The Association of the Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) has denied forcing the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) to suspend electricity trading under the Eligible Customer Regulation (ECR) 2017, which the regulator had described as illegal.
Referring to a recent media report faulting the Distribution Companies (DisCos), the Executive Director, Research & Advocacy at ANED, Sunday Oduntan, said the report was misleading.
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ANED, which represents 10 DisCos, said they welcome strict regulatory compliance, adding that DisCos have recorded performance improvements with more collaboration to increase power supply.
Oduntan said, “Available records indicate that NERC has not approved any application for eligible customer status. Despite that, these companies proceeded to arrogate the powers of NERC to themselves by vesting in themselves eligible customer status and continued the unlawful and illegal operations over the years.
“The illegal and unlawful operations of these companies and the Generation Companies (GenCos) involved are direct cannibalization of the electricity market and the entire value chain,” said Oduntan.
Denying any collusion with NERC, Oduntan said, “We wish to state unequivocally that this is untrue and irresponsible of the stakeholders who have failed to meet the requirements of the regulation and attempting to pass the buck.”
ANED also faulted NERC for being “unduly lenient with them” for undermining NERC powers for nearly four years.
ECR, effective November 1, 2017, allows customers using over 2 megawatts hour per hour (MWh/h) to get NERC approval and get their electricity directly from GenCos, instead of the electricity market involving GenCos, Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading PLC (NBET), Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and the DisCos.
But NERC, which recently suspended these activities, said no consumer has met the requirements and granted ‘Eligible Customer Status’. It directed the consumers and GenCos to formally meet requirements and be granted legal status.