The Ikeja Electricity Distribution Plc (Ikeja Electric) has expressed worry about the shortfall of about 850 mega watts (mw) in energy allocation from the national grid, just as it was allegedly constrained by incessant vandalism.
The company however said it was planning a metering infrastructure, which would ultimately address the need for estimated billing and energy theft, adding that the metering infrastructure will also enable a prompt and improved response to the vandalism of the distribution network.
Chairman of Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Sam Amadi, had recently directed all Distribution Companies (Discos) to desist from passing the buck of electricity losses to electricity consumers.
Speaking during a customer forum in Lagos, Managing Director/Chief Executive, Ikeja Electric’s, Abiodun Ajifowobaje, explained that the necessary financial and technical commitment needed to achieve a new metering regime had since been put in place by the company.
“We have and will continue to make huge investments in this regard and assure all our customers that the impending roll-out of smart meters will drive effective and transparent billing within the network. We will surely work with all customers to ensure the success of the project even as we remain committed to continuing engagements on the issue of billing estimates,” said.
According to him, Ikeja Electric has since concluded the comprehensive study and technical evaluation of the network through the assistance of its technical partner, Korean Electricity Power Company (KEPCO).
The company is also carrying out Asset GIS mapping and Customer enumeration. The completion of these exercises will facilitate effective planning for future development and reduction of technical and commercial loss levels.
Attributing the drop in power supply to low allocation of power to the company from the National Grid, he appealed to customers for understanding, stating that Ikeja Electric remain committed to equitable distribution of the power it receives from the grid.
“Ikeja Electric requires at least 1,250MW to effectively serve customers within its network, but we consistently receive only about 400MW for the past two weeks. You all are aware of the gas challenges as well as the activities of vandals.
The government and stakeholders in the sector are working assiduously to tackle these issues and ultimately the reform will transform power supply in Nigeria,” he said.
Ajifowobaje said equipment vandalism remains one of the greatest factors militating against stable power supply within the network of the company.