The West African Gas Pipeline Company (Wapco) said it had suspended the flow of gas from Nigeria to Ghana over unpaid bills by the Ghanaian government, reported Reuters. Wapco spokeswoman, Harriet Wereko-Brobby, said that Ghana’s state power producer, Volta River Authority, owes Nigeria’s N-Gas around $180m, while N-Gas in turn owes the Pipeline Company $104m.

N-Gas buys gas from oil companies in Nigeria and transports the commodity to its customers in Benin, Togo, and Ghana through the $1b pipeline, which is operated by the Wapco, Punch wrote.

Brobby added that it was the first time the pipeline, a public-private partnership in which a Chevron subsidiary has a 36.9% stake, has been closed over non-payment.

Energy supply is a critical issue for Ghana’s government in the run-up to what is likely to be a closely contested election in November. For years regular blackouts have angered voters and this year power prices have risen steeply.