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Nigerians call for removal of minister over ‘shameless’ comment on power supply

Less than 24 hours after a hike in electricity tariff, Nigeria’s power minister Adebayo Adelabu said Nigerians were responsible for the epileptic power supply in the country. Adebayo said many people took advantage of the cheap tariff to waste power supply...READ THE FULL STORY HERE▶

Adebayo Adelabu, Minister of Power

Less than 24 hours after a hike in electricity tariff, Nigeria’s power minister Adebayo Adelabu said Nigerians were responsible for the epileptic power supply in the country.

Adebayo said many people took advantage of the cheap tariff to waste power supply.

“We must tell the truth to ourselves,” Adelabu said in Abuja. “We don’t have the culture of consumption management in this country in terms of (electricity) power just because of the cheapness of the tariff we pay.”

The Nigerian government announced a 200% hike in electricity tariff for some consumers on Thursday amid a paltry electricity supply below 5,000 megawatts. Distribution companies (DisCos) will be allowed to raise electricity prices to N225 per kilowatt-hour from N68.

Business owners and analysts said the move will further cut the slim survival rate of an average business and the disposable income of many homes struggling to survive the current economic situation.

Electricity distribution companies classified electricity users along the categories of Band A, B, C, D, and E. Each category has a tariff and specified duration of power supply assigned to it daily.

Only customers in Band A will be affected by the hike.

The minister said the hike would address the issue of liquidity affecting the power sector, and disclosed that power supply would still be subsidised for 85 percent of consumers.

However, he said the mismanagement of electricity by Nigerians was the cause of the unstable power supply.

“A lot of people come back from work – they want to serve dinner or play with some friends down the road, they switch on the AC (air conditioner) to be cooling before they come back,” Adelabu said.

“Some people are going to work in the morning. A freezer that has been on for days, they leave it on when all the times in it is already frozen and about 5/6/8 hours of their items may not need to be freezed, they would still leave it just because we are not paying enough.”

Before the announcement of the tariff hike, Nigerians daily complained about little or no electricity power supply to their homes and businesses where there is heavy reliance on the use of petrol-powered generator sets – an option being explored by only a few due to a spiking poverty rate at 40.1%

Many Nigerian households already had a taste of the toughest hardships ever faced in more than 20 years after the inflation rate jumped to 29.90% in January 2024. The cost of living has more than tripled in the last 10 months.

Nigeria’s opposition leader Atiku Abubakar said the hike in electricity tariff “will create more difficulties for the citizens as inflationary pressures are elevated” and predicted that Nigeria’s manufacturing sector will be impacted negatively.

The tariff hike has been met with stiff opposition by Nigerians – many who are calling on President Bola Tinubu to sack Adelabu who they said his six month tenure as minister has ushered Nigerian homes and businesses into more “darkness” in the absence of “light” – electricity power supply.

Adelabu is not doing himself, his governorship ambitions, and this Tinubu administration any good by remaining the Minister of Power. He needs to resign that position.

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Baba Voss

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