Nigerian gov takes over rollout of prepaid electric meters


According to the Nigerian Tribune, Babatunde Fashola who is the country’s Minister of Power said the government is planning to take over the deployment of prepaid electric meters following the failure by utility firms in equipping all consumers with the prepayment technology.

The minister said the unavailability of an accurate database regarding the number of consumers in Nigeria is hindering the rollout of prepaid electricity meters.

At the moment, records possessed by the Nigerian government states there are 6 million electric consumers in the West African country yet there are more than the highlighted households.

The prepaid electric meters programme will start with energy providers implementing an audit to determine how many consumers they serve.

The Nigerian Ministry of Power will supply energy providers with the prepaid electric meters and ensure they are installed for consumers in phases according to consumer energy consumption patterns and income status.

The deployment of the prepaid electric meters will help consumers improve their energy efficiency and utility firms to reduce non-revenue electricity associated with power theft.

“Some people will put on a 70 or 120-watt bulb as security light for 24 hours, including the daytime when they do not need it and it is because they have either stolen the energy or bypassed their meters,” said the minister.

Funding of prepaid electric meters programme

Due to incapabilities to sponsor the deployment of advanced and automated metering infrastructure, some utilities in Nigeria have sought financial assistance from third.

In late March, Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company attracted a $400 million investment that will help to ensure the implementation of its smart meters programme.

The utility’s smart meter rollout programme caught the attention of the Trans-Sahara Consortium resulting an investment of $400 million that will facilitate the infrastructure upgrade within the distribution area of the company. Read more…


Image Credit: 123rf.

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Nicholas Nhede is an experienced energy sector writer based in Clarion Event's Cape Town office. He has been writing for Smart Energy International’s print and online media platforms since 2015, on topics including metering, smart grids, renewable energy, the Internet of Things, distributed energy resources and smart cities. Originally from Zimbabwe, Nicholas holds a diploma in Journalism and Communication Studies. Nicholas has a passion for how technology can be used to accelerate the energy transition and combat climate change.