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The process of getting electricity connections for newly constructed buildings is a long and tedious one. The old method involved contacting the Government Electrical Inspectorate (GEI) for approval of new buildings. Once the building is approved, a certified electrician is contracted to work on the electrical wiring. Once the wiring installation is completed, more time is then needed for the board’s approval. A Government Inspector will then visit the building and verify that the wiring is in order. It is only after all these steps are completed that a building or home would get the required electrical connection.
New Changes Proposed
The country is trying its best to improve its global rankings under various criteria. Finding an alternative to the current method could lead to many advantages. Most importantly, the citizens would be happy due to the reduction in time taken for getting electricity. The global ranking in the Doing Business Report, from the World Bank, would also improve. Currently, it takes about 95 days for the complete process of getting electricity connected for a house. The government is trying to reduce this time to 18 days. There have been some changes proposed to ensure that the process runs smoothly.
One of the main changes proposed is increasing the number of Certified Inspectors. These changes were introduced by the Minister of Science, Energy, and Technology, Fayval Williams, at the Think Tank meeting. The government proposes to include Certified Electricians in the list of inspectors. A database will be maintained with the names of these inspectors. Anyone can access this database and contract an inspector for wiring and building inspection. This will help reduce the time delay by a wide margin. Increasing the number of Certified Inspectors will help the problem of staff shortage. Government Auditors will be able to cross-check or verify the quality of work by conducting surprise checks on work completed.
Addition of Surprise Checks
The government does not want to lose on the quality aspect while trying to improve the speed. The auditors can penalize, suspend, or even terminate the inspectors if any problems are found. The inspectors can also appeal if they feel that they have been unduly dismissed. The new electricians will be given extra training and will have to undergo various certifications, particularly HEART certification, before being inducted into the system. This will ensure that the quality of the electricians is not compromised.