The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has stated that consumers will not pay for meters in the new guidelines, as it will be added to the electricity tariffs.
The Commissioner, Finance and Management Services, NERC, Nathan Shatti, also explained that customers, who had paid for meters would be compensated by a refund.
Specifically, Dr. Oladayo Olakanmi of the Department of Electrical/Electronics, Faculty of Technology, University of Ibadan, Oyo State, called for a pragmatic and academic approach to solve the challenges in the power sector.
Olakanmi urged the government to hinge recent development on the Internet of Things (IoT) for effective smart metering, saying that it would reduce the revenue collection overhead, energy theft by consumers, and unnecessary over and under-billing.
Besides, he added: “This seems like a political statement and I don’t believe in it. DisCos are fond of disobeying the NERC. Even if DisCos are instructed to refund to consumers, they will not listen and the NERC will not sanction them for their disobedience. If they are serious about the directive to refund customers’ money, let them start with CAPMI.”
At take-over, a part of the key performance indicators (KPIs) for the 11 DisCos was to meter at least 1.75 million customers yearly. The assumption was that since the reduction in Aggregate Technical, Commercial, and Collection (ATC&C) was key, mass metering would significantly reduce industry losses.
Seeing that the gap persisted, NERC introduced the Credited Advance Payment for Metering Implementation (CAPMI), due to the high level of complaints on poor quality services to customers and dissatisfaction with estimated billing.