Engr. Sale Mamman, Honourable Minister for Power

NERC only performs ‘Bi-Annual Minor reviews’ of electricity tariffs, not 50 percent increment ─Minister

*The Federal Government suspends the implementation of ‘Bi-Annual Minor reviews’ of power tariffs in Nigeria till end of January 2021

*The Federal Government continues to fully subsidise 55 percent of on-grid consumers in Bands D and E, and maintains the lifeline tariff for the poor and underprivileged in Nigeria, says Engr. Sale Mamman, Honourable Minister for Power

Alexander Davis | ConsumerConnect

Engr. Sale Mamman, Nigeria’s Honourable Minister for Power, has said that earlier reports related to a 50 percent increase in electricity tariffs in the country are ‘inaccurate and false’.

The Minister, in a tweet via his verified Twitter account @EngrSMamman, Thursday, January 7, 2021, stated that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) @NERCNG, has issued a statement regarding what he described as ‘erroneous and false reports’ by print and electronic media, that approval had been granted for a 50 percent increase in tariffs.

According to him, “it is unfortunate that these reports have led to confusion with the public.

“On the contrary, government continues to fully subsidise 55% of on-grid consumers in Bands D and E, and maintain the lifeline tariff for the poor and underprivileged.

“Those citizens have experienced no changes to tariff rates from what they have paid historically (aside from the recent minor inflation and Forex adjustment).

Mamman further stated that partial subsidies were also applied for Bands A, B and C in October 2020.

He said these measures were all aimed at cushioning the effects of the pandemic while providing more targeted interventions for citizens.

“The public is aware that FGN and the Labour Centres have been engaged in positive discussions about the electricity sector through a joint ad-hoc Committee, led by the Minister of State for Labour and Productivity and Co-Chaired by the Minister of State for Power.

“Great progress has been made in these deliberations which are set to be concluded at the end of January, 2021,” noted the Minister.

Mamman explained that some of the achievements of this deliberation with Labour are the accelerated rollout of the National Mass Metering Plan, clamp downs on estimated billing, improved monitoring of the Service Based Tariff and the reduction in tariff rates for bands A to C in October 2020 (that were funded by a creative use of taxes).

It should be clear to all that the regulator must be allowed to perform its function without undue interference.

He added: “The role of the government is not to set tariffs; it is to provide policy guidance and an enabling environment for the regulator to protect consumers and for investors to engage directly with consumers.

“Bi-Annual Minor reviews to adjust factors such as inflation are part of the process for a sustainable and investable NESI.”

He, therefore, directed that in order to promote a constructive conclusion of the dialogue with the Labour Centres (through the Joint Ad-Hoc Committee), NERC should forestall the implementation of the duly performed minor review (which adjusted tariffs between N2 per kWh and N4 per kWh) until the conclusion of the Joint Ad Hoc Committee’s work at the end of January 2021.

The Minister added: “This will allow for the outcome of all resolutions from the Committee to be implemented together.

“The Administration is committed to creating a sustainable, growing and rules based electricity market for the benefit of all Nigerians.”

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