As 50% of ECG customers engage in power theft
It has emerged that 50% of Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) customers are engaged in power heft.
Customers intentionally steal power
A large number of people intentionally steal power just because they do not want to pay for power.
28% losses equivalent to GH₵2.8bn
Each year, ECG records 28% losses estimated at GH₵2.8 billion.
10% of loses due to power theft
Power theft alone accounts for 10% of the losses.
Power theft costs GH₵1bn each year
It means that the 50% of ECG customers who steal power cause GH₵1 billion loss to ECG each year.
Power theft threatens ECG’s existence
Managing Director of ECG Samuel Dubik Mahama told senior media practitioners that power theft threatens the existence of ECG.
Accra East loses GH₵2m a month
For Accra East Region operational area alone, ECG loses estimated GH₵2 million monthly due to usage of sub-standard meters.
20, 000 illegal meters discovered in Accra East
The estimated 20, 000 illegal meters in circulation in the region had been identified to have come from neighbouring Togo and were totally different from meters coming from the Ministry of Energy and ECG.
ECG has 4.5m customers and counting
ECG has so far established the existence of 4.5 million customers with prepaid and postpaid being 50 per cent each and the count continues.
3 out 5 prepaid customers steal power
The Company has discovered that out of five prepaid customers, three are not paying the right amount.
3 out of 5 postpaid customers steal power
In the same vein, out of five postpaid customers, three are not paying for power consumed because they engaged in illegal connection.
This is because; such customers are stealing power through bypassing power and evading the meter.
Tapping of service lines to the customers’ premises
The widely used method to steal ECG power is meter bypassing and tapping of service lines to the customers’ premises.
Tampering with meters
These meters, even with security considerations, are basically tampered with by meter bypassing and tapping of service lines to the customers’ premises.
Using magnets to lower meter rotation
To temper with this meter, fraudsters place large magnets at sides of the meter to lower the rotation of the aluminium disc, thereby drastically reducing the amount of electricity consumed.
Inserting a magnetic needle to stop or slow the rotating disc
The other method is drilling a hole through the plastic case of the meter and inserting a magnetic needle to stop or slow the rotating disc.
Using contactor to cover up tapping of service lines
Some unscrupulous electricians have also developed a method that uses a contactor (an electromechanical device), which makes tapping into the service lines unnoticed by the utility operators even during an inspection.
GH₵2.5 billion debt recovered
Mahama announced that ECG has recovered over GH₵2.5 billion out of the over GH₵5.7 billion debt customers owe.
Nationwide revenue mobilisation exercise
This is the outcome of the ongoing nationwide revenue mobilisation exercise to recover all unpaid bills.
One month exercise
The exercise, which will last for a month, targets domestic users, businesses, organisations, ministries, departments and state agencies for power already consumed.
GH₵500m to offset debt of soldiers, police, others
According to Mahama, GH₵500 million was used to off-set debt of some public institutions including GH₵200m for Ghana Armed Forces (GAF), Ghana Police Service GH₵120 million among others.
Plans to offset GH₵1.2bn debt of MDAs with GRA
He announced that ECG is considering GH₵1.2 billion tax offset using the debts of some state institutions to clear tax obligation owed Ghana Revenue Authority (GRA).
ECG can be worth GH₵2bn a month
Mr Mahama is optimistic that if all consumers pay their bills, ECG will be worth GH₵2 billion a month company.
100% revenue losses
The ECG MD noted that at the time he assumed office, the company was making about GH₵125 million a month and recording over 100% revenue losses.
End-to-end digitalization to curb revenue losses
To address revenue losses, he implemented end-to-end digitalization which has increased revenue significantly.
Bulk vendors increase from 400 to over 1,000
As part of the reforms, he said bulk vendors increased from 400 to over `1,000 leading to revenue increase.
Quota vending rises from GH₵100m to GH₵200m a month
Mahama revealed that revenue from quota vending rose from GH₵4.6 million to GH₵13 million a day which translates into a monthly increase from GH₵100 million a month to over GH₵200 million a month.