Electricity agency charges DISCOs on wooden poles, poor network

Amadi
Amadi

• NLC wants NERC ex-chief, privatization programme probed
The Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) yesterday, cautioned Distribution Companies of Nigeria (DISCOs) to stop the use of wooden poles in their operations.

NEMSA also warned them against bad “networks” installation, which it said had been responsible for electrical accidents that have claimed several lives.

Managing Director/ C.E.O and Chief Electrical Inspector of the Federation (NEMSA), Mr. Peter Ewesor, who was in Benin City, on a sensitization tour and visit to the DISCOs, also closed down shops in the business of selling wooden poles in the state, assuring that persons dealing in substandard, electrical systems, particularly wooden poles will be arrested and prosecuted.

Ewesor said the need to sanction the erring DISCOs was to ensure that the recurring incidents of bad network from power firms is addressed as even staffs of these organizations risk been electrocuted in the event of electrical accidents.

Meanwhile, the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) has called for the probe of immediate past Chairman of the Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Dr. Sam Amadi over his comment on the 45 per cent increase on electricity tariff.

A statement by the President of Congress, Ayuba Wabba, in Abuja yesterday berated Amadi over his statement that Senate directive to NERC to reverse the increment was illegal, unconstitutional and a direct encroachment on the executive independence, adding that as presently constituted, NERC cannot suspend or rescind the decision by the previous NERC.

Wabba said Amadi is being economical with the truth and his legal knowledge. The duties of the legislature as defined by the constitution include legislation, oversight and investigation. Beside this, elementary knowledge of the Social Sciences tells us that independence of the three arms of government in a liberal democracy is a coordinate one. Even if it were absolute, such independence cannot be in pursuance of criminality, fraud or injustice.

“Secondly, we find it disgusting that Amadi could only remember the independence of the Executive and not that of the Judiciary which gave an earlier order and still subsisting that no increment be made until the determination of the substantive case.”

Wabba stated that flowing from the breach of this order, a contempt proceeding against NERC is on in court but Amadi will have none of that.

Wabba argued that Amadi not only described the Senate directive as a ‘dangerous precedence’, but has instigated NERC not to obey the directive, as “it would have put itself in a double impasse between the executive and legislature and a violation of the provisions of the Act.”

NLC said it is disgusted by the development and is accordingly calling on the relevant agencies to probe not just the tenure of Amadi at NERC but the entire privatisation process of the power sector, which he stage-managed, adding that NLC is also keen to know his (Amadi) relationship with some of the DISCOs for whom he has become chief spokesman.

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