NERC insists no tariff hike for consumers without 12-hour electricity supply daily

*Anyone who is enjoying less than 12 hours of electricity must not have their tariffs increased, says Dafe Akpeneye, Commissioner for Legal, Licensing and Compliance

Isola Moses | ConsumerConnect

In regard to the recent power tariff increases, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has maintained that electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) must not increase charges for power consumers enjoying less than 12 hours of supply daily.

Mr. Dafe Akpeneye, Commissioner for Legal, Licensing and Compliance at NERC, stated this at the regulatory Commission’s online town hall meeting with consumers in respect of the new electricity tariff regime, say reports.

The electricity distribution firms had announced, and subsequently begun the implementation of new Service Reflective Tariff Plan across their franchise areas across the country Tuesday September 1, 2020.

ConsumerConnect learnt the power DisCos said the classes of consumers were categorised into five bands, with Bands D and E who were not enjoying 12 hours’ daily power supply not affected by the new tariff plan.

However, in response to claims by electricity consumers that the DisCos were not adhering to the increment terms, Mr. Akpeneye said insisted that those below 12 hours’ supply daily should not experience any increment as of now.

The NERC Commissioner explained that the hours and bands were decided by the Commission after consultations, but consumers were assigned to the bands by the DisCos.

Akpeneye declared that “anyone who is enjoying less than 12 hours of electricity must not have their tariffs increased.

“Customers who receive electricity service below the band they have been assigned can have the DisCos move them to the actual band of electricity service they receive.

“Unhappy? Contest the band classification you have been assigned.”

According to him, NERC has come with “Parity with Neighbours” concept with a view to protecting the unmetered electricity consumers from undue exploitation by the DisCos.

He stated “this is the principle we are applying with unmetered customers.

“It basically means as an unmetered customer; you cannot be charged more than your metered neighbor.”

NERC has mandated all DisCos to invest in infrastructure so as to increase power supply to consumers.

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