The Ashaiman Municipality and Tema Newtown are said to be leading areas where power is most stolen in the Tema Region of the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG)
Mr Emmanuel Appoe, Tema ECG Engineer, disclosing this at a media engagement said “Tema Newtown and Ashaiman are the areas that steal more power in the region”.
Mr Appoe indicated that the Company knew the number of energy units they distribute to those areas and monies accrued from its sale always fell short of expectation.
He noted that some power thieves used sophisticated gadgets to breach prepaid meters adding that after arresting and prosecuting them, they engaged in the same act after some few months.
Mrs Zita Kyei-Gyamfi, Tema Regional ECG Revenue Protection Manager, on her part said Tema Regional Office recovered a total of GHC 870,043.40 power theft in a four-week night monitoring exercise at the Tema North, South and Nungua districts.
Mrs Kyei-Gyamfi stated that the amount accrued from 601,796 kilowatt per hour (KWh) of stolen power on prepaid meters of some commercial activities in the three districts.
She said most of the anomalies identified during the exercise included meter bypass, direct connection, meter tampering, accounts on wrong tariff.
Mrs Kyei-Gyamfi explained that meter by pass was when customers use power without it passing through their meters thereby not paying the required amount for the power consumed.
Some, she noted, had also fidgeted with some components in the meter thus preventing it from measuring power being used, while others on residential account had converted it for commercial purposes.
She said her outfit had deployed the use of prepayment metering in five of its seven district which were constantly monitored through reports extracted from the prepaid system as well as facility to facility to detect such thefts.
Mrs Kyei-Gyamfi also disclosed that between January and July 2018, the Tema Region recovered a total of 1,727GWh translating into GHC2.3 million out of which GHC1.9 million was successfully collected.
She indicated that 12 of such power theft cases made up of three meter tampering and nine meter bypass were being handled by the legal directorate of the company.
The Revenue Protection Manager said efforts were being to drastically reduce ECG’s system’s losses as according to her, one per cent of its reduction was equivalent to 18 million US Dollars or GHC 86.2 million.
She mentioned that the biggest challenge facing her department was the illegal sale of non ECG meters saying the office was pursuing a similar case in the Afienya District.