By Dipo Olowookere
The management of Ikeja Electric Plc says it is determined to ensure its customers are properly metered, thereby reducing estimated billing, which has become a big issue for consumers of electricity in the country.
According to Head, Corporate Communications, Ikeja Electric, Mr Felix Ofulue, the company remains resolute in its commitment to meter all its customers and narrow the metering gap as quickly as possible.
This Ikeja Electric has done by intensifying the roll-out of prepaid meters to further close the metering gap within its network.
The firm recently commenced the roll-out of 85,000 meters to cover residential customers across its six Business Units, in its first batch of renewed metering drive.
With this move, the DisCO is adding its quota in narrowing the metering gap. The recent report by the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) showed an increase of 1.59 percent in the number of prepaid meter customers, which is an indication that the meter gap is gradually closing.
Customers across the six business units – Ikeja, Abule-Egba, Akowonjo, Oshodi, Ikorodu and Shomolu have indicated their eagerness to be issued prepaid meters to prevent being billed through estimation.
“Ikeja Electric wants to reassure customers and state clearly its plans to progressively reduce estimated billing thereby building customers trust in our services. At the moment, prepaid meters are being installed in different communities across the network”.
“While in other localities, pre-installation activities are ongoing and between now and the end of the year we will have concluded the first batch of the deployment. We therefore urge our customers to be patient as our ultimate objective is to ensure that all our customers are eventually metered,” Mr Ofulue noted.
The regulator’s guideline states that all customers have a right to a properly installed and functional meter, and un-metered customer should be issued with electricity bills strictly based on NERC’s estimated billing methodology.
The federal government has consistently enjoined the DisCos to provide meters to customers in a bid to narrow the gap, reduce complaints of high consumption charges and estimated billing, in line with the Electric Power Sector Reform (EPSR) Act, 2005 to ensure an efficiently managed electricity supply industry that meets the yearnings of Nigerians for stable, adequate and safe electricity supply.
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