Chinedu-Nebo-Minister-of-Power-300x200As the 15 privatised power firms hand over to the new owners, the federal government has insisted that the current electricity tariff might not be sustainable.

The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo said this last Friday at a press conference shortly after performing the handover ceremony of the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) to KANN Consortium.

Nebo appealed to Nigerians to be patient with the new private power sector, noting that, “the cost reflective tariff are not truly cost reflective. This tariff might not be sustainable, because the tariff they are charging now is because government is subsidizing it.
“But I want you to know the truth, that, in order to be sustainable, we better start doing things right. If we change the price, for instance, the first SIM card I bought 1999/2000 was N45,000, today is it not N200? It will come to that, but initially, there is teething problem, but that will improve as the market stabilises,” he explained.

Prof. Nebo stated that the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) has ceased to exist, saying, “PHCN has essentially ceased to exist. We now have Distribution companies and Generation companies. This one is AEDC, KANN owns it. It is no longer business as usual, it is business unusual and the people are expected to deliver.”

On continual regulations and monitoring, he added that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) will in a couple of days release the Interim Market Rules that will guide the newly privatised five Gencos and 10 Discos within the two months interim operations before declaring the Transition Electricity Market.

Earlier at the ceremony, the Chairman, National Council on Privatisation (NCP), Vice President Namadi Sambo who was represented by Prof. Nebo reiterated government’s commitment to strictly monitor the new power companies.

The Managing Director of AEDC, Engr. Abdul Ganiyu Umar, noted that the giant stride of government will lead to rapid socio-economic transformation, adding that, “AEDC covers the FCT, Nasarawa, Niger and Kogi states with a customer population of over 650,000 covered by about 3,983 staff members.”

 

Information from Daily Trust was used in this report.

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