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President John Dramani Mahama has given Executive approval for the purchase of more Smart Pre-paid meters, popularly known as ‘Usain Bolt’ meters in a deal worth US$80million.
The approval comes at a time when the government itself is struggling to address errors in the billing of consumers of electricity, especially, those using the ‘Usain Bolt’ pre-paid meters.
In the said letter, President Mahama has authorized the Government of Ghana to enter into a Credit Facility Agreement with Cal Bank Limited for an amount of US$80million for the procurement of Smart Pre-paid meters and accessories for the Electricity Company of Ghana Limited.
The draft contractual agreement between the Government of the Republic of Ghana and Cal Bank has been prepared to that effect, a copy of which has been sighted by Kasapafmonline.com.
The said document was drafted by the Ministries of Finance and Power and jointly signed by Hon. Cassiel Ato Forson and John Abu Jinapor, both deputy Ministers of the respective ministries, and is currently before Cabinet for approval following which it would be sent to Parliament for same.
It is the belief of Government that the pre-paid meters when procured would contribute towards ECG’s drive to reduce commercial losses, increase cash flow for smooth operation and maintenance of the network, and eliminate indebtedness of MMDAs since most of its revenues would be collected upfront.
“Furthermore, taking into consideration the number of new thermal plants to be commissioned, coupled with the diminishing role of hydro in the power generation mix, Government intends to position ECG to effectively collect its bills from customers timely, and therefore the need for this project”, the draft document in part read.
Once the contract is approved by Cabinet and Parliament, the Government will then enter into an on lending agreement with the Electricity Company of Ghana to establish an account in to which an agreed percentage of revenues will be lodged for the purpose of debt service payment.