The corporate communications manager for the Northern Electricity Distribution Company (NEDCo), Maxwell Kotoka, has defended the company's decision to disconnect the power supply to St. Anne's Hospital in Damongo due to an outstanding debt of GH¢4.8 million.
In an interview on Eyewitness News on Citi FM, Mr Kotoka explained that the hospital had been given prior notice by NEDCo regarding the impending disconnection, but they failed to show any commitment or make arrangements to settle the debt.
According to Mr Kotoka, the hospital should have engaged with NEDCo to discuss alternative payment options when they realized they were unable to meet the debt obligations in a timely manner.
“Needing the power which is so critical to their operation, where they have challenges, they should have engaged us, but they didn't do that. And I heard them say that they owe GH¢4 million, they actually owe us GH¢4.8 million, and before we embarked on the disconnection, we made a public announcement that we were coming and said if you have any difficulty, you should take advantage of the notice before we get there,” Mr Kotoka explained.
Tragically, two babies lost their lives at the hospital as a result of the power cut, while three others remain in critical condition on Monday, May 22.
However, Mr Kotoka emphasized that NEDCo is willing to engage in discussions with the hospital to find a lasting solution and restore the power supply.
“The hospital will testify that when we even came to disconnect, the disconnection wasn't our best option, we wanted to engage on what we can do or what will be done about the continuous debt, but that didn't yield results. So if there is a discussion on how to address this critical issue, why not?” he stated.
NEDCo maintains its stance on the power cut but expresses openness to resolving the situation through constructive dialogue.
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