|Flagbearer of the opposition New Patriotic Party (NPP), Nana Addo Danquah Akufo Addo has called on the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) to as a matter of urgency reduce electricity tariffs.
According to him, the killer tariffs is further crippling the ailing economy making Ghanaians poorer and poorer.
“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. In Ghana, my understanding is that the tariff for commercial users is 32 US cents/kilowatt hour.
Nana Akufo-Addo’s directive comes after the the PURC directed the the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to suspend its billing system. Nana Addo Danquah in a statement said “I think the matter is more fundamental and should go further than that. The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) has ordered the Electricity Company of Ghana to “suspend the implementation of their new billing software until further notice.”
According to a statement from the PURC, the directive has been “necessitated by Complaints which it has received from consumers of Electricity regarding issues of overbilling.”
Below is the full statement by Nana Addo:
I have taken notice of today’s statement made by the PURC that the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) should suspend its billing system.
I think the matter is more fundamental and should go further than that. 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.
In Ghana, my understanding is that the tariff for commercial users is 32 US cents/kilowatt hour.
The Ivorian equivalent is 13 US cents/kilowatt hour. Again, for domestic users, we are talking about 19.28 US cents/kilowatt hour, when Cote d’Ivoire equivalent is a tariff of 9 US cents/kilowatt hour. So, you put these things together, and, already, Ghanaian industry and economic activity are suffering unnecessarily.
A large part of it is due to the taxes, the insatiable appetite of the Mahama government for taxes – 10% energy levy which is charged for both domestic and commercial uses; a service charge of GH¢7 flat rate for every consumer and a VAT of 17½% for commercial users.
I believe all of these figures can be significantly reduced to be able to bring the electricity tariff system in our country to a much more competitive relationship with that of our neighbours and what is going on in the region.
It is important for us to recognize in Ghana that, whatever we are doing, we are doing so in a globally competitive context, and if we don’t recognize that, many of the decisions we make about the management of our economy are going to put us at a disadvantage from the get go.
I am saying it is absolutely imperative and urgent that the public authorities find a way to reduce electricity tariffs in our country immediately and do so now.
A Freelance Journalist, Entrepreneur and Philanthropist. Editor-in-Chief of www.233times.com. A contributory writer for Ghanaian Chronicle Newspaper. An alumnus of Adisadel College where he read General Arts. He holds first degree in Bachelor of Arts from the University of Ghana; Political Science (major) and History (minor). He has also pursued MSc Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and Energy with Public Relations (PR) at the Robert Gordon University in the United Kingdom. His mentors are Rupert Murdoch, Warren Buffet, Sam Jonah, Kwaku Sakyi Addo and Piers Morganview all posts by: Nana Kwesi Coomson
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