President Akufo-Addo has dropped hints that the country’s energy crisis popularly referred to as dumsor is far from over.
According to the president, Ghana’s energy sector is saddled with huge debts which threaten reliable power supply if immediate measures were not taken.
Delivering his maiden State of the Nation Address yesterday in Parliament, President Akufo-Addo said attempts by the Mahama administration to solve the energy crisis that bedevilled the country led to a debt of over US$2 billion dollars.
“The attempts by the previous government to resolve the dumsor crisis have led to a gargantuan debt overhang in the sector…we have inherited a heavily indebted energy sector, with the net debt reaching 2.4 billion US dollars as at December 2016.
“I have to point out the alarming fact that 800 million US dollars of this debt is owed to local banks, which threatens their stability. Huge indebtedness of the energy sector constitutes the single major hurdle to Ghanaians enjoying reliable and affordable electricity supply.
“The cost of energy destroys businesses large and small. It destroys jobs. It compounds poverty,” the president said.
The president also reiterated that free Senior High School (SHS) policy will start in September this year.
“Education is the key; education holds the key to the rapid development of our country. If I am in a hurry, I am in a hurry to ensure that every child born in this country attends school from Kindergarten to Senior High School.
“The Free SHS starts with the 2017/2018 entrants into the public SHS,” the President said, adding “by the way, teacher trainee allowances will be restored when the Minister of Finance comes to read the budget [in March].”