Tue, 23 Apr 2024 Social News

Ashanti Region: ECG retrieves GHc598,666 from entities engaged in illegal connections 

  Tue, 23 Apr 2024
Ashanti Region: ECG retrieves GHc598,666 from entities engaged in illegal connections

The Ashanti West region of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) has been able to retrieve a total amount of GHc 598,666.00 from 74 entities engaged in illegal connections in the region in the first quarter of 2024.

The illegal connections were discovered during the day and night monitoring exercise, which saw the revenue mobilisation team visiting hotels, households, hostels, cold stores, restaurants and some institutions, to fish out persons who had connected to the national grid illegally and using power for free.

The exercise, which also saw the monitoring team of the company checking the integrity of meters, aimed at reducing power theft across the operational areas and gather enough revenue to sustain the electricity supply chain.

Mr Maxwel Dapaah, the Ashanti West Regional General Manager, in an interview with the Ghana News Agency, said the exercise was in line with the company's objective of curtailing power theft in the country.

The exercise was conducted at Ahodwo, Santasi, Apre, Abuakwa, Offinso, Kronum, Sokoban and Patasi, which form part of the operational areas of the Ashanti West region.

He said 74 customers were identified during the exercise as using power illegally and were surcharged accordingly for the power theft.

Mr Dapaah said some of the illegalities uncovered during the exercise included meter bypass, unauthorized and direct connections and meter tampering.

He bemoaned the negative effects of illegal connections on revenue mobilisation of the company, saying it crippled efforts to embark on projects that would help enhance service delivery for the benefit of all customers.

“As a company, we have to pay our suppliers like GRIDCO and VRA and Independent Power Producers when we purchase power from them to distribute to our customers, hence consuming power illegally prevents the company from getting money to pay these key players in the electricity supply chain,” he added.

“Again, when people connect to the national grid illegally, it overloads our transformers and leads to low voltage and interruption of power supply to our customers,” he said.

Mr Dapaah cautioned the public against illegal connections and said it was not only a criminal offence, which was liable to prosecution, but could also cause fire outbreaks which could result in loss of lives and property.

He called on the public to report people engaging in illegal connections to the ECG and support the fight against the menace in the communities.