Golen Gol power project’s German consultant resigns

CHITRAL: The chief consultant of the Golen Gol hydropower project has tendered his resignation to the quarters concerned, citing the reason that his suggestions were continually ignored by Wapda, the executing agency of the project.

A knowledgeable source told Dawn requesting anonymity that the consultant Mr George, a German national, was known for his efficiency who possessed varied experience in the hydropower generation job, and had accelerated the pace of work after his posting two years ago.

The source said he had developed differences with the Wapda engineers on the site when his advices were disregarded to which they were legally bound to obey, and continued faulty construction of the civil works jeopardising the future of the biggest ever power house of the district.

Says his suggestions were continually ignored by Wapda, the project’s executing agency

The source said the diversion point in the intake of the power channel had been damaged by the flash floods of last year and the consultant’s technical advice was outrightly ignored in the restoration process some months ago.

He said the consultant proposed the passage of the transmission line through the Lowari tunnel instead of Lowari Pass to cut its length short by 25 kilometres but the Wapda engineers turned it down allegedly for the undue benefit of the contractor of the line.

“At this point, the consultant had developed serious differences with the executing agency of the tunnel and decided to quit the job,” the source said.

Quoting the outgoing consultant, the source said the prime minister had been misinformed by Wapda that the completion of Golen Gol project would take place by June next year which was not possible, while the factual position was that the first of its three units was likely to be ready for reliability test by Dec 2017.

The source said that the tunnel engineer of the project had been assigned the additional charge of consultant whose eligibility for the job, he added, was being questioned by the technical quarters.

When the project director Engineer Javed Afridi was contacted to know his version, he confirmed to Dawn the resignation of the consultant but said that he had resigned on personal grounds and had no differences with Wapda.

“After assuming charge of my present assignment, I have always acted upon his (consultant’s) technical advices which were binding on us,” said Mr Afridi. — source

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