By Etuka Sunday
The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) yesterday slammed the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) over the recent tariff upward adjustment without proper consumer consultation.
The NLC President, Comrade Abdulwaheed Omar while speaking at the stakeholders meeting held in Abuja, said electricity tariff was increased by NERC without due consultation with the NLC and members of the public.
Umar said Nigerians are tired of excuses from the regulatory body, which he said has being obtainable since the 70’s, he added that the regulatory body must match accessibility with affordability.
He said: “The rate of tariff increase is quite worrisome, and there is no proportionate increase in electricity supply. The amount of consumption should determine the rate paid by consumers, what Nigerian consumers expect is an improvement in power supply, but what they have gotten in return is a hike on electricity tariff.”
He also urged NERC to properly investigate the activities of the Distribution Companies (Discos) which according to him, bill customers based on estimation and not on adequate metering system made available by the regulatory body.
“It is one thing to announce tariff rate without the capacity to enforce it, the social service component of electricity must not be laid down for profit maximization because the consumers are always at the receiving end,” he added.
Recall that NERC had lately in May 2014 announced that the fixed charge of electricity from June 2014 remains constant due to some favourable indices that had dropped it from what was earlier expected in the 2014 Multi Year Tariff Order (MYTO).
However the Energy Cost (EC) it said, slightly increased by at least N1 due to what it described as high distribution cost over a low energy generation capacity. NERC Chairman, Dr. Sam Amadi had said about 9,000megawatts (mw) was projected for 2014 MYTO when the MYTO was first drafted in 2012 but failed as actual generation is now at 3,500mw which had ignited the increase in the Energy Cost.
Meanwhile, the NERC Chairman, Dr. Sam Amadi in his speech said the stakeholders meeting was organised to address some pertinent issues which affects electricity consumers.
On the activities of the Discos and Generation Companies (Gencos), Amadi said in the privatized market, all companies are properly regu