Prepay water meters to be introduced in August

The Ghana Water Company (GWCL) has announced plans to introduce prepaid meters for all their customers, starting this August.
This is to avoid incurring unnecessary losses from non-payment of water bills by most consumers.
The Managing Director of the GWCL, Fred Lokko, announced this in Tamale during a recent three-day official tour of the Northern Region by the Minister for Water Resources Works and Housing to inspect various water projects earmarked by government for rehabilitation and expansion.
According to Mr Lokko, the GWCL over the years has had to struggle to collect revenue from consumers. He said that most of the consumers were comfortable enjoying the services of the company, but were reluctant to pay their water bills.
The Managing Director of the GWCL lamented that the attitude of most of their consumers had affected the company in so many ways and also crippled them from generating the necessary revenues for maintenance, rehabilitation and expansion of their equipment to meet the demands of the people in most of the regions.
It is estimated that the GWCL is not able to account for over 50% of the water they produce every month, as a result of non-payment of bills, illegal tapping of water by some individuals and companies and pipe bursts, among others.
In the Northern Region for instance, there have been several reports of violent attacks and of GWCL staff collecting bills or disconnecting people who are engaged in illegal tapping of water.
Pay and consume
Mr Lokko is now optimistic that with the introduction of the new prepaid meters, consumers could only avoid paying their water bills only when they decided not to consume water. “It is going to be pay and consume” instead of “consume and pay later”.
He regretted that the prepaid meters were introduced on pilot basis in one of the regions but had met some opposition from the public. But this time round, the consumers would have no option than to comply to save the company from dying.
The prepaid meters would be installed in every household and for individuals in all the 10 regions of Ghana where the consumers would have to pay for the water before they consume.
Mr Lokko, on the other hand, promised the GWCL’s readiness to render efficient services to the customers as it was currently working on most of their treatment plants across Ghana and also doing some expansion works to meet the demands of their consumers.
Currently, the GWCL and the Ministry of Water Resources Works and Housing are working to meet the Company’s Strategic Investment Plan by the year 2025, where water is expected to be adequately available for all.
The Company has signed several contracts to rehabilitate and expand most of the water systems in Ghana.
In the Northern Region for instance, the GWCL and the government have contracted loans of US $189 million for the Tamale Water Rehabilitation and Expansion Project, US $30 million for the rehabilitation and expansion of the Yendi Water Supply System, US $19 million for the Damango Water Supply System as well as Bole, Salaga and Buipe among others. The Buipe project is almost nearing completion.
The Minister for Water Resources Works and Housing, Dr. Kwaku Agyeman Mensah assured the GWCL workers of government’s commitment to provide the necessary support for them to deliver efficiently.
He appealed to them to continue to adopt ways of collecting bills to enhance their service delivery to the consumers.
Credit: Daily Chronicle

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