By ghanaweb.com Columnist: Abdulai, Alhaji Alhasan
From where I stand, I can say that almost all people in the cities and rural Ghana are happy with the current state of electricity supply. There has not been Dum Sor for most parts of Ghana in the past few days with the hope that load shedding and Dum Sor might be getting done with forever. Dr Kwabena Donkor must hold on and not jump with joy to rely on his 90% success rate yet as the people mark his examination scripts against his promise to end Dum Sor or load shedding by the end of this month. However If the situation remains the same it is my belief that a great number of people in government and private establishments, including furniture makers , hairdressers and small and medium industries would be able to plan their programs without the fear of suffering disruptions due to unannounced power cuts. However we are not out of the woods yet for we have been warned to brace ourselves for increase in tariffs. This means that we have to prepare to pay some 50 per cent more on our electricity at home and industrial and commercial set ups. However the trade union and professional association leaderships are fighting against this move assigning the poor service of ECG and difficulties faced by workers, therefore time would tell what happens whether or not the people would be forced to pay more on electricity. For now we are happy to be enjoying all day round power supply. Our advice to the Electricity Company of Ghana which is up for Public Private Partnership approved by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) is simple. Many apart from domestic users most of who pay regularly industrial and government outfits owe the ECG huge amounts of money which is no secret to the government, people of Ghana and the international community. We don’t need rocket science or the services of an investigative reporter, but good tactical approach to unearth the huge hidden cash . If recovered the amounts are enough to finance the operation of the ECG and its collaborators for some time to come. Again my advice is that the ECG must do all it can to intensify its plan to provide all government offices, schools and industrial set ups with pre paid meters. This would put the ECG in a position to collect amounts on all power sold to most organizations in the country. One other issue that needs urgent attention is the illegal connections and the illegal distribution of power by some consumers to other people in return for cash. Some of these people have been arrested giving indication that this practice is widespread and must be checked . Some industrial and domestic , commercial outfits are enjoying power without paying for it because the ECG has not given them bills to pay up. Again the only way to catch up with the illegal connectors of power in our communities and offices is to embark on automation program to get all those connected to electricity to be under surveillance from a computer in a central point. This way any illegal connection would be detected easily. While squeezing money from domestic and commercial /industrial consumers there is the need for the ECG to pay attention to the electrify needs of the less privileged people such as prisoners, children’s homes dwellers ,those in home for the handicapped and those in some medical centers. Though the government is required to pay the bills of some the above mentioned, most of the organizations do suffer power cuts intermittently for obvious reasons. Some of the organizations particularly the prisons were forced to rely on the use of generators which have proved very expensive. Power supply is to most people getting normal in most parts. However the ECG and its partners must do well to win the confidence of consumers.
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