Epileptic Power Supply: Lagos Residents Caution New Investors on Estimated Billing

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Some electricity consumers in Lagos on Wednesday urged the new investors in the power sector to suspend electricity billings pending stable power supply.

They told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) that the “outrageous billings” in spite of the poor power supply  was condemnable.

Mr Okechukwu Young, Chairman, Agbede Community Development Area in Ikorodu, said that the new investors were not considerate.

“The new investors have the guts to bring unreasonable bills to us despite the frequent blackouts that we have been experiencing.

“Handing over of electricity business to private investors was seen as the final solution to curb incessant power supply to millions of Nigerian households and business concern.

“But so far, the reverse has been the case as major cities and businesses still groan under epileptic power supply,” Young said.

Mrs Deborah Anthony, Managing Director, Deacof Engineering, said that the power situation in Surulere area had not changed since the takeover by the new investors.

“The handover to private operators has made no difference. I think things have even taken a turn for the worse.

“They are only good at sending out bills, despite the poor service, they are very fast at demanding for payments. I can count the number of times I have had power supply this year.

“The worst hit is the small business operators who now spend more on petrol to keep their businesses running,’’ she said.

A business centre operator, Mr Titilawo Rhodes, described the electricity situation in the area as very pathetic.

“I think the best thing is to cut away completely from the public power supply and rely solely on generating sets for power.

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“It is sheer wickedness on their part and outright stupidity on my side to keep paying for what I don’t use.

“I don’t see any solution to the problem of power generation, even with private operators taking over.

“It hasn’t really been easy for us businessmen as we spend most of our profits on fuelling our generating sets”.

“The implication is that inflation will rise as additional operating cost is passed on to the consumers.

Mrs Angela Eke, another customer who operates a hair dressing salon at Somolu, said that residents were not getting value for their money.

“The bills we pay are high despite the fact that we hardly get the light to use.

“All the officials are good at is dishing out bills and disconnecting light.

“There hasn’t been any significant change since the hand over. We only see them patrolling about looking for wires to disconnect.

“I don’t know when things will change for the better. We are spending so much on fuel to stay afloat,’’ she said.

Alhaji Tiamiyu Pedro, a banker, however, urged Nigerians to be patient.

According to him, Nigerians shouldn’t expect a miracle to happen overnight. I don’t think the change we are expecting in the power sector will be automatic.

“I think it’s too early to start condemning them, we should give them more time to execute their plans and projects.

“I am optimistic that this move will be beneficial to us,’’ he said. (NAN)


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