Following the commencement of the new electricity tariff, the Eko Electricity Distribution Company has said that it will quickly move to deploy over 200,000 smart meters to various categories of customers.
The managing director and chief executive officer of the DISCO, Mr Oladele Amoda, said that the company desires to meter its customers contrary to the allegations of the labour unions that DISCOs prefer billing customers on estimation.
He said that the Eko DISCO has ordered for large quantities of meters for its teeming customers, as directed by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), to ensure that all customers are metered within the next five years.
Amoda said that the company has already taken delivery of over 76,000 smart meters while 100,000 meters are still being expected from Mojec Meter Manufacturing Company in the next three months.
“We are trying to ensure that we install 200,000 smart meters between the second quarter to December 2016, having installed about 46,000 meters to date. We are patronising local meter manufacturers and they have promised to meet with the stipulated time frame to meet our customers’ mandate. We contracted our maximum demand (MD) meters to Atron of France, because it has large capacity, while indigenous contractors would concentrate on the three phases and single phases meters.We have ordered for 7,500 MD meters but have taken delivery of 3,000; they promised to deliver the balance before of end of the year,” he said.
Amoda said that the new smart metering would address challenges confronting the company, such as customers engaging in meter by-pass, energy thefts, and other related criminal activities.
“The technology would indicate in their office when customers tamper with the meter,” he said, adding that every customers would be metered before the stipulated five years directed by the NERC. We have invested about $15 million (N3 billion) on MD meters while about N52 billion would be spent on smart metering within the next three years.
“All the meters are duly certified before usage; we have been with the local manufacturer for quite a while and they have been doing their best. They would gradually meet up the meter demand, and the meters would be free, but would be administered in phases, while those who cannot wait can key into the CAMPI programmes. We are going replace all obsolete meters within our network and this is our priority in 2016,’’ Amoda said.
He explained that the nature of the meters are designed to enhance efficient energy usage and transparent billing in real time, adding that the roll out represents a remarkable step in the company’s quest for redefining service delivery in the sector.
“This development resonates with our new spirit, new drive, and new energy identity as we strive to create value for our customers,” he noted.
The Advanced Meter Infrastructure, AMI, is a state-of-the-art technology that enables utilities to read, disconnect and connect meters remotely and to detect individual customer outages quickly using a wireless communications network, ‘’ he said.