Yemisi Izuora/Hyacinth Chinweuba
To stop energy theft and bring to a standstill the controversial estimated billing of customers, the Ikeja Electric (Ikeja Distribution Company) has unveiled a new metering initiative known as “Smart Meter”under its Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI).
The company under the initiative would install about 300,000 meters procured at the cost of $106 million.
The customers have either been identified not to have meters or whose meters are faulty or obsolete.
Speaking on the initiative, the company’s managing director and chief executive officer, Mr. Abiodun Ajifowobaje said the pilot project of the new system will kickstart on the 25th of this month.
He said the company will under the test run period of two months for the project, 2000 meters will be installed.
The MD explained that a lot of study was conducted before the introduction of the scheme.
Ajifowobaje, disclosed that during the study, it was observed that out of about 600,000 customers under the company’s coverage area, over 300,000 customers were not adequately metered, leading not only to energy loss but also inadequate billing of consumers.
He also said that when the new investors took over the facility, it inherited about 138,000 meters out of which 40,000 customers have by-passed their meters.
“Because we have not adequately monitored energy received from the national grid, due to actions of these customers, we have decided to ensure we install this hi-tech meter to monitor illegal connections by customers”, he said.
He also regretted irregular power supply, blaming it on inadequate generation.
According to him, in the past two weeks, the company was receiving just 280 Mega Watts for over 600,000 customers as against over 1,000 Mega watts required.