The Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu, yesterday, says the electricity tariff in Nigeria is the cheapest in the world.
He said despite the cheap cost of electricity and the government’s efforts to make power available to Nigerians, many consumers, especially government agencies, defaulted in bill payment.
He spoke in Abuja on Thursday during an interactive session with the Senate Committee on Power and heads of various agencies in the power sector.
“Cost of electricity in Nigeria is the cheapest across the globe, particularly gas to power, which is highly subsidised.
“For example, while the cost of electricity in Nigeria is 15 cent per kilowatt, it is 42 cent in Niger Republic, 23 cent in Republic of Benin, 25 cent in Mali, 28 cent in Senegal, and 27 cent in Burkina Faso,” he said.
Managing Director, Transmission Company of Nigeria, Sulyman Abdulaziz, said high rate of default in payment of electricity bills by critical government agencies led to disconnection of Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) in Kaduna and Kano from the national grid recently.
He said though they had been temporarily reconnected, payment must be made to TCN within the 60 days’ grace given.
The chairman of the committee, Senator Gabriel Suswam and members suggested that the finance ministry deduct from source, the electricity bills of defaulting agencies.
Suswam said one of the complaints made by the DISCOs, particularly those of Kaduna and Kano, was enormous debt incurred by consumers.
“The DISCOs, as stated in the written complaint, specifically mentioned military formations across the country, educational institutions, state governments, among others,” he said.