Agyarko’s criticism of ECG needless - ISODEC

Agyarko 1 Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko

Wed, 17 May 2017 Source: classfmonline.com

The criticism levelled against the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) by Energy Minister Boakye Agyarko at the National Policy Summit which ended on Tuesday May 16 was unnecessary, Dr Steve Manteaw, Campaign Coordinator for the Integrated Social Development Centre (ISODEC), has said.

According to him, the minister made the comments at a time stakeholders including government representatives in the energy sector were sitting around the table discussing the problems at ECG and to find the solutions to those problems.

Mr Agyarko, at the event, said among other things: “The last time I checked, ECG, for example, had a negative working capital of GHS2billion.”

He indicated that some of the “receivables [of the company] go back to six years and if somebody owes you money and haven’t paid in six years the chance of collecting that money is either slim or none.”

He underscored the need to support the companies financially and also ensure efficiency in power distribution.

These comments infuriated the Public Utilities Workers Union (PUWU). PUWU said the Minister’s comments, “are very much regrettable, and as workers of the company, we find it very unfortunate that at such a critical stage in the life of ECG, the sector Minister will make such sweeping statements”.

Commenting on this development in an interview with Chief Jerry Forson, host of Ghana Yensom, on Accra100.5FM on Wednesday May 17, Dr Manteaw said although there are a myriad challenges bedevilling the state power distributor, it was out of place for the minister to have criticised the company at the forum because there is an ongoing discussion of the problems among stakeholders.

He said: “There is discussion ongoing between the various stakeholders in the power sector on the ECG concession arrangement and other matters relating to the company. And so, as this meeting is ongoing there was no need for the minister to have made those comments especially on a platform that did not give opportunities for the ECG to respond.

“That does not mean there are no problems at ECG, there are, but those issues are being discussed at a stakeholders’ meeting and so there was no need to go and demonise the company at a time we are sitting around the table to look for the way forward.”

Source: classfmonline.com