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200 women storm PHCN office in Ughelli over tariff

BY Festus Ahon
UGHELLI—OVER 200 Patani women, Tuesday, stormed the Ughelli Business District office of Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, in protest over epileptic power supply in Patani, headquarters of Patani Local Government Area, Delta State and its environs.

The women, under the aegis of Patani Development Union, Women Wing, stormed the PHCN premises at about 9.30am. They also condemned what they described as arbitrary increase in electricity tariff.

Decrying the epileptic power supply in Patani main town, Kolowaire, Aven, Agiama, Tawaire, among other towns in the council, the women who came in about five buses, said they were being made to pay “exorbitant electricity bills for being in darkness.”

Mrs Evelyn Preh, who led the protesting women, said: “We have been going through this  painful experience since the connection of our communities to the national grid by Delta State Government.

“From August till date, we have not enjoyed power supply. We see the light for less than an hour. Can this be called electricity supply? Of what use is this kind of power supply to us?

“This situation is unfair and unacceptable. It is even worse as we are made to pay monthly bills that do not reflect the poor supply. What do we pay these bills for? Is it for the darkness? Is it fair? And as if this pain is not enough, PHCN had decided to increase our monthly bills from N1,200 to N2,700.

“It is unfair to ask us to pay for services not rendered. A situation where you accumulate the monthly bills even when power was not supplied for weeks and months is unacceptable to us.”

Preh called on PHCN authorities to move the fuse line between Ohoror and Patani closer to Patani, adding that an isolator should be installed close to the fuse line “to enable tracers trace faults down to Patani before putting on the light.”

Efforts made to reach Mr. Adetunji Mojid, Business Manager in charge of the Ughelli Business District of PHCN, for comment on the protest proved abortive at press time.

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