Nigerian govt moves to distribute three million prepaid metres to citizens

Electricity Meter
Electricity Meter

More than three million pre-payment meters are to be rolled out under the Federal Government’s intervention programme, Babatunde Fashola, the Minister of Power, disclosed in Lagos on Sunday.

The intervention followed the incapacity of Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) to meter all the houses of consumers across the country.

Mr. Fashola, who is also the Minister of Works and Housing, told the News Agency of Nigeria that the government had in 2003 awarded contract for the meters but they were not supplied.

“In 2003, the government awarded a contract for three million meters but they were not supplied.

“I inherited it, they were in court and I am trying to take it out of the court so that we can settle and start the supply,’’ he said.

The former Lagos State Governor said that metering houses in the country was facing some challenges as there was no accurate database of actual consumers in the country.

Mr. Fashola said: “There is a database of six million households; it is a faulty base because we have more than six million households in the country.

“There are four types of consumers – R1 (poorest consumer), R2, R3 and maximum demand consumers — and they are not on the same plan.

“DISCOs need to go into these houses, do an audit to determine the type of meters to install.

“If you have a wrong meter, you will pay wrong price or bill. A meter is both a safety device and a measuring device; it can under read or over read or cause fire if not properly installed.

“But essentially, the DISCOs must provide meters, it is only fair and let the consumer manage his consumption and billing system because he has a meter.’’

On the challenges facing the nation’s power sector, Mr. Fashola, who described the problems as man-made, identified planning, way of life and human behavioural problem as some of the intractable issues.

Others are power wastage, building of houses in difficult terrain without approval, lack of conservation culture and energy theft.

“Some people will put on a 70 or 120-watt bulb as security light for 24 hours, including the daytime when they do not need it and it is because they have either stolen the energy or bypassed their meters.

“They are robbing DISCOs of huge sums of money as they may not be able to pay back the energy they bought for distribution,” the minister said.

NAN reports that electricity consumers pay N25,000 (official), N35, 000 (fast-track) for a single-phase meter, while the three-phase models go for N50,000 and above.

Consumers have complained of down payment for several months or a year for the meters without being supplied by DISCOs which has exposed consumers to the user-unfriendly estimated billing system or “crazy’’ bills.

In Ghana, prepayment metering was introduced in 1994 and the importation of the meters cost Ghana Government $99.2 million in 2015.

(NAN)


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  • Owejah

    Please deliver! These promises are enough! ‘Seriously’ enough!

  • isiaka

    These man has nothing to offer on the power sector. yesterday promising stable power supply, today mega wart increase and tomorrow distribution of prepaid meters. enough for tom and jerry. Nigerians needs a reasonable person in the sector.

  • George

    These are the vultures your worked to bring to power so shot your smelling mouth you Yorubas nonentity.

  • George

    All the insults this maggot looking man called Fashola rains on GEJ is back to him and his household.

    I remember vividly how Fashola insulted GEJ because of light issue today he is in charge all we heard is excuses and excuses, same way that dead man called Bola Ige ruins his mouth and he got there and left the power worst.

    Talks is cheap Fashola must give us light or he end up like Bola Ige.

    • pajerow

      lol

  • pajerow

    Why should anything about electricity in Nigeria be handed over to wicked exploiters to distribute in the first place. Don’t we learn ???????????????????????????????????????????

  • Ola

    The minister just laid our what the problems are and instead of addressing the issues , people are passing insult on him.

    Most of the problems we are facing are MAN MADE, I paid for my meter but did not get it for about 4 months, that is after I gave extra to fast track.
    Well I got to know that the contractors are diverting the meters to developers who are willing to pay more to have meters installed in their estates all over the country. This is not the Ministers doing.
    Secondly the contractors are delaying supply of meters because they want more money for the meters and are in court. This is not a military regime where you can just break into their factory and confiscate the meters,