July 19, 2024
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Pay the $20m owed WAPCo to prevent full-blown power crisis – Minority tells government

The Minority in Parliament has called on the government to settle the $20 million dollars owed to the West African Pipeline Company (WAPCo) to prevent a full-blown power crisis in the country.

This follows persistent power outages experienced in parts of the country.

GRIDCo in a statement on Thursday, October 26 explained that a gas supply shortage has resulted in a 550MW shortfall in power supply at peak time and that parts of the country would experience outages.

But speaking to JoyNews, MP for Bongo, Edward Bawa blamed the recent persistent power outages on the government’s indebtedness to the tune of $20 million owed WAPCo.

He therefore suggested that the government has some sort of arrangement with WAPCo to solve the issue.

“Government must find a way or make an arrangement with as to how that can be paid. If WAPCO begins to have some comfort that the government has kept in touch to do the payment, then, I believe that it will work.

“Government must be working to see how they can give WAPCo some level of comfort to continue transmitting gas from Obuasi to Tema or else we are going to be in trouble. If the gas does not come, what it simply means is that the plants cannot run because they use fuel. And if they cannot run, you’d have that ‘dumsor‘,’” he said.

The member of the Mines and Energy Committee of Parliament explained why WAPCo has decided to cut the gas supply due to this debt.

According to him, WAPCo has not been paid since January 2023, which has led to the accumulation of bills.

“Now the question you would ask is whose liability is it? It is true that if you look at ECG, they do not have a healthy access or guarantee to be able to always go into arrangements with power or gas utilities so GNPC stood in as a guarantee for ECG.

“So ECG has to pay WAPCo but unfortunately because for almost 13 months now the cash waterfall mechanism where all the monies that ECG collects after selling power is put for it to be distributed among the utility mechanism is no longer working, ECG is unable to pay the liability,” he explained.

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