President John Dramani Mahama says Ghanaians must be ready to pay more for electricity if they genuinely want reliable, sustainable power.
Speaking on Kumasi- based Garden City Radio; the president said the cost of electricity will go up because the country will rely more on thermal power which is more expensive than hydropower.
“If we do not want dumsor and we genuinely want reliable sustainable power, then we should be ready to pay more and that is the reality,” he said
Ghana has been experiencing erratic power supply for many years now. Authorities have attributed the situation to the lowering level of water in the various hydro dams and the piecemeal natural gas supply from Nigeria.
President John Dramani said there is a worrying signal that hydropower which is cheaper is no longer going to be reliable.
“We might have to shut down four units and rely on only two because of the water level at Akosombo,” he stated.
According to him, (500MWs) of Akosombo is off and the Dam is just four feet above the minimum operating feet.
The President blamed the situation partly on climate change.
“Normally by this time this year the water level at Akosombo Dam should be between 155-160ft but it could not get to that level because of lack of rains this year”, he explained.
President Mahama also said pipelines are being laid from West to East to pipe gas from Ghana Gas to Tema to power the five to six plants when there is no gas from Nigeria.
WAPCo threatened to cut gas supply to Ghana by Friday, October 16 if Ghana failed to settle over $180 million debt owed the Nigeria-based gas supplier, N-Gas.
It took the intervention of a high-level government delegation led by Power Minister Kwabena Donkor to get WAPCo defer its decision.
President Mahama said, the debt was incurred in 2012 when the gas pipeline that transported the gas got burst. This forced VRA to buy light crude oil for more than one year and that affected VRA’s balance sheet after the gas supply resumed.
According to him, there was an arrangement with Nigeria to pre-finance the gas supply over a period of time and that VRA was going to keep up with current payments.
“We have paid up to July and we owe only for September and as I speak with you, NMPC Boss is on his way to Ghana,” he stated.