Nigerians to enjoy electricity relief, free meters for three months

Ngozi Amuche

Federal Government and organised labour are to provide a tariff relief of N10.20 per kilowatt-hour for Nigerians and distribute six million free meters in the next three months.

The deal, which was struck at the weekend, is a follow up to the negotiation arising from the two-week suspension by labour of the nationwide strike on the recent electricity price increase.

Minister of State for Labour and Employment, Festus Keyamo, in a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, said the participants agreed to resolve issues affecting the sector in the medium term, and provide immediate succour to customers.

The immediate palliatives would not exceed December 31,2020.

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The document read in part, “Following extensive analysis, it was realised that VAT proceeds from the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) could be used to secure varying levels of relief in customer tariffs across bands A, B and C, ensuring that all customers receive some forms of relief during this difficult time.

Cumulatively, the per kWh relief that will be provided to customers in bands A, B and C is N10.20 per kilowatt-hour (kWh), which will be distributed across the bands.

“The relief will be in place for the two to the three months period required for the Technical Committee to conclude its extended scope of work. It should be noted that bands D and E tariffs were not changed, and this freeze will remain in place.”

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It was also disclosed that the National Mass Metering Programme would be accelerated.

They stated, “This programme will distribute six million meters to Nigerians free of charge. Having secured Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) funding for this programme, the meters will be immediately distributed to consumers using stockpiles in-country and local assemblers.

“The cost of meters shall be recovered from the DisCos.

“The six million meters to be procured for the NMMP will only be through local manufacturers and assemblers. This will create jobs, and a new meter manufacturing sub-sector in the country.”

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