The Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCo) yesterday cut power supply to two educational institutions in the Upper East Region over their indebtedness to the company.
The affected schools are the Bolgatanga Technical University (BTU) and the Bolgatanga Nursing Training College (NTC).
As of February 2023, the BTU owed NEDCo more than GH¢1 million, while the NTC also owed GH¢878,000.
The Bolgatanga Midwifery Training College, which owes NEDCo GH¢288,540, escaped disconnection when its management pledged to pay the outstanding bills immediately.
The power distribution company has embarked on a one-month mass revenue mobilisation exercise within its operational areas.
Currently, NEDCo is owed GH¢125 million by consumers in its operational areas, namely the Upper East and the North East regions.
Out of the total indebtedness, GH¢55 million is owed by government agencies and departments, while the remaining amount is owed by private individuals.
At the BTU and the NTC, the managements were unable to give a definite plan to pay a substantial amount of their indebtedness to NEDCo.
Instead, they lamented over the challenges which made it very difficult for them to defray their indebtedness.
The NEDCo team found their concerns and lamentations unconvincing and subsequently cut power supply to both institutions.
Unfortunately, students of the two institutions were writing their end-of-semester examinations when the schools were taken off the national grid.
In his plea, the visibly worried Principal of the Bolga NTC, William Sebil, said the inability of the institution to pay its bills was as a result of the inability of some of the students to pay their school fees.
Recoup 70 per cent
Speaking with journalists, the Upper East Area VRA/NEDCo Manager, Eugene Addo, said the exercise was intended to recoup as much of the indebtedness as possible, saying:
“The target in general is to recover about 70 per cent of the amount owed the company by consumers.”
“Any customer who owes the company is a target and we expect consumers owing us to rush to pay their debts to NEDCo,” he added.
He said the aim was not to disconnect any customer but recover every amount owed the company, adding:
“Anyone who fails to pay his or her bills will be disconnected.”
For his part, the Upper East Area Billing and Revenue Officer, VRA/NEDCo, William Asare, said the huge debts owed the company were gradually crippling its operations.
“This exercise has become necessary, since the huge debts owed NEDCo are negatively affecting its smooth operations,” he said.
He noted that the exercise was being carried out in all areas to retrieve the huge debts, noting:
“We will go after all customers owing the company until every amount owed is collected.”
He urged consumers to take immediate steps to pay their current and outstanding bills to position the company to carry out its mandate.
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