General News of Sat, 31 Jan 201510

GWC blames acute water shortage in W/R on power crisis

The Ghana Water Company has blamed the acute shortage of water in the Western Region on the erratic power supply in the country.

The company says it is unable to supply enough water to residents in the Sekondi-Takoradi Metropolis due to the crisis.

Residents in the twin cities have had to endure acute water shortage, following the power outages, and officials at the water company claim it will not be financially prudent to rely on a power plant to enable them distribute water.

According to them, they have no other choice than to halt production for as long as power is unavailable at their head works.

Joy News’ Radio Maxx correspondent Nana Adwoa Entuah says residents are constantly complaining about the effect the unavailability of water and power is having on their daily lives.

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They feel Government is only paying them lip service, making promises and not executing the duties for which they were voted for.

Regional Manager of the GWC Daniel Momoala, says unstable power supply to the treatment plant is the only major problem they are facing, adding that barring that impediment, there is enough water in the dam for treatment and onward distribution.

“We still have about 19ft of water in the dam, there is we enough water in the Daboase River, and we are comfortable. The only major problem we have is power. When power goes off there is very little we can do – we cannot pump... we have to wait until power comes before we can pump [the water].”

He however rules out the possibility of relying on a power plant. He said previous attempts to run the plant on a power plant cost the company a lot of money and it will be impossible to continue with it.

“Some time ago we tried generator sets. About five drums of diesel an hour, if we run these motors on five drums of diesel an hour nobody in Secondi can pay for the water. It is not possible especially with the current price of diesel.”

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A customized generator set to match the 30-year-old motors at the plant means that the company will have to order new generators for them every five years in order to keep them running.

The only way out, according to Ing. Momoala, is for an effective collaboration between his outfit and the power distributors.

Meanwhile industries, including mining firms, are bearing the brunt of the power crisis. The Association of Ghana Industries says its members may be forced to lay off more workers if the situation does not improve anytime soon.

Officials of the Electricity Company of Ghana have declined to comment on the situation.

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