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Business News of Thursday, 9 November 2023


'Don't do it' - Tinubu stops hike in electricity tariff as FG moves to probe DisCos' licence

President Bola Tinubu President Bola Tinubu

The Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, revealed on Wednesday, November 8, 2023, that President Bola Tinubu recently halted a hike in electricity tariff and insisted on subsidy payment on power consumed in the country.

The Minister said that the Nigerian government would probe the legality of the five-year license extension given to power distribution companies, stating that the companies' operating licenses expired on October 31, 2023.

FG threatens to sack non-performing heads of agencies

Adelabu said he would sack any inactive and non-performing chief executive in the agency under the ministry if their actions affected his performance as a minister.

He revealed that the power industry is susceptible to any leader. Adelabu said: "I never said that it is time to charge a cost-reflective tariff.

Instead, I said cost reflective tariff is supposed to have been implemented months ago because it is the source of liquidity to the system.

"But for political reasons and empathy, you cannot cause additional burden on Nigerians. We just had the removal of the fuel subsidy. We are talking about the exchange rate skyrocketing, galloping inflation, and many others that bring hardship to the people.

The Minister said Nigerians now pay about N70 per kilowatt hour, and it must be at least N130 or N140 at today's exchange rate if the country is to implement a cost-reflective tariff.

He said part of the reason for the tariff increase is the gas price, which is paid in dollars.

Minister frowns at the appalling rate of power supply

According to the Minister, 75 to 80% of Nigeria's power comes from gas plants and reflects on tariffs immediately after gas prices rise.

Per the Minister, 4,000 megawatts of power generation in Nigeria was disgraceful and unacceptable, and efforts are on to increase it.

He said he would fire non-performing officials based on President Tinubu's saying that ministers must perform or be fired.

Privatizing the power sector in 2023 was a mistake, saying commercializing the industry was preferable, the Minister revealed.

Adelaby stated the government could still take control of the DisCos despite owning a 40% stake in various firms.

Nigeria's electricity consumers increase yearly

The National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) said electricity consumers in the second quarter of last year accounted for 10.63 million and 10.81 million in the first quarter of 2022, an increase of 1.67% every quarter.

Yearly, the number of customers declined by 1.36% from Q1 2022 to 10.78 million in 2021 and dropped in the second quarter of 2022 by 2.27% from the second quarter of 2022.

The report also said that metered customers stood at 4.79 million in Q1 of 2022 and 4.96 million in Q2 of 2022, showing a 3.53% increase quarterly.