The Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) has held a tariff education at the Wesley College of Education in Kumasi, with a call on the students to speak up against the dangers of illegal mining.
It has urged Ghanaians to join the fight against the canker, which is known as galamsey, since it has increased the cost of water treatment by the Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL).
Speaking on the theme: “A Year of Operational Efficiency,” Dr Ishmael Ackah, Executive Secretary of the PURC, told the students to speak up against the menace because it is having a huge toll on the services rendered by the utilities companies.
“The reason for this rise is that it costs more time, more chemical and more energy to now process water and this is because of Galamsey. In some areas, muddy water has to be treated for consumption.
“It’s our appeal that all citizens will contribute to help educate people on the consequences of illegal mining. It is affecting all of us and unfortunately, we’re all paying for these effects,” he said.
On illegal connection, Dr Ackah noted that the challenge was still prevalent. “There are people who connect to water and electricity illegally as well. The criminal code frowns upon these practices. We call it illegal but it is stealing, so the law will deal with anyone who will be caught.”
He, however, disclosed that the utilities companies have come up with some incentives to curb the practice, in addition to the public education they have embarked upon.
Dr Ackah pleaded with both the ECG and GWCL to make meters available because it was one of the challenges facing consumers.
“I expect people to be more informed, use water and electricity efficiently and also educate friends and family members to use them efficiently”, he pleaded.
The PURC indicated at the event that gas was needed to generate electricity and chemicals are needed to process water but acquisition of these materials depend on money.
He, therefore, advised the students to use water and electricity wisely.
“Put off your gadgets when not at home, don’t leave your phones on overnight and practice other measures to help manage electricity bills”.
Dr. Ishmael Ackah also told the students that the aim for the meeting was to educate them and their teachers on how the tariffs are determined and also to show them the complaint process.
“This will enable teachers to be efficient, since some of them are living in their own apartments, where they pay electricity and water bills”, he said.