By Abu Michael.
The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC), Kogi Region, has said that over N22 bilion worth of energy is being owed by electricity customers in the state, a factor that is affecting the smooth operation of the organization.
The Regional Manager, Kogi AEDC, Mr Danladi Baba, disclosed this in an interview with Newsmen on Saturday in Lokoja, appeals to the consumers to harken to the call for prompt payment to enable it remain in business.
According to Baba, Kogi Region customers as a whole is owing AEDC over N22 billion worth of debt, and every month we add value to our debt.
He said the State Government alone was owing N483 million as at April 2023, while other debts were from private individuals, companies and other customers make up the entire indebtedness.
“For the past four months in Kogi, we import Energy of nothing less than N1 billion but we hardly get N500 million in average every month from our customers.
“The highest we have gotten in a month is N543 million and sometimes it dropped below N500 million.
“We encourage our customers to pay their electricity supply debt to avoid the AEDC from being disconnected from the National Grid,” Baba said.
The Regional manager stressed that regular payment of electricity bills and outstanding debt would lead to improve electricity supply for customers to enjoy.
He explained that some Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) who could not fulfill the obligation of the market were recently disconnected by Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) from the National Grid.
This, he said was because of their inability to pay for what they imported as energy.
“The obligation of the market is that you must meet up with the payment for the energy that you are taking.
“Thank God the AEDC is not part of those Discos that were disconnected, and that is why we are appealing to our customers to pay up their accumulated bills.
“If care is not taken the disconnection by TCN from the grid can affect AEDC also,” Baba said.
He, however noted that the drop in the electricity supply in March and April was due to the shortfall in the allocation given to them by TCN from the National Grid, described it shortfall as a national problem.
“We can only dispense to our customers what is being allocated to us. We hope for improvement in the allocation very soon.
“But if you compare Kogi to other AEDC Regions as well as other Discos in terms of Megawatts intake, Kogi has improved electricity supply than Nasarrawa and even part of FCT.
“The improvement has started from the beginning of this month of May, and we will continue to improve.
“As from May, almost all our Feeders take 16 hours supply of electricity till this moment, while customers on band A get over 20 hours supply daily”, Baba said.
He noted that Prepaid Meters were available through only one access window called, “Meter Access Provider (MAP)” where customers pay with their money and get the meters unlike before when they were doing Mass Metering giving it out free of charge.
According to him, a single phase meter goes for N63,100, while that of double phase is N118,000 aside the MD categories which is N500,000 and above depending on the rating.
He, however assured that the Federal Government and the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) are in collaborative efforts to provide over 100 million Prepaid meters to customers free of charge.
The Regional Manager however appealed to the consumers to be patient, pay up their bills, assured that AEDC is working round the clock to ensure effective service delivery.