The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has refrained from providing clarification on the widely discussed topic of a potential 40 percent increase in electricity tariffs. Despite numerous reports suggesting an imminent tariff hike due to rising petrol prices, the NERC has not yet expressed its position on the matter. The 2022 multi-year tariff order (MYTO), scheduled for a bi-annual review this month, is anticipated to determine the new tariff structure.
Controversy Surrounding the Tariff Increase
The possibility of an electricity tariff increase has drawn condemnation from major associations. The Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) criticized the proposed tariff hike, labeling it as “insensitive and callous.” The NLC emphasized that the capacity to pay and the quality of service delivery should take precedence over market logic. The Manufacturers Association of Nigeria (MAN) also voiced concerns, urging the NERC to diversify energy sources and warning about the potential negative impact on the industrial sector and consumers.
Discrepancies and Uncertainty
Electricity distribution companies have stated that the tariff increase has not received approval from the NERC. Representatives from companies such as the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) and the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) have confirmed that no directive has been issued by the regulatory commission. Reports on the suspension of the planned tariff hike have further added to the uncertainty surrounding the topic.
NERC’s Silence and Lack of Clarity
Despite mounting speculation and public demand for clarification, the NERC has chosen to remain silent on whether the tariff increase has been implemented or is still under consideration. When approached for comments, the commission’s spokesperson, Mike Faloseyi, declined to provide any insights, emphasizing that the commission will speak when it deems appropriate.
The lack of communication from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission regarding the speculated tariff increase has contributed to widespread uncertainty. Stakeholders and the public are eagerly awaiting an official statement from the NERC to address the concerns surrounding the potential tariff hike. As the wait continues, the uncertainty surrounding electricity tariffs in Nigeria remains unresolved, leaving consumers, industries, and electricity distribution companies in a state of limbo.