Electricity Regulatory Commission Adjusts Tariffs Upward Again, Consumers Kick

Akanimo Sampson

Akanimo Sampson

Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has adjusted the tariffs payable to Discos, as some of the power firms got a raise in their tariffs, while others had theirs reduced.

This was, however, not announced or published on the website of the regulator as it used to publish it in the past.

But, electricity consumers are kicking against the silent increase in the tariff payable by customers to power distribution companies for electricity consumed, saying it was worrisome that the government was allowing Discos to raise electricity tariff amid fuel scarcity across the country.

Adulterate fuel imported into the country about two weeks ago had led to fuel scarcity and long queues in filling stations in states.

However, President of Nigeria Consumer Protection Network, Kola Olubiyo, says his group has taken up the matter with the regulator, explaining that while some customers said their tariffs were increased by N4, others could not actually tell the amount by which theirs were raised, adding that there had been no public confirmation by the NERC.

According to him, “they (NERC) raised it last week or thereabout, and is like it is a N4 adjustment. Port Harcourt and Abuja (Discos) raised it and in fact, I think it is across board. But what we are asking the regulator is that if they approved something that is going to affect our pocket without letting us know, it is like shaving our heads in our absence.

“They said labour was part of them and I said is that what labour went to negotiate for us? I was told that they have a structured table that has already been approved and it is just for them to implement.”

Adding, Olubiyo says “but if they have approved the table as they said, are they giving us the required services? You and I know that services have not improved. We are having low generation and all manner of blame games.”

The legal practitioner and NCPN president are insisting that the regulator should provide a table on the increase as it used to publish in the past, stressing that consumers had the right to know.

He said, “they should let us have the table that shows the bit-by-bit increment. We should have it. They are not communicating with the public.

“If they are making a decision that will affect our disposable income, are we not supposed to be in the know? If you raise it they will argue that are we not aware that things are increasing every day. Is that the way we are going to work?”

Confirming the increase, a power user in Abuja, said, “it seems the Discos have increased their tariffs again without public notice. I recharged N5,000 today but was given 91.7 units instead of the usual 107.”

Also, an official at the Federal Ministry of Power stated that the increase had to be implemented because the Federal Government had withdrawn some of its financial support to power firms.

“The Federal Government has to withdraw every support or most of its support to power firms, such as subsidy on electricity”, the source, who pleaded not to be named for lack of authorisation, stated.

“So in a way, there is an adjustment in tariff because they (power firms) are shouldering higher cost responsibility now. However, some of them actually have reductions in their tariffs and nobody is talking is about it”, the official adds.

On whether there was any official adjustment in tariff, the source replied, “They (Discos) have been communicated more than a month ago, since January or so.”

Efforts to get the NERC to speak on the matter did not pay off, as its spokesperson, Usman Arabi, could not be reached, and a text message sent to him on the matter was not replied to.

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Professor Jideofor Adibe


Comments 1

  1. Jerrymaya says:

    This people are devil in human in human clothing. God will punish all you.

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