By Deji Elumoye and Udora Orizu
The Senate yesterday expressed concern over the poor performance of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in the Mass Metering Project in the country despite N33.4 billion already released for this purpose by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN).
Its Committee on Power gave the verdict at an interactive session with NERC officials and representatives of the various Electricity Distribution Companies (Discos)
The project, which targets one million metering of houses across the country between October 2020 and April 2021, according to the NERC Chairman, Mr. Sanusi Garba had only recorded 13 per cent implementation as at March 19, 2021.
According to him, ‘’while N403, 000 out of the targeted one million meters, have been delivered to the various Discos, only 127, 000 have been installed, representing 13 per cent performance”.
He however attributed the poor performance to delay in disbursement of fund, the chunk of which he said was made available to the Discos last month, adding that with the funds available to the Discos, the implementation performance index would rise astronomically within the next few weeks.
Members of the committee headed by Senator Gabriel Suswam, one after the other, chastised NERC and the DISCOs for poor performance.
Suswam said based on the poor performance recorded so far, the essence of intervention made by the federal government with the N59.2 billion loan may not be achieved.
“Your performance report on the mass metering project is not impressive and encouraging at all. Nigerians are not happy that all efforts being made by the federal government to get electricity consumption metered, are being thwarted in one way or the other. Estimated Billings is not acceptable and that is the reason why the intervention was made.
“In the light of this , this Committee will want your Commission and the DISCOs to appear before it again by the end of next month to see whether the assurance given on better performance will be done or not