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General News of Monday, 19 October 2015

Source: Class FM

Pay more to end dumsor – Mahama tells Ghanaians

President John Dramani Mahama President John Dramani Mahama

Ghanaians will have to pay more for power if they want to have sustainable electricity supply and lessen the current erratic power situation (dumsor), President John Mahama has said.

He told Garden City Radio in Kumasi- Ashanti Region- on Monday, October 19 that the low water level in the Akosombo dam makes it imperative for the country to rely more on thermal production, a situation which he said comes along with additional cost.

“If we genuinely want reliable, sustainable power, then we might have to pay more for power.

“If we don’t want any more ‘dumsor,’ then we might have to pay a bit more…that is the reality,” Mr Mahama said.

Already, utilities regulator, Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC), has hinted at tariff increases. It is on a roadshow sampling views to that effect.

State water producer Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) and state power distributor Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) are both pushing for tariff increases beyond 100 percent.

The Ghana Trades Union Congress and some political parties, including the main opposition New Patriotic Party, have kicked against the looming tariff hikes.

Ghana has been battling poor power supply for the past three years due to a drop in production. The situation has been caused by a breakdown in equipment, intermittent shortage in gas supply, and low water levels in the country’s hydropower stations.

Mr Mahama, who expressed fears that Ghana’s main hydro station, Akosombo dam, may be shut down sooner than later due to the low water level, said Ghanaians must psyche themselves up to pay more for power if they want an improvement in the situation.

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