Your Most Reliable and Dependable Source

Residents in Tamale demonstrate against VRA new prepaid meters installation


Thousands of residents in the northern regional capital town of Tamale today embarked on a demonstration in protest against the installation of a new prepaid meter by the Volta River Authority and the Northern Electricity Company Department.
The demonstrators gathered  at the Kalandan Park/old Tamale sports stadium at about 7 am this morning and matched through some principal streets of the metropolis amid chantings of songs such as ’’new meter no;old meter yes’,  or no VRA in the region.
The demonstrators held placards, some of which read “VRA stop installing new prepaid meters, it’s not a force, remove it, VRA is killing us softly, VRA are human vampires” among others.
The demonstration which was led by a group calling itself, Progressive Citizens of Tamale, first went to the metropolitan police command where they presented their petition to the metropolitan police commander DSP Ceaser  Abanga and proceeded to the northern regional coordinating council.
DSP Abanga thanked the demonstrators for not resorting to violence but due process to press home their demands.
Presenting the petition, the spokes person for the group, Alhassan Mohammed Hafiz said the new meters are causing a lot of economic hardship to residents whose income is already recording very low.
He further stated that, the three northern regions are most impoverished regions and wonder what have could have informed VRA to embark on such exercise without consultations with its customers.
Mr. Hafiz wants VRA to educate to customers on the usage of meters, advice customers, most whom he said live in compound houses to separate their internal wiring and apply for separate meters.
He also called for setting up vending places or stations at vantage points in the various communities.
DSP Abanga said it is their constitutional right to demonstrate and thanked the demonstrators for conducting themselves peacefully.
The demonstrators also stormed the northern regional coordinating council and presented their petition to the northern regional minister which was received by the Coordinating Director, Alhaji Alhassan Issahaku.  
He said the RCC will look into it and will quickly get all the relevant officers to address their concerns. This is in spite of the Northern Electricity Department's (NEDCO) 12 September suspension upon the advice of Public Utility Regulatory Commission (PURC) and other stakeholders  statement halting the installation process until Wednesday September 19, 2012. NEDCO said they intend to embark on a sensitization programme on the new prepaid meters for various communities in Tamale and its environs. Even though Zaa News cannot independently confirm, an estimated number of six thousand (6 000) workers are expected to be laid-off by VRA because their services will no longer be needed if the new prepaid meter project is successful implemented.  

Leave A Reply

Your email address will not be published.