Thirty-two communities in the Akyemansa District of the Eastern Region have finally been connected to the national grid.
They are among 40 communities within the district which were not connected to the national grid.
Last Friday, the majority of Ofoase-Ayirebi residents came out in their numbers with joy, hailing and expressing their gratitude to Minister of Information, Kojo Oppong Nkrumah for expediting processes to connect them to the national grid.
Addressing some inhabitants after touring the 32 communities at a durbar held in Betsenase to commemorate the event, Oppong Nkrumah who is the Member of Parliament for Ofoase-Ayirebi constituency reiterated his commitment to the people.
” I am happy to see the smiles on your faces here. The praises showered on me only urges me to work hard so that I can bring more developmental works to you and I must say that we are determined to work in unity to ensure that everyone benefits from government interventions and developmental projects”.
“The target of this project was to connect 40 villages in the constituency to electricity, but as we speak we have been able to complete 32. So as we connect them to the national grid, we would work on the remaining 8 communities as soon as possible for them to also enjoy same,” he added.
Abraham Damtey Lincoln, the Eastern Regional Marketing Officer of Electricity Company of Ghana, also indicated that about 5,000 customers had been taken through some sensitization programs to ensure efficient and judicious use of power.
“I am glad to say that over 5,000 residents have already been taken through some form of power sensitization all aimed at improving their knowledge about electricity to ensure that they adhere to safety regulations while they use it judiciously”.
“We also explained when and how the billing process would commence so that they can prepare themselves for it and have a regular and constant supply of power”.
Mr. Lincoln also cautioned the residents against the illegal connection.
“I want to use this opportunity to inform you about the personal risk and dangers we can face in trying to get illegal connection. You can set your house on fire with illegal connection because those you will deal with in getting you power are not professionals and may use fake items. Secondly, it is against the law to involve yourself in illegal connectivity because you will be prosecuted if caught. We at ECG are there always ready to work with you and help you so come to us for our doors are always opened”.
Kwesi Salasi, the spokesperson for Betsenase chief, who was very appreciative of the gesture in a Citi News interview, promised to galvanize support to ensure that the Member of Parliament retains his parliamentary seat.
“It’s been 10 years sleeping in darkness, so if we have light today, then you can understand our joy. I am glad that the Minister has fulfilled the campaign promise he made to us and I want to tell the minister that he should expect a reciprocal act of kindness during the 2020 elections because we will make sure we give him a massive endorsement come 2020 elections “.
Madam Abena Dapaah, an inhabitant from Arkoh, a community in the constituency also indicated that the presence of electricity in the communities would change the fortunes of the community.
“The absence of the light for some years now drove most of the youths in the community to neighbour and other far cities and towns but now I am very optimistic that those who left will come back due to the existence of the light and I believe we will see a new vibrant life in our communities”.
Janet Oduro, a student at Arkoh Junior High School, was also optimistic students in the communities will witness an impact in their education.
“Most of my colleagues and I were always worried and felt reluctant attending evening classes at the school due to the absence of electricity but now that we have light, we can’t even wait to attend classes and I know there will be massive change in our results”.
Extension of Telecom services
Some residents also pleaded with the MP to ensure that the telecommunication companies extend their services to their part of the country because of the poor nature of network connectivity there.
Madam Kukua Anaman said that “most of us here climb trees in order to converse with our friends and families in other towns and cities which is very bad.”
“So we are pleading with the telecommunications networks to extend their services here especially now that we have light”.
Madam Asantewa also pleaded with the minister to construct their roads and give them safe drinking water.