Union Blames NERC For Outrageous Electricity Bills

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The National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the federal government have been blamed for outrageous electricity bills not commensurate with the units consumed by Nigerians.

Speaking with The Tide in Port Harcourt recently, the National Women leader, National Union of Electricity Employees (NUEE), Mrs Doris Nnaji said NERC,  which is the regulatory body fixes electricity tariff while Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) only multiply the tariff based on the units consumed.

Nnaji therefore said the federal government and the regulatory body should be blamed for fleecing Nigerians of trillions of naira through electricity bills and not PHCN.

It was reported recentlythat  PHCN fleeces about N3.41 trillion from Nigerians through outrageous electricity bills annually. It stated that PHCN collects about N1.04 trillion from households in the country yearly, N2.074 trillion from Micro Small and Medium Scale Enterprises (MSMEs); N2.86 billion from 22 federal airports across the country and N3.4 billion from banks and other large scale enterprises.

Commenting on the ongoing privatisation of PHCN, the women leader said, it was not in the interest of the Nigerian masses as many may not afford electricity when privatized as investors will be at liberty to bill any amount they want.

In a related development the FG has disclosed plans to privatise 10 independent power plants built by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP).

Making the disclosure during an interactive session with newsmen in Lagos, NDPHC managing director, Mr James Oluto said the power plants include Omotoso in Ondo State (450MW) Sapele in Delta State (450MW), Geregu in Kogi (434 MW), Olorunsogo in Ogun (750 MW) and Ihovbor in Edo State (450MW).

Others were Gbarain in Bayelsa State (225 MW), Alaoji in  Abia State (450 MW), Calabar in Cross River State (561 MW). Egbema  in Imo State (338MW) and Omoku in Rivers State (225 MW).

Oluto stated that six of the plants had been completed technically while the remaining four would be completed in 2014 adding that federal government would divest 80 per cent of its shares in the power plants and the auctioning would involve the ministry of power and the Bureau of Public Enterprises.

“With the planned privatisation, there would be efficiency and effectiveness in the management of the power plants.

“Government can play its role where it has relative advantage.