Association urges residential customers to comply with estimated billing

In what seemed to be calls and counter calls, the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) has appealed to residential (small demand) customers across the country to continue paying their estimated bills and not misconstrue the directive of no meter no pay to include them.
The Association acknowledged the fact that electricity consumers may have misconstrued a recent directive by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) exempting hitherto unmetered maximum demand (MD) customers from paying bills,
A statement issued by ANED on behalf of the 11 distribution companies (DisCos) in Abuja explained that the directive by NERC was targeted at some of the Maximum Demand (MD) customers that may not have been metered after the metering deadline for them which was originally 28th February, but extended to 1st March, 2017 at the request of the DisCos expired.
“The MD customers who are also called Large Power Users (LPU) include mainly MDAs, large plazas estates, large firms, and small-scale industries, e.t.c., with consumption threshold of 45KVA from whom huge revenue is generated.
“The MD meters are connected on the 11Kv (High tension wire) electricity lines, mostly on dedicated transformers,” the statement explained further.
ANED said the DisCos will continue to operate with the estimated billing methodology approved by NERC as frantic efforts are being made to ensure completion of the on-going metering processes according to the Performance Agreements with the Bureau for Public Enterprises (BPE).
Meanwhile NERC in a statement issued by the AGM on Media, Mrs Vivian Mbonu said, non-MD customers that do not have meters must continue to pay their estimated bills but warned the DisCos to strictly adhere to estimation methodology rather than hiking bills.
It will be recalled that the Meter Manufacturers Association of Nigeria, EMMAN, appealed to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, to extend the directive of `no meter no payment’ to all electricity consumers nationwide.
The association’s Executive Secretary, Muyideen Ibrahim, made the call in Lagos, against the backdrop of NERC’s directive on June 11 that all Maximum Demand (MD) customers not provided with meters to stop paying estimated bills presented by distribution companies.
The maximum demand customers are commercial and industrial customers, who consume high levels of electricity and contribute substantially to the revenues of distribution companies.
The EMMAN scribe said that effective metering of customers would eradicate estimated billing and also boost the revenue of the distribution companies.
He said that most distribution companies have resulted to estimated billing to generate more revenue to their purse at the expense of their customers.
According to him, NERC should not limit the directive to maximum demand customers but rather to all consumers, because it’s really embarrassing for the DISCOs billing without meter.
“Consumers had been complaining over the years that DISCOs should install meters to their premises for effectiveness and accountability but they refused.There is no sense for consumers paying for services not rendered. There is need for NERC to checkmate the excess of the DISCOs,” he said.
“If all consumers are properly metered, it will reduce energy theft and waste. It will also increase the revenue of the DISCOs if not compromised. Most of the electricity distribution companies have refused to deploy meters to Nigerians, a situation leading to exploitation of electricity consumers across the country,’’ he added.

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