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ECG ordered to pay over GH¢1 million compensation to customers affected by pre-paid challenges

BY: Jasmine Arku
Flashback: Some customers of the ECG who besieged the company's premises due to their inability to purchase credit
Flashback: Some customers of the ECG who besieged the company's premises due to their inability to purchase credit

The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) has ordered the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to pay compensation to pre-paid customers in Achimota, Korle-Bu, Dansoman and Kaneshie who were unable to buy credit for their meters in December last year.

A statement released on Thursday and signed by the Executive Secretary of the PURC, Mami Dufie Ofori, said the compensation had become necessary because the ECG violated its statutory obligations stated in Regulation 6 (2) (i) of the Electricity Supply and Distribution LI1816.

Regulation 6 (2) (i) states that the ECG shall ensure that facilities for the purchase of units for prepayment meters are available at all of its customer service centres between the hours of 8.00 a.m. to 5.00 p.m. each working day.

The PURC has therefore ordered the ECG to pay a total compensation of GH¢1, 927,620.45 to the 41,000 residential and non-residential customers within the affected districts.

Below is the full statement from the PURC

The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC), has ordered the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) to pay compensation to the affected prepayment customers in Achimota, Korle- Bu, Dansoman and Kaneshie who were unable to purchase electricity units from December 3- 12, 2017.

Subject of violation:

  • Failure to provide facilities for vending of electricity credit to customers on its prepayment meter system in the affected areas (Achimota-Korle-Bu-Dansoman and Kaneshie) from December 3-12, 2017, contrary to its statutory obligations stated in Regulation 6 (2) (i) and (j) of the Electricity Supply and Distribution LI1816.
  • Slow response to customers and the public.
  • Late and unsatisfactory response to related regulatory queries.

The Commission through its regular monitoring of utility service provision, became aware on December 4, 2017 of the inability of the ECG customers in Achimota, Korle-Bu, Dansoman and Kaneshie Districts of Accra to purchase electricity units.

The Commission undertook preliminary investigations into the matter on December 4, 2017 and further directed ECG to submit technical and operational information on the Prepayment System and its failure. ECG was also given an opportunity to answer questions and explain the circumstances of the incident to the Commission.


Having investigated the matter, reviewed data submitted by the ECG including correspondence, minutes, incident reports, BOT contract and system documentation, the Commission arrived at the conclusion that there was a violation on the part of the ECG.

ECG has therefore been ordered to pay compensation to its affected customers for loss suffered as a show of good customer service. The compensation is based on the average energy lost to each customer category as a result of the prepayment failure for 10 days and does not affect the Service Charge or other charges.

The Commission orders that ECG shall pay the compensation to the affected customers in the form of one-time electricity credit effective February, 2018 energy consumption, and that by March 1, 2018 each affected customer shall have been appropriately compensated and evidence submitted to the Commission by ECG on or before March 5, 2018.
 
On the basis of 41,000 residential and non- residential customers within the affected districts, the total compensation payable is One Million, Nine Hundred and Twenty Seven Thousand, Six Hundred and Twenty Ghana Cedis and Forty Five Ghana Pesewas (GHS1, 927,620.45). Details of the compensation payment are presented below:
Customer Class

Compensation payable by ECG per Customer

Customer Class Compensation payable by ECG per Customer

Residential

 

0-50

1.74

51-300

26.97

301-600

98.30

600+

76.64

Non-Residential

 
0-300

20.80
301-600


108.47

601+


1,109.33


The above amount shall be credited by ECG to the account of each affected customer per paragraph 7 above.

 

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