Residents of Alaba-Aro and Amukoko, Orile area of Lagos State on Thursday protested against the alleged estimated billings and other sharp practices of the Eko Electricity Distribution Company Plc.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the residents who trooped out in their hundreds staged a peaceful protest at the Oyersile undertaking unit of the EKEDC.
The protesters, arrived the place around 12 noon, carried placards with different inscriptions such as, “No pre-paid meter, no payment’’, “No electricity, no bills, “Enough is Enough to overbilling” and “ Bring ladder and die,” among others.
The protesters claimed that they were being asked to pay more for electricity they never consumed, noting that in the last two months, the supply had dropped abysmally to less than two hours per day.
Mr Yusuf Raji, Chairman, Ifelodun Community Development Association, said their current electricity bills were higher than some five months ago when they had more relatively stable supply.
Raji said that the people would continue to resist any attempt by officials of the power distribution company to distribute bills or carry out any disconnection of electricity in the area, if the situation was not immediately addressed.
He said the protest was to register their grievances and dissatisfaction about the epileptic power situation in the area.
“It also is also meant to let the company know the extent of suffering which the residents are going through as a result of lack of power supply,” he said.
He noted that the residents have become fed up with the poor service of the EKEDC, adding that it amounts to wickedness on the part of the company to force them to pay for electricity which they did not use.
“The firm has failed to improve on its services to the consumers despite several meetings and agreements we have had.
“As a result of the ugly situation which the residents are experiencing, they have unanimously agreed that the EKEDC should disconnect the entire Orile from their source.
“It is unjustified for the company to supply electricity to some areas and leave others in darkness, ‘’ NAN quotes Raji saying.
Raji He said that the community had resolved that “there will be no further payment of bills and disconnection until we are sure we enjoy power supply.
“ We have agreed in the community that “No pre-paid meter, No payment of electricity bills.
“We wish to use this medium to inform you that until we have a stable supply of power, we will continue to protest.
However, Mr Godwin Idemudia, General Manager, Communications, appealed to the angry residents to be patient with the company and promised that all their grievances would be looked into.
According to him, that is strange, it is a known fact that energy has improved tremendous. Definitely our customers should expect slight increase in their bills.
“where there is no meter or the integrity of the meter is in doubt, we have no option that to estimate such customers.
“There is a methodology we use in estimating our customers. As a provision of meter, they should bear with us as arraignments are on top gear to meter all our customers very soon.
Idemudia said that the company had stopped collection of payments on CAPMI programme as directed by the NERC with effect from Nov.1, 2016.
He said that the company will make arrangement for those that have paid to get their meter roll out plans are still ongoing, while appealing to its esteemed customers to bear with them.