NLC Asks FG to Halt Planned Electricity Tariffs Hike

June 22, 2023
electricity tariffs

By Adedapo Adesanya

The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has asked the federal government to stop the proposed hike in electricity tariffs by 40 per cent from next month.

The President of the union, Mr Joe Ajaero, said in a statement that the plan to increase electricity tariffs from July 1 doesn’t consider the hardship faced by Nigerians due to the rise in the cost of living.

He said, “The massive increase is explained away as a response to the over 100 per cent increase in the pump price of premium motor spirit (PMS).

“Details reveal a movement in inflation from 16.9 per cent to 22.41 per cent (threatening to needle 30) and a shift in the exchange rate from N441 to N750 (per Dollar). We believe not even these figures are a justification for this reckless proposed tariff increase.

“The issue of capacity to pay and quality of service delivery is not only germane but superior to any rationalisation by market logic.

“The service providers, despite sundry support, have not been able to meet the threshold of 5,000 megawatts.

“Coupled with this, there have been surreptitious increases without notice in violation of statutes.

“The inherent risk in the new regime of tariff is that there is no control, implying that by August, consumers will pay new rates.

“The other risk is that by the time other products or service-rendering entities come up with their new prices or rates, the ordinary person would have been compacted into dust.

“We would want to advise apostles of the Market who have called NLC all sorts of names to check their conscience.

“The rate at which they are going is highly combative and combustible. With the contemplation of payment of school fees in tertiary institutions and increases in privately-owned ones in addition to other costs/tariffs on the way, life in Nigeria could truly be Hobbesian,” the statement partly read.

According to the NLC, the market economies, which the market fundamentalists seek to emulate, have in place socio-economic safeguards which Nigeria does not have and in light of this, “the proposed tariff hike should be shelved for the collective safety of Nigerians.”

Adedapo Adesanya

Adedapo Adesanya is a journalist, polymath, and connoisseur of everything art. When he is not writing, he has his nose buried in one of the many books or articles he has bookmarked or simply listening to good music with a bottle of beer or wine. He supports the greatest club in the world, Manchester United F.C.

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