Sale of ECG: Court throws out workers’ injunction

An Accra High Court has dismissed an interlocutory injunction filed by the Public Utilities Workers Union (PUWU) against the implementation of the Millennium Development Compact II which seeks to privatize the Electricity Company of Ghana (ECG).

But PUWU’s suit against ECG, the Attorney General and the Millennium Development Authority over the demand of severance packages is yet to be determined by the court.

PUWU had argued in its writ that the decision to handover the power distributor to a concessionaire will affect its members for which reason a package needs to be given to its members.

It contended that discussions that went into negotiations for the sale of ECG did not factor the declaration of redundancy, despite the directive in Section 65 of the Labour Act, 2005 (Act 651).

The workers therefore filed suit seeking a perpetual injunction to restrain the defendants, their assigns and privies from continuing with the Compact Agreement between the government of Ghana and the Millennium Challenge Corporation.

But the court presided over by Justice Lorrenda Owusu dismissed the interlocutory injunction application saying, based on  it cannot be established that on the balance of convenience, workers of the power distribution company will suffer any serious damages as compared to the serious hardship or damages that the state is likely to suffer if an injunction is granted to stop the implementation of the compact.

The ECG workers want government to back down on the concession plan


She said the court cannot restrain the respondents from going ahead with the compact since works have already started which the applicant have not denied, TV3’s Godfred Tanam reported.

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Justice Owusu also stated that meetings have been held with stakeholders towards the implementation of the compact which the injunction will result in some consequences.

The judge therefore assured the parties the substantive case would be expeditiously dealt with and urged the parties to work together in resolving the issue amicably.

Power Compact

Ghana signed the Power Compact with the United States of America acting through the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC), an independent United States government agency, on the sidelines of the US Africa Leaders’ Summit in Washington DC on August 5, 2014.

The Ghana Power Compact would provide Ghana with a grant sum $498,200,000 to improve the performance of Ghana’s power sector, unlock the country’s economic potential, create jobs, and reduce poverty.

About $350 million of the grant is being invested in ECG to make the country’s power distributor operationally and financially more efficient.

Source: | Ghana