Vanguard (Lagos)

Nigeria: Electricity - New Owners Demand Increase in Tariff

NEW operators in the nation's power sector have asked for increase in electricity tariff in the midst of worsening power situation in the country.

The operators have already jerked up service charge from N750 to N1,500 monthly.

This came as the Federal Government and organised labour are meeting today to review labour issues in the sector especially non-payment of terminal benefits for thousands of sacked workers, alleged victimisation of labour leaders in the massive sack of workers immediately after the take-over of the assets of Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, among others.

Vanguard gathered that the operators met with the National Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, last week to demand for increase in tariff.

It was gathered that the Director-General of the Commission, Mr. Sam Amadi, told the operators that they had no basis to ask for increase when Nigerians were still lamenting the negative effect of last increase and the worsening power station in the country.

He was said to have also blamed the new operators for the massive sack of workers of the defunct PHCN, which had created shortage of manpower and compounded the power situation.

According to Vanguard sources, the new operators were said to have dissociated themselves from the sack, blaming the Bureau for Public Enterprises, BPE, for same.

However, it was not confirmed if NERC approved the increase in service charge from N750 to N1,500 monthly less than one month after take-over of assets.

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