Electricity consumers to get refund on payment made for meters under MAP~NERC
Good news for electricity customers who paid for meters under the Meter Asset Provider (MAP) scheme, according to the industry regulator, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), their money will be refunded to them.
“All customers who made payment for meters under the MAP scheme would be refunded. The modality for the refund of the meter’s cost funded by the customers either through upfront payment or amortised payments is being worked out,” the Punch reported on Thursday quoting Michael Faloseyi, head of NERC Public Affairs.
The MAP Regulations was approved by NERC in March 2018 to fast-track the closure of the metering gap in the sector through the engagement of third-party investors (called meter asset providers) for the financing, procurement, supply, installation and maintenance of meters.
Electricity Distribution Companies also known as (DisCo) have been charging consumers between N84,000 for three phase meters and N45,000 for single phase before they are metered.
However, the Federal Government in November said that it was making funding immediately available for Discos to roll out one million meters in the first phase of the NMMP.
The government said that it will distribute six million meters through the DisCo at no cost to consumers under the National Mass Metering Programme.
Before the announcement, some customers who had already paid for meters had asked if their money would be refunded.
Under the MAP scheme, which kicked off on May 1, 2019, customers have two options for acquiring a meter: upfront payment and payment in installments through metering service charges on a monthly basis.
But the scheme has suffered setbacks, including changes in fiscal policy and the limited availability of long-term funding, according to the regulator.
NERC said that all the distribution companies had keyed into the new initiative, NMMP, adding, “Meter deployments are commencing in earnest across all Discos under the first phase of the NMMP.”
The regulator said the first rollout of meters had already commenced based on meters that were already available at the warehouses of the Discos/meter asset providers.
Asked if the consumers would bear the cost of meters later, the commission said, “Given that all prudent costs are borne by customers, the full cost of metering would form part of the tariff once the industry assumes full cost recovery.”