EKO DISCO Re-assures Customers of Better Days
The management of EKO Electricity Distribution Company has re-assured its numerous customers of better days ahead. The Managing Director of the firm, Engr Oladele Amoda, who delivered the re-assuring message during the quarterly media briefing in Lagos, said that since November 2013 hand-over of the power assets to the new owners, the firm had committed about N7bn to its network rehabilitation, sustenance and expansion. According to him, the amount was however “just scratching the surface, considering the nature of the network”.
He also stated that beside power coming in from the National Grid, the distribution company had signed on several embedded power generation contracts with some firms to produce power and sell directly to it for the benefits of EKO customers. A total of 300 megawatts of power is expected to come from this embedded platform, which are due to start delivering in three years’ time, once the approval of NERC is secured.
Amoda therefore called on customers to cooperate with the company, adding that it would soon also roll out free smart meters to all households yet to acquire meters, which would facilitate accurate billing of customers and thereby eliminate estimated billing.
He appealed to customers to exercise patience or apply for the meters under the Credit Advancement Payment for Metering Implementation, CAPMI, which he assured would be refunded later.
CAPMI was designed by the Federal Government to address the slow pace of customer metering by the Discos, the high level of complaints received from customers and dissatisfaction with the prevailing estimated billing. Several Discos have abandoned the program but have not been able to put in place an operational alternative.
The Managing Director submitted that the firm has budgeted the sum of $15m to meet the demand of customers on maximum demand pre-paid meters, while another N20bn would be spent on other categories of customers (residential and other small MD users).
With regards to the Aggregate Technical, Commercial and Collection losses of the company, he said the losses have been reduced to 29.4 per cent from 35 per cent prior to the handover of the company in November 2013, adding that the company was working to reduce the losses to 10 per cent in five years in line with NERC’s directives.