Assin Central Member of Parliament, Kennedy Agyapong, has asked President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo and Energy Minister Dr. Matthew Opoku Prempeh to act against the high tariffs introduced by the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC).
In his view, the high electricity prices are threatening the survival of businesses in the country, a situation he said could affect the chances of the governing party in the next elections if immediate steps are not taken.
His comments come after the Minority in Parliament had demanded the immediate suspension of what they described as clandestine hikes in electricity tariffs by the PURC.
Ranking Member on the Energy and Mines Committee, John Jinapor, observed that the price hikes had been in force since the beginning of February this year without the knowledge of the consumers, a situation he described as insensitive and illegal.
Addressing the press in Parliament on Wednesday, February 16, Mr Jinapor who is also a lawmaker for Yapei Kusawgu said “We did our own investigations and realized that PURC has secretly increased the tariffs by very huge margins.
“The law demands that before the PURC can make this adjustment, they will need to consult the customers and consumers. Secondly, after the increment, they need to inform Ghanaians but they have done this secretly and have started charging the people.
” We the Minority members on the Energy and Mines Committee are asking the PURC to reverse the charges, their action is illegal.”
Speaking on his television network, Kennedy Agyapong said “Another signal to the NPP government and President Akufo-Addo is the PURC prices. This one, I agree with John Jinapor, PURC prices are ridiculous. President Akufo-Addo, Minister Energy Dr Mathew Opoku Prempeh pay attention to PURC. The prices are ridiculous and they want to collapse businesses. Most businesses will not be able to afford the cost of electricity in this country.”
“I don’t know the level of the independence of the PURC that makes them increase prices like that. Mr President, Minister of Energy we are heading to a ditch,” the outspoken MP noted.
But the PURC dismissed the claim that it has secretly increased tariffs.
The Public Relations Officer of the PURC, Bawah Munkaila told TV3 on Thursday, February 17 that “The Commission has not yet adjusted tariffs.”