Comrade Abayomi Dawodu is the National Chairman of the Coalition of Residents and Business Association of Nigeria (CRBN).
The group commenced a campaign against the nations power utility company, PHCN, some months and even as it makes plans to file charges of corrupt practices against the behemoth PHCN, he made another startling revelation in this exclusive interview with Sweet crude’s Yemie ADEOYE. According to him the organisation which the federal government has repeatedly told the Nation is to be privatised no matter the odds is not a registered company with the Corporate Affairs Commission (CAC), the body legally empowered to issue licenses and permits to all business entity in the country.
He also reiterates the reason why no Nigerian should ever bother to pay any bills to the PHCN as there is no electric power to show for it.
How far is it going with your Association and its struggle?
My association, the Coalition of Residence and Business Association of Nigeria, with the mission statement to put an outage to inhuman poverty, you can never see prosperity anywhere there is darkness. Look at all this big Nations of the world, they are smart. The spirituals are smart enough to have dashed into the words of the almighty God. At the inception of creation when God gave the first order, directive and command, it was let their be light.
From that day, which no one knows the date even by scientific calculation, up till today, the sun rises by the day while the moon and the star rises by the night. I would want to stress again that all Nigerians should stand up and clap for the Vanguard Newspaper because where other news papers are demanding that we should pay them money to air our views on electricity.
They are doing it for Nigerian people and they are doing it for posterity and on that note I want to say thank you very much. How far has your association taken the struggle since we last spoke to you about a month ago. Have you been able to get the federal government’s attention? When I was granted an interview by the Sweetcrude, which appeared on the first Tuesday of November, in that edition I said somebody who is always brutal, there are ways and means in which you deal with that person.
The only way in which you can make this government sit up is for the teeming populace not to accept bills by the PHCN and also not pay PHCN. I am appealingÂ to Nigerians not to destroy PHCN installations because the bulk will still be passed on to us but what you can do at any point in time is to refuse to collect these bills from them.
Now they have devised a means. They will drop this bills unnoticed even behaving like they came to visit somebody. What matters is even if you see it, ignore it.Nigerians have been cowed so much .
They will say we are fighting government. No its all lies. Go and check letter headed papers, you can’t find coat of arms or emblems of Nigeria to show that they are serving the Nation. But if a chancellor gives you a score card, you will see the coat of arm of Nigeria on it. It is in any other national service corporation but not in PHCN.
The company is unbundled and they say it is Plc what is remaining is not just to register them with the Corporate Affairs Commission CAC. PHCN is not on the list of the registered companies of CAC, but if you go through your computers, yo will hear that PHCN holds the trust for the federal government and yet they say it is Plc. Are you saying that PHCN is not registered with the CAC?Affirmative! and I will tell you the trick behind it when the leaders try to fool us, they should put into cognisance that some people have refused to be fooled.
One, as long as you have all the necessary electrical gadgets in your house, you are a member of the coalition of residents association of Nigeria with a mission statement to put an end to human poverty pointed by power outage. If Nigerians refuse to pay their electricity bills as you have suggested their electric power will be disconnected, what have they to do if the situation comes up. And again, what steps have you taken thus far to meet and dialogue with the federal; government, and what has been the outcome? Before now we have gone to the sit of power in Abuja, we have laid complains even before the Senate President.
I want to tell you something, there are representative and there are representatives. We wrote letters to about fifty of them in the green and the red chambers, but save for Honourable Akeem Arole Fansi, in the green chamber and sent for the senate president of the federal republic of Nigeria in the red chamber, no other person thought we were talking something reasonable, no body replied us except these two people.
But I will tell you that there is more to this than meet the eye on electricity. The only solution which we have proffered is that the federal government should take their leprous hands off power just as they did communications, today you can sit down on your toilet sit and call anywhere in the world.
Look at the time we used to go and queue at the Nitel office, which has become history with the evolution of GSM in the country, that was a brilliant step. Now they have found out that they are losing ground in contract awards, that is the reason they would not want to give electricity corporations to entrepreneurs.
I want people to read this area with the inner and outer eyes. The Nigerian government made a spiritual error when they took their diabetic hands off communication. But one thing leads to the other, for the tariff of communication to come down, electricity must be available even if it is not cheap. So many companies run on diesel. Infact as I am sitting down here now, I am hearing the sound of a generator. How do you break even? I am going to digress a bit.
When the federal government said they where going to build textile industries with about seven hundred million, as the money is going down the drain, what are they going to do with it, they are simply going to buy diesel with it.
Coming back to the real issue, the mater before Nigerians is that all those who are suppose to stand up for the people are tripping, we know that the Nigerian Labour Congress is moribund, they are palm wine powerless organisation. Look at all the governments in Nigeria, Federal government, state, local government and private, every one that remits union dues to Nigerian Labour Congress, what do they do with this money?. At this juncture I am asking Farida Waziri to visit the Nigerian Labour Congress.
Look at the huge amount of money that they remit to them, what do they do with them? The only venture they tried was the labour mass transport. It failed! What are they doing with all those money?Â Common ordinary Nursery school they cannot run.
When Adams Oshiomole, was to become the President of the Nigerian Labour Congress, Nigerian had about sixty textile factories, on assumption of office and when he was leaving, Nigerian had about 20 to 21 and still counting. Is it not under the nose of Adams Oshiomole that companies where closing every where.
Is it not under the new president Omar that the Nigerian Professors of the Nigerian universities had to sit down for months without them doing anything? So I have nothing to do with labour congress. The best thing we will talk about the Nigerian labour congress is that they are failures. I have two other organisations that I am looking upon. I have put the Press before the Nigerian bar association. I have my reason.
The lawyers who knows that in his house he has not used electricity for a while will still pick up the bill and go and pay NEPA. I have never seen any of these lawyers taking up the congress on behalf of Nigerians to ask Nepa or PHCN why they are doing this? If they cannot do it individually, why can’t they do it collectively? There are no two ways about it, prayer cannot solve our problems. God is looking down on us.
But I am looking up to the press and the Nigerian Bar association for once, let them help us, for once let the people feel their presence on this issue of electricity. Then let us go to court and try the issue. I am telling you the future of Nigerians depends on one thing and it is electricity.