Compete to deliver or exit, FG warns Electricity Distribution Companies

Babatunde-Raji-Fashola

The Federal Government has read the riot act to the Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) operating in Nigeria. Addressing a news conference in Abuja on Monday, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, warned them to be efficient in their service delivery to Nigerians. He said the companies were aware of the challenges in the power sector, noting that the government would no longer tolerate the issues of estimated billing and mass disconnection of consumers. “The DISCOs bought these assets with their eyes wide open and they must compete to deliver or exit,” said Fashola.

He added, “In the face of this picture where we have power to sell with more to come, the number of complaints coming to government for meter which DISCOs should supply, and for estimated billings and mass disconnection where not everybody is owing cannot continue. Government must act and will do so.” The minister decried that investment of the generating companies is threatened because the capacity of electricity being generated is under-utilised. According to him, small business owners who need very little power are not getting enough because the DISCOs cannot make the power available to them.

Fashola informed reporters at the briefing that the government effort to improve the sector is yielding positive results as power generation is increasing by an average of 1,000MW annually. He, however, insisted that government would not allow any distribution company to frustrate its efforts towards providing a stable power supply for the citizenry. The minister revealed, “I can report progress in generation, transmission, and distribution post-privatisation.