Just two weeks after a video exposing three major banks in Port Harcourt city for stealing electricity was released, another similar case has been brought to Spark media’s notice. This time we have a block of flats along Elekahia estate in Port Harcourt bypassing their newly installed prepaid meters in order to avoid payment or electricity bills.
Less than one week after the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHED) conducted installation of prepaid meters for free in house holds in Elekahia Estate, occupants of this building have bypassed their meters.
Recall that PHED flagged off a massive metering program last month in Rumuomasi, Port Harcourt.
The video which was released by an independent advocacy group shows that about Six households and a commercial shop in the building are guilty of meter bypass.
Let’s consider the level of theft committed here;
If an average household pays a total of N5,000 per month for electricity supply, this building will be guilty of robbing the distribution company of N35,000 per month.
This is without considering the cost of the prepaid meters that were installed by the distribution company. Today, in Nigeria, the cost of acquiring one single-phase prepaid meter by is approximately N30,000 while a three-phase meter costs about N60,000.
This means that by bypassing Seven meters, occupants of these building are putting to waste N210,000 worth of PHED’s investments.
The video also shows clearly the very unsafe connections of electric wire that were exposed in order for the bypass to be achieved.
The distribution company’s in Nigeria are far from perfect but with this kind of attitude from electricity consumers we can be sure that the power sector will not move forward.