The residents of Magboro community and Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) are now at loggerheads over epileptic power supply to the community and environs.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that residents of Magboro community, along Lagos/Ibadan expressway, are dissatisfied with the new load shedding plan introduced by IBEDC, which has been described as arbitrary.
Going by the new sharing formula introduced by IBEDC, Magboro community will enjoy electricity for only eight hours in 48 hours as against the previous arrangement of eight hours in 36 hours.
A letter from IBEDC to residents reads: “Dear esteemed customer, in recent times, supply has been erratic, owing to increase in load demand.
“To this end, we have carved out another pattern to manage the allocation given to us and serve you better.
“Our rotation of supply will change from three to four rotations. This connotes that you have 24hrs off in between. Our intention is to give you better stability and availability of supply during your rotation.
“Also, minimise downtime to fault. This new rotation will commence on March 15, 2021. Below is the pattern of supply rotation. Please your usual cooperation and understanding is always honored and appreciated.”
This, however, did not go down well with residents of Magboro, who are now calling for total disconnection of the community from IBEDC if supply to the community cannot be improved upon.
David Ajayi, member of the Community Development Committee (CDC), decried the exploitative tendencies of IBEDC, calling for an intervention from the government.
“IBEDC Magboro is kneeling on the neck of her customers. The community bought poles, wires and transformers without any form of compensation from the Disco.
“The total value of all assets procured by the consumers runs into at least N800 million, this is just a little short of N1 billion.
“The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) has all the evidences needed with respect to the aforementioned.“We are peaceful, and we have been trying to pay all bills despite how crazy they are; the Federal Government and Ogun State need to use their good offices to rescue this community,” he said.
Mr Ajayi said there was an urgent need to summon NERC and IBEDC for their role in the exploitation of the Magboro community.
“Our demands are manifold; we need supply of prepaid meters which will encourage stable electricity,” he said.
Another resident, Olumogbon Olusegun, said IBEDC has not been truthful about the distribution of electricity to Magboro, arguing that some places in Magboro do enjoy 24 hours supply while some are left in total darkness.
“IBEDC are not truthful at all in this matter, all what they want is to reap where they did not sow, or how can we describe the fact that some communities within Magboro do enjoy uninterrupted power supply while others live in darkness.
“What they (IBEDC) are doing is unjust and uncalled for, they are selling their power supply to the highest bidder,” he said.
Dayo Olowonjoyin, corroborating the views of others, said IBEDC had come up with several flimsy excuses on the inadequate supply of electricity to the community, yet the company kept on increasing its bill.
“Magboro community has been suffering from inadequate supply of electricity for many years; there was even a long period about 15 years of power outage.
“When IBEDC came on board we negotiated on the supply of electricity to our community, having bought all the infrastructure but they never kept to their promises.
“We can’t keep quiet on this, it is either they improve supply to our community or cut us off totally. The new arrangement of having eight hours in 48 hours is totally unacceptable to us.
“IBEDC has their shady way of supplying electricity to our community as some petrol stations and supermarkets are placed on dedicated lines with uninterrupted electricity. So, why not same treatment to all?”
Mr Olowonjoyin also contested the argument by IBEDC of inadequate supply from TCN as baseless.
“IBEDC argues that they are not having the required supply from TCN in Oke Aro, but we have found out that it is entirely false.
“We gathered from TCN in Oke Aro that they have more power supply but that IBEDC is not ready to buy more energy to increase supply to our community,” he said.
Olu Ajijola, another resident of Magboro, said if IBEDC must continue with the new allocation, then it must reflect it in the billing of the community.
“After meeting the representatives of IBEDC, we are told that the new system remains unchanged and that the distribution is now among four communities namely, Magboro, Ibafo 1 and 2 and Orimerunmu.
“With this, we will only enjoy eight hours in 48 hours, but at the same time they increased their bills, not minding that economic activities are at the lowest ebb.
“NERC has told them that they cannot increase their bill and if that will take place, then the supply should be increased as well, but IBEDC has defaulted,” Mr Ajijola said.
According to him, there is hardly any time that residents enjoyed electricity for eight hours within 36 hours, that most times IBEC supplies electricity for three hours and attribute it faults.
“If IBEDC is not faithful in the previous allocation, how are we sure that they will even keep eight hours in 48 hours? That is why they enjoy the estimated billing,” he said.
Olusegun Oguntoye was emphatic that IBEDC had been cheating the community based on the money paid on units of electricity consumed.
“I wonder if this arrangement is a joke or a scam, IBEDC are talking about allocation given to them, which is a lie. The truth is based on the volume they buy from Transmission company.
“If amount the allocation given to IBEDC is constant with increasing demand then cost per customer should reduce and not increase or remain constant, thus amount billed per customer should reduce. We are expected to pay N1,800, yet they charge us over N4,000.
“We must stand up against the scam because it will not cease. We all must say in a loud, sincere, unequivocal voice enough of IBEDC injustice to Magboro resident,” he said.
The Manager, IBEDC Magboro, Femi Akinkurolere, declined to comment on the on the issue.
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