Profit-Making DISCOs: Consumers Deserve Better Service

It appears electricity distribution companies (DISCOs) in Nigeria are making money by distributing darkness to consumers.

Development Diaries reports that revenue generation by the companies surged to N1.1trilion within the 12 months of 2023, according to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS).

It is understood that the amount shows a 28.2 percent increase, or N234.4 billion, above the N831 billion the power companies produced over the same period in 2022.

Something is amiss because the are making profit despite consumers suffering longer hours of darkness.

The International Energy Agency reported that between 2017 and 2023, Nigeria’s national power grid collapsed 46 times.

The report also revealed that Nigerians had to deal with increased nationwide blackouts in 2023, particularly on 14 September, when a huge transmission line fire caused the grid to collapse.

In February, Development Diaries condemned the issue of DISCOs overbilling about 7.1 million unmetered consumers for nine months.

We understand that the power distributors raked over N105 billion as a result of overbilling, according to the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).

Nigerians have struggled with sporadic power supplies since the beginning of 2024, which has negatively affected homes and businesses and caused many people and companies to look for alternate energy sources.

A situation where DISCOs are recording substantial profits while consumers continue to endure frequent blackouts despite paying for electricity is highly condemnable and unacceptable.

It reflects a blatant disregard for the rights and welfare of consumers who are being deprived of essential services despite fulfilling their financial obligations.

Such a disparity between company profits and service quality shows that there is a fundamental imbalance in the electricity sector, where the interests of corporate entities seem to outweigh the needs of ordinary citizens.

This scenario not only highlights systemic issues within the electricity distribution system but also raises questions about accountability and transparency within the sector.

Development Diaries calls on the Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, and the NERC to prioritise addressing these discrepancies and ensure that electricity distribution companies are held accountable for their performance and that consumer rights are protected.

Photo source: TCNNigeria


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