27 April 2014, Lagos – The core investors in the privatized electricity distribution companies, DISCOs, have asked the National Assembly to enact a strong anti-theft law to curb vandalism of the country’s power infrastructure.
The Managing Director of 4Power Consortium Limited, the core investor in Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company, PHEDC, Matthew Edevbie, said the law would empower the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, successor companies to prosecute electricity vandals and customers who attack utility personnel in the cause of their duties.
Mr. Edevbie told members of the House of Representatives Committee on Commercialization and Privatization in Port Harcourt that the DISCOs were suffering huge losses as a result of the growing incidence of vandalism of their facilities.
He lamented the poor condition of the electricity distribution networks the PHEDC inherited, pointing out that they were worse than envisaged.
Some of the challenges the company said it was facing included higher average technical, commercial and collection, ATC&C Loss than the Multi Year Tariff Order, MYTO, assumption; and vandalism of power distribution facilities.
In spite of the challenges experienced by PHEDC, Mr. Edevbie said the company recorded some important achievements since taking over the DISCO in November 2013.
They include the construction of new 33KV lines at Trans Amadi Industrial area; re-conduction of Okrika 11KV feeder for Okoloma Communities in Ahaoda; commissioning of the NIPP 1 x 15MVA 33/11KV Injection Substation at Ikot Abasi and the 1x15MVA 33/11KV Injection Substation constructed by the Rivers State government at Eleme.
Other projects include 1x15MVA 33/11KV Injection Substation also constructed by the Rivers State government at Eliozu-Eneka; 4 units of 1 x 15MVA and 15MVA Injection Substation in Trans Amadi, and 22 units of Distribution Substations, and general maintenance of the network.
At the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company, the Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer of the DISCO, Robert Dickerman, called on the Federal Government to address the problems of inadequate gas supply to the generation companies, GENCOs, and pipeline vandalism militating against power generation in the country.
– Bassey Udo, Premium Times