Claim: 86% of Ghana’s population had access to electricity in 2016
Source: Former President John Mahama
Researched by Gifty Tracy Aminu
On May 11, 2022, Former President John Mahama delivered a keynote speech at the Nasarawa Investment Summit in Nigeria on the topic: “Building for the African Continent: Lessons from the Ghanaian economy.”
While sharing his experience and insights into investments made in the power sector under his government, the former Ghanaian leader claimed 86% of the country’s population had access to electricity in 2016.
“By 2016, the sum of our effort in terms of electricity access across the country raised the percentage of our people connected to the national power grid to 86% and this among the top five in Africa,” John Mahama partly said.
This fact-check report seeks to verify:
- Whether 86% of the Ghanaian population had access to electricity in 2016.
Electricity access refers to the percentage of the population that has relatively simple, stable access to power. It can also be referred to as the electrification rate.
Available World Bank data shows 79.3% of Ghana’s population had access to electricity in 2016 contrary to the claim by former President John Mahama.
The data showed that 89.6% of Ghana’s urban population had access to electricity in 2016, as compared to 66% in the rural areas during the same period.
This was captured in the “Tracking SDG 7: The Energy Progress Report” – jointly prepared by the International Energy Agency (IEA), the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA), the United Nations Statistics Division (UNSD), the World Bank and the World Health Organization (WHO).
Meanwhile, according to the Energy Commission of Ghana’s National Energy Statistics report, 83.6% of Ghana’s population had access to electricity in 2016 – including 96.6 urban population and 61.7 rural population.
Furthermore, the proportion of households with access to electricity in 2016 stood at 78.5% – which included 91.4% urban and 61.5% rural. The 2020 National Energy Statistics report provides time-series data on Ghana’s energy supply and uses from 2000 to 2019.
Therefore available data from the World Bank and Energy Commission of Ghana show the claim by former President John Mahama is inaccurate and FALSE.