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Groups demand protection of electricity consumers’ rights, fault Osinbajo on sale of power plants

By Ernest Nzor, Abuja
13 July 2022   |   4:01 am
Association for Public Policy Analysis (APPA), a Civil Society Organisation (CSO), has urged the Federal Government to put measures in place to protect the rights of electricity consumers.

Association for Public Policy Analysis (APPA), a Civil Society Organisation (CSO), has urged the Federal Government to put measures in place to protect the rights of electricity consumers.

National President of APPA, Mr. Princewill Okorie, said this in an interview with News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja, yesterday.

Okorie spoke against the backdrop on the recent plan by Fidelity Bank to take over the boards of Kano, Benin and Kaduna Distribution Companies (DisCos) and collateralise their shares.

NAN reports that the Director-General, Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE), Mr. Alex Okoh, and the Executive Chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Mr. Sanusi Garba, in a joint statement issued in Abuja recently, said:

“Today, we were informed by Fidelity Bank that they have activated the call on the collateralised shares of Kano, Benin and Kaduna (Fidelity and AFREXIM) DisCos.

“They have also initiated action to take over the boards of these DisCos and exercise the rights on the shares.”

Okorie said there was need for the Federal Government to set up a committee to monitor consumer interest following the development.

He said: “What has been existing, all this while, is that Sections 80 and 81 of the Electricity Power Sector Reform Act have been silent. We found out that implementation of Sections 80 and 81 of the Reform Act that deal with electricity consumer protection and licensee performance standards are not well enforced.

“You see a situation where consumers pay for electricity not supplied and their rights are abused. If the banks want to recover their money, the consumers also want to recover the money they have been cheated of.”

MEANWHILE, Coalition of Northern Groups (CNG), yesterday, issued a statement calling on northern lawmakers to withstand attempt at mortgaging the future of people in the region.

Signed by Director, Strategic Communication, Samaila Musa, CNG recalled that on July 13, 2021, the Federal Government had declared plan to privatise the Calabar, Ihovbor, Olorunsogo, Omotosho and Geregu power plants, held by Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited (NDPHC).