Chineme Okafor in Abuja
For failing to submit their audited financial reports for the years 2013 and 2014, Afam Power Plant Plc and Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) have been fined N66.6 million by the country’s electricity regulator, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
A statement from the NERC yesterday in Abuja stated that Directives 162 and 163 of the commission found Afam Power and Eko Disco in breach of their licencing terms and other operating conditions when they failed to either file, or filed late their audited financial reports.
It said Afam Power was fined N18.5 million for the offence, while Eko Disco was fined about N48 million.
Both directives were signed by the acting Chairman of NERC, Dr. Anthony Akah and the General Manager, Legal, Licencing and Environment, Mrs. Olufunke Dinneh.
NERC said the companies were expected to pay their fines within two weeks beginning from December 9, 2016, when the directives were signed.
It stated that the fines would attract five per cent interest daily after the two weeks moratorium, and that it may subsequently consider further disciplinary action against the erring electric power firms.
“Failure by both companies to file their audited financial reports as and when due, according to Directives 162 and 163 violate Section 63 (1) of the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005; Conditions 4 (1) and 6 of their respective electricity generation and distribution licences.
NERC equally stated that both companies defied several overtures and reminders sent to them to file their audited financial reports for the periods under review.
Akah however said in the statement that: “The commission would do whatever is required to ensure discipline in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI).”
“It is only when stakeholders endeavour to play by the rules that we can begin to reap maximum benefits of the privatisation in the sector,” he added.
He further stated: “We expect the operators to act in good faith and in line with the industry rules, standards and conditions for their licences as the Commission will not compromise on international best practices.
“Customers are also expected to fulfil their obligations to their service providers by paying their bills and not to engage in electricity theft.”
Akah stated that all fines received by the gommission as a result of regulatory sanctions are to be transferred to Rural Electrification Fund in line with the provision of the Electric Power Sector Reform (EPSR) Act 2005.