The House of Representatives has urged the Ministry of Power and the Transmission Company of Nigeria to find a lasting solution to the issue of power distribution and supply across the country.
The resolution was sequel to a unanimous adoption of an urgent motion of public importance by Rep. Unyime Idem (PDP-Akwa Ibom) at plenary on Tuesday.
Moving the motion, Idem expressed worry about the frequency and incessant interruption of power supply across the nation in the past weeks.
He said that interruption in power suppl has been on the increase, thus disrupting businesses and lives of Nigerians who are equally burdened with several tariff increments.
The rep said that media report suggest that that the Federal Government through the Transmission Company of Nigeria and the Market Operator have begun disconnecting electricity distribution companies (Discos) that are not complying with the operation codes and guidelines.
He said that the market operator, a division of TCN, has reportedly served some of the Discos notices of disconnection from the national grid due to their inability and failure to comply with operation ethics.
“Unfortunately, it was gathered that virtually all the distribution companies in Nigeria are defaulting in one area or the other to the detriment of the consumers.
“Millions of electricity consumers in Nigerian homes and communities may be plunged into darkness in the coming weeks as the Federal Government through the TCN and the market operator have begun massive disconnection of debtor electricity distribution companies (Discos) from the national grid.
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“Unfortunately, the news is already generating unpalatable outburst as over 20,000 members of the Aba Landlords Protection and Development Association (ALPDA) and other communities have threatened to mobilise and occupy streets if the TCN fails to rescind their decision.
“Note that an extension of the grace period of 60 days given the defaulters discos wherewith they are expected to comply with the provisions of the market rules with respect to payment of their outstanding invoices, posting of adequate bank guarantees, and forwarding of their active Power Purchase Agreements to the MO/TCN is almost over,” he said.
Idem said that in the general interest of millions of Nigerians, the house should urge the erring Discos to seize the dialogue opportunity to fix the crisis and ensure that they comply with the market procedures.
He said that the discos should provide security deposit when so required to serve as a guarantee of payment for all amounts due from their participants to the TCN, as well as settle, in a timely manner, any payment due.
Idem said that the TCN should penalise the erring Discos for failure to remit payment by either freezing their bank accounts or reprimand rather than suffer the masses that have been diligently paying for their power supply.
In his ruling, the mandated the House Committee on Power to oversee the implementation of the resolutions of the House and report back within one week.