By; JACOB ONJEWU DICKSON
Barely 24 hours after the installation of a free meter under the Federal Government’s National Mass Metering Programme, a customer at MPH Estate, Millennium City, Kaduna has had the meter by-passed.
The customer whose property located at 189, Ahmed Makarfi Street, MPH, Mortgage 1 where the meter was installed and bypassed has admitted culpability and has been served a retroactive billing and loss of revenue penalty as stipulated the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
The letter highlighting the penalty reads: “During the on-going mass meter deployment at Ministerial Pilot Housing Scheme- Urban Shelter, meter number 58000654408 was installed in your premises on 27th January 2021 to ensure optimum energy accountability.
“In a quest for an excellent service delivery, your premises was re-visited on 28th January, 2021 to inspect / monitor the meter performance. It was discovered that your installed meter (58000654408) was externally bypassed through load diversion by peeling the retilence cable on the red, yellow and neutral phases of the incoming supply to the meter, thereby preventing the meter to register consumption (feeding from – 11KV Urban Shelter Feeder) resulting to loss of revenue. The energy utilized was not accounted for”.
Reacting to the development, Kaduna Electric’s Chief Marketing and Revenue Assurance Officer, Abubakar Jimeta, decried what he described as a sad and unfortunate development.
He said it is frustrating that customers who have been yearning to be metered will turn round to sabotage the system to enjoy free electricity.
He said these are some of the challenges the company has been facing which makes energy accountability difficult and hinders the desired progress in the sector.
He appealed to customers to work with Kaduna Electric to stamp out the menace of energy theft for good.