ECG clamps down on power theft!! …begins nationwide checks, audit, disconnection of illegal electricity

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) yesterday deployed power visibility teams across the country to audit and check on the state of meters as part of efforts to clamp down on power theft and illegal connection.

The teams are expected to inspect power meters at both residential and commercial facilities.

One commercial facility at East Legon in Accra was disconnected and issued an appearance notice by the Accra East Region team for power theft and illegal connection.

The exercise followed the expiry of a month amnesty for all customers engaged in illegal connection to report it for rectification or face sanctions when caught.

The amnesty took effect from June 7 and ended July 20 to allow for correction of the illegality and fight power losses.

Speaking earlier at a brief ceremony in Accra to launch the deployment of the teams, Managing Director of ECG, Samuel Dudik Mahama, said the main focus of the teams were to help in recovering revenues for power consumed.

He explained that the meter audit would entail checks on the meter to ascertain whether it had been tampered with and assess its reading functionalities.

He stated that the checks would enable the power distribution company determine power delivered to a specific location and losses or revenue accrued within a specific period.

“This exercise is necessary for us to know the customers who are using our power without paying for it. We know that our losses as a company is not technical but rather commercial.

The meter is the property of the ECG and no one has the right to touch it. We get to know the quantity of power delivered to an area and the corresponding revenue or losses,” Mr Mahama added.

He asked all customers to cooperate with the taskforce involved in the exercise adding that “any customer who resists our checks will have their power disconnected by removing the service cable.”

He noted that customers who would be found to have tampered with the power meter would have 48 hours to report to their respective ECG meter office for reconciliation and necessary sanctions.

Failure to do so by a customer, he said, would give the ECG no option than to cause their arrests and ensure prosecution.

Mr Mahama noted that power theft had been inimical to the growth of the company saying it was recording revenue losses of more than US$100 million as a result of the menace.

He advised the team members to be professional and honest in their conduct during the exercise.

“Be professional in your conduct. Make yourself visible by identifying yourself to the consumer.

Let’s not allow unscrupulous persons to take advantage of the exercise to engage in illegal activities. Do well to report to your supervisors any customer who does not cooperate with the team,” he stated.

Bismark Otoo, General Manager of Accra East ECG, said the operation by the teams is to reduce commercial losses of the company.

BY CLAUDE NYARKO ADAMS

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