Following the misinterpretation of recent directive by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) exempting hitherto unmetered maximum demand (MD) customers from paying bills, the Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) has clarified the order, stressing that residential (small demand) customers across the country are not part of the directive.
Besides, NERC in another statement issued by the AGM on Media, Mrs. Vivian Mbonu also 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.
Accordingly, the association has called on residential (small demand) customers to continue paying their estimated bills.
In a statement issued by ANED for all the 11 distribution companies (DisCos) in Abuja, the association made it clear that the directive by NERC targeted only 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 Head/CEO of ANED, Azu Obiaya dismissed the report in a section of the media that NERC stopped all unmetered electricity customers from paying the estimated bill, saying “This is incorrect as it only applies to MD, customers and not residential customers.”
“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.
According to ANED, 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).
Analysts say both NERC and ANED need to create more awareness on the matter as many Nigerians who fall within the segment of residential (small demand) consumers have taken the directive as including them.