The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) is set to have its assets and operations taken over by new entity, Power Distribution Services (PDS) Ghana Limited from February 1, 2019.
The company is expected to inject US$580m into ECG which will see it build a new bulk station in the Greater Accra regional town of Pokuase which is expected to supply power to almost half of Accra residents.
According to the Chief Executive Officer of the Millennium Development Authority (MiDA), Martin Eson-Benjamin, while the PDS assumes the assets of ECG, it is in talks with the Finance Ministry on the way forward with regards to government debt owed ECG.
Ghana is engaged in the power compact two which is expected to inject some US$900m into the ECG. Ghana signed the Power Compact with the Federal Government of the United States of America acting through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), an independent United States government agency, on the sidelines of the US Africa Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC on August 5, 2014.
Under the Power Compact, six projects are being implemented to address the root causes of the unavailability and unreliability of power in Ghana.
The project includes ECG Financial and Operational Turnaround Project; NEDCo Financial and Operational Turnaround Project; Regulatory Strengthening and Capacity Building Project; and Access Project.
The rest are Power Generation Sector Improvement Project; and Energy Efficiency and Demand Side Management Project.
Meralco Consortium, a Philipino power company which won the bid to take over the operations of ECG for 20 years under a concessionaire agreement is the major shareholder in PDS.
It is expected with PDS’s emergence, leakages and financial losses in the system will be contained with assurances given workers of ECG they will not lose their jobs under the Power Compact Two except if they engage in criminal conduct.
At a crunch meeting between PDS, ECG officials, government and other stakeholders, it was agreed the takeover be suspended for a few issues to be ironed out in a few weeks before finalization of the deal.
By Michael Eli Dokosi/goldstreetbusiness.com