Ghana’s new president, Nana Akufo-Addo, has told his nominee for energy minister that power shortages have to become ‘a thing permanently of the past.’
Despite having some of the highest rates of electricity access in Sub-Saharan Africa, Ghana has become notorious for its rolling blackouts – known locally as dumsor – which can see entire neighbourhoods switched off without warning.
At the peak of the most recent dumsor crisis in 2015, the country experienced 159 days of blackouts, leading to massive job losses and missed economic targets.
Boakye Agyarko, who will head up Ghana’s Energy Ministry once confirmed by Parliament, has now been tasked with ending the problem for good.
But with the country’s energy supply plagued by both gas shortages and a shortfall in hydropower, experts are predicting that dumsor may rear its head again in 2017.
For Mr Agyarko, the challenge will be to diversify Ghana’s energy mix so the country can grow, create jobs and provide a more secure and prosperous future for Ghanaian citizens.