Revoke Licenses Of DISCOs, NUF Tells Nigerian Govt

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By Chuks Eke

The Nigerian government as a matter of urgency and immediacy has been called to revoke the licenses of the Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) in the country, for their abysmal performances.

The group, Ndigbo Unity Forum (NUF), made the call in a statement made available to journalists in Onitsha, Anambra State, after their strategic general meeting.

NUF said it has become glaring that the privatisation of power in the country by former President Goodluck Jonathan’s administration was a “huge hoax and scam”.

The group in the statement signed by its national president, Dede Uzor A. Uzor, expressed shock that the All Progressives Congress, APC- led Muhammadu Buhari Government still allowed this fraudulent scam to continue more than nearly eight years after they took over the reins of power.

The group lamented that there is nothing electricity distribution companies provide for Nigeria except to exploit NIgerians by charging exorbitant cum crazy bills and manipulating the prepaid billing systems.

“The DISCOs of late, they said, have introduced fast reading metres by replacing the old ones, while they have bluntly refused to metre those people who are still in estimated billings so that they can continue to exploit them because there’s no difference between their criminal exploited activities and the so-called privatisation which came onboard years ago”.

They lamented that in the face of all these high charges, the services are abysmally and criminally poor as they refuse to supply power to the consumers even when there is an avalanche of power in the grid.

” Consumers, said Ndigbo group, have continued to bear the brunt of replacing packed up transformers, damaged parts and pay for the services rendered by staff or agents of DISCOs under duress and exploitations”, the group further lamented.

“In the face of all these, the services are still abysmally poor. There is low shading. And sometimes, there would be no light for several days, weeks and months due To minor faults”, especially in the Fegge area of Onitsha where some areas were classified as industrial and commercial areas respectively, the said commercial areas got supposedly hours of power against commercial areas, this glaring development must stop henceforth”.

The group said that DISCOs have become a conduit pipe and an avenue through which consumers are being exploited by a privileged few who bought over the companies from the Federal Government in the name of privatisation through estimated and crazy bills without providing light.

NUF decried that DISCOS do not do anything to improve power supply or serve their customers satisfactorily except to collect money from electricity consumers through their crafty, criminal and crazy billings for those in estimated bills.

For those using prepaid metres, they said DISCOs have installed fast-reading metres that make power consumption for the customers very expensive and exploitative.

This, the group lamented was in addition to the inbuilt system which makes the metres enter into what they call tamper code.

They specifically accused EEDC of corruptive distribution of power and load shading in some commercial and residential areas in South East, especially in the Figge area of Onitsha.

NUF called for an immediate overhaul of the power system in Nigeria and the removal of feeder managers, managers, distribution managers, sectional heads and others involved in contributing to the poor power supply in Onitsha and the entire South East.

The group called on Federal Government to develop other sources of generating power such as solar as well as allow companies, organisations and individuals who can generate their power to do so and distribute it without facing unnecessary bottlenecks from the system.

These, NUF said, would help provide regular power supply and crash the cost of power in the country like that of telecommunication, lamenting that the DISCOs as presently constituted enjoy monopoly even more than what was obtained in the past which power reform initially sought to break.

Unfortunately, said the Unity Forum, the President Buhari administration has not demonstrated enough political will to improve the power supply in the country. They have not done anything to improve power in the country. They cannot even compel the DISCOs to carry out the Federal Government metering programme”.

And that is why estimated billing system persists as the major source of exploiting consumers” the Ndigbo group cautioned

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