Tariff Increase Sparks Outcry: Nigerians Decry Poor Power Supply Amidst Extortion Claims

In the wake of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission’s (NERC) approval of a staggering 240 percent tariff increment for Band A customers, a chorus of grievances has emerged from power consumers across the nation. The tariff hike, announced by NERC, elevates the cost from N68 to N225 per kilowatt-hour for Band A consumers, constituting approximately 15 percent of the country’s total power users.

Despite assurances from the Minister of Power, Adebayo Adelabu, that the Federal Government stands firm on the new tariff regime, discontent among consumers continues to escalate. Adelabu emphasized the government’s inability to sustain the hefty power subsidy, estimated at N2.9 trillion for the year 2024, as the rationale behind the tariff adjustment.

However, the implementation of the new tariff structure has been met with widespread dissatisfaction and allegations of exploitation. Numerous customers, voicing their concerns through various platforms, lamented not only the exorbitant charges but also the dismal state of power supply in their localities.

One aggrieved consumer, Heybeedo @Fadodunabayomi, expressed frustration over the mismatch between the increased tariffs and the persisting electricity shortages in their area, questioning who would be held accountable for the shortfall in supply. Similarly, Tariq Abdulazeez @tariqq2, from Kaduna, highlighted the failure of the Kaduna Disco to adhere to the new regulations, leaving consumers with inadequate power supply despite being classified under Band A.

Moreover, reports emerged of electricity distribution companies upgrading consumers to Band A tariffs without corresponding improvements in service provision. @OlaosunSina recounted an instance where despite paying N50,000 for electricity, the supply remained elusive, labeling the experience a “pure scam.”

The discontent extended to social media, with users like Vivo Val and Bolaji sharing their experiences of receiving inadequate electricity despite being classified under lower tariff bands. The absence of transparency and accountability within the electricity ecosystem was a recurring theme among consumers, with many feeling exploited and marginalized.

In a related development, calls for action reverberated as Lere Olayinka, a chieftain of the Peoples Democratic Party in Ekiti State, urged President Bola Tinubu to dismiss the Minister of Power, citing incompetence and insensitivity to the plight of consumers. Olayinka’s plea underscores the growing frustration over the government’s handling of the power sector, particularly in light of successive tariff increases amid persistent electricity challenges.

Meanwhile, the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company downgraded several feeders, including the Olusegun Obasanjo Farm, from Band A to Band E, citing inadequate power supply as the basis for the reclassification. This move, while aimed at aligning tariffs with service levels, further underscores the complexities and challenges within the electricity distribution network.

In response to the tariff hike, the Pan-Yoruba socio-cultural and political organization, Afenifere, condemned the increase as counterproductive to economic recovery efforts. The organization criticized government agencies for passing the burden of inefficiency onto consumers, warning of dire consequences for businesses and the economy at large.

Echoing the sentiments of discontent, Osun State Governor, Ademola Adeleke, called upon the management of IBEDC to address the irregular power supply plaguing the state. Adeleke emphasized the critical role of consistent power supply in driving economic growth and urged swift action to remedy the situation.


Kindly share this story: