Managing director for the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG), Samuel Dubik Mahama, has apologized for the exorbitant sale of unapproved meters by some staff to prospective customers.
According to him, he is very much aware of the operation perpetrated by these unscrupulous staff of ECG, which “saddens me”. He expressed disappointment that customers have to go through such shady and unfair deals from such persons.
“It’s so sad that customers have to go through something like this. It’s so sad staff of ECG will collect money like this and not even a quarter of that money comes into ECG’s coffers.
“I must categorically apologize to our customers who’ve gone through this, this is not supposed to be how we do business. We are very sorry, and we intend to fix this problem.”Samuel Dubik Mahama
Mr Mahama revealed that in identifying the issue after taking office, one of the main things he decided to do was to commence the loss reduction program. Under the loss reduction program, he explained that the processes of getting a meter have been structured in such a way that it is electronic.
“… The human interface has been reduced drastically, where it is only the point where the certified Energy Commission electrician and the estimator goes to the area to verify the location of the property. But it is clear that once you close one loophole, another one comes up.
“Because from one of the videos, you can clearly see the electrician, who is certified by the Energy Commission, now having to create his own group of people and they now collect ahead of to see how they can fast-track your service delivery. It’s sad, it’s difficult but it’s not something we cannot do.”Samuel Dubik Mahama
Addressing challenges in meter sales
To further address the problem, Mr Mahama stated that the ECG is “now going to automate everything from beginning to end, because clearly, we know that there are some of us who work with us that we cannot trust”.
He noted that the implicated persons are not even supposed to be on the premises of ECG in the first place, as they are people meters have been given to go and install for the customer but have found a way to deprive customers of the meters.
Moreover, he highlighted that these individuals will now divert the meter to someone else who has given them more money.
“That also distorts the information in the systems within ECG. It’s mindboggling because on one breath they seem to think that they are helping but in a different space they are not.
“If you take the incident in Accra East, the Makola one, you ended up installing a post-paid meter that was never read for how many months? So, the Company keeps bleeding, the Company is closing the gaps and the next question we need to ask is after we’ve seen these videos should these people still work at ECG?”Samuel Dubik Mahama
Commenting on how these persons are able to forge documents, Mr Mahama revealed that although the ECG has gone “very cashless” and has a system where the whole process has to start online, there are still gullible customers who fall victim to such ploys.
To this end, he encouraged customers who need service from ECG to make their way there, interact with certified district managers and district commercial officers to initiate process for the meter.
“You need to speak to people within ECG because when you speak to those outside, those are the ones who have created their own cartel.”Samuel Dubik Mahama