Governor of the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Godwin Emefiele, has called on all Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) to ensure that all electricity consumers are supplied with meters. This, he said, will ensure that revenue realised will equate the amount of electricity consumed.
Emefiele stated this over the weekend during the “4th batch disbursement of the CBN-Nigerian Electricity Market Stabilisation Facility, at the Central Bank of Nigeria, Lagos office. Present at the gathering were Minister of Power, Works/Housing and Energy, Alhaji Babatunde Fashola, SAN; representatives of DISCOs, GENCOs, and gas companies, as well as stakeholders in the power, banking and petroleum sector.
In his speech, the CBN governor noted: “Many customers don’t have meters and by this, it shows we can’t determine how much money to realise from customers. To ensure that this trend changes, DISCOs should buy meters for their customers so that accurate electricity consumption can be captured.”
He recalled that the increase in electricity tariff in February resulted from the need to make meters available to all electricity consumers in the country, stressing: “DISCOs must take active steps in delivering meters to the people.”
Emefiele said that power generation is investment-driven, and needs the support of every stakeholder to thrive. This, according to him, is what necessitated the disbursement of the electricity stabilisation facility.
“Our review of the fund utilisation and reports of impact by beneficiaries revealed that the intervention resulted in the restoration of a total of 905mw of power into the grid, as a result of facility turn-around maintenance; contribution of over 25 per cent of the annual capital expenditure budget for the sector. Specific reports from generating companies revealed that there was execution of capacity recovery programmes in three hydro-power stations as follows: Intake of under-water repair projects, overhaul of Unit 4 and compliant metering/supplementary protection at Shiroro Dam; overhaul of 2G6 at Jebba Hydro and rehabilitation of 3 units at Kainji Dam. A total of 300mw capacity increase was reported as a result of fund utilisation towards rehabilitation of both plants.
“Others were rehabilitation of ‘7no gas turbines’ at the three major thermal power plants, namely: Geregu, Transcorp Ughelli, and Ibom Power Plant.”
Emefiele said the intervention has also enabled the DISCOs to provide bank guarantees to Nigerian Electricity Bulk Trader (NEBT), purchase of over 171,071 units of meters, comprising both maximum demand and single phase meters. For instance, Kano Electricity Distribution Company (KEDC) alone acquired 62,021 energy meters with the facility, within the period. Rehabilitation of over 332kms of 11kv lines and 130km of 0.45kv lines; 70,310 No 500KVA transformers procurement and construction of 34 new distribution substations, and acquisition of one mobile injection substation under confirmed permitted utilisation by the initiative.”
He called on stakeholders in the power sector, especially gas suppliers, to invest more in the business to ensure more returns in terms of efficient service delivery and revenue generation.
Fashola, on his part, said although there are challenges in the power sector, but they are not insurmountable. “We are in a result-business: the only result that matter is power; getting electricity to the homes of Nigerians.”
*Photo shows electricity meter.