As an electricity consumer in Nigeria, you have most likely, at some point had issues with your Distribution company relating to Metering and their billing system. You may find out that it is a lot more difficult to state your claims when you are not aware of your right and duties as an electricity consumer.
With that in mind, here are your rights, according to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), as an Electricity consumer as regards Metering and Billing;
Electricity Consumer Rights:
- Customer who elects to procure meter under the Credited Advance Payment for Metering Implementation (CAPMI) Scheme must be metered within 60 days, failure in which the electricity customer will neither be billed nor disconnected by the electricity distribution company.
- It is your Right to transparent electricity Billing. Unmetered customer should be issued electricity bills strictly based on NERC’s Estimated Billing Methodology.
- It is your Right to contest any electricity bill. Any unmetered customer who is disputing his/her estimated bill has the Right not to pay the disputed bill, but pay only the last undisputed bill as the contested bill goes through the dispute resolution process of NERC.
- It is not the responsibility of electricity customer or community to buy, replace or repair electricity transformers, poles and related equipment used in the supply of electricity.
DisCo’s Customer Service Standard:
Whenever a customer reports a problem to a Distribution Company that would suggest to the Distribution Company that the cause of the problem is that the electricity meter used to record usage at the Customer’s premises is recording incorrectly, such as that an electricty bill is too high or too low compared to normal monthly bills for the same Customer or premises, an authorised official of the Distribution Company shall visit the Customer’s premises and, where appropriate, test the meter within three working days of the problem being reported and if an official reply cannot be given at the time of the visit it shall be provided within five working days of the visit.
Repositioning Of A Meter
Whenever a Customer-
Requests a Distribution Company to reposition an electricity meter, and Pays the cost of carrying out the repositioning, the Distribution Company shall undertake the work within five working days of the request;
Provided that the Distribution Company agrees to the Customer’s request to move the meter, and the old and proposed meter positions remain in the same premises.
Responding to faults with prepayment meters
Whenever a Distribution company is informed during working hours by a customer that his prepayment meter is not operating properly, an authorised official from the distribution company shall-
Meter Reading frequency
Every Distribution company shall obtain, through its authorised representatives, an actual reading of all meters in all supply addresses within its areas of supply every month but not later than once every three months.
Without prejudice to the other exceptions contained in this regulation, the following are exceptional circumstances which may make it impossible for a Distribution Company to comply with these standards.
Monitoring of Standards of Performance
Every Distribution company shall monitor its performance against each of the customer service standard of service detailed in regulations 1 to 10 of this Regulation.