By Ayobami Agboola, Osogbo
In line with the National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP) initiative of the Federal Government to bridge the country’s metering gap, the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC), has commenced the distribution of over 10,000 free meters in Osun State.
CityMirrorNews reports that no fewer than 104,000 prepaid meters will be installed in the first phase of IBEDC mass metering across their franchise in Osun.
Speaking after the meters were installed at the houses of some of the IBEDC customers at Aratumi Community, Osogbo, Osun State Capital, the Head Metering of IBEDC, Engr Adewale Obajemu said his company started the free meters distribution, with the aim to accelerate the rate of metering in the country and eliminate estimated billing.
Obajemu added that the metering initiative is designed to ensure a seamless metering process that allows customers to register and be metered quickly after following the due process.
“We believe that within few weeks, most of the customers that are designated for meters would have it installed in their premises.
“We have our distribution strategy so that it would not depend on ‘man know man.
“It will be such that areas that have been designated would be metered as they are supplied.
“The customers that don’t have meters on the transformer would all fully be metered before we move to the next.”
“The meter is free for all customer listed on our platform that collecting estimated bail for now, we are flagging of at Aratumi area here in Osogbo today. These meters are free and they are at no cost to any customer.
“Our customers have to make their house ready and the service wires should be of good quality.
“We are saying bye bye to estimated billing in Osun and very soon it will get to everyone.
“We are launching it to the glory of God and benefits of the people. We are looking about 10,000 household in Osun to benefit from this gesture and this is the starting point, federal government called it phase zero.
“The phase one will commenced very soon with 104,000 meters across IBEDC region.”
He however, enjoined the beneficiaries to make Judicious use of the opportunity warning them not to tamper with the meters, adding that tampering with it will attract penalties because it’s an offence.
Echoing a similar view, the Osun Regional Head, Mr Akin Ogunleye warned electricity consumers of sharp practices just as he urged the beneficiaries not to bypass their meters adding that whoever that’s caught will be arrested and prosecuted.
Ogunleye emphasized that the IBEDC commenced the distribution of free meters allotted to the state under the Federal Government Government National Mass Metering Scheme.
He hinted that the company would collect the beneficiaries BVN numbers for security purposes.
The Osogbo Regional Head said: “These are free meters so customers are not paying for it. The essence is to discourage estimated billing that a lot of customers have been complaining about.
“We believe that within a few weeks, most of the customers that are designated for meters would have it installed in their premises.
“We have our distribution strategy so that it would not depend on ‘man know man.’
“I want to enjoin all the beneficiaries not to bypass their meters. If you have any issue with the meter come straight to our office so we can send our engineers to come and rectify whatever problem that might happened.
“This is a free initiative from federal government and we should not do anything that will jeopardize the opportunity given to us. And the meter is not transferable from one house to the other.
“I want to sound a note of warning to our customers desist from tampering the meters. They should not bypass because anybody that is caught would be arrested and prosecuted.
Some of customers of the company who benefited from the gesture commended the federal government and the distribution company, noting that the gesture is a huge relief from estimated billings.
Speaking on behalf of beneficiaries, Mr Faremi Adebayo, a community leader and Mr Musbau Tiamiyu said they would forever be grateful to the IBEDC for their kind gesture.
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