By Noah Ocheni, Lokoja
The Country Director, ActionAid Nigeria, Ene Obi on Tuesday warned that the proposed increment in electricity tariff will further erode the purchasing power of Nigerian workers in formal and informal sectors and even impoverish more Nigerians.
In a release made available to the press in Lokoja, Obi said “The increase in electricity tariff is not only ill timed but insensitive to the precarious plight of Nigerians whose lean disposable incomes are already decapitated.”
ActionAid Nigeria, a non-governmental organisation working to eradicate poverty in Nigeria has decried the alleged resolution by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) directing the 11 Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) to increase their tariffs from Wednesday, September 1, 2021.
According to her, “ActionAid’s position is hinged on the premise that previous hike in electricity tariffs had not translated to effective and regulatory strategies to manage the impact of such hikes on macro-economic indices affecting end-users that are currently economically crippled and trapped”.
Obi said “Instead of this tariff hike, NERC should compel all the actors in Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry to ensure increased efficiency in the power sector including managing energy loses to make erratic power supply a thing of the past as a way of boosting productivity and Nigeria’s GDP”.
The country Director who reminded the Federal Government “that more than a hundred million Nigerians are living below the poverty line
urged NERC to rescind this decision and ensure that the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry improve its performance before than a tariff increase.
“If this purported decision is not reconsidered, the cost of production of basic items produced in the country will increase and this may also lead to job losses in the already ailing medium and small-scale industries in Nigeria especially Investors who rely largely on power supply will obviously not be able to cope up.” She said.
ActionAid Nigeria therefore called on the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the Federal Government, to halt the planned electricity tariff increment and uphold its values of transparency, fairness, and accountability by ensuring continuous consultation with the masses while protecting consumer rights.