..Laments GenCos invoice inflation
From Uche Usim, Abuja
Power distribution companies (DisCos) on the platform of Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED), yesterday threw its weight behind plans by the Federal Government to restructure over N1 trillion being accumulated debt owed by the power sector investors.
It also lamented the challenge of inflated invoices issued by Generation Companies (GenCos).
Speaking at a press briefing in Abuja Wednesday, ANED spokesman Sunday Oduntan, said the frightening debt only reflected in the books of Discos, a development that paints them as chronic debtors unworthy of any form of partnership with local and offshore banks.
According to him, Discos had always canvassed for transparent operations by stakeholders in the power sector so that Nigerian consumers will get the best of services.
He said: “The recent plan by the government to restructure the N1 trillion shortfall is a vindication of what ANED has been saying. Discos carry the deficit of the entire industry in our books. Now, let everyone carry their own cross.
“We are also not happy with the inflated and doctored invoices. How can capacity charge be higher than energy charge? It should be aligned with energy I got. I can’t pay for what I need not use. We cannot allow fraud to thrive. It is like fixed charge being higher than consumption charge. It is unfair”, Oduntan lamented.
He however hailed the Federal Government for intervening in the sector so as to ensure all players are treated fairly.
“What the government is doing now is commendable and we also want them to walk the talk. Let GenCos and the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company (NBET) open their books. We want transparency in the system. We are ready to work with the government to make the sector whole. The power sector challenges are best tackled by all players coming to the table to discuss”, he said.
The ANED Spokesman also noted that Discos were strongly in support of calls for hike in tariff as the current pricing remains unrealistic.
“The price of power generation and distribution has gone up and the current pricing template is unrealistic. I buy power at N68 and sell at 31.50k. I have to pay staff, incur some operational expenses, pay NBET and all that. How can I come around under this arrangement? I am glad other players in the sector are canvassing for tariff increase. It was set when one dollar was N197. What is the dollar today? Pricing should reflect current realities”, he said.