BY NAOMI UZOR
The Nigerian Association of Small and Medium Enterprises (NASME) has faulted plans by the new owners of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN)to increase electricity tariff, asserting that it is inappropriate and uncalled for.
“They should not increase tariff just like that without showing some impact or improvement on the electricity and it is wrong to charge people on fixed rates; whether you use the electricity or not, it is very wrong for one to pay for what he/she did not use.
“The electricity tariff should be transparent, there is need for harmonisation of DISCO’s, there is still 75 per cent reduction on fixed charge, the new investors are people like you and I in business,” said NASME.
Briefing the press in Lagos, Dr. Lizzy Okereke, Chairperson, Conference Organising Committee, said there is still a big problem with electricity supply and distribution, adding that, it is wrong for the new owners to increase tariff now.
Fielding questions on the focus of this year’s edition of NASME international conference and exhibition scheduled to hold in Abuja, she said for Nigerian economy to take its rightful place in Africa and serve as the continent’s hub, there is need to strengthen the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises (MSME) sector, hence it is themed ‘MSMEs as Catalyst for Economic Transformation and Social Stability.’
“We strongly believe that the conference which will bring together participants from across the country, ECOWAS sub-region and the international development partners will strengthen the MSME sector to enable it tap from the opportunities being thrown open by the economic transformation taking place in virtually all the sectors of the economy.
“The MSMEs as the engine of economic growth and the highest employer of labour the world over, will create jobs that will not only stem rural-urban migration, but will ensure social stability in Nigeria” she stated.
She disclosed that the event will attract over 2000 participants, exhibitors and visitors and will focus on the critical issues of economic transformation and social stability, adding that critical issues on sustainable access to finance, employment generation, technology and innovation will be discussed.