05 October 2015, Lagos – Residents of the Apapa-Iganmu and the Ifelodun local council development areas of Lagos State have marched in protest to the Eko Electricity Distribution Company in Ijora-Badia over what they described as crazy bills served by the company on them.
The residents told PUNCH Metro that their electricity bills were higher than their house rents.
The residents displayed placards and sang solidarity songs to the distribution company, demanding an explanation from the authorities on why such bills should be given to them.
The protesters, who marched from Amusu Street, went through the Gaskiya Road, calling on shop owners and other stakeholders to join them.
One of the residents, Kamoru Wole, said some tenants paid as much as N5,000 as electricity bill on a monthly basis, which was higher than the house rent which was N1,500 per month.
He said, “Badia and Amukoko are low-profile populated areas, and we paid as low as N1,500 for rent. It is a residential area with just a few people engaging in petty commercial activities. Yet, this is an area where the electricity per room is as high as N5,000.
“This is robbery by workers of the distribution company. Our electricity bills are higher than our house rents. We do not use air-conditioners; so where did the company get the high bills?”
The residents, who read a protest letter on the distribution company premises, urged the management to address the anomalies in the bills to prevent “crises when the company workers would be sharing the next bills”.
The letter reads in part, “The residents of these communities register our displeasure over the abnormal and arbitrary bill given to us a monthly basis by the distribution company in the Badia sub-station.
“We cry for the intervention of the management because our persistent appeals have fallen on the deaf ears of the junior workers. They have taken us for a ride simply because they consider us as some of the lowly placed in the society.
“This act is inhuman and condemnable. It has become the habit of the workers of the distribution company to increase the electricity bills of residents on a monthly basis without any justification.”
One of the landlords, identified only as Adedayo, said the distribution company should cancel all the past debts of the residents.
He said, “The pre-paid meters should also be supplied en mass to curb the menace of crazy billings.”
An official of the distribution company, who identified himself as N.A. Adebayo, assured the residents that their demands would be looked into.
He said, “The management is going to look into your demands. We will get back to you soon.”