The Right-of-Way (RoW) sensitisation team commenced engagements with staff of the Northern Network Department (NND), engaging so far with staff at the Kumasi Directorate (Anwomaso), Kumasi Operational Area, the Techiman and the Sunyani Area.

In his opening remarks, the team lead and Director of the Land Management Department (LMD), Ing. Bismark Anane, commended staff for their attendance, emphasising the significance of the exercise. He highlighted the connection between the new RoW policy and GRIDCo’s mandate, noting that the policy aligns with national efforts to ensure a reliable power supply.

Ing. Kenneth Kafui Kportufe, Manager of Vegetation Control, led the day’s presentation, covering the following topics: Directive principles of the policy; Policy objectives; A new guide to land acquisition; Permissible use activities as well as Public education and engagement for relevant communities.

Key Questions and Answers at the NND Directorate, Anwomaso

Question 1: Where are the drones acquired to help in the RoW monitoring?

Answer: The drones are currently centralised. LMD and the Southern Network Department (SND) are working on licensing them, after which they will be deployed.

Question 2: Are there any new strategies to deal with government intrusion under the new policy?

Answer: The policy is backed by law and will be communicated to the public through a structured public education plan by the Stakeholder Engagement team.

Question 3: How would GRIDCo monitor activities under the permissible use in the policy?

Answer: The LMD is partnering with the Forestry Commission to streamline these activities.

Still on the tour, the key Q&As at Sunyani were:

Question 1: Does the RoW policy cover structures that may not be in the RoW but pose remote danger to line infrastructure?

Answer: The policy is limited to obstructions within the RoW infrastructure, but such cases will be captured under our compensation plan and executed.

Question 2: What incentives are available for farmers who are already captured under “permissible use”?

Answer: The LMD is finalising a plan that includes partnership agreements with these farmers. They will receive GRIDCo-branded farm tools and be periodically engaged to report suspicious activities.

Question 3: Since the policy is a working document, can we think of commercialising some of the lands owned by GRIDCo?

Answer: Engaging in commercialisation risks violating the legal instrument that established GRIDCo. We would, therefore, adhere to our core values in implementing this RoW Policy.

Question 4: A major problem we face as various Line Maintenance teams, is proof of compensation during eviction and demolition of unapproved structures. How can this be resolved under the new policy?

Answer: The new RoW policy will be updated to address these concerns. In the meantime, the land acquisition section will engage the Director of LMD for approval to share evidence of payment with all Area Line Maintenance teams to facilitate their work.

In his closing remarks, the Director of LMD assured participants of the Department’s commitment to the smooth implementation of the new RoW Policy. He urged all staff to identify, report, and act swiftly on infrastructure challenges in their Operational Areas.