Saturday, 3rd June 2023

Failed recharge tokens throw prepaid consumers into darkness 

By Kehinde Olatunji
12 January 2021   |   4:11 am
Some prepaid power consumers have been thrown into darkness for weeks over their inability to recharge tokens.

Some prepaid power consumers have been thrown into darkness for weeks over their inability to recharge tokens.

Consumers complained that after purchasing tokens from distribution companies, they have been unable to recharge as the credit code were rejected.

Adebunmi Okin, a consumer affected, lamented that effort to get the electricity distribution company (DisCo) to come to his aid since December 2020 had been failed, even as he has been unable to access service.

He said: “I purchased a recharge token on December 1, 2020, to recharge my prepaid meter. That was not the first time I would recharge, I followed the normal procedure of getting migration tokens from Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC) website but the tokens were rejected.”

Okin, who lives at Akute, Ogun State, said when he called the customer care line of the distribution company and was asked to reload the tokens but there were no positive results.

“Precisely on December 6, I called the customer care for hours at my cost and finally one of their officers attended to me. The officer asked me to dial 006 and 030, which I did and I called the error code displayed,” he said.

The customer care attendant promised Okin that a technical team would be sent to his residence to resolve the issue, but he waited to no avail. This prompted him to visit the distribution company office at Abule Egba business unit on December 17.

“One of the staff I met told me that none of the technical personnel was around and I had to return the following day. I went the second day as early as 7 am and I was attended to around 10 am. I gave them the error codes and the serial number, which they noted in their book and they promised to come to my residence on December 22, 2020. Till now, I have not seen anyone from the distribution company and all the messages I have sent have not yielded any positive result, except promises.”

Also speaking with our reporter, Oluwakemi Olatunji, a resident of Alago in Ikorodu, said she has been battling with the challenge of a failed token for four weeks now.

“It is a new prepaid and we purchased it for N48, 500. It was installed on November 28 and when the unit (100 units) that came with it was exhausted on December 20, we bought another unit but the token was rejected. We did everything that we were asked to do by IKEDC customer care unit. But all we get is ‘error.’

This is not peculiar to my house. Other residents also experience the same thing.

Also, Akin, who resides in Gbagada, has had to deal with a similar challenge.

“It is the first recharge on the meter, it is not going through. I have tried all they ask me to do yet we cannot recharge the meter. It is still giving a failed message,” he said.

Also, Oluwafemi Oguneko, who resides at Itokun, Ikorodu, Lagos State told our reporter that his family has been without electricity since last year mid-December.

He stated that he got the meter in early December, exhausted the 100 units that came with it. Since then, efforts to load another unit had been futile.

“It was a war to get the activation token from Ikeja Electric, now even more, as the token has failed to work, all codes and numbers imputed brings back an’’error“ or ‘’failed “ message. I have called several times, only to be told that in three-working days a technician would come and see it.

“From mid-December up until now, I have not been able to power my house because of gross incompetence. That a complaint will take this long and still be unresolved is unacceptable, I have called the customer care number every day since December.

Efforts to get Ikeja Electric’s response to the complaints failed as messages sent had not been responded to.