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New power policy rendering Discos technically useless in power value chain?

The newly unveiled electricity distribution policy, called ‘willing seller, willing buyer’ have continued to generate confusion as to the place of Discos in the emerging new value chain of electricity delivery from generation to end users.

In a statement issued by the Federal Ministry of Power, it explained that under the new policy, electricity would be wheeled directly from generation companies to willing consumers ready to fully settle their bills.

It also added that the willing consumers might include community and commercial clusters, industrial areas and hospitality sectors.

However, many energy experts, who barred their minds with our correspondents noted that by the provisions of the new policy, there are strong indications that the job of electricity distribution companies (Discos) may have been taken away thereby rendering them technically useless in power value chain.

Only recently, the Minister of Power, Mr Sale Mamman, was quoted as saying on a phone-in radio programme in Kano that the policy was designed to save energy losses in the power sector and assist Gencos, which had not been getting the full payment for their generated power.

He recalled that the policy has already taken off as a pilot scheme in two states, adding that the increase in electricity tariffs was inevitable, considering the cost of energy generation in the country.

According to him, Discos had not been distributing all the power wheeled to them on the pretence that the consumers were unable to pay for the power, arguing that the scenario necessitated the huge Federal Government’s subsidy intervention in the power sector by paying the Gencos for undistributed power directly what Discos ought to have paid them.