The Federal Government has said that it will not approve a fresh electricity tariff hike at least for now.
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, who stated this on Monday in a Channels Television Talk Show, Sunrise Daily, said the government was still meeting with stakeholders in the country’s electricity sector, including the World Bank to provide some level of interventions to the market.
He added that if the government’s deliberations with the World Bank on the financial challenges of the market end well, Nigerians would be protected from a possible electricity price hike.
“Government still has to deal with how to stabilise the value of the naira to the dollar, and again that will be impacted by how much money we get from oil production, which is still our major foreign income earner. We have used our leverage in OPEC to get OPEC to agree to a production cut, which heralded a price rise but can we as a protagonist take advantage of this by stopping to fight?
“People must be clear that if government accepts the recommendations that we will make to intervene, it is not to give the Discos a golden parachute, but first to protect citizens from price hike in terms of power for now and also to keep the subsectors so that they don’t lose their businesses.”
The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) is expected to, this month, announce new cost-reflective electricity rates to reflect current operational indices in the industry. Statutorily, NERC undertakes periodic reviews of the tariff to factor in changes in operational indices like foreign exchange and inflation rates, price of gas for power, as well as changes in generation capacities.
Meanwhile, the Federal High Court Judge, Justice M.B Idris recently overruled the application by the Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) for stay of action on the landmark judgment against electricity tariff hike.
In the ruling, Justice M.B Idris recently, described the application to stay the judgment of the court as unreasonable, lacking in merit and therefore dismissed.