ECG ‘taken aback’ by PURC directive

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) was taken aback by Tuesday’s directive of the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) to suspend the application of its new metering system, an official of the Company has revealed.

Eric Asante, who is the Accra West Senior Public Relations Officer, said the Company was aware of the anomalies with the meters and was in discussion with the PURC over how to compensate customers.

“Although we were so surprised – because we were in discussion with the PURC – I should add that as a regulator, once” the Commission has issued the directive, ECG must comply, he said on TV3’s Midday Live on Wednesday, May 25.

He said the problems had been detected one-and-a-half month ago.

“It is just the degree of error that is overwhelming,” Mr Asante pointed out.

‘More fundamental’

Political leaders have weighed in on the issue with the Speaker of Parliament, Edward Doe Adjaho, on Tuesday, May 24 tasking the Mines and Energy Select Committee to get the Minister of Power to furnish the House with clarification.

Some members of the House (MPs) notably Majority Chief Whip Muntaka Mohammed Mubarak blamed ECG as solely responsible, raising suspicion that its staff may be sabotaging the Mahama-led government.

But leader of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP) Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo thinks the issue goes beyond the power-distributing company.

“I think the matter is more fundamental and should go further than that,” the former MP suggested in a statement on Tuesday, May 24.

“If you look at the rates we are charging, industry, as well as domestic users, for electricity in Ghana, compared, for instance, to Cote d’Ivoire, already, it puts our enterprises in a very uncompetitive comparison.”

He said the situation is making Ghanaian industries suffer “unnecessarily”.

Mr Asante has already indicated that the Company will have a discussion with the PURC on the way forward and not completely let the software go by the board.

“The fact that there is wrong billing doesn’t mean the entire software” is not good, he stressed.

By Emmanuel Kwame Amoh||Ghana

Twitter: @kwame_amoh

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