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Nigerian govt slams World Bank’s report on poor power distribution in Nigeria

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The Federal Government on Sunday slammed evidence contained in a report by the World Bank on distribution of electricity in Nigeria.

Ripples Nigeria had reported that the World Bank report titled ‘Power Sector Recovery Programme Opinion Research Fact Sheet’ alleged that 78 per cent of power consumers in Nigeria get less than 12 hours of daily supply of electricity.

However, a statement issued by the special adviser to the president on Infrastructure, Mr. Ahmad Rufai Zakari, aimed to set the record straight.

The Nigerian govt stated that it was worrisome that the World Bank arrived at such a conclusion without any clear empirical evidence.

Zakari said, “it is inaccurate to make a blanket statement that 78% of Nigerians have less than 12 hours daily access.”

“Empirical evidence from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) shows that only 55% of citizens connected to the grid are in tariff bands D and E which are less than 12 hours supply”, the FG’s spokesman clarified.

Read also: Nigerians to pay more for fuel as govt moves to fulfill World Bank’s terms for $3.4bn loan

“The data from NERC is that 55% of citizens connected to the grid are in tariff bands D and E which are less than 12 hours supply. Those citizens are being fully subsidised to pre-September 2020 tariffs until DIsCOs are able to improve supply. There is a N120 billion CAPEX fund from CBN for DIsCOs to improve infrastructure for these tariff classes similar to the metering programme that is ongoing,” the statement read.

Zakari also kicked against aspects of the World Bank report which claimed that 58 per cent of electricity consumers in the country do not have meters to measure electricity use, dismissing the data as unverifiable.

“It is unclear who did this survey and what the timeframe is. All citizens that have gotten free meters report they are happy about the reform trajectory. To date, more than 600k meters have been delivered to DISCOs out of the 1 million in phase 0 with installation ongoing. Meters are sourced locally and are creating jobs in installation and manufacturing/assembly,” he stressed.

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