Ghana’s energy sector is blessed with several individuals, institutions and organisations whose outputs and direction keep the sector in motion, and fit to meet challenges posed by global shocks. In this article, we take a look at young Ghanaian indigenes who are making various strides in different aspects of the sector’s value chain. The Top 5 features data from the Energy Ghana Magazine on winners of the various editions of the Ghana Energy Awards.
1. Dr Ishmael Ackah, Executive Secretary, Public Utilities Regulatory Commission
An Energy Economist with experience that spans public service, private sector, civil society, and academia. He was the Regulatory and Electricity Market Expert at USAID West Africa Energy Program, Deloitte Ghana. Through a collaboration between the Ghana Oil and Gas for Inclusive and the Government of Ghana (GOGIG), he was recruited as a Technical Advisor on Energy and Petroleum Policies to the Minister for Planning. In this role, he led the team that developed the energy and petroleum sections of the 2017 and 2021 Coordinated Programme for Economic and Social Development Policies.
Ishmael was the first Coordinator of Local Content at the Ghana Energy Commission where he initiated an industry-wide baseline study before the full implementation of the Local Content Regulations. Related to this role, he served on the technical Committee that reviewed Ghana’s Energy Policy and was a member of the technical sub-committee of the Energy Sector Recovery Program.
He worked as the Head of Policy Unit, at the Africa Centre for Energy Policy, where he coordinated research and advocacy on sustainable energy management, regulations and petroleum revenue management.
He has a keen interest in energy research and served as an Adjunct Lecturer at the Institute for Oil and Gas Studies, University of Cape Coast, and the Department of Economics, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, and GIMPA. He has provided research consultancy for the African Development Bank, United Nations University, United Nations Commission for Africa, IHS Markit, GOGIG/OPM, the Natural Resource Governance Institute, the National Accreditation Board, SNV and SEND Ghana among others. He has published more than 40 peer-reviewed papers in high impact journals. Ishmael holds PhD in Energy Economics (Portsmouth-UK) MSc in Energy Economics (Surrey-UK) and a degree from UPSA. He is conversant with modelling tools such as Oxmetrics, and Eviews.
2. Prosper Ahmed Amuquandoh, Energy Expert
Amuquandoh is an Energy, Infrastructure Development, and International Trade professional, with over 10 years of combined working experience that spans academia, international development and public and private sectors. With over four years’ experience in the energy sector, particularly in the science, engineering, economics, policy, and regulatory aspects of renewable energy, he has consulted for several organizations, including the United Nations Environment Program and the Global Alliance for Clean Cookstoves and Fuels.
Amuquandoh currently serves on the National Risk Management Team for the implementation of Ghana’s Paperless Port System to facilitate international trade; and the Technical Select Committee of the Ghana National Chamber of Commerce & Industry’s Business Awards. He is also the Energy Advisor to the Integrated Water & Agriculture Development Ghana Ltd. He also works with the Ghana Energy Commission, where he helps with the development, as well as leads the enforcement of Regulations, Standards, and Codes of Practice in Ghana’s renewable energy industry.
He is also the CEO of the Smart and Green Energy Group, an energy management firm. Prosper plans to continue the promotion of renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies, as well as play a central role in the development of a sustainable electricity market in Ghana and West Africa.
His training is in Public Policy, at the University of Oxford; Theoretical Physics at the Abdus Salam International Centre for Theoretical Physics (Trieste, Italy); Zero–Net Energy Systems & Policy, at the University of California (Davis, USA); Hydropower & Sustainable Development at the International Center on Small Hydro Power (China); and Physics and Computer Science (with First-Class Honours), at the University of Ghana.
3. Justice Ohene-Akoto National Vice President – World Energy Council’s FEL Ghana)
An Electrical Engineer, an energy expert, and an entrepreneur. He is the National Vice-President of the World Energy Council’s Future Energy Leaders Ghana (FEL Ghana) and an Electrical Engineer at the Volta Aluminium Company Limited (VALCO). Justice is a Co-Founder of Maiseville Groupe Company Limited. He is the representative of VALCO at the Chamber of Independent Power Producers, Distributors, and Bulk Consumers, Ghana (CIPDIB).
Justice was a keen member of the Ghana Taskforce that historically launched the Future Energy Leaders Ghana (FEL Ghana) in 2017 and spearheaded the World Energy Council’s Issues Monitor for Ghana in 2018. In the same year, he represented the Ghana Member Committee of the World Energy Council at the World Energy Week Milan 2018 in Italy where he attended the Executive Assembly, African Regional Meeting, and other stakeholder meetings to contribute to several discussions of global interest.
Justice has been working at the Volta Aluminium Company Limited (VALCO) since 2016. Owing to his immense technical know-how and expertise in Design and Reliability Engineering, he has been able to help the VALCO Maintenance and Engineering section work on a greater percentage of their equipment reliability and operational issues. He is the Electrical Engineer in charge of the Cast House Department (value added sector), Technical Department and also the Power and New Business Section, and helped VALCO historically produce her first 100% recovery 8- inches billet (value added product) in December 2018 which was a big landmark for VALCO and Ghana.
He is passionate about the integrated Aluminium Industry the government of Ghana is keenly pursuing with VALCO as the lynchpin. Prior to joining VALCO, Justice had worked with the Volta River Authority (VRA), the Ghana Grid Company Limited (GRIDCo), and the Ghana Ports and Harbours Authority (GPHA).
4. Juliana Serwaa Adusei, Assistant Chief Technician Engineer, Bui Power Authority
A trained Electrical Engineer with nine years of experience in the Power Industry. She is a product of Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology (KNUST) (MSc: Sustainable Energy Management); University of Energy and Natural Resources (UENR) (BSc Electrical Engineering); Cape Coast Technical University (HND Electrical Engineering). She began her career at the Bui Power Authority in 2012 as a Technician Engineer Trainee and has risen through the ranks to an Assistant Chief Technician Engineer, a position that is equivalent to a Senior Engineer position in BPA.
A self-motivated individual in a male-dominated industry, Serwaa has excelled in her roles as a Protection and Control Engineer over the last nine years. She is well-organised, efficient and works hard on the right things. She is particularly impressed with the number of tasks she manages to accomplish daily and assumes an appreciable level of leadership role, especially in times of challenge. She has helped the Power Operations Department overcome daunting challenges that go to the core of Power Generation at BGS. In her special role as Protection and Control Team Leader, she has through her innovation and creativity overcome pertinent challenges whose resolutions hitherto were the preserve of OEMs’ experts.
In May 2019, she was promoted to Principal Technician Engineer having satisfied the experience and certification criteria. Again, in May 2021, in recognition of her outstanding performance, she was elevated to the position of Assistant Chief Technician Engineer, a position she currently occupies. Her interventions have in many ways contributed to curtailing load shedding in the country on many occasions.
5. Dr Riverson Oppong, Manager (Commercial Operations), Ghana Gas
With over 13 years of Global experience in the oil and gas industry with Horizon Energy Ltd, GE Energy/oil and gas (US & Ghana), PPS (Ghana & UK), and Lukoil International (Russia, Dubai, USA & Cote d’Ivoire), Riverson is currently the Commercial Manager in charge of Economic Modeling and Risk Management at Ghana National Gas Company. He is also an Adjunct Lecturer at Ghana Technology University College/Coventry University Campus in Africa, and a Visiting Lecturer at University of Cape Coast and GIMPA. He is the Section Chairperson of the Society of Petroleum Engineers (SPE) -Ghana Section, even as he continues to serve as an Advisory Committee Member of SPE Africa.
He is an experienced Oil and Gas Business Analyst with solid technical and commercial knowledge in oil and gas field development planning and portfolio management. He is heavily involved in the day-to-day interpretation of value creation potential for oil and gas businesses. His strengths include being diligent, innovative and technology driven.
Riverson holds Ph.D. in International Oil and Gas Management – Finance and Economics from Gubkin Russian University of Oil and Gas; Diploma in Earth GeoScience from Stanford University, USA; Masters (with honors) in Petroleum Engineering from Gubkin Russian University of Oil and Gas, with Masters Exchange Program in Arctic Development from the Norwegian University of Nordland; a Bachelor’s degree in Materials (Industrial) Science and Engineering from K.N.U.S.T., Ghana; Diploma in Project Management from Institute of Commercial Management, UK.
Before joining Ghana National Gas Company in 2020, Dr. Oppong worked in several oil and gas fields, including North Busachi Fields in Kazakhstan, Independence Field in Cote d’Ivoire, Djata Fields in Ghana, and West Quarna2 Gas Fields in Iraq. He also consulted for the Croatian Government on the Croatian LNG Project as a Project Economist.
In Ghana, he has been playing an active role on Ghana’s Energy Sector Recovery Program; a program that gave birth to the Cash Waterfall Mechanism, Natural Gas Clearinghouse, and P4R.
He has worked tirelessly to ensure that the objectives of these programs are holistically achieved. Dr. Oppong equally sits on Ghana’s National Energy Transition Technical Committee, where he contributes to writing policy documents to address Ghana’s energy transition roadmap. He also currently plays a dynamic role in the review of Ghana’s Gas Master Plan (GMP) and Natural Gas Pricing Policy (NGPP). Riverson has been at the forefront of public and academic lectures, volunteer programs, and government engagement in of Ghana’s Energy Sector. His contribution to the Ghanaian energy sector has earned him a ‘Presidential Outstanding Youth Prize’ in 2020 for his excellence in Oil and Gas
Source: Energy Ghana