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General News of Tuesday, 15 March 2016

Source: Atinkaonline.com

ECG disconnects GES office over 10-years’ accumulated debt

The National Literacy House building which houses the Non-Formal Education Division (NFED) of the Ghana Education Service, has been without electricity for the past four (4) months due a debt of Gh¢344,000 it owes the Electricity Company of Ghana.

The amount is an accumulated bill owed the power company for electricity supply for over a decade, Atinka News can confirm.

The government issued a directive which took effect from January 2014, for all its agencies to pay their utility bills.

But the Ministry of Education with the help of other government agencies operating in the building paid only Gh¢70,000 out of the total amount due leaving an outstanding debt of Gh¢138,000. The agencies that operate in the building include the Funds and Procurement Unit (FPU) of the GES and School Health Education Programme (SHEP).

The ECG was subsequently compelled to disconnect power to the building in November, 2015 and re-connected after a few weeks after some payment was made.

However, on December 19, 2015, the power company again disconnected the power and the building has been without electricity since then.

The Ministry of Finance which has to release the funds for payment of the debt, has unduly delayed for reasons yet to be made known.

Ironically, the FPU which is also housed in the building, has a generator plant which only powers equipment of that unit. The management of NFED persuaded the unit to extend power to its demonstration room which has been turned into a make-shift office where official documentation is done.

But the staff say the room is not conducive for such purpose and as a result, those who go in there to work sweat profusely.

The development is gravely affecting productivity as staff inevitably vacate the premise after midday upon reporting for duty.