Fashola urges DISCOs to patronise local meter manufacturers
• Govt to distribute 115, 000
Against the backdrop of scarce foreign exchange, Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, yesterday urged Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOs) to patronise local meter manufacturing companies in the country.
The minister, who spoke yesterday while flagging off mass distribution of pre-paid meters at Kabuga business unit of Kano Electricity Distribution Company KEDCO in Kano yesterday, explained that such patronage was necessary to encourage the production of meters by the local manufacturing companies in the country and preserve scarce foreign exchange.
“Patronising the local meter manufacturing companies is the way to diversify and save foreign exchange,” he said.
According to the minister, government would be distributing about 115,000 pre-paid meters across the nation this year alone while also expressing the commitment of government to ensure adequate power supply in the country soon next.
He assured that the implementation of the nationwide metering system would open windows of opportunities of job creation to teeming unemployed youths.
Fashola, who emphasised that the quality of locally made prepaid meters in Ogun State are of high standard and equal qualities with those imported from China and India want the DISCO to contribute to local content.
While commending KEDCO’s effort for fulfilling the mandate of providing meters to customers and involving their customers in the distribution, Fashola uses the occasion to challenging other distribution companies to toe the line of KEDCO.
According to Fashola, “We want to urge Nigerians not to panic over the current power situation in the country because the federal government is working day and night to overcome the power challenges facing the country”.
In his remarks, the Managing Director of KEDCO, Alhaji Jamilu Gwamna, said the company had purchased more than 63, 000 meters to be distributed to its customers.
Gwamma said that the inauguration of the scheme would go a long way in checking the issue of crazy bills, in addition to ensuring effective service delivery.
“Our intention is to ensure that by 2020, the company will be the most valuable company to compete favourably with other companies in the country,” he said.
Also speaking, the Vice-Chancellor, Bayero University, Kano, Prof. Yahuza Bello, called on the minister to use the magic wand he used in Lagos to improve power supply in the country.
“The power sector has a lot of challenges, and with low power supply, we are spending N6 million weekly on diesel to power our generators in the university,” he said.
Bello said that if power supply improved in Kano, the management of the university was ready to pay the money to KEDCO to enable it serve its customers better.