The Senate yesterday ordered the reversal of the 40 per cent hike in electricity tariff by Electricity Distribution Companies (DISCOS) and Generation Companies (GENCOs), and mandated its committees on Labour, Employment and Productivity and Power to liaise with electricity companies to comply with the directive.
A motion against the tariff hike was brought on the floor of the red chamber by Sen Suleiman Nazif (Bauchi North-APC).
Nazif who came under Orders 42 and 45 of the Senate Rules, said there was an urgent need to stop the hike, as according to him, power supply stability was yet to be achieved.
The deputy senate president, Ike Ekweremadu who backed the motion and dismissed the hike, decried that “As a country and as a people, we are now on life support and for any person to increase tariff, is to be ultra-wicked and to draw more blood from s. It’s unconscionable”.
He therefore called on the government to suspend the hike and revert to the original tariff forthwith.
He said Nigerians should not pay for the fact that the DISCOs and the GENCOs that bought these electricity companies, did not have enough capital to provide for metres.
In his contribution, Sen Dino Melaye (Kogi-APC), warned that the government-backed tariff hike must be lowered for the interest of the downtrodden who cannot afford.
He said: “This is one other time in the history of the 8th Senate that people must realise that we are here for the Talakawas (the poor), Mekunus and the downtrodden, and therefore we must carry out policiesthat will favour them”.
He therefore ordered for “the immediate reversal of this 40% increase in electricity tariff forthwith”.
The Senate with Senate President Dr Bukola Saraki presiding, adopted the arguments and summarily referred the motion to Committees on Labour and Power.[Leadership]