In order to promote transparency and accountability in the electricity distribution value chain in Rivers and Bayelsa states for effective electricity service, the Stakeholder Democracy Network (SDN) in conjunction with Access to Electricity Working Group of Civil Society Organizations (CSOs) launched an Electricity Distribution Tracker (EDT) Today in Port Harcourt, Rivers state, Nigeria
In her remarks, Mrs Christiana Idasefiema a Programme Manager in SDN said “We know that access to power have been a very huge issue in Niger Delta , most of the things we do include access to energy”.
She said “the programme today is for people to have access to electricity in Niger Delta but basically in Rivers and Bayelsa states”.
She said “the launch of EDT tends to address issues of estimated billing, lack of transparency, lack of accountability, lack of fairness in terms of power distribution, so if We have accountable and transparent distribution, We will be happy and people will also be happy”.
Mrs Idasefiema who works on access to energy in partnership with PHED,CPC and NERC revealed that the platform will play a mediating role between Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company(PHED) and customers.
In his own Speech, a member of Access Working Group of CSOs Barrister Arochukwu Ogbonna(esq) said “it will enable interaction, open up the space for customers, policy makers and DISCOs that is electricity providers to meet at the platform, so that challenges associated with electricity distribution such as bad infrastructure, inadequate electricity supply, estimated billing will be resolve quickly ,so that conflicts between electricity providers and the public will be reduced”.
Another member Of Access Working Group of CSOs comrade Green Isaac in his speech said “what led to the invention of EDT is that over the years customers keep suffering extortion from service providers, people like NERC who are suppose to monitor and supervise the service providers have not been able to see through this challenges, so We felt that as CSOs and non state actors We can come together with a programme or project that will challenge the service providers and also make the customers to be able to access information and report whatever challenges they have through the EDT”.
Meanwhile the Executive Director of an energy advocacy group “Nepa Wahala” Barr.Emeka Ojoko said “electricity customers can address their problems by first writing to DISCOs that provide them electricity and if after fifteen working days the matter is not resolved, the customers can write to National Electricity Regulatory Council(NERC) and NERC will fix a date to hear the matter and if the customer is not satisfied with the judgement of NERC, He or She can appeal the judgement of NERC and if the customer is not also satisfied with the appeal, the customer can then proceed proceed to court”.
Our correspondent gathered that the EDT app can be downloaded from Google play store on android phone with the following key words:Electricity Distribution Tracker from Endoclan.
The mobile application does two things;first part will aggregate responses from consumers to inform the mobile application administrators (as well as the PHED and NERC,CPC and the Access to Energy Working Group of Civil Societies) real time about consumers experiences with issues such as load shedding,distribution,billing any other electricity issues they face.The other part is to act as information hub to consumers for effective use of electricity in their homes and business.