The Electricity Company of Ghana, (ECG) has asked its customers to pay its debt or get disconnected.
That is the message the company has for defaulting companies, private and public customers as it undertakes an ambitious programme to recover GH₵5.7 billion owed by its customers.
Private manufacturing industries and mining firms are the highest debtors, followed by some government institutions.
The Energy Ministry, which has a supervisory role over ECG, has already been affected by the exercise as its power supply was allegedly disconnected last Friday over unpaid bills.
Managing Director of the ECG, Samuel Mahama says the Energy Ministry has entered into a deal to resolve its indebtedness.
“I don’t want the issue of 5.7 billion in debt to be overcrowded by my issue with my mother Ministry. There was a conversation, there was an understanding – matter solved. Let’s move forward, let’s look at the plusses from that and the fact that dialogues were had and the problems were solved…,” he said in an interview on Joy FMs Super Morning Show on Monday.
According to him, the Energy Ministry was the right place to start the exercise because it offered a shing example. He pointed out that if the Energy Ministry and ECG had to sit down to resolve a problem, “then no one is untouchable.”
Mr. Mahama noted that a chunk of the debts are owed by industries.
ECG on Monday undertook mapping of the areas to concentrate on for the disconnection exercise to start.
Mr. Samuel Mahama is emphatic that no intervention from any quarters will get them to stop the exercise.
“No ECG staff is mandated to collect cash. It is a cashless exercise because of the new platform that we have. They are well equipped to generate a pay-in slip for you to go to the nearest bank and pay, they are well equipped to generate your payment for you to receive a notification to pay by MoMo, Vodafone cash etc or bank card.
“There are going to be a lot of disconnections, I know because I have a feeling some people may try to leverage on one thing or the other,” he said.
Meanwhile, JoyNews’ James Avedzi reported that Parliament has paid GH¢8.5 million out of GH¢13 million owed the power distributor to avert disconnection from the national grid.
Currently, ECG team is in a meeting with the Ghana Airports Company Limited.
At the time of the ECG’s swoop last year, the Ghana Airports Company owed GH¢48 million in arrears. They have since paid 20 million, leaving a balance of GH¢28 million.