DisCos Owe NBET N322bn In 8 Months
Power distribution companies failed to pay a total of N322.14bn to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc for the electricity sold to them from January to August this year.
The government-owned NBET buys electricity in bulk from generation companies through Power Purchase Agreements and sells through vesting contracts to the Discos, which then supply it to the consumers.
The Discos were given a total invoice of N419.18bn for the energy received in the eight-month period but only paid N97.04bn to NBET, data obtained from the bulk trader on Monday by our correspondent showed.
The 11 power distributors received a total invoice of N55.78bn in January; N51bn in February; N54.53bn in March; N51.64bn in April; N53.96bn in May; N47.58bn in June; N51.68bn in July, and N53.01bn in August.
But they paid N12.48bn in January; N10.07bn in February; N13.17bn in March (including N4.18bn February late payment); N12.28bn in April; N14.67bn in May (including N2.56bn April late payment); N8.39bn in June; N11.05bn in July, and N14.93bn in August (including N2.63bn July late payment).
Kaduna Electric, which covers Kaduna, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara states, did not make any remittance in February, March, April, June and August.
Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company did not make any payment to NBET in February, March and April; neither did Kano Electricity Distribution Company make any remittance in February, March and July.
The BEDC Electricity Plc failed to make any payment to NBET in March and July. Enugu Electricity Distribution Company made no remittance in April and July; Jos Electricity Distribution Company paid nothing in March and June.
Yola Electricity Distribution Company, which was returned to the Federal Government by the core investor in 2015, failed to make any payment in March.
The remittance by Discos to NBET in the eight-month period averaged 22.34 per cent, the data showed.
According to the Ministry of Power, the current commercial structure where NBET buys all the power from Gencos, with government guarantee, and sells it to Discos, with no effective guarantee of payment, was supposed to be a transitional arrangement to facilitate movement to the desired commercial structure envisaged by the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005.
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, in a notice last month, gave eight of the Discos 60 days to explain why their licences should not be cancelled for what it described as “manifest and flagrant breaches”.