The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has suspended its Eligible Customer policy.
The policy allows the Generation Companies (GenCos) to sell power directly to consumers without going through the Distribution Companies (DisCos).
The Nigeria Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) had directed the TCN to suspend eligible customer transactions, a directive the TCN heeded.
According to a document made available to The Nation yesterday, the TCN, on August 3, 2021, had written to communicate the compliance to the affected customers.
Its Market Operator, E.A. Eje, notified the commission in a letter entitled: “NERC’s Directive to Suspend Eligible Customer Transactions Without the Commission’s Approval”, with reference no: TCN/MO/003/071/002/2021.
The letter reads in part: “Following a letter from the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) dated 7th July, 2021, the commission ordered the suspension of all eligible customers transactions without its approval.
“In a subsequent meeting with the commission on 30th of July, the commission further directed the suspension of all eligible customer transactions without its approval.
“In the letter NERC directed TCN to forthwith stop all eligible customer transactions pending the conclusion of the review and approval of the respective applications for eligible status by the commission.
“In this regards, we write to formally notify you that the MO/TCN is abiding by this directive and will credit all affected eligible customers associated energy to their host DisCo, we advise that all eligible customers follow up their licence application with the commission.”
Responding to the directive, the Nigeria Consumer Protection Network, Kunle Kola Olubiyo, a lawyer, noted that the only window available for competition in the market for bulk users of electricity is the eligible customer transactions and framework.
He claimed that before the Sun Flower NIPP/TCNeligiblecustomer framework made its debut, the bulk users in the Sun Flower/NIPP/TCN eligible customer business model were paying for darkness and poor, epileptic and erratic power supply from the national power grid.
“Not until they decommissioned their source of power supply from the host DisCo and migrated to the NIPP/NDPHC sourced eligible customer national power grid supply loop.
“The original ideals of eligible customer transactional framework in the power sector was designed to give end users of electricity the right to choices or options in a near 100 per cent monopolistic electricity market.
“The beauty of the market is in the competition but this is not the case here as there seems to be a carefully and well-orchestrated institutionaliserd synergy between the regulatory institutions and market participants/markets operators to stifle market competition in ways and manners that is inimical to the collective national economic interests,” he added.
Source: The Nation