There are possibilities that electricity tariffs might escalate to new heights according to Sale Maman, the Power Minister.
He said this on a phone-in radio programme monitored in Kano while speaking on a new electricity distribution reform.
Mr Mamman said tariff hike was inevitable in light of the improved power supply that the new power policy shift would offer as well as the exorbitant cost of power generation in Nigeria.
The new policy christened “willing seller, willing buyer” seeks to deliver power directly from generating companies to consumers capable of paying for the service.
The Ministry of Power identified this target category of consumers to include industrial belts, community and commercial clusters, and hospitality sectors.
Mamman said the reform was intended to curb the high incidence of energy losses in the power sector at the same time help Gencos obtain full payment for their generated power. The policy is said to have been piloted in two states
He lamented the blatant inability of Discos to dispense all the power supplied to them with the alibi that consumers were not paying for electricity. On this ground, government had committed enormous fund in the form of subsidy intervention in the power industry, which made it pay Gencos for undistributed power.
He asserted that more than 2000 megawatts remained undistributed owing to the defective distribution chain. Discos indebtedness to Gencos and other agencies in the power sector exceeded N1.3 trillion, Mr Mamman confirmed.
He went further to state that the collections and remittances of Discos stood below 30% despite moves to make them improve.
He cited the completion of ongoing projects as part of the measures taken by government to improve the generation and the distribution segments of the power value chain. The minister appealed to Nigerians to pay up their electricity bills, stating that despite higher electricity tariffs in the neighbouring Niger Republic, payments were nearly 100%.
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