THE Abuja Electricity Distribution Plc (AEDC) on Sunday, January 8, expressed concerns over the frequent attacks on its electrical assets and installations across its franchise area.
The Chief Marketing Officer of the company, Donald Etim, who disclosed this in a statement, pointed out that such attacks had impeded the efforts to deliver stable and reliable power supply to its customers.
Etim explained that the attacks on its facilities were further dragging down its ability to deliver on some key projects that it commenced last year, geared towards improving power supply in its franchise areas.
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According to the statement, some elements of these various projects involved the procurement and installation of various electrical equipment worth millions of naira.
“Unfortunately, many of these installations are currently being vandalized across the network, causing very painful power supply disruptions, untold hardship and losses to its customers, and huge financial and reputation losses to the company.
“The surge in cases of vandalism within our franchise area has become quite worrisome, especially so because these vandals lately, increasingly utilize unfathomable methods to perpetrate their criminal acts,” the statement said.
The AEDC regretted that 185 meters of XLPE underground cable were carted away at the Central Business Area, Abuja FCT, valued at over N5 million at just one location out of several others that had been similarly affected across our franchise.
A multiplier effect of these damages, the company stated, ran into billions of naira.
Etim noted that the company would not relent on its efforts to ensure it provides adequate uninterrupted power supply, adding that “the company has continued investments in network upgrades, refurbishment of faulty transformers and procurement of new transformers, as well as the construction of new feeders and lines to relieve existing one.
Commenting on metering, he noted that the company had gone mobile with its metering drive by physically taking meters to customer cluster locations and getting them metered within 24 hours.
He said, “There are, at least, 27 such locations currently operational within our franchise today, excluding our formal offices. We have launched multiple payment channels, including USSD short codes, that allow our customers vend power at zero commission.
“We have also launched a verify-staff platform that enables customers, for their safety, to quickly verify AEDC visitors to their premises by simply inputting the said staff’s ID card number into a link connected directly to our website. Detailed information on how these innovations work can be found on our AEDC website.”
Etim also informed that the company had strengthened its collaboration with security agencies such as the Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), Nigeria Police Force (NPF), community leaders, and had even recently set up a civilian JTF component.
“These collaborations have resulted in increased security patrol exercises, aggressive community sensitization, several arrests and successful prosecutions.
“The company is also working towards deploying a remote monitoring system for locations with high incidences of vandalism,” he disclosed.