The Ghana Water Company Limited (GWCL) has rejected claims that water bills in the country have shot up after the free water initiative commissioned by government in 2020 ended.

This comes after a section of Ghanaians complained about a sharp increase in their water bills since January 2021 when customers were to pay fees themselves.

The agitated customers accused the Company of purposefully over billing them to make up for the nine months of free water President Akufo-Addo implemented as part of efforts to reduce the burden of citizens amidst the Covid-19 pandemic.

But the Public Relations Manager for GWCL, Stanley Martey in an interview on Joy FM’s Super Morning Show Friday, stated that tariffs in the country can only be increased by the Public Utilities Regulatory Commission (PURC).

He said until the regulators increase charges, the water distribution company cannot unilaterally increase fares of water.

“About nine months of 2020 we had free water, the expectation was that we were going to use free water to stay healthy, but what we realised was that people’s consumption over the period increased from 10% to about 400%. Now, things have changed in 2021, and per our investigations, a lot of our customers are still living in 2020.

“And are using their water like before, so obviously, your bills will go high. There is no motivation from any staff of Ghana Water Company to cheat any customer,” he told host Winston Amoah.

Moreover, Mr Martey dispelled claims that his outfit is transfaring charges of free water to citizenry stating that government has been up-to-date with the payment for the free water.

“With the free water, it was free to the customer but government paid Ghana Water Company Limited. We were sending the bills to government and it was paying us.

“So there is no motivation for us to recoup any money. No! We have been paid, we don’t have a problem. We are still managing our water business and we are making sure that Ghanaians are getting good quality drinking water,” he stated.

The PRO urged citizens to be vigilant about leakages that happening in their homes.

In his view, these leakages when left unattended for a period of time builds up and subsequently increase the monthly charge.

“We bill our customers according to their consumption and their consumption can only be determined by their meter and readings. So we can’t take something else that is not indicated on your bill.

“When there are minor drippings or leakages from your taps and faucets in your homes, and you ignore them because you think it’s just droplets, those little droplets will swell your bill. So let us take our time to fix them,” he advised.