Claims that artisans, namely barbers, hairdressers and tailors were granted special electricity tariff reduction by the New Patriotic Party (NPP) government were straight-face lies, according to the Minister of Energy.
Mr. Peter Amewu unconsciously exposed the president’s ‘politricking’ with electricity tariff when he stated that categorization of electricity consumers is not done based on artisanal groupings.
According to him, categories per the fourth schedule of the gazetted tariffs are residential, non-residential and Special Load Tariff for Low, Medium and High Voltages and mines.
Mr. Amewu made these revelations during question time in Parliament when member for Mion, Hon. Mohammed Abdul-Aziz asked for the bill segregation that Electricity Corporation of Ghana (ECG) and the Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCo) have for consumers.
According to him, tariffs issued by the Public Utilities and Regulatory Commission (PURC) are the same for both ECG and NEDCo areas of operation and that consumers are billed based on consumption band in a particular category and the units (kilowatt hours) consumed.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo in January announced an average of 14% reduction in electricity tariffs for non-residential users at the opening of the 8th Salon Academy of the National Association of Beauticians and Hairdressers at Legon and indicated that barbers, hairdressers and beauticians and tailors would enjoy some special reduction.
He said, “From January this year, the non-residential tariff rate, which is the rate which includes all of you here, is being reduced by an average of 14 per cent. For barbers, it is being reduced by 18 per cent, for hairdressers and beauticians, 15.7 per cent, and for tailors, 9.8 per cent.”
Mr. Peter Amewu’s explanation in Parliament however contrasted sharply from the President’s announcement, stressing that there is no specific tariff category for barbers, hairdressers and tailors because they all fall within the residential category of the schedule and therefore are charged according to the billing plan of that category.
In a desperate defence of President Akufo-Addo’s promised reduction to the artisans, however, the Minister claimed the President simply provided detailed information of beneficiaries of the residential category where consumption of the targeted artisans fall and not a specific tariff reduction for them.
By Osumanu Al-Hassanfirstname.lastname@example.org