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Reverse electricity tariff hike, millions in darkness – SERAP

The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project has urged the President, Major General Muhammadu Buhari (retd.), to “direct the Minister of Power, Goddy Jedy-Agba and the Chairman/Chief Executive Officer, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, Professor James Momoh, to immediately reverse the unlawful, unjust and unreasonable increase in electricity tariff, which reportedly occurred in December 2022.”

According to SERAP, millions of Nigerians continue to live in darkness despite the spending by successive governments of trillions of naira as investments and bailouts to electricity companies.

SERAP therefore urged the President to “ensure the investigation of the spending of public funds as ‘investments and bailouts’ by successive governments to electricity distribution companies and generating companies since 2005, and prosecution of cases of corruption and mismanagement.”

Following reported approval by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, electricity tariffs were increased across DisCos in the country in December 2022. Several prepaid customers have reportedly confirmed the increase. Both the Minister of Power and NERC have refused to confirm or deny the increase.

In the letter dated January 7, 2023 and signed by SERAP deputy director Kolawole Oluwadare, the organisation said, “The increase in electricity tariff would exacerbate the extreme poverty across the country, and undermine the ability of millions of Nigerians to satisfy basic human needs.”

SERAP said, “the increase in electricity tariff failed to follow due process. It is entirely inconsistent and incompatible with the provisions of the Nigerian Constitution of 1999 [as amended], the Electric Power Sector Reform Act and the country’s international human rights obligations.”

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