General News of Tuesday, 4 December 2018
The National Petroleum Authority (NPA) has closed down indefinitely the T-Terkpor LPG retail outlet at Afariwa Junction at Ashaiman in the Greater Accra Region.
This came after the advice of a Multi-Stakeholder Committee (MSC) made up of representatives of the NPA, Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), Ghana National Fire Service (GNFS), Association of Oil Marketing Companies (AOMC), Land Use and Special Planning Authority (LUSPA) and Department of Factories Inspectorate (DFI).
MSC has decided not to renew the gas refilling authorization in order to prevent the plant from operating at that site. The facility is supposed to suspend its operations with effect from January 1, 2019.
It would be recalled that several petitions including that of the assembly member of the Naa Amui Electoral Area – Charles Kissi – were filed to the Ministry of Energy and the NPA against the siting and operations of the T-Terkpor LPG refilling plant at the said location.
One of the concerns raised by the petitioners was that the operations of the facility posed a significant risk to two adjoining schools (Tema International School and Tema Ridge School) as a result of the hazardous nature of LPG hence their request to the authorities to suspend the operations of the LPG refilling plant.
Subsequently, the Ministry of Energy directed the NPA to investigate the concerns of the petitioners and advise accordingly. The NPA also tasked the MSC to conduct necessary investigations.
A suspension of operation letter issued by the NPA indicates that as part of the investigative process, the MSC met with all stakeholders involved, including representatives of T-Terkpor Energy Limited.
According to the letter signed by the Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of NPA, Alhassan Tampuli to the T-Terkpor Energy Plant, “During the meetings, all the various parties submitted documents covering their operations to the committee for review. The committee visited your LPG refilling plant to conduct a risk assessment of the facility. The committee also visited the two adjoining schools to appreciate the concerns of the petitioners.
“Following the visits, the MSC deliberated on the findings of the investigations and concluded that the current location of your plant poses a threat to the neighbours of the facility, especially the adjoining schools. The committee further concluded that in the event of an explosion, the consequence will be catastrophic as the population in the two schools exceeds 700. The MSC therefore recommended that the LPG refilling plant should be relocated as soon as possible to avert any population disaster.”
He further asked the operators of the plant to decommission the refilling plant by December 31, 2018.
In an interview with the DAILY GUIDE, Mr. Charles Kissi congratulated the MSC and NPA on saving lives and properties.
He appealed to the operator of the gas outlet to comply with the directive of the NPA to prevent future punishment and prosecution.