Conscious of the metering gaps existing across various customer classes, Benin Electricity Distribution Plc (BEDC) said it plans to install additional 100,000 meters for domestic and commercial customers this year.
Speaking at a press briefing during the 7th Monthly Power Pector Stakeholders Meeting, which it hosted at the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), along Sapele road, Benin, Edo State, the firm said it would strive to achieve 100 per cent metering of all industrial and Maximum Demand (MD) customers by November ending.
Its Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, Mrs. FunkeOsibodu said the firm will also achieve the metering of at least 2,000 distribution transformers in order to adequately account for energy billing to customers.
“The company has been proactive in installation of meters having installed over 120,500 meters since takeover of the company. We have taken advantage of both the industry CAPMI Scheme and own funded meters. More than 25,000 out of these have been installed this year alone,” Mrs. Osibodu who was represented by the Chief State Head, Edo, Engr. Fidelis Obishai, was quoted to have said in a statement yesterday.
BEDC she noted, has also commenced some projects to ensure the health of the customers’ meters including 100 per cent recertification and rectification of existing MD customers; massive meter sealing exercise for domestic and commercial customers, prepaid meters recertification and rectification exercise, and shifting meters from customer premise to external visible locations.
Speaking on enforcement and network monitoring team, she said the objective was to ensure that connections to the network were in line with safety standards, and to ensure only paying customers were on the network, and that by-pass or illegal connections were not allowed on the network.
She added that customers who have not paid their bills within 10 days of the delivery of bill will be disconnected from the network during this process, saying ”in addition to customers who have by-passed their meters by removing part or all of the electricity load from reading on the meter would also be disconnected, except upon payment of the appropriate fines and reconnection fee.”
“BEDC prides itself as being committed to the continued provision of improved service delivery to its customers while ensuring that connection to its network for power supply connections is not dangerous to the health and safety of the public. The provision of appropriate safety standards as well as the education of all customer is thus critical in this process,” she said.
She affirmed that since inception, BEDC has embarked on series of improvement exercises in the areas of enumeration, payment channels, customer care, enforcement and monitoring, billing and metering among others, stressing that the improvement implemented in phases were further enhanced during the 2016 operating year.
According to Mrs. Osibodu, BEDC has also commenced the installation and activation of nearly 2000 transformers across its network as part of the process to improve quality of power supply.