LAHORE: The Ministry of Energy (Power Division) has expressed grave concern over non-implementation of the recommendations of an inquiry report including an action against a leading multinational company for allegedly causing loss of Rs10.8 billion for non-functioning one of the turbines installed by it at 747MW Guddu Power Plant (GPP).

The Power Division further advised the Genco Holding Company Limited (GHCL) Board of Directors (BoD) to take action in line with the recommendations which include suspension of GHCL CEO as well as action against General Electric (GE).

“It has been noticed that the GHCL CEO is still working despite written orders from this division on March 31. It is observed with serious concern that the GHCL BoD has not taken this matter seriously despite the fact that the issue involves massive loss to the public exchequer,” reads a letter the Power Division wrote to the GHCL BoD Chairman on April 8.

The division, according to the letter, is also required to justify the delay in finalising the selection of the GHCL CEO which apparently has taken undue time. Needless to point out that the inordinate delay in the process might create doubt about the impartiality of the board. “Foregoing in view, the GHCL BoD is directed to implement the directions conveyed vide the letter issued on March 31, 2022 without any further delay and fail,” the ministry said.

It may be mentioned that gas turbine-14 of the combined cycle GPP surprisingly started malfunctioning in February last year and eventually went out of order. The initial investigations reached a consensus that the unit went non-operational after some of its internal parts damaged reportedly. The initial investigation was conducted by the Central Power Purchasing Generation Company (CPGCL).

Earlier on March 31, the Power Division in a letter to the CPGCL CEO said that it was categorically established that M/s GE has been grossly negligent under the contractual service agreement and therefore primarily responsible for the accident and consequent loses.

“The CPGCL, under close supervision of the GHCL must approach M/s GE to compensate for the loss of around Rs10.8bn plus cost of repair and maintenance involved in restoration of the Unit GT-14. If GE doesn’t compensate the above mentioned losses, the CPGCL under close supervision of the GHCL must legally and prudently evaluate options of black listing such services of M/s GE and referring the matter to NAB/FIA after consideration and approval of the BoDs of the CPGCL and GHCL,” the Power Division’s March 31 letter desired.

The division further asked the CPGCL CEO to complete proceedings against the then chief engineer and plant manager with exemplary punishment under rules and ensure that the necessary SOPs are put in place and proceedings for adequate insurance cover for the plant are completed.

In another letter on March 31, the division sought, in the light of inquiry report, suspension of the GHCL’s CEO with immediate effect. It also sought initiate an inquiry against the GHCL CEO for failing to supervise the operations at CPGCL since COD of the plant and then failure to get necessary actions like proper inquiry, claim with GE etc in place resulting in possible loss to the public sector plant.

“The GHCL is also required to immediately take stock of operations at all Gencos to identify shortcomings and get the deficiencies removed to secure plants from eventualities,” read the letter.

In another letter on March 31, the ministry also reprimanded the CPGCL’s BoD for completing the inquiry after a long period of one year or so. “Regarding failure of the BOD of the CPGCL to get necessary and adequate inquiry conducted immediately, which has been done now after a year from the incident, the board is required to explain why it may not be replaced,” the letter deplored.

Published in Dawn, April 10th, 2022

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