Following the Commission’s theme for 2023, “Year of Operational Efficiency,” the Executive Secretary of PURC, Dr. Ishmael Ackah, and a team from the Head office, paid official visits to the Management of Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) and Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) in the Central Region. This event took place between July 27-28, 2023.
Dr. Ackah, in his opening remarks, outlined the purpose of such engagements, indicating that, there was the need for the regulator to periodically meet the utilities in the regions to foster good working relations and to understand challenges faced by the regulated utilities in the regions in their daily operational activities to ensure the provision of quality service. Dr. Ackah also highlighted that the Commission has developed a holistic approach to measuring the utilities' performance in the regions, using the Ghana Utilities Performance Index (GUPI), which was launched in February 2023.
The utility service providers gave comprehensive presentations on their Operations, highlighting some of their challenges, such as infiltration of illegal energy meters, high turbidity levels of water at the abstraction points, as a result of constant small-scale illegal mining (galamsey) activities, meter theft, low revenue mobilization due to inability of customers to pay their bills and the destruction of distribution water lines by contractors.
Dr. Ackah encouraged the utilities to put in place measures to cut down on their losses. Key among these measures are the timely repair of burst or leaking pipes, clamping down on illegal activities, such as illegal connections and constantly educating customers. The Executive Secretary charged the utilities to conduct and enhance their public sensitization programs to cover all their customers; they were also tasked to communicate to their customers on timeously, whenever a challenge affected service delivery.
Speaking on the L.I. 2413, various speakers of the PURC team made the utilities understand the need to submit their operational reports to the Commission on time and to provide relevant answers to some demands of the regulator. Additionally, the PURC team announced that the Center for Public Utility Regulation (CEPUR) has been established and encouraged the utilities to enrol in some of the courses been offered at the Center.
Results of the 2021 Ghana Utility Performance Index (GUPI) were shared with the utilities visited, with discussions on the indicators underpinning the areas of high and low performances.
The Executive Secretary of PURC, Dr. Ishmael Ackah, Director of Research and Corporate Affairs, Dr. Eric Obutey, and the Central Regional Manager of PURC, Madam Adwoa Kesewaa Apenteng- Addo, were hosted by two (2) radio stations in Cape Coast, ATL FM, and Eagle FM, to inform and educate consumers on how tariffs are arrived at, both in the major and minor tariffs and the need for the Quarterly reviews. Dr. Ackah, reminded listeners about the existence of PURC in the region. He encouraged listeners to report leaks, illegal activities and any untoward behaviours first and foremost to the tulity service provider. However, when the expected action is nit taken, then customers are encouraged to report such activities to the Commission for immediate redress
|Consumer Education at Eagle FM in Cape Coast, Central Region.|