Electricity Cutoff to Parliament in Ghana Due to $1.8 Million Debt

The Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG) cut power supplies to the parliament due to an outstanding debt of 23m Ghanaian cedi ($1.8m; £1.4m).

An outage disrupted a discussion about the president’s State of the Nation address.

A video shared by local media captured MPs in the dimly lit chamber chanting: “Dumsor, dumsor”, which translates to power outage in the local Akan language.

According to reports from local media, a back-up power generator quickly restored electricity to the chamber.

However, certain sections of the parliament building were left without power for the majority of the day until the supply was eventually restored.

MPs and parliamentary staff were trapped in the lift when a sudden blackout occurred, as reported by Ghana’s TV3 channel.

The communications director of the power company, William Boateng, informed Reuters that they had to disconnect power due to parliament’s failure to pay their demand notices.

Electricity was restored later in the day after parliament paid 13m cedi and made a pledge to settle the remaining debt within a week, Mr Boateng added.

“Disconnections apply to all customers; those who do not pay and do not make arrangements will be disconnected,” he informed Reuters.

Ghana’s electricity company is experiencing severe financial challenges and often cuts off power to customers who owe money.

Lately, power shortages have escalated due to the country facing its most severe economic crisis in ten years.

According to Elikplim Kwabla Apetogbor, the head of the organisation representing private electricity suppliers, the state power company owes them $1.6bn.

In July of last year, they warned of potential operational shutdown due to outstanding debts.

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