Tema, Dec. 10, GNA – The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) says it is committed to a peaceful resolution of the impasse and improvement in revenue collection in the Yilo Krobo and Lower Manya Krobo Municipalities.
“ECG is committed to delivering on its mandate to provide quality, safe and reliable electricity services to support the socio-economic growth and development of Ghana.
“ECG is, therefore, open to dialogue and engagement with all stakeholders to ensure a peaceful environment conducive for normal operations,” Mr Emmanuel Akinie, ECG Tema Regional General Manager, said at a press conference.
He said due to the protracted insecurity, the ECG Krobo District had been closed with effect from December 1, 2021, and a new Office opened at Juapong which is now the ECG District Headquarters to serve parts of the seven political districts: Yilo Krobo, Lower Manya Krobo, Asuogyaman, Ho West, North Tongu, Shai Osudoku and Okere.
Recounting activities that led to the closure of the Krobo District office, he noted that on May 26, 2017, that office was attacked and vandalized by angry demonstrators, led by a group, Voice of United Krobo Force (VUKF) and was later renamed United Krobo Foundation (UKF).
Mr Akinie noted that ECG investigations into their resolution, which they referred to as estimated bills, wrongful overbilling, accumulated bills, and lack of Meter Reading Cards revealed that the said issues were a result of the implementation of a SHEP project to install energy meters that did not pass through the ECG.
The second cause, he said, had to do with the installation of a new billing system (Customer Management System) in late 2015 and early 2016, to replace the decades-old billing system, which initial implementation challenges resulted in billing anomalies throughout ECG’s operational area.
“These anomalies, coupled with tariff increases at the same time, caused significant national concern,” Mr Akinie noted.
He indicated that the said software issues were resolved and corrected under the directives of the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC).
He said the ECG later had an extensive engagement with traditional rulers, religious leaders, political authorities, opinion leaders, youth groups and all other stakeholders in the Lower Manya Krobo and Yilo Krobo Municipalities over the issue.
Mr Akinie said the ECG also inaugurated a Communications and Customer Education Committee on October 21, 2021, at the Zimmermann Congregation of the Presbyterian Church of Ghana at Odumase-Krobo.
He said it was worrying that after all these engagements and agreements between the people and the ECG, the United Krobo Foundation organized a mass demonstration against the operations of ECG in the Yilo Krobo and Lower Manya Krobo Municipalities.
“Preliminary investigations revealed that before, during and after the demonstration various written and verbal threats were issued against ECG Staff at the Krobo district and indeed, against ECG as a whole,” he added.
Mr Kwame Agyeman-Budu, ECG Managing Director, on his part said the management of the ECG supported the position of the Tema Regional Office to protect the lives of its employees.
Mr Agyeman-Budu said, “the ECG has been very tolerant and extremely patient with customers of the Krobo district.”
Source: Ghana News Agency