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TCN Finally Reconnects Aba Power To National Grid

1 year ago
3 mins read

The Transmission Commission of Nigeria (TCN) has reconnected Aba Power limited to national grid after 10 days of disconnection over debt owed Federal Government agencies in the power sector.

TCN had on 19 April thrown nine local government areas in Abia State into black out following its disconnection of Aba Power from the national transmission grid.

READ ALSO: BREAKING: TCN Plunges Abia Into Indefinite Blackout

According to a statement from the Aba Power management, TCN disconnected it because it owed N896 million of which a part payment had been made, even with the company having just been in control of the franchise for about six months.

READ ALSO: Industrialists Back Aba Power, Flay TCN, Market Operator 

The power utility firm said Market Operator gave a notice of 30 days to offset the debt but went ahead the same day to issue a disconnection order to TCN, an action that put the company in a fix as the residents became agitated.

While blackout in the ring-fence lasted, industrialists, landlords under the Aba Landlords Protection and Development Association (ALPDA) and members of the Electricity Consumers Association (ECAN), who were affected, backed Aba Power and protested, calling on TCN to reconnect the area so that the company can pay gradually.

Aba Power paid N120 million to the Market Operator on Friday, 28 April as part of the debt so it can be reconnected.

“We would like to inform the wonderful people and government of Abia State and, indeed, all Nigerians that Aba Power was reconnected to the national transmission grid at 00.00 hours today, after 10 days of disconnection over payment to Federal Government agencies in the power sector,” Aba Power management said in a statement released on Monday.

“On April 19, 2023, the Market Operator, a unit of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) wrote us a notice giving us 30 working days to clear the debt with it, and served us the letter the next day. The same day, the Market Operator wrote to the TCN asking it to cut us off immediately from the national grid. The Market Operator complied.

“Despite the unfavourable operating environment in the country which has gravely impacted our customers’ ability to pay their bills, Aba Power, paid N120 million to the Market Operator last Friday, so as to reconnect it to the grid immediately. Aba Power took effective control of the Aba Ringfence servicing nine local government areas in Abia State only last September, yet it has paid the N440 million to Federal Government agencies in the power sector in the last six months.”

It said this is the first time in Nigeria’s history that an entire area serviced by an electricity distribution company has been cut off from the grid, with all the far-reaching socioeconomic and security implications for the whole nation. “In the case of other DisCos, not more than feeders would be put out for two or three days, despite owing billions of naira.”

It added that the blackout in the Aba Ringfence led to significant loss of revenue and equipment, and thanked Nigerians from all parts of the country for their understanding, patience and solidarity with the company during the trying period.

It highlighted some of its challenges in managing the Aba franchise such as damage and theft of its facilities by hoodlums and failure of electricity consumers to pay their bills.

The company appealed to residents to guard power infrastructure in their localities and report suspicious acts of vandalism.

It also pleaded with electricity consumers to always pay their bills to enable the company discharge its obligations to TCN and other agencies in the power sector.

“To serve the people and organisations in the Aba Ringfence Area better, we need the support of all the stakeholders. We need individuals and communities to guard power infrastructure in their localities and report any suspicious act of vandalism to us or to any security agency. We constantly lose expensive machines, equipment and materials to thieves.

“We also need electricity consumers to pay their bills as and when due. When we generate revenue from customers who pay for power consumed, we will be able to discharge our obligations to not just electricity providers like the Niger Delta Power Holding Company Ltd but also government agencies like the Transmission Company of Nigeria. As a result, we will be able to avoid experiences like cutting off people and businesses in the Aba Ring fence from the national grid.

“A situation where only 40 per cent of businesses and individuals in the Aba Ringfence pay what they should is unacceptable. Many electricity consumers bluntly refuse to pay for power consumed; some engage in meter bypassing; some others in other grave malpractices which can only make constant, quality and affordable power supply very difficult,” it lamented.

While thanking Abia State government and the people generally, the power company restated its determination “to provide regular, quality and affordable electricity to all our customers. All we need is your cooperation.”


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