The power Distribution Companies (DisCos) are already hiking electricity rates despite the effects of the COVID-19 as a three-month tariff hike implementation begins on Tuesday.
Tariff schedules of three DisCos seen by Iexclusivenews on Monday night, revealed that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) approved the tariff hike for the DisCos.
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NERC had recently okayed tariff hike but said the DisCos must consult with customers first, and that the hike will not affect consumers who do not get 12-hour power supply daily for a month.
According to the schedule for Ikeja DisCo, NERC said: “Following consultations and directions on tariff policy, the Commission (NERC) hereby approves a deferment of the applicable tariffs for customers in service band D and E (that is customers with a service commitment of less than an average of 12 hours supply per day over a period of one month) for the period 1st September 2020 to 1st January 2021.
“Accordingly, Ikeja Disco shall continue to charge customers in Bands D and E the tariffs applied prior to this Order, and shall only be allowed to charge the approved tariffs in this Order upon investments that improve quality of service experience thus migrating customers to higher service bands or another Order of the Commission.”
NERC stated that the new tariff order will end on January 1, 2020 when sources in the power industry said, the Commission is expected to approve another hike for the power firms.
Residential customers under the Ikeja DisCo have been grouped to R2SP and R2TP paying N21.30 and N21.80 per kilowatt hour (kwh) starting today.
In a similar NERC Tariff Order for Eko DisCo, it grouped the customers according to A to E with the C to E customers having 12 hour supply down to four hour daily, and charged them not to hike tariff for those below 12 hour power daily supply.
Kaduna Electric also hiked its electricity tariff. In its Tariff Order approved by NERC, it said: “From Tuesday 1st September 2020, the new Service Reflective Tariff will take effect.”
While there is no increase for Band D and E customers, the schedule showed that the tariff for Band A rose to as high as N56.31/kwh from about N40 previously.
“The above tariff is from September to December, 2020,” Kaduna DisCo noted.
Chairman of NERC, Prof. James Momoh, last Wednesday hinted that the new model being implemented from Tuesday is the Service Based Tariff (SBT).
“Under these service-based principles DisCos will only be able to review tariff rates for customers when they consult with customers, commit to increasing the number of hours of supply per day and quality of service.”
Although he said no immediate tariff hike, the Order conveying the latest approval proved otherwise, and punctured his claim.
Iexclusivenews learnt that the three DisCos which had submitted their amended Performance Improvement Plans (PIP) to NERC for approval as basis to raise their rates, were the ones granted approval, just as other DisCos will take cue within the month.