Home » POWER » NERC Kicks as DISCOs Rakes in N105 Billion from Overbilling Customers in Nine Months

NERC Kicks as DISCOs Rakes in N105 Billion from Overbilling Customers in Nine Months

……..by Victor Egbo…….

The Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) has frowned over the non-compliance of  Power Distribution Companies (DISCOs) on capping of Estimated Billing of unmetered customers. Data from NERC showed that power distribution companies overbilled customers with over about N105 billion in Nine months. This is between January and September 2023, an analysis of the latest monthly number of overbilled customers showed.

In the various Regulatory Interventions for Non-Compliance with the Order on Capping of Estimated Billing to Unmetered Customers, issued to the 11 Discos by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, an agency of the Federal Government, it was established that the power distributors raked over N105bn as a result of over-billing.

The breakdown shows Yola Disco overbilled about 42,902 customers to the tune of N541.9m during the review period, while Abuja Disco overbilled 1,823,218 customers by N17.9bn.

Benin Disco overbilled 754,849 customers underestimated billing by N10.5bn, as Enugu Disco overbilled a total of 1,011,402 customers to the tune of N11.9bn during the nine-month period.

Eko Disco overbilled 371,828 customers under the estimated billing category between January and June 2023, as the months of July, August and September were not captured in the report released by NERC. It overbilled these customers to the tune of N14.13bn.

Ibadan Disco made N333.68m from the overbilling of 143,465 customers underestimated billing between January and September last year, while Jos Disco overbilled 1,264,537 customers to the tune of N13.3bn.

Ikeja Disco overbilled 934,438 customers by N20.9bn, as Kaduna raked in N1.14bn from the overbilling of 126,071 power users under its franchise area during the review period.

The report stated that the customer complaints in the third quarter was higher than what was recorded in the preceding quarter by 8,049 cases.

It quoted the NERC report as saying that “the total number of complaints received across all Discos (distribution companies) in 2023/Q3 was 333,947; Ibadan Disco received the highest number of complaints (59,901), representing 17.93 percent of the total complaints received. Abuja Disco received the least number of complaints (1,919), representing 0.57 percent of the total complaints received.

“Compared to 2023/Q2, the number of complaints received, number of cases resolved, and average resolution rate changed by +2.47 percent (333,947 in 2023/Q3 vs. 325,898 in 2023/Q2), +1.19 percent (317,179 in 2023/Q3 vs. 313,442 in 2023/Q2), and -1.2 per cent (94.98 in 2023/Q3 vs. 96.18 in 2023/Q2) respectively.

“Benin (-47.85 percent), Jos (-26.21 percent) and Ikeja (-1.84 percent) Discos recorded decreases in the number of customer complaints received compared to 2023/Q2.

“Conversely, eight Discos recorded increases in the number of customer complaints with significant increases being recorded by Yola (+43.28 percent), Kano (+17.46 percent) and Port Harcourt (+16.05 percent).”

On the type of complaints, the report stated that “the most frequently reported issues among the 333,947 complaints received by Discos in 2023/Q3 were metering (57.31 percent), billing (12.88 per cent), and service interruption (8.07 percent).

 “These three complaints categories cumulatively accounted for over 78 percent of the total complaints in the quarter. Out of the 333,947 complaints received in 2023/Q3, 317,179 were resolved, translating to a resolution rate of 94.98 percent.”

Meanwhile, the commission has reaffirmed its commitment to regulatory compliance and consumer protection within the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry.

Consumers expressed optimism that the power sector regulator would ensure the enforcement of this latest sanction on Discos, with the hope that it would deter the power firms from overbilling electricity users on estimated billing.

Share about us

About admin

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*