ECG board members fined GH¢5.8m over ‘dumsor’ timetable

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The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) has imposed a fine of GHC 5,868,000.00 on members of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) board who served from January 1 to March 18, 2024.

The fine was imposed on them for violation of Regulation 39 of L.I. 2413 which required ECG to offer prior notification to consumers before any power interruption.

The development comes after the PURC in a March 18 letter directed the ECG to issue a load-shedding timetable by April 2, 2024.

PURC among other things asked the ECG to submit the total number of planned outages that it undertook between January and March. However, the power distribution company refused to heed the directives.

The PURC in a letter on Monday, April 15, said its analysis of the data submitted showed that 4142 outages were carried out within the period.

“The Commission established from its analysis of data submitted by ECG that there were 4142 outages to consumers within ECG’s operational areas between January and March 2024. Out of this number, 165 representing 3.98% of the total outages were ECG-planned outages. Further analysis showed that of the 165 ECG planned outages, 40 were supported by public notices, while there were no notices for the remaining 125 outages.

“Further, 38 of the 40 notices did not comply with the requisite three-day statutory notice prescribed under Regulation 39 of L.I. 2413. This indicates that in 163 instances of planned outages, ECG did not comply with the law.”

The PURC has therefore imposed 3,000 penalty units on ECG for each breach it committed. It added the fine be imposed on ECG’s board members due to ownership structure.

“For failure to comply with the 3-day statutory notice required under Regulation 39 of L.I. 2413, the Commission in accordance with Regulation 45 of L.I. 2413, hereby imposes a regulatory charge of 3,000 penalty units on ECG for each of the 163 breaches, amounting to Five Million, Eight Hundred and Sixty-Eight Thousand Ghana Cedis (GHS 5,868,000.00).

“The Commission has determined that having regard to the nature of ECG’s ownership and business, the imposition of the penalty of Five Million, Eight Hundred and Sixty-Eight Thousand Ghana Cedis (GHS 5,868,000.00) on ECG would be counter-productive, as payment from ECG’s revenue would have a rebounding adverse effect on quality of service and consumers who pay tariffs to the company,” the letter noted.

The nine board members, according the PURC have up to May 30, 2024, to pay the fine “into a dedicated fuel account under the joint control of the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Finance.”


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