PURC Advices Companies To Adopt Liberal Way For Paying Bills

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PURC
PURC

Dr Ismael Ackah, the Executive Secretary of the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC), has appealed to companies to devise a liberal method to enable customers to pay for their bills.

He said the high cost of metres and connection charges as well as other bills were serving as disincentive and barriers to many customers, especially private developers.

Dr Ishmael Ackah, made the appeal when he paid a working visit to the Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCO) and the Ghana Water Company in Wa.

He interacted with management of the services companies to learn of their challenges, plans and measures instituted to improve their services.

The visit was also to enable the PURC to look at the development plans of the utilities with the aim of supporting them to deliver quality services to their customers successfully without any hindrances.

The PURC Executive Secretary noted that the Ghana Water Company in the Upper West Region, unlike the others, has a peculiar challenge regarding financial support from other civil society organisations and nongovernmental organisations.

He appealed to water-related civil society organisations and non-governmental organisations to extend their support to the company to ease some burden from customers who were finding it difficult to pay for the high cost of connection charges.

He said one of the main challenges facing the Ghana Water Company was the limited distribution network and the high connection charges, which some of the customers were unable to pay.

Dr Ackah said the PURC was to ensure that customers get satisfactory services, and the companies were also financially viable and progressive to deliver.

“The PURC is working assiduously to ensure that the utilities are financially viable to provide quality services to the clients,” he assured.

He said the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC) would organise training workshops for the workers of the utilities to help improve on their skills to enhance the provision of quality service delivery to clients.

According to him, the PURC had also developed a WhatsApp platform where it interacts with management of the utilities to resolve challenges promptly and regularly.

Madam Serena Kwakye-Mintah, the Upper West Regional Chief Manager of the Ghana Water Company, announced that the Wa Water Treatment Plant at Jambusso has a production capacity of 15,000 cubic litres and was doing about 4,000 cubic litres due to a limited pipeline network.

She said the company has 235 kilometres of network and it would embark on adding 70 kilometres extension works in April this year to extend water to other suburbs of the Wa Municipality.

Madam Kwakye-Mintah said the company had established a Complaint Centre and developed a WhatsApp platform for clients to use to address their grievances, challenges and problems they encounter regarding the operations of the company for quick resolution.

She mentioned the non-payment of bills by clients, vandalising of pipelines by some people and the burning of pipelines by bushfires during the dry season, as some of the challenges that the company was faced with.

At the NEDCO, the high cost of metres was identified as a challenge for many private developers and Dr. Ackah urged the NEDCO to adopt suitable payment methods to enable consumers to have access to the metres.

The issue of lack of communication between the company and consumers was also recognised as a challenge and Dr Ackah appealed to consumers to always have patience with the company whenever lights went off.

He explained that many of the outages that consumers sometimes experience were unplanned ones, which the company could do little about and urged them to always reason with the company in that regard.

He said NEDCO had created a platform where District Assembly Members were participating to help enhance information flow when unplanned occurrences happened.

 

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