Power firms ration supply as generation drops to 3,494MW

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The 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (Discos) have continued to ration power supply to consumers across the geo-political zones of the country as the national grid generation drops to 3,494Mega Watts (MW).

The Guardian investigations yesterday revealed that the nation’s power sector appears to be lacking proper harmonisation of data as various government agencies, including the Federal Ministry of Power, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) failed to update the power generation level while some are parading conflicting figures on their websites.

Before the dissolution of the Presidential Task Force on Power (PTPF), the agency had been the only platform that parades accurate information on the national generation levels. The Electricity System Operator, an arm of TCN has also barred the public from the more reliable website that updates power generation (www.nsong.org).

Statistics from the Federal Ministry of Power showed that the national grid could only boast of about 3,144MW as at April 22, while the TCN announced 3,500MW same day.

As at April 23, the TCN data showed that generation has dropped further to 3,494MW from the highest peak generation of 5074MW recorded on February, 2, 2016.

The generation statistics showed that the output has started dropping from 3.928MW on April 21, to 3639MW and 3494MW accordingly.

The situation, according to The Guardian source, may not be unconnected with shortage in gas supply, poor water management and transmission challenges.

The prolonged load-shedding embarked upon by the DISCOs has negatively impacted on business and domestic activities, as consumers lament paying high bills for poor service delivery.

Besides, some consumers told The Guardian that securing prepaid meters have become a herculean task for them, while the DISCOs continue to roll out estimated billings that are not commensurate with power supply.

NERC had berated the DISCOs over poor implementation of their metering plans under the Credit Advance Payment for Metering Implementation (CAPMI) scheme.

The acting Chairman of the Commission, Anthony Akah, described as unacceptable the low number of metered customers by the eleven distribution companies since privatisation of the power sector.

Expressing his dissatisfaction with the development, Akah said that the commission was in the process of winding down CAPMI since most of the Discos are not implementing it even as they are performing badly in their metering scheme.

“People are complaining of being unfairly billed, they are not questioning the tariff as much as the fact that there is no noticeable improvement in supply. We believe we have done what is closest to reflective tariff. We are being challenged, now there is no going back on our protection of the consumers, we are stepping up our enforcement’’, he said.

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