Suspend electricity tariff increase until consumers are metred, Otumara monarch urges FG

The traditional ruler of Otumara community in Lagos Mainland Local Government Area of Lagos State, Chief Kehinde Kalejaiye, has urged the Federal Government to halt planned increase in electricity prices until consumers are metred.

The monarch said that doing this will let consumers know the actual electricity they consumed and end estimated billings.

Increasing energy prices, according to him, without providing metres to consumers will lead to cpersistent estimated billing crippling small businesses.

It will be recalled that the Federal Government, through the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), had announced the increase in electricity tariff to N225 per kilowatt from N66 for consumers in the band A category.

“The current electricity prices are hurting. Many homes and businesses are unmetered. They are on estimated billings. The distribution companies on a monthly basis serve consumers unjustified bills without supplying electricity.

“Nigerians don’t want to pay for electricity consumed on the basis of estimated bills. We want to pay for what we consume; therefore we should be provided metres to achieve this.

“For instance, in my community, there was power outage for four months and within this period residents were served huge bills at the end of each month. The Discos demanded to be paid for the services not rendered. The implication of this is that many of the small businesses, especially those who sell frozen foods are forced out of business.

“I cannot count the number of residents I receive on a daily basis complaining of outrageous billings they are served by EKEDC.

“The electricity distributors should make it a priority to metre consumers and desist from extorting and over-billing end users with estimated bills,” the monarch said.

“With the current economic hardship, it hurts to be forced to pay for the electricity that is not consumed. This kills business and overstretched the finances of unmetered electricity consumers.

“National Assembly should wade into the matter and address why the Discos are unable to metre electricity consumers. If there is any need to revoke their licences for inability to live up to expectation, they should for the sake of the masses,” the monarch said.

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