The Ghana Trades Union Congress (TUC) and the Ghana Employers Association (GEA) have called on the Volta River Authority (VRA) and the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to review the new load-shedding schedule started on Wednesday.
The two bodies asked the VRA and the ECG to limit the load-shedding to 12 hours at night only to allow for productive work during the day.
“Against this background, the GEA and TUC appeal to the VRA and the ECG, through the government, to review the newly-announced schedule so that the outages are for 12 hours at night only for two times in every four-day cycle,” the TUC and the GEA said in a joint statement signed by Mr Charles Cofie, the GEA President, and Mr Kwesi Adu-Amankwah, the TUC Secretary-General, and addressed to the Minister of Energy.
The VRA and ECG announced a new load management cycle of four days, effective March 28, 2007. Under the new schedule, customer groups will go off once during the day for 12 hours and once during the night for 12 hours, after which the cycle will be repeated.
“The new arrangement will have serious repercussions for the operations of industry and most other economic activities which take place from 6a.m. to 6p.m.
“This will have a drastic and negative impact on the viability of enterprises and the sustainability of jobs,” the TUC and the GEA said.
The statement said the load management programme had been reviewed as part of the strenuous efforts to manage the current situation, following the acceptance of recommendations made by the VRA and the ECG to the government.
The VRA and ECG had said the programme would be reviewed every two weeks to monitor the impact of the measures being taken and appropriate changes made where necessary.
On August 26, 2006, the VRA and ECG announced a load management programme with the primary objective of arresting the depletion of the Volta Reservoir and facilitating its recovery.
Regrettably, the water level of the Volta lake had continued to drop at a higher rate than expected and it was at an elevation of 237.78 feet as of March 24, 2007. —