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Electricity Tariff: Court fumes at FG, DISCOs



Justice Mohammed Idris of the Federal High Court in Lagos has warned the federal government and electricity Distribution Companies, DISCOs not to act in any way that shows disdain for the court in a constitutional democracy.

He stated this as he warned them against disobeying subsisting court orders on electricity tariff.

This also followed a protest by the Trade Union Congress, TUC, and union affiliates, with placards, yesterday, at the premises of the High, against the hike in electricity tariff by Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC and the DISCOs.

Justice Idris had made an order directing parties to maintain status quo. But, while the suit was pending, NERC announced a tariff hike.

Read also: Lawyer asks court to charge NERC, DISCOs for contempt

Justice Idris, who is the trial judge, at the resumed hearing in the matter, said: “The point must be made that obedience to the rule of law by all citizens is sacrosanct, but more particularly those who publicly take the oath of office to protect and preserve the constitution is panacea to good governance and respect for rule of law.

“In a constitutional democratic society like ours, this is meant to be the norm. It is an act of apostacy for government to ignore the provisions of the law and the necessary rules meant to regulate matters.

“I must say it loud and clear that the government of this country shall be a government of laws and not of men.”
Protests by labour unions have trailed the new power tarriff approved by NERC.

Activist and lawyer, Mr Toluwani Adebiyi, had last year in a suit sought a perpetual injunction restraining NERC from implementing any upward review of electricity tariff without significant improvement in power supply for at least 18 hours a day.

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