The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) is set to procure additional 30,000 prepaid meters to intensify mass metering of customers in its franchise locations.
The locations are Kogi, Niger, Nasarawa and the Federal Capital Territory.
While signing the contract for supply of the meters in Abuja on Tuesday, the Managing Director of AEDC, Mr Ernest Mupwaya said contract for supply of the meters, valued at US$3.7 million (about N1.29 billion) was awarded to ZTE Nigeria Limited, a Chinese company operating in Nigeria.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) recalls that the AEDC had in June procured 60,000 prepaid meters worth N2.4 billion from MOJEC International, a local meter manufacturer.
The company had embarked on a mass metering project last December with a target of installing 120,000 meters annually in its areas of operation.
It said that the metering of customers was to bridge the metering gap, reduce estimation billing, restore confidence of customers and ultimately improve revenue of the company.
Mupwaya said that the company would have met its target of 120,000 meters for 2017 by procuring the additional 30,000 meters.
He said that the meters comprised 24,000 single phase and 6,000 three phase meters, adding that N214 million would be used to procure additional materials to install the meters.
The AEDC boss explained that the meters would help customers to monitor the rate of electricity consumed, reduce load shedding on the part of the company and ultimately help eradicate energy theft by some consumers.
Mupwaya said that the installation of the meters would also facilitate the revenue collection profile of the company.
According to him, the continuous inflow of cash to the company would also enhance the procurement of more meters for customers.
He advised consumers to desist from bypassing its meters and other forms of energy theft, adding those acts were affecting the operation of the company in terms of technical and commercial losses.
The AEDC boss said that the technical loss incurred by the company was in the region of 12 per cent, while the commercial loss was 42 per cent at the moment.
NAN reports that technical losses are losses that occur in the process of receiving electricity from the other value chain and distributing same to the consumers.
Commercial loss is occasioned by the criminal activities of some consumers such as energy theft, vandalism and by-pass of meters among others.
He, however, said that the company was reconfiguring its distributions lines to take care of the losses.
In his remarks, the Managing Director of ZTE Nigeria Limited, Mr Fan Jian said that the company had provided technical services in Nigeria for 17 years.
According to him, the company, which is also involved in the provision of telecommunication services to notable companies in the country, has government agencies as its partners.
Jian said it was the second time the company was entering into a contract to supply meters to AEDC, having successfully delivered the initial supply of meters.
He commended AEDC for the partnership and the confidence reposed on the company.
Meanwhile, AEDC has begun the metering of residents of AKU and AMAC housing estates in the Lugbe area of the FCT following the conclusion of enumeration of the estate. (NAN)