Electricity Tariff Dispute: ‘95% of Distribution Companies’ Band A Customers Receive Less Than 20 Hours of Daily Electricity Supply’

In a recent interview, Mr. Eket Eko Ogbonga, the National Secretary of the Network for Electricity Consumer Advocacy of Nigeria, discussed the controversial removal of subsidies and the subsequent increase in electricity tariffs for consumers in Band A. The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) stated that consumers in Band A, who are supposedly using 20 hours or more of electricity daily, would see their tariff increase from N68/KWh to N225/KWh. However, Ogbonga pointed out that less than five percent of consumers in Band A actually receive 20 hours of electricity supply.

Ogbonga highlighted the issue of metering and how Distribution Companies (DISCOs) are allegedly collecting money for electricity not supplied. He mentioned that the smart prepaid meters record outages, allowing for the extraction of data to show the actual hours of electricity received. According to him, some customers on Band A have not received the minimum 18-hour supply in 11 months, despite being classified in that band.

Discussing the lack of compliance monitoring by NERC, Ogbonga emphasized the need for a mechanism to measure actual electricity supply. He questioned the effectiveness of the compensation policy for customers who do not receive the promised hours of electricity, stating that it leaves the measurement process to the DISCOs rather than independent verification.

Ogbonga also discussed the broader issues in the electricity sector, such as revenue assurance, metering gaps, and high technical and commercial losses. He emphasized that metering is crucial for revenue collection and reducing losses in the sector. Drawing comparisons with countries like Zambia and Kenya, where 100% metering has led to lower losses and increased revenue, he suggested that Nigeria should focus on metering as a solution to liquidity challenges.

Regarding the Federal Government’s aim to save N1.14 trillion in electricity subsidies, Ogbonga highlighted the need for transparency in how funds allocated for the sector are spent. He expressed concern about the lack of accountability and tracking of funds, especially with the request for an additional $3 billion loan for the power sector.

In conclusion, Ogbonga stressed the importance of addressing the metering gap, improving transparency in fund usage, and focusing on practical solutions to improve electricity supply and revenue collection in Nigeria’s electricity sector.


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