Institute of Energy Security, IES, is predicting unstable power supply across the country in the coming days if government does not resource electricity service providers.
President Nana Akufo-Addo, on Thursday, 09 April 2020, revealed that the government will fully cover the bills of low-income consumers of electricity for April, May and June 2020.
The remaining consumers who fall outside of this category will enjoy a 50 percent reduction in the cost of electricity for the same period. These are part of measures to cushion Ghanaians as the coronavirus take a toll on various aspects of the economy.
The Research and Policy Analyst at the Institute, Raymond Nuworkpor, in a Citi News interview said the already existing challenges in the sector may be compounded if funds are not provided urgently to support the roll out of government’s intervention.
“For this policy to come to effect, the government must first make available resource funding to the three entities in the supply chain so that they will be able to give us consistent power. Unfortunately, we don’t know whether funds have been made available to them and that’s the problem now because even before the President made the announcement, we understood that, the IPPs and the rest were unable to get gas supply from Nigeria because of liquidity challenges and Jubilee [field] too is unable to produce enough gas to power our thermal plants so if the government doesn’t make funds available to these entities, it will be difficult.”
The entities in the supply chain are the Ghana Grid Company, the Northern Electricity Distribution Company and the Electricity Company of Ghana.
President Akufo-Addo in announcing the intervention in the power sector, said “We have decided further measure of mitigation for Ghanaians for the next three months… The government will fully absorb electricity bills for the poorest of the poor, i.e: lifeline consumers. This will cover persons who consume 0 to 50-kilowatt hours per month for this period. This forms part of relief interventions by the state amid the novel coronavirus pandemic. Other categories of consumers will enjoy a 50 percent discount within the same period. For all other consumers, residential and commercial, the government will absorb 50 percent of your electricity bill for this period using your March 2020 bill as the benchmark”.