In this piece, ’FEMI ASU examines the new initiative aimed at stopping power distribution companies’ unrealistic and arbitrary billing, as well as the low deployment of meters to consumers more tha...Published February 27, 2020 Kindly Share This Story In this piece, ’FEMI ASU examines the new initiative aimed at stopping power distribution companies’ unrealistic and arbitrary billing, as well as the low deployment of meters to consumers more than six years after the power sector was privatised the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission announced on Monday that it had put limits on the amounts power distribution companies can charge unmetered consumers for electricity consumption in a month. This came more than a year after NERC disclosed that it was considering putting limits on estimated billing following outcry from electricity consumers over “crazy bills.” The regulator had in October 2018, in a ‘Consultation Paper on the Capping of Estimated Billing’, described the Methodology for Estimated Billing introduced in 2012 as “a complete failure.” On Monday, it said it had cancelled the Estimated Billing Methodology Regulation as a basis for computing the consumption of unmetered customers by distribution companies. NERC disclosed this in its order on the capping of estimated bills in the Nigerian electricity supply industry which it said took effect from February 20, 2020. It noted that the Estimated Billing Methodology Regulation was introduced as a means of ensuring that customers were not issued arbitrary bills that were unrelated to actual consumption or any other metric for estimating their energy consumption. But the successful implementation of the regulation was hindered by the inadequate level of metering of feeders and distribution of transformers which form the source of data for the effective application of the estimation methodology, the commission said. It said, “The inadequacy of accurate data required for the estimation of consumption of unmetered consumers produced the most significant customer complaints with non-provision of meters and unrealistic billing of unmetered customers accounting for over 65 per cent of complaints lodged at customer care centres of Discos, disputes filed at Forum Offices and subsequent appeals to the commission. “The significant level of customer dissatisfaction arising from unrealistic estimated bills have also adversely impacted on the market revenues as a consequence of customer apathy and declining willingness to settle their invoices in full.” The President, Electricity Consumers Association of Nigeria, Mr Chijioke James, in an interview with our correspondent on Wednesday, said the number of unmetered customers in the country was too high and unacceptable. He described the capping of Discos’ estimated billing as a welcome development, saying the regulator needed to do more in order to achieve the desired results. He said, “It is not just by issuing directives; the regulator must now begin to activate the enforcement with the full weight of the law in terms of penalties. That is what consumers actually expect from the NERC. “The regulator must put frameworks in place to ensure that the policies that are formulated are enforced to the letter and those who are in breach are brought to book. That would help to bring about some measure of sanity in the sector.” James also stressed the need for NERC to increase the level of advocacy with consumer groups. “They need to do more in public enlightenment to let the consumers know what their rights are. Once Nigerians are fully aware, they will take ownership of the policy because it is a policy that directly affects them,” he added. According to NERC, the customer population has grown from five million in 2012 to over 10 million as of December 2019 with about 52 per cent of the population being invoiced on the basis of estimated billing. The commission said all unmetered R2 and C1 customers should not be invoiced for the consumption of energy beyond the cap stipulated by it. R2 customers are residential customers who consume more than 50 kilowatt-hours in a month (single phase and three-phase), while C1 customers are small businesses (single and three-phase). Citing an example, NERC said, “A consumer of XYZ Disco resident in White Acre under R2 (single phase) tariff class has an energy cap of 78 kilowatt-hour per month and a tariff of N24 per kilowatt-hour. The maximum that XYZ Disco can invoice such a customer is 78kWhr x N24/kWhr=N1,872 per month.” In Mushin, Lagos a residential consumer under R2S tariff class, with an energy cap of 110 kWh per month and a tariff of N24 per kWh, shall not be charged more than N2,640, while a consumer under R2T tariff class shall not be charged more than N3,791.13 (147kWh x N25.79/kWh) In Ikorodu, Lagos, a residential consumer under R2S tariff class, with an energy cap of 112 kWh per month and a tariff of N21.30 per kWh, shall not be charged more than N2,385.60, while a consumer under R2T tariff class shall not be charged more than N2,637.8 (121kWh x N21.80/kWh). In Ikeja, a residential consumer under R2S tariff class, with an energy cap of 207 kWh per month and a tariff of N21.30 per kWh, shall not be charged more than N4,409.10, while a consumer under R2T tariff class shall not be charged more than N7,150.40 (328Wh x N21.80/kWh). In Kafanchan, Kaduna, a residential consumer under R2S tariff class, with an energy cap of 60 kWh per month and a tariff of N26.37 per kWh, shall not be charged more than N1,582.20, while a consumer under R2T tariff class shall not be charged more than N2,244 (80Wh x N28.05/kWh). In Onitsha, a residential consumer under R2S tariff class, with an energy cap of 114 kWh per month and a tariff of N30.93 per kWh, shall not be charged more than N3,526.02, while a consumer under R2T tariff class shall not be charged more than N6,136.12 (179Wh x N34.28/kWh). An R2 customer in Gwagwalada, Abuja, shall not be charged more than N2,235.60 (92kWhr x N24.30/kWhr). It said all other customers on higher tariff classes must be metered by Discos not later than April 30, 2020, adding customers would not be liable to pay any estimated bill issued if the Disco failed to supply meters. “The customer shall remain connected to supply without further payment to the Discos until a meter is installed on the premises under the framework work of MAP Regulations or any other financing arrangement approved by the commission,” it said. According to the commission, Discos shall ensure that all customers on tariff class A1 in their franchise areas are property identified and metered by April 30, 2020. A1 customers are those that use grid-connected premises for agriculture, water boards, religious houses, government and teaching hospitals, government research institutes and educational establishments that require single or three-phase meters. NERC said all R1 customers, who by definition consume no more than 50kWhr of energy per month, should continue to be billed at N4/kWhr and a maximum of N200 per month unless amended by an order of the commission. It said, “Customers whose current estimated bills are lower than the prescribed energy cap shall remain so without any upward adjustment until a meter is installed by the Disco under the MAP Regulations or any other initiative approved by the commission. “Any customer that rejects the installation of a meter on their premises by a Disco shall not be entitled to supply and must be disconnected by the Disco, and shall only be reconnected to the network with the installation of a meter.” On March 8, 2018, NERC approved the Meter Asset Provider Regulation, aimed at fast-tracking the closure of the metering gap in the sector through the engagement of third-party investors for the financing, procurement, supply, installation and maintenance of electricity meters. The commission, which set a target of metering all customers within three years, directed the Discos and the meter asset providers to commence the roll-out of meters not later than May 1, 2019, adding that customers should expect meters to be installed on their premises within 10 working days of making payment to MAPs. NERC noted in its February 20, 2020 document that the third-party investors for the provision of meters were procured by the Discos, under a competitive framework to provide meters to customers based on multiple financing options. “However, several constraints including changes in fiscal policy and the limited availability of long-term funding have led to limited success in the meter rollout,” it said. The Federal Government handed over to private investors on November 1, 2013 the generation and distribution companies carved out of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria. Copyright PUNCH. All rights reserved. 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Give us prepaid meters and we pay for what we use. The discos are slowing down the issueance of prepaid meters. And this is best way to get us out of darkness. PLEASE GOVERNMENT HELP US. SOS. EFCC HELP US OUT OF THE UGLY CLAWS OF DISCOS. Estimated billing is pure nonsense, and this can only happen in a country like Nigeria. Ripping people of their money for services not rendered. Government should stop making noise but act to regulate the disco Comp. And let themselves fulfill their responsibilities. Prepaid metr
Please stop these monsters, this is pure fraud. Give us meters, this estimated thing is cheating on us Give every Nigeria prepaid meter, that's the only way out of the high estimated bill.
NERC gives DisCos till April 30 to meter electricity consumers – Daily TrustThe Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has directed the Distribution Companies (DisCos) to ensure that electricity consumers are metered by April 30. Is a welcome development Is there any fixed price for d metering? And is there any channel to report staff who extort? We will help you amplify the volume 💖💯✔️
Discos deny receiving subsidy from FGThis government is nothing but scam. I do hope Nigerians learnt something. Not all election promises are sincere, genuine and realistic. We should be able to judge people's promise by who they are not just what they say. What subsidy do you need in the first place? With the crazy bills you force customers to pay and estimated bills you give without reading any meter, yet you force customers to pay, is that not enough? Who is now deceiving who?
DisCos to Minister: TCN cannot wheel 7,000mw - The Nation NigeriaThe Association of Nigeria Electricity Distributors (ANED) yesterday told the Minister of Power, Mamman Sale that the Transmission Company...
FG sets bill limit for DisCos – Daily TrustThe Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has barred the 11 Distribution Companies (DisCos) from charging residential customers above an average of N1,800 or 78 kilowatt hour monthly until those customers are metered. NERC in an Order 197 signed by the Chairman, Prof. James Momoh to compel DisCos to meter customers. NERC said all unmetered residential … That's a good move IkejaElectric take note change this country for good
ICYMI: NERC puts limits on Discos’ estimated billingPlease do something to avert further prolonged power cut of over a year and three months at Edibe-Edibe, Atim Edem Rise, Daniel Henshaw and adjourning Streets of Calabar South, Cross River State. Via communal efforts a transformer arrived three months ago but no power supply. Only if implementation will occur otherwise this is just paper talk What modalities have they put in place to ensure compliance?
NERC bars DisCos from billing unmetered residents above N1800 – Daily TrustAmidst sustained outrages on over billing, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has barred the 11 Distribution Companies (DisCos) from charging residential customers above an average of N1,800 monthly until they are metered. In an Order 197 signed by the Chairman, Prof. James Momoh and the Commissioner, Legal, Licencing & Compliance, Dafe Akpeneye, NERC said … Sweet! Waste of time, zero implementation. Toothless Bulldog Who will enforce this?