29 February 2016, Abuja – The Consumer Protection Council has ordered the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company to pay the family of an electrocuted boy the sum of N10m for the firm’s alleged technical lapses and negligence.
The CPC’s order came on the heels of a complaint by one Mr. Tade Ayodele, who claimed that a live electricity cable fell from a pole at the old Panteker Area of Kabusa in Abuja on Monday, November 9, 2015, causing the electrocution and subsequent death of his son, Master Samuel Ayodele.
The complainant claimed that his son had slipped and fallen on the cable, leading to his electrocution and death.
However, the AEDC, in its response, dissociated itself from the accident, claiming in its letter dated December 7, 2015 that the electricity distribution network in the community where the deceased lived was a substandard self-help project.
But the council said before making its decision, it had in the course of its investigation visited the site, conducted interviews with residents of the community and sought the technical opinion of the Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency, the sector’s regulator.
According to the council, NEMSA concluded that the accident occurred as a result of weak/bad low tension network and technical lapses on the part of the AEDC for allowing the substandard installations.
NEMSA, according to the CPC, also stated that the AEDC did not respond promptly to the snap conductor after it was reported to it.
The CPC said in a statement on Sunday, “The council, in reaching this conclusion, agreed with and relied on the expert opinion of NEMSA, the sector regulator, on quality and electricity materials.
“Furthermore, the council found the AEDC liable for incorporating this self-help project into its billing system by collecting payments from the community, while failing, refusing and neglecting to disconnect the purported illegal substandard installations.
“Consequently, the CPC ordered the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company Plc to pay the sum of N10,000,000 to the complainant as compensation for the death of Master Samuel Ayodele, which arose from the technical lapses and gross negligence of the respondent.”
The statement stated that the AEDC had been served with the order, and must comply and revert to the council on or before the April 30, 2016.