NERC fines discos over customers’ complaints, reports
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has sanctioned four electricity distribution companies over failure to treat customers’ complaints and submit statutory quarterly reports.
NERC said this was in breach of their licensing terms and conditions, provisions of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005 and regulations of the commission.
The commission said the utilities should pay fines of various sums within two weeks, beginning from July 25, 2016.
At the end of the two weeks, the Discos are to pay five per cent daily interests until remedial steps are taken.
A statement from NERC noted: “ Two of the erring companies, Port Harcourt and Enugu electricity distribution companies were sanctioned for their failure to submit quarterly reports on their key performance indicators, whereas Ibadan and Ikeja electricity distribution companies were fined over failure to attend to customers’ complaints severally referred to them.”
NERC said Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) flouted the Electric Power Sector Reform (EPSR) Act 2005, its licensing terms and conditions as well as NERC Customer Complaints Handling: Standards and Procedures (CCHSP) Regulation 2006.
“The Commission received several complaints directly from electricity customers in IBEDC operational jurisdiction, based on which same was forwarded via letters dated October 27, 2015 and April 15, 2016 to IBEDC’s Customer Care Unit for resolution, in line with CCHSP, 2006.
“However, IBEDC failed or refused to comply with the commission’s request/directive to resolve the customer complaints in accordance with the provisions of the CCSHP 2006.”
IBEDC was subsequently fined N10, 000.00 on each of the three grounds of misdemeanour beginning from April 22, 2016 till July 25, 2016, which totalled N2, 850, 000 due for payment within two weeks beginning from the July date when the directive was signed.
In a similar development, Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC) was in Directive 151 found guilty on three grounds of violating its licensing terms and conditions, EPSR Act 2005 and CCHSP that compels it to obey every directive of the commission, treat customers complaints within a stipulated time frame as well as oblige the regulator every information sought from the company.
The company was, therefore, fined N10, 000. 00 per day on each of the three ground of misdemeanour beginning from April 22, 2016 till July 25, 2016 when the directive was signed.
“Failure to pay the fines within stipulated time shall attract additional interest of five per cent per day until the total fine is paid,” the directive said.
Both Enugu (EEDC) and Port Harcourt (PHEDC) electricity distribution companies were found liable for their failures to submit quarterly reports on their key performance indicators which run contrary to terms and conditions of their licence, Section 63 (1) of the EPSR Act 2005.