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Adelabu: Nigeria will be in darkness if FG doesn’t implement electricity tariff hike

Adebayo Adelabu, minister of power, says the country will be thrown into darkness if the federal government does not implement the new hike in electricity tariff.

On April 3, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) approved an increase in electricity tariff for customers under the Band A classification.

The commission said customers under the classification, who receive 20 hours of electricity supply daily, will now pay N225 per kilowatt (kW), starting from April 3 — up from N66.

Appearing before the senate committee on power on Monday, Adelabu said although citizens are bearing the brunt of the increase, it would “catapult us to the next level”.

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“The entire sector will be grounded if we don’t increase the tariff,” the minister said.

“With what we have now in the next three months, the entire country will be in darkness if we don’t increase tariff.

“The increment will catapult us to the next level. We are also Nigerians, we are also feeling the impact.”

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Adelabu said if distribution companies (DisCos) do not provide 20 hours of power for seven consecutive days, the customer should be billed on the old tariff.

“We made it a conditional tariff, we made it a service reflective tariff, that the only condition that can make a discriminate company charge the new tariff of N225 per kilowatt hour is they must ensure they supply a minimum of 20 hours to that consumer every day,” he said.

“If they cannot sustain this within a period of seven days, such consumers must be granted the old tax.

“Any consumer that can get supply for 20 hours, they can pay N225 per kilo as against the N66 in the old regime. And we also put in some monetary and tracking framework to ensure that these posts are compelled to comply with this tariff order.

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“And this was displayed in the first day or the first week of this new regime, when it was discovered that a particular DisCo was not supplying for up to 20 hours and was charging the customers. A penalty of N200 million was slammed on this DisCo.”

The minister added that the fine has served as a deterrent to DisCos.

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