Trade Union Congress (TUC) has kicked against plans to hike electricity tariffs, stressing that Nigerians who rarely have power in their houses and businesses are leaving the country for neighbouring countries.
But the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has approval of tariff increase.
National president of TUC, Quadri Olaleye, in a statement asked NERC not to encourage such inefficiency by the distribution companies in the country.
“NERC should not encourage inefficiency by approving higher tariff because the distribution companies do not collect the billed revenue for the current tariff. There is very low collection efficiency in the system.
“The argument that the increment in tariff will help to improve the power supply holds no water. For decades now, we have been paying for services not rendered, which, to us, is broad day robbery. Increase in tariff means passing the low-efficiency loss to the customers. If collection efficiency is high enough, it will help reduce the gap in the cost of delivering electricity and reduce the need for the higher tariff,” he asserted.
Olalaye wondered why the Federal Government should release another intervention of N600bn to operators.
“What did they do with the first two bailouts of N213bn and N701bn released to support power distribution, generation and gas companies?
“We have issue with the government making all these serious interventions without significant progress. Is it not shameful that Nigeria with over 200 million population cannot boast of 6,000 megawatts consistently for one week at a time that South Africa with a little over 50 million population is generating over 50,000MW?” he said.
Meanwhile, reacting to media reports that end-user electricity tariffs had been increased following the approval of the minor review (2016-2018) of 2015 Multi-Year Tariff Order on August 21, 2019, NERC in a statement signed by the General Manager, Public Affairs, Usman Arabi, explained that the minor review it implemented was an adjustment of the tariff regime released in 2015 to account for changes in macroeconomic indices for the years 2016, 2017 and 2018.