The Federal Government has issued a directive to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to reinstate the regulation that allows power consumers to purchase meters from approved vendors.
In September 2016, NERC had directed the 11 electricity distribution companies operating in the country to formally wind down the alternative meter financing scheme on or before November 1, 2016.
The commission had stated that the Credited Advance Payment for Metering Implementation, which allowed electricity consumers to self-finance meter acquisition and installation given that Discos were unable to promptly deploy meters to them, would cease to exist from November 1, 2016.
However, on Thursday, the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, disclosed that both the federal and state governments recently resolved that NERC should reinstate the regulation that permits power consumers to purchase meters, especially where the Discos could not provide the facility.
According to the ministry, the decision was agreed upon at the recent third edition of the National Council on Power.
It was gathered that the council – consisted of members from 27 states of the federation – was presided over by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, and supported by the Minister of State for Power, Works and Housing, Suleiman Hassan.
A statement issued in Abuja on Thursday after the meeting reads:
“Council considered issues, observations and recommendations made by the working/technical committees as contained in the reports laid before it, and took key decisions as well as gave directives for implementation with time lines as outlined below.
“NERC to reinstate regulations permitting willing customers to purchase meters from approved meter vendors as approved by the distribution companies and the Nigeria Electricity Management Services Agency with a framework to reimburse such customers in cash, or energy.
“NERC to issue a regulation that enables third-party meter providers to install and manage customers’ meters, provided that such third parties are certified by NEMSA and approved by the Discos based on available metering standards. NERC to provide a framework for compensating the investment made by meter service providers in cash or shares in the Discos.”