Business News of Wednesday, 17 January 2018
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo’s announcement of a reduction in electricity tariffs for tailors, barbers and hairdressers is problematic, Richmond Rockson, Principal Research Analyst at the Institute of Energy Security (IES), has said.
According to him, the plan announced by the president is alien to the energy sector in the country, therefore, that announcement has embarrassed the president among industry players.
He has accordingly called on the handlers of the president “to save him from some of these embarrassments.”
Mr Akufo-Addo announced that from January this year, non-residential users of electricity in the country would enjoy an average of 14 per cent reduction in electricity tariffs.
According to Nana Akufo-Addo, not only has government succeeded in normalising the power situation in the country, “we now want to boost private business in our country.”
Thus, the President indicated that “from January this year, the non-residential tariff rate, which is the rate which includes all of you here, is being reduced by an average of 14%. For barbers, it is being reduced by 18%; for hairdressers and beauticians, 15.7%, and for tailors, 9.8%.”
Nana Akufo-Addo continued: “An average bill last year was GHS562 a month. With this reduction from January, it is coming down to GHS473 a month, which means GHS88 has been taken from the electricity tariff that you pay. We want to encourage private business, and make business stand on its feet.”
The President made this known on Monday, 15th January, 2017, at the opening of the 8th Salon Academy of the National Association of Beauticians and Hairdressers, held at the Mensah Sarbah Hall, University of Ghana, Legon.
But reacting to these comments in an interview with Chief Jerry Forson, host of the Ghana Yensom on Accra 100.5FM on Wednesday, 17 January 2018, Mr Rockson said: “Since when did we single out hairdressers, barbers, and tailors, to reduce tariffs for them? There is nothing like that in the ACT. People are now asking: Are we going to bring different meters for these categories of people because that communication is problematic.
“The president gave one example that he said barbers and hairdressers who were paying 500 something, this time he is going to pay 400 and something and so there is a reduction of GHS88. How did the president come to that conclusion?
“I think the handlers of the president, sometimes, they should save the president from some of these embarrassment because truly speaking if you ask any industry player, there is nothing like that.
“If at the end of the day we have residential and nonresidential and that is what we are going to do, fine. At the end of the day we are going to review and make sure that nonresidential which is normally for businesses comes down. But to single out barbers, tailors, hairdressers, we don’t have anything like that in the price build up.”