Monrovia — Following the completion of an intensive and vigorous six-month capacity-building training, the management of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) has graduated and certificated at least 12 of its employees in Siemens Simatic PCS7 and fire service control.
'Siemens Simatic PCS7', is a computer based-solution or process that controls and monitors systems used by operational staff at LEC-Mount Coffee Hydro Plant, in Harrisburg, Montserrado County.
The training, according to Perry Brown, Senior Manager for Training and Development Specialist at LEC, was intended to provide employees with power rate solutions digitally and provides a uniform power management solution that will enable them to locate potential savings by examining the power behaviors of different operating units and obtaining information on the power plant status.
Brown told journalists at his Waterside office during a major press conference that the country is growing gradually and as such, there is a need to have potential people trained that will have access and digitally control the plant or equipment at the Mount Coffee.
The training, Brown said, is one of their strategic objectives of the management service contract for the ESBI -- the Irish company that has managed the entity for the past three years to improve the operational performances of individuals of the corporation.
He added that the corporation is not only focusing on staff increment but also capacity development that will provide sanity to the institution.
According to him, the program was developed to help improve the capacity building of employees of the corporation.
"Today, one of the benefits that came with this program is that we have an accreditation from the Ministry of Education to run our in-house training program. So LEC has been approved to provide and issue a certification program for LEC staff," he said.
The certification program, Brown further indicated, is not just limited to their staff capacity building development but also for students, particularly those from the Booker Washington Institute (BWI), that are on the LEC's internship program.
"Now, if you focus on the energy sector, you will realize that you have the value chain of the sector but the mainline has to do with generation, transmission, and distribution, where you have the engineers and soft skills part.
According to him, most of the funding that comes into LEC is mostly restricted to the value chain--focus on mechanical engineers, electrical and civil engineers and most of them are in the generation division, transmission, and distribution, commercial and technical because those are the people who make up the whole content of LEC as workers.
"This is why, as Director for this department, we want to ensure that we balance capacity building, this is why you are seeing this in-house training program here today that focus on those soft skill programs like the administrative staff where donors will not be having funding for but we can look in and provide the resources because we want to make sure that all staff capacity is balanced throughout the length and breadth of the corporation," he said.
Brown further noted that due to the establishment of the training and development department, LEC had several issues that needed to be achieved, beginning with the development of a training development policy that will help the corporation to execute its goal.
Speaking further, the Senior Manager for Training and Development revealed to newsmen that the in-house training program came about based on the lack of insufficient funding or budgetary constraints.
According to him, the program was developed to work with internal staff capacity development-where managers within the rank of high-level capacity could also serve as ToT, as well as build a team of local staff.
"Today, one of the benefits that came with that program in this corporation is that we have an accreditation from the Ministry of Education to run our in-house training program. So LEC has been approved to provide and issue a certification program for LEC staff," Brown added.
Meanwhile, the staff also lauded the management of the corporation for the opportunity provided to them.
They also promised to make maximum use of the opportunity and that it will be in the best interest of the corporation and Liberia at large.