NLC, MAN, others kick against electricity tariff hike

Electricity consumers, labour unions and key stakeholders in the economy on has kicked against increase in electricity tariff implemented by power distribution companies across the country .

Those that spoke to The Punch on the tariff adjustments included the Nigeria Labour Congress which vowed to resist the increase, the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria which said the hike could precipitate recession in the third quarter of the year, the and the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry.

The NLC said the hike would further impoverish Nigerians. The congress argued that the implementation of the new tariff on Tuesday was despite the resolution of the Senate and the direct orders of the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd), that the decision by the electricity distribution companies on tariff should be suspended until further notice.

NERC and the Discos had said that the new service reflective tariff took effect from September 1 (Tuesday). The Discos said on Tuesday that electricity customers, except those receiving less than 12 hours of supply, would have to pay more. With the review, the tariffs being charged residential consumers receiving a minimum of 12 hours of power supply has increased by over 70 per cent.

The NLC President, Ayuba Wabba, said the move would be resisted and cautioned the DISCOs against going ahead with the implementation of the new electricity tariff.

Meanwhile.the pump price of petrol should be closer to N155 per litre, the Chairman of the Major Oil Marketers Association of Nigeria, Mr Adetunji Oyebanji, has said.

Oyebanji, who is the managing director/chief executive officer of 11Plc (formerly Mobil Oil Nigeria Plc), said this on Tuesday on CNBC Africa. Petrol price was increased by marketers to between N148 and N150/litre in August, as the Petroleum Products Pricing Regulatory Agency remained silent as regards the guiding retail price for the month.

Following the sharp drop in crude oil prices which led to the reduction in the pump price of petrol in March, the PPPRA had said it would advise the Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation and oil marketing companies on the monthly guiding retail price at which the product shall be sold across the country.

Oyebanji said the under-recovery of N5.35bn recorded by the NNPC in June had to do with the inventory losses that would have occurred because of the reduction in prices at the time. He said, “However, going forward, we still note that there is still an element of subsidy because when you look at the prices that were posted for the month of August, for instance, NNPC is still retailing petrol at N145 when really the price should be closer to N155.