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Ogun community threatens to dump IBEDC over crazy bills, poor service

Bianca Iboma

Residents of Itele Awori Community Development Committee (CDC), comprising three area CDCs of Itele Awori, Egbejoda-Itele and Ayetoro Itele in Ogun State, have threatened to withdraw their patronage from the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBDC) and switch to Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC).

The community alleged that the electricity company has been dishing out outrageous bills to residents without proportionate electricity supply. They threatened that if the situation was not corrected, they would have no alternative but to withdraw their patronage from IBEDC and switch to the IKEDC, which they believe is more people-friendly.

In a protest letter to the IBDC managing director, signed by the chairmen of the three ACDCs, Alhaji Adeleke Musodiq (Egbejoda), Prince Onaolapo Olatunji (Itele Awori), and Hadji Ayoade Ajisefini (Ayetoro Itele), entitled: “Request to reduce our outrageous bills,” they stated that the development was psychologically affecting residents and demanded immediate action to rectify the anomaly.

The people are angry that despite the fact that they single handedly provided electricity to the community at a huge cost, after many years of staying in darkness, the IBEDC, after connecting the community, has consistently given them exorbitant and outrageous bills:

“All the Community Development Associations (CDAs) spent about N7 million each to ensure that we got electricity. We procured transformers, poles, cables and other electrical accessories without any contribution by the IBEDC.

“However, barely one month after we got electricity, IBEDC started billing our people. This is not really our problem; the problem is that the bills are excessive, outrageous and unheard of. For instance, a one-room apartment with only fan and a lighting point, recently received a monthly bill of N6,700. This has been the case with the electricity company since 2014, when we got light in the community.”

They noted that in 2015, they protested and the bill was stabilised at N3,000 per month for one room apartment, but lamented that since October 2017, the regime of crazy billing had returned, with so many people having psychological problem as a result. They appealed to IBEDC MD to intervene and rectify the anomaly as soon as possible or they would seek refuge in IKEDC, which they alleged does not give more than N3000 per month for one room apartment.

They demanded “that our bills should be pegged at a maximum of N3,000 per month; we believe that this will translate to a minimum of 12 hours per day, judging by the presence of light hours that we had in the past. IKEDC beside us gave our people light for 12 hours at N2,500 per month. That IBEDC should henceforth take charge of repairs and maintenance of our transformers and other electrical accessories.

“The communities have been burdened by these activities since 2014, yet, we receive crazy bills. We also recommend that you extend electricity to other parts of the community and complete installations where necessary.

“For instance, Greenland CDA just repaired their transformer after about 16 months in darkness, but they are yet to be connected back due to stringent conditions by your electricity company.

“That Lafenwa feeder that has been having problems for over six months should be immediately fixed because the people also receive the same outrageous bills, in spite of poor electricity supply.

“That IBEDC should provide meter to all the houses that have connected light in the community, so as to ensure peace.

“We believe that your company will reason with our people and grant our request in order to lessen our burden. However, we are ready to move our light to IKEDC if our request is not granted. We request that you give a formal written reply within one month of the receipt of this letter.”

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