The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission has warned that Distribution Companies that failed to comply with local content regulation metering would be sanctioned.
The Chairman of NERC, Dr. Sam Amadi, gave the warning at a news conference on Tuesday in Abuja.
“Distribution companies should note that the commission will mete out severe sanctions to any operator who violates the regulations on metering and local content,” Amadi said.
He said the commission was committed to the promotion of local content in the electricity market.
“In 2012, we made the regulation on local content obligatory on every operator in the Nigerian electricity market to localise employment, services and technology,” he said.
Amadi explained that the mechanism in the local content was carefully designed not to intervene with efficiency gains expected from a privatised electricity market.
“It was also designed to provide a transparent and clear procedure for peer-review of the performance of every operator on local content obligation,” he said.
He said to promote the local content obligation in metering of customers, the commission imposed a restriction on certification of meter importers.
The chairman stressed that any importer of meters must produce proof that the local manufacturers cannot source such number of meters from local manufacturers.
“As long as there is available supply from local manufacturers to meet demands of distribution companies, NERC will not approve importation of meters,” he said.
Amadi said any DISCO seeking to import meters to meet its demand for reason of technical competence or price must justify it in writing to the commission.
Amadi said some local manufacturers had alleged that some distribution companies had violated the local content obligation by installing imported meters.
He said the commission had completed technical work on the regulation on smart metering in the country.
Amadi said the regulation would provide a framework for the deployment of smart meters to protect the revenues of the distribution companies and as well help customers manage consumption.