By Niyi Olutunde, Akure
As part of efforts to curb wrong and estimated billing, the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) said it is rolling out 114,740 pre-paid meters within the next two years under the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) scheme for its customers in Ondo state.
The Executive Director, Commercial of BEDC, Mr. Abu Ejoor, disclosed this at the weekend in Akure, Ondo state capital during a media launch of the state MAP by the company.
Mr. Ejoor, who spoke on behalf of the Managing Director, BEDC, Mrs. Funke Osibodu, said that rolling out of the meters would eventually pick up with expected monthly run rate of 20,000 with total of at least 500,000 meters rolled out within the next years period across its franchise areas.
According to him, “metering customers will encourage the development of independent and competitive meter service in Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI), eliminate estimated billing by NASI, attract private investment in provision of metering service and close metering gap among others.”
“Meter Asset Provider parties will carry out meter rollout location by location, route by route, street by street, with enumeration being a prerequisite for meters to be provided under MAP.
On how to acquire the meter, Ejoor said, “In order to benefit from this Meter Asset Provider, initiative, customers are therefore encouraged to cooperate with the enumeration teams that will be visiting your premises to enable quick metering to take place.
“On the process involved, our customers are required to complete the customers data and survey from (Know Your Customer) which will be available online in our website, checking’s will be done to confirm enumeration has been done, customers will obtain and fill the meter application form after which approved electrical officials will assess the customers premises in readiness for metering.
“Once a customers premises is cleared as ready, customers will be advised on how to pay for the meter, whether single phase or 3 phase. We advise customers not to give cash to either MAP or BEDC staff and should pay only into bank accounts designated by the MAP and after payment confirmation, the customer will then be metered within stipulated time.
“In Ondo state, metering will be taking off from two local governments in Akure North and South on the following areas, Igbatoro, Ijapo, Alagbaka and Ilesha Road”, he said.
He enjoined customers to cooperate with the enumerators who have been going round some of the various locations in Ondo state by responding promptly to requests for completion of enumeration forms, saying “this is also a prerequisite for metering as the customer data need to be captured for meters to be given”.
While assuring of the company’s commitment to improving its service delivery to customers, Ejoor said that BEDC has turned out another set of 60 graduate trainees and 74 technician trainees for its 2018/2019 edition in its quest to have more staff in assisting to improving service delivery to customers and bridge skills gap in the power sector.
Ejoor however said in order to permanently solve the problem of power supply in Ondo and other states, BEDC would soon be advertising for power producers to come and produce power through embedded generation/off national grid generation that could provide power to cover the huge shortfall from TCN.
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