LEC Loses US$35m Annually To Power Theft
The Management of the Liberia Electricity Corporation (LEC) has revealed that the entity is experiencing an annual loss of US$35 million as a result of power theft.
LEC Chief Executive Officer John Ashley said US$35 million is a huge sum of money and the forfeiture of such financial resource is hampering the LEC’s operations in the country.Ashley made the revelation in Monrovia on Monday at a Certification Program of over 80 personnel of the Liberia Electricity Corporation Security Department. The capacity-building training was conducted by the Liberia National Law Enforcement Association (LINLEA).
He noted that power theft and the neglect by some government entities to meet their financial obligations to the LEC have placed the corporation in a difficult financial situation.
Ashley maintained that because power theft is being considered as a misdemeanour under the law, people continue to commit the offense because the punishment for such offense is not harsh.
According to him, the management of LEC is having a discussion with the Ministry of Justice to change the law on electricity theft from misdemeanour to felony something, he said, will prevent people from stealing electricity.
He disclosed that when people are arrested for electricity theft, they are fined as low as US$10, noting that power theft is an economic sabotage and should not be taken lightly.
Ashley emphasized the need for the government to prioritize the fight against power theft so as to enhance private investment in the nation.
He added: “Power theft, makes it difficult for LEC to supply current to huge investment companies to try help transform the Liberian economy.”