The Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has announced that from Friday, 1 January 2021, the payment of water bills will be the sole responsibility of consumers across the country.
This follows the end of the government’s free water supply.
The policy was implemented by the government, as part of measures to alleviate the economic burden of the COVID-19 pandemic on Ghanaians under the theme: ‘Free water for all Ghanaians.’
A statement issued by GWCL on Tuesday, 22 December 2020, said: “31st December marks the end of the government’s directive to the Ghana Water Company to serve Ghanaians with water for free, as part of measures to curb the rapid spread of the COVID-19 pandemic.
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“Customers of GWCL must please note that from hence, the payment of water bill will be the responsibility of the customer.”
The statement continued: “The Minister of Sanitation and Water Resources, and the management of GWCL, therefore, wish to inform consumers and the public that the last meter reading for the month of December 2020 officially ends the free water delivery.”GWCL assured consumers that “meter readers and all frontline staff will continue to adhere and practice in full, all the protocols to protect themselves and our cherished customers, including cladding themselves in GWCL apparel, identity cards, personal sanitizers and face masks, before accessing their premises to read the meters.”
It also noted: “Landlords and Landladies can/must revert to the arrangements with tenants prior to the free water delivery, water vendors can/must resume their normal business after the last meter reading in December 2020. Disconnected customers who were reconnected to enable them to enjoy the free water during the period, as a matter of urgency, must pay their arrears to remain connected. Disconnected customers will remain disconnected until their arrears are settled in full before the supply will be restored”.
It added that “all GWCL collection/pay points are opened during normal working hours and customers can also pay their bills via mobile money channels with all the telecommunications networks.
President Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo extended the free water policy by another three months until the end of the year 2020.
The free water policy should have ended on 30 September initially.
According to the statement, the extension of the ‘Free Water For All Ghanaians’ from 1 October to 31 December 2020 was “to enable Ghanaians to continue with the protocols, especially the washing of hands under running water to help fight the COVID-19 pandemic”.