General News of Thursday, 17 December 2015
Utilities regulator, Public Utilities Regulatory Commission, (PURC), has filed a suit in court seeking to set aside an earlier suit filed against it by the Consumer Protection Agency (CPA) in connection with the recent tariff increases for electricity.
CPA CEO, Kofi Owusuhene, popularly known as Kofi Kapito, filed the suit against the Commission (1st defendant), Volta River Authority (2nd defendant), Northern Electricity Development Company (3rd defendant), Ghana Grid Company Ltd (4th defendant) and the Electricity Company of Ghana (5th defendant), seeking to restrain them from implementing the recent upward tariff adjustment, as far as power is concerned.
The PURC recently announced a 59.2% hike in electricity tariffs. Mr Kapito avers in his suit that the power stakeholders have failed to live up to expectations and so prayed the court to place an injunction on the implementation which takes effect from Monday December 14, 2015.
Among the reliefs sought from the court, the CPA wants “a declaration that the decision of the 1st defendant to approve a 59.2% increase in electricity tariff is unfair in the light of the persistent irregular and unpredictable power outages pejoratively known as ‘dumsor’.”
It is also praying the court for “an order setting aside the 59.2% tariff increase in electricity announced by the first defendant for the benefit of 2nd, 3rd, and 4th defendants as being illegal and invalid.”
The PURC is, however, fighting back with a counter suit praying the court for “an order to set aside the writ of summons and/or to dismiss” the CPA’s suit “for want of jurisdiction and for further orders as the court may deem fit.”