GRIDCo pylon hackers should be found and prosecuted – Hon. Mireku Duker

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Member of Parliament for Tarkwa-Nsuaem and Vice Chairman for the Parliamentary Select Committee on Mines and Energy, Mr. George Mireku Duker, has stated that the security agencies must intensify their investigations into the recent hacking of one of the high voltage transmission pylons, belonging to the Ghana Grid Company (GRIDCo) within the Tema enclave, in order to bring the criminals to book.


Mr. Mireku Duker explained that the unfortunate incident is an attack on the nation and that it must be a wakeup call on the urgent need to intensify protection of all national assets.

Presenting a statement on the floor of Parliament on the incident, the Tarkwa-Nsuaem MP pointed out that in an era of technological advancement, there is an urgent need for the country to invest in technology, to protect and safeguard all the strategic national installations that provide essential services.

He reiterated that it must be possible for entities such as GRIDCo, the Volta River Authority (VRA), Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL), Ghana Gas, Power Distribution Services (PDS) and the Bulk Oil Storage, Transportation (BOST), to monitor all their assets from a central location by the use of technology, to enhance early detection when saboteurs invade installations.

Mr. Mireku Duker informed the House that the saboteurs of the high tension line destroyed bolts and nuts of one of the pylons at its base using a substance believed to be corrosive.

He revealed that investigators from the Criminal Investigation Department (CID) of the Ghana Police Service who visited the scene also found a hacksaw suspected to have been used by the suspected saboteurs.

Mr. Mireku Duker pointed out that the hacked down pylon fell on an adjacent tower in the process and destroyed it, adding up to two damaged pylons.

He further added that GRIDCo has estimated to spend a total amount of US$100,000, to replace the two pylons that were destroyed as a result of the havoc, and that the estimated amount could have obviously been spent on other useful national needs.

He urged the general public, especially, those living in and around Tema, Dawhenya, Afienya, Kpone, Ashaiman and Prampram, to volunteer information on suspected individuals to the police, for investigations.

Minority’s contribution

In contributing to the statement, Member of Parliament for Tamale North, Mr. Alhassan Sayibu Suhuyini, indicated that security agencies must investigate the matter to the core and arrest the perpetrators for prosecution.

He averred that political actors should not create the impression that some group of politicians are eager to celebrate power outages and score political points out of the situation.

Mr. Suhuyini informed the House that politicians should not conclude that the falling of the pylon is a matter of sabotage against the current government, and that politicians should not engage in unfair taggery.

The Tamale North MP suggested that the various security agencies and investigative bodies should be allowed to conduct their investigations and provided the relevant results.

Mines and Energy Committee member’s reaction

A member of the Energy and Mines Committee and the Member of Parliament for Adanse Asokwa, Mr. Kobina Tahir Hammond, lamented that he found it strange that individuals would attempt to destroy the country’s property.

Mr. Hammond reiterated that the installation of the pylons for power distribution is done for the benefit of the nation, and that it is strange for rational individuals to attempt to sabotage the utility providers.

He also informed the House that the issue is of national security nature and the Minister responsible for national security should conduct an investigation.

Speaker of Parliament’s ruling

The Speaker of Parliament, Professor Mike Oquaye, stated that many nations have revised their economic crime laws and Ghana must look at its economic laws again.

Prof. Oquaye indicated that it is time for the government and the various Parliamentary Committees to look at drafting a legislation on economic crimes.

He further explained that offences that underpin the economic development of the country should be dealt with by strong legislation.
Prof. Oquaye recommended that the laws of the country should be tightened, to serve as deterrent to perpetrators of economic and other related crimes, which may retrogress the development of the country.

He thereafter, referred the statement to the Parliamentary Select Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, for subsequent deliberations and report.

Source: GhanaJustice/S.Ayisi


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