Ibadan Residents Protest Estimated Electricity Billing, Launch ‘No Meter, No Payment’ Campaign

Residents in some communities in Ibadan, the Oyo State capital on Saturday embarked on a “No Meter, No Payment” campaign against the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC).

The protesters are residents of; Apete, Awotan, Araromi, Jeje, and Arola of Ido Local Government Area and also residents of Ajibode, Masoke, and Laniba of Akinyele Local Government Area.

The campaign began over the weekend with a peaceful rally near Awotan Junction, with protesters carrying digital banners bearing various slogans and inscriptions.

Residents stated that unless they are metered, they will not pay money to any official of the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC).

They maintained that any official from the electrical distribution company who visits their homes without being provided prepaid meters will be refused entry.

The demonstrators, who promised not to pay their monthly power bills until they were given prepaid meters, claimed that IBEDC employees had been handing them estimated bills, which they called “crazy bills,” and they demanded that they be stopped.

They demanded that PHCN meters be regularized to make life worth living for them, as well as more feeders and transformers for the villages and the metering of all unmetered dwellings.

“We are here to launch a “No Meter, No Payment” campaign,” Rasak Fabayo, chairman of the Ajibode, Apete, Awotan, Araromi, Akufo and Environs Community Development Association, said. We are paying for something we don’t use.

“On behalf of residents of Apete, Awotan, Araromi Akufo, Laniba, Ajibode, we are launching this campaign. If any IBEDC official comes to your house, and they demand money, tell them that no meter is no payment,” they said.

IBEDC Media Relations Officer; BusolamiTunwase while reacting to the request by the protesters, disclosed that all consumers without meters are metered under the National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP) program and that meters that have been prohibited by NERC “cannot be integrated into our network.”

So far, we’ve metered over 80,000 people for free as part of the scheme. As FGN releases more meters, we will continue to meter customers. Meanwhile, all consumers without meters are billed according to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission’s (NERC) approved capping policy, which means they cannot be invoiced arbitrarily,” Tunwase said.

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