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General News of Thursday, 1 August 2019

Source: www.ghanaweb.com

Most Ghanaians ignorant about PDS saga


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The country has been thrown into a state of debate, following the sour turn of events of the Power Distribution Service (PDS) deal which took effect in February 2019.

The ‘cover’ of power supplier PDS which was engaged to take over the distribution duties of the Electricity Company of Ghana to ensure quality service seems to have been blown following a “detection of fundamental and material breaches of PDS obligation in the provision of Payment Securities (Demand Guarantees) for the transaction which have been discovered upon further diligence by government”.

But some government officials say it is too early to point accusing fingers, as government is yet to conclude full investigations into the debacle.

While some political figures have begun a blame game targeted at some key governmental agencies and personalities, some Ghanaians on the streets of Accra seem not to have the slightest idea about what has transpired over the past 24hours.

Checks and conversations with some pedestrians on the streets of Accra by GhanaWeb reveals that very few Ghanaians have an understanding of the ongoing issue spiked by the detection of possible fraud on the part of the Power Distribution Service, Ghana.

To the extent that some people enquired from the News Team what the full meaning of PDS is, why they took over ECG, amongst several other basic questions.

To some people, this is another political technique to hoard money for ‘family and friends’ while others remain indifferent, nonchalant and undisturbed about the fiasco.

While this raises very disturbing concerns, particularly about how a government can engage the intellect of citizens who are disinterested in governmental issues, it also brings to bear the non-challant outlook some Ghanaians have developed as a result of our political systems and the seemingly ‘playful’ attitude of politicians.

Meanwhile, pedestrians who had a fair idea about the ongoing issue expressed disappointment in government for making such a critical issue slighter through their grasp for more than six months in operation.



A man the team engaged with said, “I think at the end of the day, the government should be blamed. If a government is in power and certain contractual issues don’t go on well we can blame the government...They didn’t do due diligence to whatever is it. I hear there’s an ongoing investigation, we hope it comes out well. At least we’re glad we have out ECG back...”

Another said, “I think government rushes too much in doing things, they should take time and think about the future of decisions they take and stop wasting our money...I don’t even know what the PDS is about. All I know is they suddenly changed ECG to PDS.”

Government has since allayed any public fears relating to imminent power crisis following the suspension of operations of the Power Distribution Service.

Background

In the dying hours of Tuesday, July 31, 2019, government in a statement signed by the Information Minister Kojo Oppong Nkrumah announced the suspension of contract with the Power Distribution Service, Ghana over a possible forgery of documents.

The company took over power distribution in the country from government-owned Electricity Company of Ghana barely six months ago.

According to the statement, “the decision follows the detection of fundamental and material breaches of PDS obligation in the provision of Payment Securities (Demand Guarantees) for the transaction which have been discovered upon further diligence."

"The Demand Guarantees were key prerequisites for the lease of assets on 1st March 2019 to secure the assets that were transferred to the concessionaire.”

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