Chairman of ECOWAS Electricity Authority assumes duty
Professor Honore Bogler, the newly appointed Chairman of the Regulatory Council of the ECOWAS Regional Electricity Regulatory Authority (ERERA), has assumed duty at the ERERA Headquarters in Accra, Ghana.
At a ceremony, on Friday, 15, April 2016, which was attended by the high-level executives of the regional body, Professor Bogler was full of praise for the pioneer Regulatory Council.
The dignitaries include the ECOWAS Commissioner for Energy and Mines, Mr. Morlaye Bangoura and the ECOWAS Commissioner for Human Resources Management, Mr. João José Huco Monteiro, the out-going ERERA, the Acting Chairperson, Mrs. Ifeyinwa Ikeonu and Regulatory Council Member, Mr. Alagi Gaye, as well as ERERA staff members,
He commended his predecessor and the two Regulatory Council Members for their ability to make ERERA functional, even without a model to copy from and the transitional leadership for its many achievements within 10 months.
Prof Bogler appealed to the ECOWAS Commission to extend its support to ERERA.
Commissioner Morlaye Bangoura, for his part, urged the ERERA team to continue working in collaboration with other ECOWAS’ institutions dealing with energy matters, including the West African Power Pool (WAPP) and the ECOWAS Centre for Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency (ECREEE).
Commissioner Bangoura recalled that ERERA was set up in response to the urgent need for ECOWAS to provide adequate electricity for its citizens, taking into account the abundant natural resources existing within West African countries.
He, therefore, expressed confidence that the launch of the Regional Electricity Market was feasible, though a lot had to be done, considering the political implications relating to the sovereignty which Member States had to lose for the benefit of the citizens of the whole region.
In her remarks, Mrs. Ikeonu noted the challenges of getting ERERA operational, and the strides it had so far made, attributing it to the “human spirit” within ERERA.
She urged the staff to continue to do all they could to excel, especially as the institution prepared to launch the first phase of the regional power market later in the year.
Mrs Ikeonu appealed to the ECOWAS Commission to increase its support to the institution and to “help spread the gospel of ERERA” throughout the Sub-region.
In his statement, the ECOWAS Commissioner for Human Resources Management, Mr. João José Huco Monteiro, expressed satisfaction over the team spirit and warm atmosphere at ERERA, which was evident in the hand-over exercise.
He urged ERERA staff to maintain the same spirit of cooperation in order to facilitate the mission of the new Chairman.
Commissioner Monteiro said ECOWAS would lean on the expertise and integrity of the out-going Chairperson for future missions of the Community.
The Commissioner, however, noted that ERERA’s three main challenges were institutional, financial and human resources and pledged ECOWAS’ continued support to the institution to enable it to achieve its objectives.
Until his appointment, Mr. Bogler was the Director of Legal Studies at ANARE, the electricity regulatory body of Cote d’Ivoire. He was also previously a professor of law at the Félix Houphouët-Boigny University of Abidjan, Côte d’Ivoire.
Professor Bogler participated actively in the process leading to the establishment of the Cotonou-based West African Power Pool (WAPP).
Similarly, he was involved in the creation of ERERA, and contributed in the drafting of its legal texts.
He also worked closely with the founding members of the regulatory institution, which is the first regional electricity regulatory authority in Africa.