The Minister of Power, Sale Mamman has insisted that Nigerians will pay higher electricity tariff from July this year.
Sale Mamman made this known in his presentation at an investigative public hearing on: “Power Sector Recovery Plan and the Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic” organized by the Senate Committee on Power, in Abuja.
According to the Minister, the increase in electricity tariff was supposed to take place in April 2020, but was postponed to July due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
“The impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has also affected our laid out plan for the repositioning of the electricity market towards financial sustainability under the Power Sector Recovery Programme (PSRP).
“Initially, the regulator, following the completion of public consultation on tariff review, planned on conducting a tariff review in April 2020.
“However, due to COVID-19 and customer apathy, the proposed tariff review was delayed by 3 months.
“The impact of this means the subsidy being incurred in maintaining the current tariff level had to be maintained till July 2020 when the proposed tariff review will be implemented.”
He noted that the challenge the nation’s power sector is currently facing in the development and expansion of the nation’s transmission line is to “budget and release FG’s commitment of an estimated sum of N32billion, primarily for Right of Way acquisition and environmental impact mitigation.
“The fund should be provided for in the 2020, 2021, and 2022 Appropriation of the Ministry of Power.”
He added that the power sector is also grappling with the challenge of infrastructural misalignment, market inefficiency/transparency, sector governance/policy coordination, increase energy access and completion of legacy projects.
Mamman went on to lament that the COVID-19 pandemic, has had a great economic impact – not just on the health sector, but the overall economy of the country.