President Mahama Launches US$16.8M Control System

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Charles Darku (2nd Right) explaining a point to President John Mahama (with hand stretched). Looking on are other dignitaries at the inauguration.

Charles Darku (2nd Right) explaining a point to President John Mahama (with hand stretched). Looking on are other dignitaries at the inauguration.

President John Dramani Mahama has launched the newly-constructed system control centre of Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCO), which is said to be the first of its kind in the sub-region worth $16.8 million.

According to him, the launch of the energy facility at the Tema Free Zone is a clear indication of the commitment of his administration to achieve stability in power generation and distribution challenges, as well as attain government?s 2015 target of 5000 megawatts of total generated capacity.

Addressing a gathering at the launch, President Mahama noted that establishment of the facility formed part of measures by government to ensure adequate supply of electricity to promote industrial activities with a view to achieving government?s targets.

The President told the gathering that his administration has over the last few weeks commissioned projects to make the country a giant player and exporter when it comes to energy.

He said the inaugurated system control centre, a World Bank funded project, would replace an outdated centre and ensure effective monitoring and supervisory control of Ghana Power Network and power exchanges between member countries of West African Power Pool (WAPP).

The replacement, he said, is expected to upgrade all Remote Terminal Units (RTUs) in 48 substations across the country and beyond.

It also saw the installation of new Fiber Terminal Equipment to form the GRIDCo communication backbone ring, provision of spurs and the increase and upgrade of Power Line Communication network band.

President Mahama called for the delivery of efficient customer services, which will meet the expectation of consumers and appealed to the Volta River Authority (VRA), Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), GRIDCo and all the energy generation authorities to intensify efforts to export energy.

Prior to the president?s address, GRIDCo Chief Executive Officer (CEO), Charles Darku expressed joy at the inauguration of the system control room and mentioned that the project would offer his outfit total remote coverage and control of the entire National Interconnected Transmission System (NITS) comprising some 66 sub-stations and switchyards, as well as about 5,000 circuit kilometers of transmission lines across the country.

Mr. Darku pointed out that system control centre comes with several enhanced features and functionalities such as an online energy tele-metering system which enables GRIDCo to have access to energy consumption data.

According to him, some operators have been trained to man the centre so as to quickly tackle major faults and take preventive actions.

He told the guests that his outfit would soon complete the construction of a new 150 kilometer 330kV transmission line from Tema to Togo and Benin to link up with an existing 330kV line from there to Ikeja West in Nigeria.

He also announced that construction would start later this year on the Bolgatanga-Ouagadougou 225kV transmission line.

Emmanuel Armah Buah, Minister for Energy and Petroleum, for his part, stressed that the inauguration of the project was an indication of the commitment of government and his ministry to boost the energy sector of the country.

From Razak Mardorgyz Abubakar, Tema

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