Electricity consumers spread across the networks of 11 distribution companies (DisCos) in Nigeria consumed N52.13 billion worth of electricity in 31 days of January 2020.
The Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading Plc, NBET, which declared this in a document sighted by New Telegraph at the weekend, maintained that this represented the total volume of power it sold to distribution companies [Discos] during the month under review.
The power distribution companies only paid N14.91 billion out the lump sum, leaving a debt of N37.22 billion yet to be paid to the government-owned NBET.
Yola Electricity Distribution Company, which was returned to the Federal Government by the core investor in 2015, failed to make any remittance in the month under review
The NBET, according to the power value chain, buys electricity in bulk from generation companies through Power Purchase Agreements and sells through vesting contracts to the Discos, which then supply it to the consumers.
The bulk trader noted that some of the Discos had yet to meet up with the minimum remittance approved by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission.
“The 11 Discos were given a total invoice of N52.13bn for the energy received in January but only paid N14.91bn to NBET,” the NBET data read.
Giving a breakdown of payment schedules, the document read that Yola Electricity Distribution Company, which was returned to the Federal Government by the core investor in 2015, failed to make any remittance in the month under review.
On July 2015, the Federal Government took over Yola Electricity Distribution Company following the exit of the core investor after it had declared a force majeure, citing insecurity in the North-East region of the country.
Only Jos Electricity Distribution Company met up with its approved minimum remittance of nine per cent as it paid N242.73m to NBET.
Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company, which was required to remit at least 49 per cent, paid N3.58bn (46 per cent) of the invoice of N7.77bn it received.
It was followed by Eko and Abuja Discos, which remitted N2.52bn (41 per cent) and N2.54bn (40 per cent) respectively, as against their approved minimum remittances of 43 per cent and 42 per cent.
Ibadan and Benin Discos, which were required to remit at least 28 per cent and 36 per cent respectively, paid N1.95bn and N1.23bn (27 per cent each).
Enugu Disco remitted N1.05bn (23 per cent, instead of 50 per cent); Port Harcourt Disco, N772.38m (22 per cent/28 per cent); Kano Disco, N700m (19 per cent/38 per cent), and Kaduna Disco, N303.81m (nine per cent/29 per cent).
NERC, in its latest quarterly report, said the financial viability of the Nigerian electricity supply industry remained a major challenge threatening its sustainability.
It said: “The liquidity challenge is partly due to the non-implementation of cost-reflective tariffs, high technical and commercial losses exacerbated by energy theft and consumers’ apathy to payments under the widely prevailing practise of estimated billing.
“The severity of the liquidity challenge in the Nigerian electricity supply industry was reflected in the less than 50 per cent settlement rate of the energy invoice issued by the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc and market operator to each of the Discos as well as the non-payment by the special and international customers.”
Source: New Telegraph