Mr Ebenezer Kofi Essienyi, Chief Executive Officer of Ghana Grid Company Limited (GRIDCo), has challenged the company’s Safety and Technical Services teams to ensure 100 per cent compliance to safety standards in the years ahead.
He also urged all Directors, Managers, Supervisors and Employees to take issues of safety seriously within the company.
“Safety meetings are a must for every employee and no one is above that, including all staff in non-operational departments.”
Mr Essienyi said this in a speech read on his behalf by Mr Daniel Amartey, Director of Southern Network Services of GRIDCo, during the GRIDCo’s Annual Safety Awareness Week celebration in Tamale on Friday.
The GRIDCo’s Annual Safety Awareness Week celebration is to acknowledge the importance safety plays in the discharge of the company’s mandate and also to remind staff to continue to remain committed to the highest safety standards and environmental practices in line with the company’s core values.
This year’s celebration, which was on the theme: “Anticipate, Prepare and Respond to Crisis: Effects of COVID-19 on Mental Health,” was climaxed with awards for individuals, operational areas and non-operational areas of the company, who performed creditably in maintaining the company’s core value of safety.
The Prestea Operational Area and the System Operations Department of GRIDCo won the overall best awards for Operational Area and Non-operational Area categories respectively while some individual staff members also won awards.
Mr Essienyi assured that “On my part, I will also ensure that we initiate moves to procure tools and equipment for maintenance activities on time, ensure timely provision of personal protective equipment to all staff despite the financial challenges and instil discipline in all aspects of our operations to avoid unnecessary accidents and injuries, going forward.”
He said, “I recently signed the revised Safety Policy Statement, which commits myself and the entire Management team to work in ensuring the safety and wellbeing of our employees. We will need your support and dedication to achieve our goals in this aspect.”
He commended the Safety and Technical Services teams of the company for their proactivity in ensuring that “We continue to provide an environment that is comfortable for us to deliver on our mandate as the leading power transmission company in West Africa.”
On the COVID-19 pandemic and its effects on GRIDCo’s operations and projects from last year to this year, Mr Essienyi said, “It forced us to realign key project timelines and in some cases, we even had to mute certain key expectations and revise our revenue and profitability forecasts for the years ahead.”
He said the COVID-19 pandemic also revealed the importance of focusing on how to preserve a good mental health balance for employees and challenged “Directors, Managers and Supervisors to work with Human Resources in identifying peculiar mental health cases amongst staff and to deal with them effectively.”
Mr Anthony Godzi, Acting Director, Technical Services, GRIDCo also touched on safety at the company, saying “Our accident rate as a company has been very encouraging. Only one major accident was recorded in the year under review.”
He said although the accident involved a staff of ECG at GRIDCo Obuasi Substation, it was fully investigated and recommendations for improvement were currently being implemented.
Mr Charles Dzikunu of the Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCo), who represented the Managing Director of NEDCo, urged property owners to engage electricians certified by the Energy Commission to wire their buildings to ensure safety.
He also complained about power theft in the Tamale Metropolis and called on all relevant stakeholders to help stop the situation in the area.
Alhaji Shani Alhassan Saibu, Northern Regional Minister, whose speech was read on his behalf, entreated GRIDCo to strictly abide by its safety protocols to enable it to continue to serve the people.