The implementation of free electricity supply promised by the 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOS) is subject Federal Government’s approval which has the initiative to cushion the harsh effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on the citizenry.
Making clarification on how the plan would be implemented, the Association of Nigeria Electricity Distributors (ANED) Executive Director (Research and Advocacy), Sunday Oduntan, said once the government gives the power firms the go ahead, it could be based on the previous usage capacity of the customers.
Speaking with The Nation on phone, the DisCos spokesman said that for customers with prepaid meters, the DisCos may credit their meters with units worth the average energy they purchased in the last six months.
For those that are owing, the equivalent of their energy usage would be credited to them and also debited at the same time.
For customers on post paid meters, the DisCos may give them what is equivalent to their previous electricity consumption.
Oduntan said “The point is that we hope that if you are on estimated billing, it is just a question of crediting you. You remember when we used CAPMi, it was very easy to look at you vending history.
“Looking at that we will know how much you vended, how much you vended and how much you vend on average, say, in the last six months. We will use that to know your average monthly vending and that will be very easy because we will put that credit on your meter. That is prepaid meter.
“If you are on estimated billing, post paid meter- the meter they will read and give you bill; we will know you usage history, so you will be given the equivalent of your usage history.
“If you are in debt, even when we put that credit, it will show credit but it will be debited from your debt. For those on estimated billing that is what I am saying.
So at the end of the day, it will not be too difficult to work out.
“Don’t forget that the federal government will approve it. We are waiting for further directive from the federal government. Once they give that we will kick off. So there is is no commencement date.”
Oduntan was very explicit that the DisCos are not producers of the electricity as they only buy and seek whatever they get from the generators and transmitting company.
He described with initiative as a plan that was still subject to government’s approval, adding that the DisCos have only indicated their support and intention for the initiative.