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VON DG, Okechukwu hails Buhari, knocks Discos - Electricity tariff

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Tiamiyu Saheed Oluwatosin
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calendar-icon Posted on: 2021-01-10 17:00:14
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The Director-General of Voice of Nigeria, Mr. Osita Okechukwu has commended the President Muhammadu Buhari administration for halting a further increment in electricity tariff.
Okechukwu, who spoke to journalists at the inauguration of All Progressives Congress, APC, Ward Executive at Eke, Enugu State on Sunday, Mr Osita Okechukwu reacting on the incessant electricity tariff hike, thanked Mr President for halting the tariff hike.
“ May I thank Mr President for saying no to incessant Shylock electricity tariff hike; to be exact almost three times since inception of Buhari’s regime. One has carefully perused the defense Advert of Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and beg to disagree with them. For the avoidance of doubt, without prejudice to their nice prose, adjustment from N2 to N4 per kwhr, As stated by them to reflect the partial impact of inflation and movement in foreign exchange rates, for me is 100% Shylock Tariff Hike, not even the 50% Nigeria Labour Congress mentioned.”
Reminded that the Electricity Disco Companies are complaining of low tariff which hinders their performance.
Okechukwu in reply said,
“Methinks it is better for Mr President to consider the revocation of the agreement with Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOS) nationwide. Otherwise, their incapacity will thwart economic development in Nigeria, hence making it impossible to realise Mr President’s objective to lift millions out of poverty. Bet me, even if tariff is increased 10 times, they lack the capacity to turn around the electricity distribution infrastructure.”
When confronted with the fact that it is only increase in tariff that will save the situation, Okechukwu quipped,
“Increase in tariff will make the greatest number to remain in darkness will the few who can pay will enjoy electricity. Is that the improvement we are yearning for? No, the truism is that lame excuse cannot exonerate the Electricity Distribution Companies from breaching the agreement they had with Nigerian People to fix the moribund distribution networks.”
“Our problem started with a rigged privatization exercise. It is imperative to remember that the Privatisation Exercise was less than transparent. Evidence can be located in the Dr Artedo Peterside’s Technical Committee of National Council of Privatisation (NCP) report, which reviewed the exercise.”
Going further Okechukwu maintained that the agreement constructed was akin to a Tenant drafting an agreement for the Landlord. The only pragmatic solution is the termination of the agreement, as critical examination of amount the Federal Government pumped in since 2015, to revamp this critical distribution infrastructure is more than what the Discos invested. Lets terminate the agreement and revamp the electricity distribution infrastructure, less we remain ever in darkness.”

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