By Pamela Eboh, Awka
The EEDC office in Awka, Anambra State capital was recently besieged by hundreds of customers protesting the incessant epileptic power supply and the excessive tariff they pay on monthly basis.
The protesters who comprised mainly of those that ply their business along the popular Zik’s Avenue, Awka complained that their businesses are collapsing because of poor power supply.
Speaking to Journalists on behalf of the protesters, the Vice-Chairman of the traders who operate under, Zik’s Avenue Business Owners Association, Nze Ik Okafor said that the EEDC in addition to poor power supply, the company officials issued them excessive tariffs through estimated bills, fixed charges adding that there was a period some parts of the area did not have electricity for about seven moths, yet those operating businesses in the affected areas were issued with bills to pay.
He stressed that they decided to vent their anger through public protest because some officials of the company came to disconnect the electric facilities in their area, and, threatened that they would not allow them to do so.
Okafor however called on the management of the company to come and restore electricity in their area and provide them with Pre-paid Metres so that they would be paying only for the electricity they consumed.
In a chat with Champion, one of the protesters, who gave his name as Mr. Chuka Chidebelu said that he was without light for a period of seven months, from November last year but the company later told him to pay N5,000 fixed charge otherwise they would disconnect the electricity facility in his area.
He pointed out that he petitioned to the management against the charge but that they still insisted on his paying the amount otherwise they would disconnect him from their services.
Also another aggrieved EEDC customers executive, Mr. Bonvera Ndubuisi expressed disappointment over the manner the entire staff of the company ignored their protest and threatened that they would resist any attempt by the company’s workers to disconnect electricity facilities in their area.
Efforts made to get reactions of the officials of the EEDC on the development proved abortive as those approached declined making any comment saying that they were not allowed to talk to the press except the Public Relations Manager whom they said has his office at Onitsha, the state’s commercial nerve centre.