Lagos residents served by the Eko Electricity Distribution Company Plc (EKEDC), and about 500, 000 electricity consumers in Kaduna, Kebbi, Sokoto, and Zamfara States, who are serviced by Kaduna Electricity Distribution Plc, may soon be metered as Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has issued permit to the companies through government’s Meter Asset Providers (MAPs) policy. NERC said Section 4, the sub-section 3 of the MAP regulation requires all electricity distribution licensees to engage MAPs that would assist, as investors, in closing the metering gap and thus eliminate the practice of estimated billing in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI).
Though MAPs, which came into effect in April, 2018, brought in a set of operators in the power sector to eliminate estimated billing, attract private investment into the provision of metering services, and close the metering gap through accelerated meter roll-out, the programme has witnessed criticism due to loopholes regarding ownership, outright transfer of cost of meters to consumers and credibility as well as capacity of companies under the scheme. Announcing the development in Abuja on Monday, NERC’s General Manager, Public Affairs Department, Dr. Usman Abba Arabi, said KEDC appointed Crest Hill Engineering Limited, Holley Metering Ltd, Integrated Power Nigeria Limited, and Mojec International Limited, while EKEDC has appointed Armese Consulting Limited, Bendoricks Integrated Limited, CIG Metering Assets Nigeria Limited, Gospel Digital Technology, Integrated Resources Limited, Mojec International Limited, and Turbo Energy Limited, respectively, to provide meters within their respective franchise under MAP.
NERC had directed that the rollout of meters shall commence not later than the 1st of May, 2019, stressing that customers should expect from the commencement of rollout date for meters to be installed in their premises within 10 working days of making payment to MAPs in accordance with section 18 sub-section three of the MAP regulations. MAPs were expected to charge an upfront amount of N36,991.50 for single phase meters and N67,055.85 for three phase meters respectively. These costs of meters are inclusive of supply, installation, maintenance and replacement of meters over its technical life. Arabi said NERC would monitor closely the rollout plan of distribution licensees and overall compliance with the regulation and various service agreements by the MAP and electricity distribution licensees.