Legal action will be taken against private developer encroaching on Adoato sub-station – ECG

ECG says it will soon take legal action against a private developer encroaching on its land bordering a sub-station in Adoato in Kumasi.
Electricity Company of Ghana's headquarters, Accra.

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) in the Ashanti region says it will soon take legal action against a private developer encroaching on its land bordering a sub-station in Adoato in Kumasi.

The sub-station harbouring the main power lines to the Owabi dam has some of its underground cables exposed following some construction work on the site.

ECG has warned of imminent power and water cuts to some households in the Greater Kumasi metropolis if stringent measures are not taken.

The structure, located at Adoato, is said to be sitting on the underground power distribution lines to the Owabi water treatment plant.

With portions of the power cables almost exposed, it poses a threat to the dam and residents in the community.

The power company insists the situation poses a threat to national security.

According to Ing. Frederick Kwabena Bediako, the development could adversely affect regular maintenance works.

“Should anything happen and the fact that there’s been some development on the land, these are underground cables that would require some time for us to be able to repair in the event of any puncture.

“Activity such as this would endanger the supply that we have within the enclave. Water supply is a national security issue. If there are shortages of water, national security is also threatened,” he said.

Authorities of the company say they are preparing to file a case at the law court upon the advice of the Regional Security Council (REGSEC).

“We are taking steps. The REGSEC have been here to understand what’s happening and the possible effects of any level of encroachment. We are committed to giving a reliable source of power supply to the Ashanti Region and also supplying the people within Adoato and Owabi with water.

“From our initial visit with REGSEC, we were given a litany of things to do and that’s what we are following up. First and foremost we are going on with our wall and cordoning off the property and taking a step from the directive of REGSEC to go to court and claim our property,” Ing. Frederick Kwabena Bediako said.

The Owabi water treatment plant serves as the main water source for thousands of residents in the North-Western part of the Kumasi metropolis.

The areas include Kwadaso, Asuoyeboah, Abuakwa, Nkawie, Akropong and other adjoining communities.

Unhappy with the development, the Minister for Sanitation and Water Resources, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, requested that the encroachers provide legal documents affirming their ownership of the land.

“This spot houses the cables that power the Owabi water plant. Owabi serves about half of Kumasi. We are here to warn whoever has encroached to stop it. Fortunately, REGSEC is aware of this problem and they are dealing with it. I will brief the sector minister for Energy so that this doesn’t happen.

“Again, we are not saying ECG or Ghana Water has the right to take anyone’s property. Whoever owns the spot will have to produce genuine papers because ECG tells us they own the plot. Their installation is on it,” she said.

The sector minister added that; “we need to think about the larger picture, that if I singlehandedly encroach to deprive half of Kumasi of its water supply, I think I would have done a great disservice to the nation and to the good people of this region. We cannot afford to let this happen. We hope there will be an amicable solution to this so that we can protect the national asset that ECG has put in”.

Meanwhile, human encroachment has eroded portions of the forest cover at the dam, exposing the water to direct sunlight.

In a bid to avoid drastic evaporation of the water resource, the ministry, together with officials of the Ghana Water Company in the region planted some trees along the water body.

The sector minister however cautioned encroachers around the water treatment plant to stay off.

“Asantehene, His Eminence Otumfuo Osei Tutu II cautioned, called the chief of the area and the encroachers. So we hope they will heed to the wise counsel and the directives and command of the overlord to stop it.

“More importantly, we need to protect our water bodies. That is why we planted the trees around Owabi to give shade to our water bodies so they don’t dry up. If it dries up, there will be no water to treat for the good people of this region,” she said.

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