Saturday, December 3, 2022

Electricity: AEDC disconnects Niger Govt House, hospitals over N1.3bn debt

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Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan
Ibrahim Ramalan is a graduate of Mass Communications from the Ahmadu Bello University (ABU) Zaria. With nearly a decade-long, active journalism practice, Mr Ramalan has been able to rise from a cub reporter to the exalted position of an editor; first as Arts Editor with the Blueprint Newspapers before resigning in 2019; second and presently as an Associate Editor of the Daily Nigerian online newspaper. He can be reached via [email protected], or www.facebook.com/ibrahim.ramalana, or @McRamalan on Twitter.
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Abuja Electricity Distribution Company, AEDC, has disconnected Niger Government Ministries, Departments and Agencies over accumulated unpaid electricity bills totaling N1.3 billion.

House, the state Secretariat, hospitals and other public institutions over accumulated unpaid electricity bills totaling N1.3 billion.

The AEDC Public Relations Officer in the state, Mohammed Pele told the News Agency of Nigeria in Minna on Friday that the Government House and hospitals were also disconnected.

Mr Pele said one-week notice was given to the state government to settle its accumulated bill. but failed to meet its obligation.

He explained that the state House of Assembly had four months ago intervened between the company and the government and agreement was reached for the government to settle 80 per cent of the debt.

“Till date there was no any commitment from the state government.

“We took the action after being pushed to the wall by the state government for not keeping its words after the intervention of the state Assembly four months ago,” Mr Pele said.

The AEDC spokesman, however, explained that the government had in the last three months been paying N74 million monthly of its current bill, adding that the N1.3 billion was unpaid bills that accumulated before now.

“We don’t have any option than to disconnect their services and concentrate on our teaming loyal consumers in and outside the metropolis.”

Mr Pele lauded consumers for ensuring prompt payments of their electricity bills, adding that the company had added seven transformers and spent over N500 million to improve power supply.

Other public institutions affected by the  disconnection include the state Water Board, schools, all General hospitals, office of the Secretary to the State Government and that of the Head of Service, among others.

Meanwhile, the development has led to rise in the cost of water in Minna by 50 per cent, as water vendors now collect N300 as against N600 for a truck of 10 jerry cans of water.

When contacted, the Secretary to the State Government, Ahmed Matane, told NAN on telephone that he was on his way to Kontagora for an official function and was not aware of the disconnection.

There has been a marked improvement in electricity supply, especially in Minna, in the last three weeks.

NAN

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