The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, has accused Electricity Distribution Companies (DisCos) of forming themselves into an association.
He said his ministry will not deal with an association because the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) acting for the National Council on Privatization (NCP) did not contract the asset sales and performance agreements with an association.
Fashola who stated this at the 19th monthly meeting of his ministry with power sector stakeholders yesterday in Jos, Plateau State, alleged that the objective of disseminating information to members of the public on what is being done to resolve the problems of electricity and provide service is being frustrated by the Electricity Distribution Companies in the country.
According to him, the objective is not being fully achieved or at worst is being frustrated by the DisCos that have formed themselves into an Association of Distribution Companies, and have persistently issued statements on issues they either did not present for discussion at meetings, or which contradict the communiqué that is jointly agreed and released after each meeting.
“While the right of association is a constitutional right which they are entitled to exercise, the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing also reserves the right to recognize or deal with the companies as an association.”
He narrated that the government contracted with 11 investors in the distribution companies and the Commission licensed 11 distribution companies, adding that Government will continue to relate with the distribution companies as such, through meeting, or individually to ensure that they discharge their duties to consumers.
On the unfortunate electrocution incident in Calabar, Cross Rivers State, the Minister said while the incident was regrettable and the consequences very saddening, they were clearly man-made and avoidable, adding that it occurred as a result of non-compliance with laws and regulations.
Governor Simon Lalong of Plateau State said the state government is in active collaboration with the Power Sector, Jos Electricity Distribution Company (JEDC) PLC and Nigeria Electricity Supply Company (NESCO) Ltd are located in Plateau State, adding that the active collaboration with both JED Company and NESCO to ease their operations, by creating the enabling environment in terms of security and community relations, as well as investing in the provision of power distribution assets in rural communities.
Lalong added that the state government is in support of the National Power Goal of 30:30:30 being pursued by Nigeria towards not just improving power supply, but doing so with emphasis on increasing the contribution of renewable energy in the National Energy Mix.