Work on the second phase of the Kaleo Solar Power Plant in the Nadowli-Kaleo District has commenced, the Upper West Regional Minister, Dr Hafiz Bin Salih has disclosed.
He said the commencement of work was a sequel to the first phase of 13 megawatt which was inaugurated by the President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in August.
“Work has also commenced for the construction of phase II of the Kaleo plant to add 15 Megawatt peak. When completed, it will make the region the largest contributor of solar energy to the national energy mix,” he said.
Taking his turn at the State of the Region Report, a media engagement platform put together by the Ministry of Information for Regional Ministers to provide updates on developments in their regions, Dr Salih said the completion of the project would help transform the region and make it “a hub of economic activities in the country.”
He said beyond augmenting the energy needs of the country, it would help create jobs, improve livelihoods and alleviate poverty in the region.
President Akufo-Addo in August this year inaugurated phase I of the project which was to generate a total of 13 Megawatts of solar power.
The project was the second utility-grid-connected solar project in the country and together with the Lawra solar project also inaugurated by the President last year, the systems would provide a combined generating capacity of 22.8-megawatt peak.
It would complement the national grid in Wa to provide efficient and reliable power for the region.
Dr. Salih expressed delight at the coming on stream of the project adding that the projects would stimulate socio-economic activities and bring about an improvement in the lives of people in the region.
Touching on education, he said more than 33,868 students from the region had benefited from government’s flagship Free Senior High School programme so far.
He explained that the increment in senior high school enrolment in the region was due to the visionary leadership of President Akufo-Addo in making education accessible to all.
“The introduction of the Free SHS programme in 2017 saw all 35 public SHS, Senior High Technical School (SHTS) and Technical Vocational and Educational Training (TVET) Schools in the region being enrolled onto the programme. So far, the programme has benefited 33,868 students in the region,” he said.
Dr Salih said though the region was faced with the challenge of inadequate infrastructure when the programme was first introduced in 2017, the government through the Ghana Education Trust Fund (GETFund) had completed 33 new educational projects, with 11 facilities at various stages of completion in different areas within the region.
“In addition, from 2017 to date, the GETFund has completed 33 new infrastructural facilities, and 11 new facilities are in progress.These projects include dormitories, classrooms, Science Laboratories, Administrative Blocks, Accommodation etc,” he added.
The minister said strenuous efforts were being made to complete all 52 stalled GETFund projects in the region.
These projects, he said included some critical infrastructure at the Hilla Limann Technical University, some senior high schools and basic schools across the region.