07 February 2016, Lagos – The 45 percent increase in electricity tariff with effect from February 1, 2016 is unsettling for many Nigerians, especially consumers paying with estimated bills.
While the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) said that increase in tariff will enhance service delivery and customers’ satisfaction, a large number of consumers, especially manufacturers, are calling on the Federal Government to provide prepaid meters for the people as a matter of urgency.
Under the new power tariff regime, electricity consumers in R2 class, said to be under residential, will payN24.30 per kilowatt in Abuja; Benin-N24.08; Enugu-N27.13; Ibadan -N23.09; Jos- N26.93; Kaduna – N27.36 and N28.05 (in single phase and three phases); Kano – N20.26 and N26.41; Ikeja – N21.30 and N21.80; Port Harcourt –N24.91; Eko- N24.00 and 25.79; Yola –N23.25 and N24.75 per kilowatt. Meanwhile, residential customers under R2 class within Abuja Electricity Distribution Company will no longer pay N702.00 fixed charge every month; instead, their charge will increase by N9.60kwh.
The residential customers in R2 category within Eko and Ikeja Electricity Distribution zones will no longer pay N750. 00 fixed charges. They will pay N10kwh and N8kwh increase in their energy charges. The burden of N800.00 and N750.00 fixed charges will be removed from Kaduna and Benin electricity consumers, while they will get an increase of N11.05kwh and N9.26kwh in their energy charges.
The commercial consumers in C2 category in Ibadan and Enugu will no longer pay fixed charges of N17, 010. 00 and N22,141. 00; instead their energy charge will increase by N12.08kwh and N13.35kwh. The Minister of Power, Babatunde Fashola, explained that the increase in tariff will boost investment in the sector. He added that once more investors bring money into the sector, the cost of electricity consumption may decrease in the near future.
When Sunday Vanguard visited the office of the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) at Ikeja, Lagos, to get their reaction on the new tariff regime, many manufacturers lamented the new increase, saying the hike in tariff without giving all consumers prepaid meters to measure the exact amount of electricity they consume on monthly basis is another way of exploiting the people, especially manufacturers whose businesses are already going under.