The debt owed Bui Power Authority (BPA) by the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) has shot up astronomically from $612million to $658 million, Chief Executive Officer of the power generation company, Samuel Kofi Ahiave Dzamesi has stated.
He pointed out that the debt keeps increasing because BPA continues to generate power for ECG’s perusal.
Mr Dzamesi while speaking on GhanaWeb TV’s BizTech programme hosted by Ernestina Serwaa Asante admitted that the lack of free flow of funds and delay in payment of power by clients remain a major problem of BPA.
“The greatest problem of this company is that we generate and yet, we’re not paid for what we generate. Yeah, it’s an issue and I need to talk about it. It’s like you generate 100 units and you are paid 20 units. So what happens to the 80 units? So, if the efficiency of receivables is there, I think that we can do so much. So many times our job, though is suppose to generate more power, our job is also supposed to go and chase money, and if the money doesn’t come, that’s a very serious issue.
…So we pray that the more money we get, the more projects we undertake, and Ghana will be better for all of this,” the Bui Power Authority CEO told host of BizTech, Ernestina Serwaa Asante.
When asked about the $612 million debt owed BPA by ECG, Mr Dzamesi said, “It has gone up. Now, it is $658 million because we always generating and the more we generate, they’re supposed to pay us but if, as I said, if you generate 100 units, you are paid 20 units. So the man who’s supposed to pay you 100 units is paying only 20 units, of course every month, you’ll still be having more debts to pay. So as I speak is now around $658 million.”
He however noted that a committee – Cash Waterfall Committee – has been set up to look into the debt owed BPA, as well as, draw “a financial plan” for ECG to settle its debt.
Mr Dzamesi noted that the committee has tasked the ECG to pay an appreciable amount of money to BPA at least every week to help clear its compounding debt.
The move, the Bui CEO said was laudable as it would help them pay the salaries of workers and invest as well.
“Recently there was a meeting. There is this Cash Waterfall Committee. Recently there was a meeting and at that meeting, it was resolved that ECG must be able to pay as some amount of money at least every week or every two weeks, and then the Ministry of Finance is supposed to top up so that at least every month we will be able to pay salaries and have enough to pay for our investments and this new arrangement started just to the first of August, so we’re praying that it will continue like that,” Mr Dzamesi said on BizTech.
He added that, “I’m beginning to see some positive signs and I know our minister is working very hard to ensure get more funds.”
It would be recalled that in April this year, it was reported that ECG owed the managers of the Bui Generating Station more than $612 million.
Expressing disappointment in the inability of ECG to pay the authority, Mr Dzamesi indicated that almost 99 percent of the power produced was sold to the ECG.
This, he said, was the major problem confronting the operations of the 404 Megawatts (MW) dam situated in the Banda District of the Bono Region.