Istanbul electricity grid executive steps aside after power cuts
ISTANBULThe head of the power grid company on Istanbul’s European side has stepped aside, following a series of huge electricity cuts.
Mehmet İslamoğlu, the general manager of BEDAŞ, has been replaced by Murat Yiğit, the head of AEDAŞ, another power grid company in the Mediterranean region.
CLK, a consortium of Cengiz, Kolin and Limak, has owned the two companies since they were privatized in 2012, but Limak withdrew from the group in October last year.
İslamoğlu will now act as a distribution coordinator for AEDAŞ and BEDAŞ while Çamlıbel, another CLK-owned grid, will temporarily take over the management of AEDAŞ, according to a statement by the holding.
BEDAŞ serves some 4.8 million subscribers in Istanbul and has faced as criticism due to repeated cuts in recent weeks.
The latest cuts were planned on Jan. 24 in several neighborhoods in the Güngören, Silivri, Bağcılar, Esenler, Esenyurt and Büyükçekmece districts of the city, all under BEDAŞ control.
The Energy Ministry has built a mechanism to detect the causes of the electricity cuts, according to media reports, adding that the ministry will sue those responsible for the cuts.
Power cuts over last weekend were reportedly caused by a cement truck that destroyed a major cable.
Meanwhile, main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP) deputy Didem Engin has said in a statement that she was dissatisfied with the answers to her parliamentary questions to Energy Minister Berat Albayrak on the power cuts and on a decision last year to abandon changing clocks in Turkey for winter time for “energy saving.”
The minister said in his response that the power cuts lasted only 2 days for a total of 20 hours and 10 minutes, Engin said, claiming that this was not true and also noting that the cuts had badly hit industries.
She also quoted the ministry as saying that claims that the cuts were planned and aimed at cutting power consumption were not true and there were no problems with power generation or in gas supplies to power-generating plants.