Abia Lawmaker, Erondu Jnr Commends Fed House of Reps for Supporting ABHA Resolutions

Abia Lawmaker, Erondu Jnr Commends Fed House of Reps for Supporting ABHA Resolutions

The member representing Obingwa-West state constituency in Abia State House of Assembly (ABHA), Hon. Erondu Uchenna Erondu Jnr has commended the Federal House of Representatives, National Assembly Abuja for honouring the plea from ABHA resolution to suspend the proposed electricity tarrif increment earlier billed to start by July 1, 2023, as moved by him (Hon. Erondu Jnr).

Erondu Jnr who disclosed this with newsmen yesterday in Umuahia Abia state, maintained that Nigerians are neck-deep into untold hardship with no end in sight, thanked Federal lawmakers for timely responding to people’s-oriented plea from ABHA.

The House of Representatives at plenary on Thursday 20th July 2023, called on the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to put a stop to the planned increase in electricity tariff at the moment.

The House further mandated its Committee on Power (when constituted) to interface with NERC with a view to finding a common ground to addressing the proposed hike in the interest of Nigerians.

The resolution followed a motion moved by the Deputy Minority Whip, Hon. Aliyu Madaki, who expressed concerns over the suspense created by the planned increase in electricity tariff by Distribution Companies (DISCOs).

The lawmaker recalled that the DISCOs recently alerted customers of a planned electricity tariff hike hinged on the
Multi-Year Tariff Oder (MYTO), citing a circular issued to that effect by the distribution firms, stating that effective July 1, 2023, there would be an upward review of the electricity tariff influenced by fluctuating rates.

According to him, “under the MYTO, 2022 guidelines, the previous exchange rate of N 441/$1 may be revised to approximately N750/$1 which would have an impact on the tariffs associated with electricity consumption”.

He pointed out that under the planned hike, consumers within ‘B’ and ‘C’ with supply hours ranging from 12–16 hours per day will pay N100 per KWh, while Bands ‘A’ with 20 hours and above and ‘B’ with 16–20 hours, would experience comparatively higher tariffs, that is, for customers with a prepaid metre, whereas, for those on post-paid (estimated) billing, a significant increment is expected to be higher.

“The proposed increase is coming despite the inability of the operators to meet the threshold of supplying at least 5,000 megawatts per year after signing the contract with the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC)”, he argued, stressing that “it is most inappropriate and insensitive to come up with a price increase of such magnitude at this time when many Nigerians are yet to come to terms with the increase in petrol prices”.

Recall that Erondu Jnr had moved the first motion of the 8th Abia Assembly on matter of urgent public importance at the plenary of ABHA on 29th June 2023; calling on FG to suspend the newly proposed electricity tariff billed to start on 1st July 2023 until the effect of petroleum subsidy removal is properly absorbed.

He had decried the negative impact of the planned increment in electricity tarrif on the people, pointing out that the hardship brought upon Nigerians by fuel subsidy removal without any palliative measure to cushion the negative effect, is yet to be absorbed properly.

The 8th Abia Assembly subsequently resolved thus; following the motion moved by the member representing Obingwa-West state constituency, Hon. Erondu Jnr:

“Urge the Federal Government to suspend the proposed electricity price hike on 1st July, 2023 until the effect of petroleum subsidy removal is properly absorbed.

“Besiege our Colleagues at National Assembly to intervene and pass a similar resolution.

“Request the Nigerian Labour Congress (NLC) to include the Nigerian Masses interest in all their negotiations in the current subsidy removal in the energy sector”.

The Abia Lawmaker further urged FG to show commitment towards the vulnerable groups in Nigeria by providing palliative measures to cushion the untold hardship Nigerians are facing in the country.

This, he said, would relieve vulnerable Nigerians that are going through difficult times due to fuel subsidy removal with its attendant hardship.

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