By: King A. Wellington
As part of government’s effort to provide clean, safe and healthy cooking fuel, as well as increasing access to LPG to low access and low income areas across the nation, the Ministry of Petroleum, is continuing its Rural LPG Promotion Programme in the Upper West Region.
Together with the National Petroleum Authority (NPA), Ghana Cylinder Manufacturing Company (GCMC) and Bulk Oil Storage and Transport (BOST), the Ministry is distributing 6,000 LPG Cylinders, cook stoves and related accessories for free in Wa, Lawra and Nadowli districts.
The Rural LPG Promotion Programme, seeks to enable rural dwellers switch easily to LPG without paying for the initial investment cost.
The distributions come, as President John Mahama who is in Paris, France with other world leaders at the Climate Change Conference dubbed ‘CHOGM 2015’ called for other alternative means of cooking apart of the use of charcoal and firewood.
Last year, the Ministry of Petroleum, distributed 13,000 cylinders, cook stoves and related accessories to households in the three Northern Regions, Central, Western and Brong Ahafo Regions of Ghana.
This year, the distribution was scaled up to 40,000 cylinders and cook stoves, and so far the Ministry of Petroleum has been able to distribute 20,000 cylinders and cook stoves in eight districts and hopes to distribute additional 20,000 cylinders and cook stoves by the end of the year.
Speaking on behalf of the Petroleum Minister at the launch in Nadowli, Prof. Thomas Mba Akabzaa, Chief Director for the Ministry of Petroleum, highlighted on governments effort to increase Ghana’s domestic supply of LPG through the Atuabo Gas Plant saying “the new Gas Processing Plant, aside from delivering over 100mmscf of lean gas per day for thermal plants to generate power is also currently producing 500 tons of LPG a day for the domestic market”.
“The plant is also on track to produce more than 180,000 metric tons of LPG per year amounting to over 50% of the present estimated 360,000 metric tons annual LPG national demand.” he said.
Prof Akabzaa drew attention to similar distribution exercise that was carried out by the Ministry in Nkoranza North and South, Atebubu-Amantin and Pru districts in the Brong Ahafo Region.
Deputy Upper West Regional Minister, Dr. Musheibu Mohammed-Alfa urged everyone to embrace governments efforts and advised beneficiaries not to revert to the use of firewood and charcoal.
“Government’s efforts would be in vain if this should happen. “LPG is the safest, cleanest and healthiest form of cooking fuel available today and we urge all Ghanaians to switch to LPG now” he added.
According to the Petroleum Minister, Emmanuel Armah-Kofi Buah, all these efforts, will further create wealth and employment opportunities for Ghanaians to ensure that domestic LPG produced at the Atuabo Gas Processing plant ,benefits all Ghanaians.
Mr. Ali Nuhu Abeka, Ag Downstream Director at the Ministry of Petroleum, also cautioned beneficiaries to observe the basic safety precautions necessary to ensure optimum safety and security, when using the cylinders and cook stoves.