Electricity Bills are set to triple for Nigerian energy consumers this month as power consumption has increased in tandem with power supply, which attained and remained at an all time high throughout July and August.
Nigeria attained its highest peak generation of 4,662.2MW on July 28 this year, according to the Ministry of Power. Power generation capacity has also been ramped up to 5,500MW, and it might surpass this level if on-going work is completed.
Currently, Nigeria generates about 4600MW of power (according to Godknows Igali Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Power), and generation has consistently been maintained at over 4,500MW in the past two months.
This compares with the output of 2,000MW generated between January and May this year. The major challenge now, is in the evacuation of the generated power to end-users.
The high power supply is mostly attributed to the rains, which have ensured hydrothermal generation of power continues to add supply to the grid.
Just recently the Egbin Power plant confirmed it had increased its power generation to over 1,100MW. A lot of the independent power projects have also come on stream ensuring a steady contribution of supply to the grid.
Also, a lot of big manufacturers that had previously relied on power from the discos have also moved on to becoming energy independent, freeing up a lot of energy for residential and commercial consumers.
Another factor responsible for the surge in output is the relative calm in gas disruptions, as prevalence of criminals vandalising gas pipelines has reduced considerably ensuring a steady flow of gas supply to Gencos.
These positive developments mean that energy consumers will have no choice but to pay more for electricity. Before now, most consumers interviewed by Nairametrics said that they enjoyed 4 hours of power supply daily. However, this has now increased to about 20 hours a day, and in other instances up 22 hours a day.
Based on this, we opine some consumers may see their electricity bills triple. Customers who are on estimated billing are more likely to be hard hit as they may have to take the brunch of having to pay for higher bills. We won’t be surprised to see customers who are typically billed N5,000 a month see their bills rise to as much as N15,000 a month.