The Managing Director, Kano Electricity Distribution Company, KEDCO, Jamilu Gwamna, has described illegal connection and meter bypass as the major challenges bedeviling the operation of the company in its franchise areas of Kano, Katsina and Jigawa.
This is contained in a statement by Ibrahim Sani-Shawai, the Head, Corporate Communications of the company, and issued to newsmen in Kano on Wednesday.
According to him, the analysis of events within the Kano franchise areas by the company’s field officers had seen these constraints causing serious economic losses to the company and the country at large.
Mr Gwamna said: “As a company, we have the best of intentions for all our customers and the power sector development in the country.
“But the analysis from our field officers over time has revealed some frightening statistics that have given us a cause to worry.
“No business can survive under the atmosphere of any economic loss amounting to billions of Naira. It is a threat to the economic development of our country and we are not happy about this.
“If we make our customers happy and work assiduously for their happiness all the time, I see no reason for illegal connection just to evade payment or being metered.
“Yet you are enjoying services in a manner that puts power distribution at risk of low income.
“We keep investing in networks and making expansionary measures reality in the interest of the stakeholders, but what we get in return in some areas is not encouraging to be frank,” he said.
The Kano DisCo boss added that the acts of not wanting to pay bills by some customers amounted to energy distribution crisis which is capable of threatening the capacities to provide adequate electricity supply to customers.
He said such attitude was in spite of a rapidly growing culture of network expansion and the Federal Government’s reform measures to address the challenges in the power sector.
“We are still metering our customers and we believe effective metering will help us address some of the challenges in this regard and to also continue to key into the Federal Government’s reform agenda for the power sector.
He said that currently, only a few per cent of KEDCO’S customer population paid their bills regularly and also there was a growing number of such people who engaged in connecting energy without permission.
He stressed that the taskforce in charge of addressing issues of illegal connection and other illegal acts had been mandated to scan the areas for proper prosecution of anyone found wanting.
He appealed to customers who had formed the habit of not paying for services enjoyed to ensure prompt payment of their electricity bills to enable the company to serve them better in the interests of all stakeholders.