By Marie-Therese Nanlong
Jos—Residents of Jos, Plateau State capital, yesterday, stormed the Jos Electricity Distribution Company, JEDC, over high electricity tariff, fake metres and other perceived “gross injustices” meted on consumers in the state.
The residents, comprising of Civil Society Organisations, CSOs, and communities’ leaders in the city, defied the cold weather and gathered at the Rwang Pam Street office of the company, carrying placards and calling on the management to reverse the exploitative decisions against electricity consumers or be faced with daily protests until their plights were addressed.
Speaking at the venue amidst a heavy presence of security agents, a member of a civil society organisation, Mr. Steve Aluko, said the protest was to call the attention of relevant authorities to indiscriminate billing and provision of uncalibrated metres, which read leakages leading to exorbitant billing of customers.
He said: “It is gross injustice for residents of Plateau State to pay higher electricity tariff than those of other states. Even when we do not have power supply, we still pay higher for what is not consumed.
“If other states can have it cheaper, what makes Plateau different? States like Bauchi charges N17; Kaduna, N19; Lagos, N15; Abuja N18 and Jos N29. JEDC entered people’s houses without prior notice to remove their pre-paid metres in exchange for fake metres even when many others do not even have metres.”
However, a Senior Manager, Planning and Expansion, JEDC, Mansur Nakande, who responded to the protesters, said the company would look into their grievances with a view to addressing them.
He said: “We have been having discussions with the consumers and we will still meet next week to see how we can come to an under-standing, so that the cordial relationship, which has been existing between us and our customers, can continue.”