A policy analyst at the Integrated Social Development Centre (ISODEC), Dr. Steve Manteaw, has accused the Minister of Energy, Mr. Boakye Agyarko of only providing justification to proceed with the ECG concession as the previous government had wanted.
“I can say this without any equivocation that the President means well on the ECG issues and wants to follow this in the interest of the nation. We have heard him say that if the company is not viable, why will the investors have so much interest in coming onboard. So I can infer from the President’s position that he wants the best for Ghana.But I don’t know why the Minister is still providing justification for the poor terms we’ve kicked against. The Minister’s position is inconsistent with that of the President, because we know the President is pushing for the best in this concession,” he told sit-in-host of the Anopa Kasapa Morning Show, Kweku Owusu Adjei on Kasapa 102.5 FM Wednesday.
The Public Utilities Workers Union (PUWU) of the Trades Union Congress (TUC) has reacted strongly to government on the ECG concession after the Energy Minister, Boakye Agyarko’s claims that the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) is woefully underperforming in collecting bills owed by its consumers.
The Minister recently told journalists and officials from the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA) after the inauguration of a 7-member ECG PSP Stakeholders’ Committee in Accra that out of GH¢130 million weekly revenue target, ECG collects only GH¢50 million.
The Energy Minister also stated that the utility provider’s debt stock is currently on the rise due to a faulty metering system and avoidable employee recklessness.
But the General Secretary of PUWU, Lawyer Michael Adumatta Nyantakyi has rebuffed the Minister’s claims insisting that the Minister’s statements are not only unfortunate but are unsubstantiated facts.
Commenting on the banter between the Minister and PUWU, Dr. Manteaw told Kasapa FM that the Minister is only demonising ECG to carry on with the earlier arrangement by the former administration.
He said the Minister is whipping up public sentiments against ECG’s viability so that at the longrun Ghanaians will no longer have confidence in the state power distributor.
“His actions undermines the ongoing dialogue between stakeholders and the government with respect to the ongoing dialogue over ECG concession. The Minister didn’t state that the government itself also owes ECG, which clearly is the substantial portion of all debts owed ECG.He also didn’t state that the energy sector levy which was collected last year, not all the substantive amount was used to offset the ECG debt. In that government used some of the monies for other things. The ECG workers reaction over the Minister’s statement is justified, but If we continue on this trajectory then the good faith that underpins the ongoing dialogue will be undermined.
“Ghanaians voted massively for change because they wanted to see NPP government improve governance. We don’t expect government to go on the course of collision with interest holders, but it should rather find consensus position so that there would be national and collective ownership of the policy decision the government is taking.”