Government will entirely cover the bills of low-income consumers of electricity in the country for April, May and June, President Nana Akufo-Addo has announced.
According to him, other consumers who fall outside of this class will also enjoy a 50 percent reduction in the cost of electricity for the same period.
Addressing the nation in his sixth national address on Thursday, 09 April 2020, President Nana Akufo-Addo said this is part of measures to bring relief to Ghanaians in the fight against COVID-19.
“We have decided on further measures of mitigation for all Ghanaians for the next three months of April, May and June. Government will fully absorb electricity bills for the poorest of the poor, that is, lifeline consumers. Free electricity for persons who consume 0-50 kilowatt hours per month for this period. In addition, for all other consumers, residential and commercial, government will absorb 50 percent of the electricity bills for this period using your March 2020 bill as your benchmark,” he said.
The President further urged Ghanaians to be disciplined in the use of these utilities.
“This is being done to support industries, enterprises and the service sector in these difficult times and to provide some relief for households. Nevertheless, I urge all Ghanaians to exercise discipline in their use of water and electricity,” he added.
Earlier this week, President Nana Akufo-Addo in his fifth national address on Sunday, April 5, 2020, announced that the government will take care of the water bills for all Ghanaians for the next three months as the nation observes a partial lock-down.
He also announced that water tankers, both, publicly and privately owned are being mobilized to ensure the supply of water to vulnerable communities.
Following the outbreak of the novel Coronavirus in the country, there have been calls from many individuals and groups asking the President to absorb some basic amenities in the country, including electricity tariffs.
Key among them were the Minority in Parliament and former President John Mahama who argue that absorbing the tariff will help ease the burden on Ghanaians amidst the COVID-19 outbreak.
The Management of the Ghana Water Company Limited also introduced a ‘strategic water supply-demand management plan” in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.
As part of its new strategy, it has arranged with “other institutions like the NADMO [National Disaster Management Organisation], National Security and other agencies with water Tankers to support our fleet of tankers in the delivery of water to critical areas.”
The new plan is to determine water volumes that need to be supplied in order to meet the various demands of the general public and that of other essential institutions during the outbreak.
Reduce Electricity tariffs
Also, a Research and Public Policy Think Tank called on the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) to review electricity tariffs for all classes of electricity consumers to reflect the current cost of generation in the electricity power mix.
“In the light of the falling prices of the key input fuel for power generation on the world market, it is fair and reasonable for the PURC to consider immediate review of electricity tariffs to give relief to businesses and consumers.”