To mitigate the debilitating effects of the ongoing power crisis, the management of Multimedia Group Limited, the parent company of Joy FM, Adom FM, Hitz FM and Asempa FM and a host of TV and online networks, has taken a decision to cut back on overnight transmissions.
The decision means broadcasts on all these networks, including radio stations in Kumasi – Nhyira and Luv FM – will end at midnight and resume at 4 am each day until further notice.
The power crisis has taken a toll on many businesses across the country. Many firms have had to adopt cost-cutting measures in a bid to keep jobs and their business running.
One of the major challenges affecting business operations is the expenditure on fuel to power generators or power plants.
Chief Operating Officer of Accra Radio, Ekyi Quarm, said over the past three months, when a nationwide power rationing exercise started, Multimedia has been digging deep into its finances to sustain normal broadcasts.
“However, it’s gotten to a stage where we can no longer do that. So since last week, we’ve been going off from midnight to 4am. This applies to our operations in Kumasi as well”, he explained.
Generators running Multimedia transmitting sites are also being managed to cut down fuel costs
According Ekyi Quarm, expenditure on fuel over the past months has risen exponentially, from GH¢2,000 to GH¢20,000 for radio alone every month.
The Multimedia Group spends about GH¢60,000 a week to run its generators across all platforms in Accra and Kumasi, a situation that has taken a heavy toll on the company’s resources.
“We have to conserve to survive”, Ekyi Quarm said.
A 500 megawatt shortfall in power generation, representing almost a third of the 2,000 megawatts needed, kickstarted the nationwide plunge into a frustrating energy crisis.
Power producer, Volta River Authority (VRA), has said the situation, which is by the far the worst in the country’s history, has intensified due to the low levels of water in the Akosombo, Bui and Kpong dams.
Furthermore, the strategic Asogli thermal power plant is down to half capacity which is equivalent to about 90 megawatts.
Cenite, another thermal plant in Tema, is also down, further depriving the nation of some 100 megawatts of power; while TICO in Takoradi is also down.
The situation got to a head when the loadshedding exercise, characterised by 12 hours of power and 24 hours of power cut, was extended to industrial enclaves across the country.