however showed its gratitude to GIMPA for the fruitful collaboration for making the Centre a reality”, he added.
In a statement, the Rector of GIMPA, Prof. Samuel Kwaku Bonsu said the Centre will conduct high-level policy relevant research to encourage public dialogues on utility regulation, adding that the initiatives will enrich the intellectual environment for utilities regulation in the country.
In a related development, the Executive Secretary of PURC, Dr. Ishmael Ackah used the occasion to launch the maiden edition of the Ghana Utility Performance Index (GUPI) for 2021 as part of the drive to assess the performance of electricity and water utilities across the operational areas of country.
Report by Ben LARYEA