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‘Blame gaming dumsor’ while the ordinary Ghanaian suffers – Abigail Arthur writes

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Amidst the already challenging economic conditions in the country, the recent resurgence of ‘dumsor’ has compounded the woes of the populace. ‘Dumsor,’ derived from the Akan words ‘dum’ (to turn off) and ‘sɔ’ (to light), has resurfaced as a troubling issue, reminiscent of the power outages experienced back in 2015.

What exacerbates the situation is the prevalent blame-shifting and evasion of responsibility by those entrusted with resolving this issue.

For the ordinary Ghanaian, the impact is profound. Businesses are disrupted, healthcare delivery is affected, education is impeded, and generally, life in Ghana is very uncomfortable and unbearable. Yet, amidst this discomfort, the ordinary Ghanaian seems to be caught in a crossfire of blame games and shirked responsibilities by those in authority.

The power generators, the power transmitters and the power distribution companies have been caught in a cycle of blame-shifting. Each party points fingers at the other, citing reasons ranging from inadequate funds, poor infrastructure, to a lack of political will. This blame game has become a recurring decimal, a political hot potato tossed around with no one willing to take decisive action.

While the authorities engage in this blame game, the ordinary Ghanaian bears the brunt of their inaction. Businesses are unable to operate optimally, leading to job losses and reduced income. Students struggle to study at night, healthcare delivery is hampered, and the cost of living increases as families resort to expensive alternatives like generators.

The situation paints a grim picture of a nation in dire need of a solution. It calls for a break from the cycle of blame and a move towards taking responsibility. It demands that those in authority put aside their differences and work towards a common goal – ending dumsor.

The issue of dumsor in Ghana is more than just about power outages. It’s a reflection of the state of governance, the management of resources, and the value placed on the welfare of the ordinary Ghanaian. Until those in authority move past the blame game and take up their responsibilities, the ordinary Ghanaian will continue to bear the brunt of their inaction.

What can be done

Diversification of Energy Mix: The country’s energy mix is heavily reliant on hydroelectric power. Seasonal fluctuations in rainfall and water levels disrupt electricity generation, exacerbating supply shortages during the dry season. Diversifying the energy mix with more thermal and renewable energy sources can help ensure energy security.

Investment in Infrastructure: Insufficient investment in alternative energy sources, ageing infrastructure, and systemic inefficiencies have contributed to the recurrent power shortages. Increased investment in modern and efficient infrastructure can help improve the reliability of the power supply.

Improved Management and Regulation: The politicisation and mismanagement of Ghana’s energy sector have compounded the dumsor crisis. Implementing long-term planning and consistent regulations can help address the sector’s systemic challenges.

Addressing Financial Challenges: Unpaid electricity bills pose a significant financial burden on Ghana’s power utilities. Implementing effective measures to reduce electricity theft and improve bill payment can help improve the financial viability of the sector.

Promoting Energy Efficiency: Encouraging energy-saving practices among consumers can also help reduce the electricity demand, thereby alleviating some of the pressure on the power grid.

Public-Private Partnerships: Engaging the private sector in the provision of power supply can bring in much-needed investment and efficiency in the sector.


The writer is a journalist

Email: [email protected]

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