Electricity Consumers Decry Increase In Tariff
Electricity consumers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), have decried the increase in tariff by the Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCOs). According to them, the increase is unjustifiable.
The consumers, who spoke to Economic Confidential in Abuja yesterday, said that DisCos had increased tariff payable for power across the country without notification.
According to them, the increase in electricity tariff is unjustified, given the unreliable, and epileptic power supply across the country.
“Millions of Nigerians continue to live in darkness in spite of the huge amount of money so far invested by governments as well as bailouts to electricity companies,’’ they said.
The consumers said that it is annoying that the increase in tariff was not announced, adding that you only discover that there was an increase when you recharge your meter.
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in its Multi-Year Tariff Order, provides a 15-year tariff plan for the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry with limited minor reviews each year.
It states that the reviews are in the light of changes in a limited number of parameters such as inflation, interest rates, exchange rates and generation capacity, and major reviews every five years when all of the inputs were reviewed with the stakeholders.
There had been public outcry that the privitasation of the power sector had not yielded positive results and called for a mid-term review of the process or total reversal.
Speaking on the increase, Mr Kunle Olubiyo, the President, Nigeria Consumer Protection Network said that electricity tariff was increased without giving Nigerians the opportunity to make inputs.
Olubiyo said that over the years, Nigerians and end users customers were being made to pay for systemic bloated costs at the detriment of the citizenry and economy at large.
According to him, the impact of the recent crises in the energy market supply value chain and the recent increase in electricity tariffs are quite enormous.
”In order not be left behind, the Nigerian Government should as a matter of urgency address the energy market supply gaps, ” he said.
A resident of Kubwa, Mrs Ese Williams described the increase as unjustifiable, saying there was no improvement in the power supply, so why the increase?
Williams said inspite of the increase in electricity tariff over the years, Nigerians had continued to live in darkness, in my area, you cannot even boast of having light for seven hours in a day. It’s just so frustrating, I call on the Federal Government to revisit the privatisation of the sector, because it is not working as things are deteriorating,” she said.
A mechanic residing in Lugbe, Mr Kola Jimoh, said that he was shocked when he recharged his meter with N3,000, and got only 44 units instead of 50 units he usually gets when he recharges for the same amount.
Mrs Ebuwa Ojo, a Banker, residing in ACO, Estate along Airport Road, stressed the need for the regulatory bodies to check the DisCos. How can they continue increasing tariffs every time? I am not happy about the increase, it is becoming too frequent and not that the money or light is there,” she said.
Another consumer, a banker resident in Area 3, Mrs Titilayo Olowu said, “they increased the electricity tariff without informing us.
”There is no official communication to us on the increase, this is not good enough. We have a right to know what is happening,” he said.
Miss Sandra Offor, a Public Servant resident in Garki, Abuja said that she was not happy with the way her meter was running,
She said that she spends about N16, 000 a week to recharge her prepaid meter.