The chiefs and people of Asawinso in the Western North Region have assured the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) of their support to help track defaulters to retrieve its revenue estimated at over a million cedis.
This follows a violent confrontation during a revenue mobilisation drive and mass disconnection for non-payment at Asawinso. More than 90 per cent of the residents failed to pay a total of ¢1.1 million consumed for their domestic and commercial activities since 2015.
The company said it adopted a customer friendly approach, where the revenue mobilisation team embarked on a sensitisation drive to make these customers honour their debt obligation to ECG but all efforts proved futile.
The company, therefore, embarked on disconnection of defaulters, which constitute about 90 per cent of customers in the community, and the move was fiercely resisted.
The community members rallied and attacked 20 ECG officials in their attempt to disconnect them or get defaulters to pay their bills.
Debt since 2015
The angry residents who claimed the government’s Free Electricity still covered their electricity consumption since 2015, therefore, descended heavily on them, physically assaulted, heckled and deflated the front-tyres of the company’s vehicle last weekend.
The dare situation was such that but for the timely intervention of the police the ECG workers would have been lynched. After being rescued, and with the people refusing to pay their debt, the ECG was left with no option but to disconnect the entire community until they are ready to pay.
However, considering the impact of the disconnection, the traditional rulers through the Western North Regional Minister sent their plea to the ECG to restore power to Asawinso ‘A’ town.
No violence approach
The Western North Regional Minister, Mr Richard Ebbah Obeng, after separate interaction between the community and the company called for a meeting.
He made the people aware of the importance of sustainable power generation, which could only be achieved when people paid for power they consumed through legal means.