Directs Complete Metering of Maximum Demand Customers on CAPMI Scheme
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has advised electricity consumers to explore its complaint and redress mechanism rather than resort to jungle justice in settling disputes with officials of electricity distribution companies (DisCos).
The appeal is coming on the heels of rising incidents of attacks on staff of electricity distribution companies even as the Commission directed the DisCos to provide meters for all maximum demand meter customers within their networks not later than the last quarter of 2016 as agreed during the meeting it had with them on metering.
The Commission said that it will sanction any defaulting DisCos beginning fourth quarter of the year. Maximum demand electricity customers are those connected on the 11 Kv (high tension wire) and mostly with their dedicated transformers.
This directive is sequel to the rising complaints from all categories of electricity customers over estimated bills they considered irreconcilable with the available power supply in the networks
The Commission frowned at DisCos refusal to meter their maximum demand customers under the Credit Advance Payment for Metering Initiative (CAPMI).
CAPMI is one of the Commission’s initiative which permits willing electricity customer to pay for meter by advancing money to DisCo, who installs the meter within 45 days. Customer who subscribes to
CAPMI is refunded his money with interest through discounted electricity bills over a period of time.
The Commission in its directives observed that most of the DisCos have refused to accept maximum demand customers under CAPMI scheme. Meanwhile, maximum demand customers are fewer in number than the other categories of customers and should have been easily dispense with by the DisCos.
In a directive signed by the acting Chairman, Dr. Anthony Akah, mni, the Commission said “any customer who approaches your DisCo for metering under CAPMI Scheme must have their meters within CAPMI stipulated timeline of 45 days.”
“The scheme remains as an option for customers but a compulsory requirement for DisCos to implement when customer offers to contribute to metering through CAPMI.”
Electricity distribution companies were further directed to ensure that customers in the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) are effectively managed. The directive further encouraged the DisCos to publicise CAPMI and encourage customer to subscribe to it so as to close the wide metering gap in the industry.
Dr. Usman Abba Arabi - Head, Public Affairs Department