Consumers laud NERC, DISCOs for suspending new tariff

Some electricity consumers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT), have hailed the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) for suspending electricity tariff for two weeks.

The NERC on Sept. 28 ordered the 11 DISCOs to suspend the Sept. 1 increase for 14 days starting from the date to Oct. 11.

NERC suspension followed a joint statement issued by the Federal Government and the labour unions.

The Federal Government agreed that the recent review in electricity tariffs would be suspended by the commission for 14 days for further consultations and finalisation of negotiations between the parties.

The consumers however commended the Federal Government for the development in separate interviews with NAN today in Abuja.

They however called for the old tariff to be sustained even beyond Oct. 11.

Mrs Ejiro Umukoro, a civil servant and resident of Gwarinpa, said that this was the first time that electricity tariff was increased and brought down following complaints by the organised labour and consumers.

Umukoro said she was happy when she recharged her pre-paid metre and discovered that the Abuja Electricity Distribution (AEDC) had reverted to the old price.

“When I went to recharge my pre-paid metre, I discovered that AEDC has reverted to the old tariff ; I was so happy.

“I am appealing to the Federal Government to leave the tariff the way it is for now, ’’ she said.

Mr Jude Okolo, a pharmacist residing in Lugbe, FCT, expressed delight at the development, adding that the government had done well by asking DISCOs to revert to the old tariff.

Okolo said that it was not easy paying the new tariff which was almost 80 per cent increase.

He commended the Federal Government and NERC for taking the decision, adding that the increase in tariff was not favourable to the consumers.

Mrs Josephine Akwe, a trader at Garki market said that decision to go back to the former tariff was good, and appealed to the government to suspend the proposed increase for now.
“I thank the Federal Government for reverting to the old price, but I want to appeal that the price should be left the way it is.”

Mr Chikwube Ibe, a welder in ACO Estate, along the Airport Road in the FCT, said the tariff increase was too much burden on consumers.

Ibe said that even if the DISCOs planned to increase tariff, it should not be more than 20 to 30 per cent, however, he commended the government for the positive development.

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