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At least GH¢200m! Cost of Akufo-Addo’s three-month free water supply revealed

Sanitation Minister, Cecilia Dapaah

Government has picked up the tab from the taps of Ghanaian households as part of a relief package at a time when an infectious disease has crippled economic activity.

It is at least GH¢200million, the Sanitation and Water Resources Minister, Cecilia Abena Dapaah, revealed a provisional estimate of the popular intervention.

She called the estimate, a “whooping figure” but said it was important that government intervened as Ghanaians battle the coronavirus outbreak.

Lockdown relief package: Minister warns landlords not to charge tenants for water bills

From its first case on March 12, Ghana has recorded 287 cases, with more than 40 recovering. While on the medical front, the mortality rate suggested the fight appears to be contained, the economic impact is proving dire.

Many workers are at home as government locks down Accra, Kumasi, Tema and Kasoa while a ban on public gathering enters its third week.

Mrs. Dapaah said absorbing the water bills of Ghana’s 25 million population was a heavy responsibility the government had taken.

‘Nobody anticipated that we would all be battling with this matter,’ she said, explaining the money to pay for the bills was not budgeted for by her ministry.

It is the Finance Ministry which is putting the money together to pay for the free service. The actual cost would be made available after more data has been collected and confirmed.

She urged Ghanaians not to abuse the water supply they enjoyed or tamper with the infrastructure of the Ghana Water Company Ltd.

The free water supply ends in June.

The company has at least 550,654 customers in all urban areas. The number represents 77% coverage of urban Ghana.

A 2019 report revealed, the GWCL averagely produces 192 million gallons per day. This is 57 million gallons less than the daily demand of 249 million gallons per day.

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