FCCPC Urges Customers To Report Unfair Estimated Electricity Billing Practices

The Federal Competition and Consumer Protection Commission (FCCPC) is urging electricity consumers to report any distribution companies (DisCos) that fail to comply with regulations on capping estimated bills for unmetered customers.

In a statement released on Monday, the FCCPC commended the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) for taking action against 11 DisCos for non-compliance.

Recent reports from The Spectacles highlight concerns among residents of Zamfara, particularly within the Gusau metropolis, regarding alleged misconduct by personnel from the Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO). Residents are alarmed by perceived theft and human rights abuses within the Gusau community.

Residents have noticed a decline in service quality from KEDCO, coupled with a lack of meter readings and receipt of false debt notices. This has led to confusion and distress among Gusau residents, who are unfairly burdened with debts they do not owe.

NERC has announced deductions from the annual allowed revenues of DisCos as part of sanctions for non-compliance with billing regulations. The commission stated that DisCos would pay a percentage of the amount they over-billed customers between January and September 2023.

The FCCPC supports NERC’s efforts to protect unmetered customers from arbitrary billing and encourages affected consumers to lodge complaints with their DisCos, escalating to NERC or FCCPC if necessary.

Adamu Abdullahi, Acting Executive Vice Chairman/Chief Executive Officer of FCCPC, emphasized solidarity with NERC and urged stronger measures to deter future violations, including increased penalties and stricter enforcement.

Furthermore, the FCCPC reaffirms its commitment to advocating for electricity consumers in Nigeria, including organizing consumer platforms and collaborating with NERC on information sharing and enforcement actions.

The commission stresses the need for fundamental reforms to address challenges in the electricity sector, such as metering gaps, billing malpractices, and inadequate customer service.