Residents of Ago Palace way, early this morning stormed the Okota office of Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company (IKEDC) along Cele road in protest demanding Prepaid meters. They were protesting what they termed ‘Evil Exorbitant’ light bill which they swore not to pay and asked for installation of prepaid meters in their homes.
The residents who were at the office as early as 7am today succeeded in locking out most of the workers and denied them access into their offices. According to them, what they wanted was prepaid meters as it is very obvious the light company was out to rob them of their hard earned money using light bills which they said was increased to almost 700% the previous month.
Some of the Residents who spoke with Irukkanews said, despite their more than two years plea to the light company to give them prepaid meters, they are yet to be given any but rather get charged very high with each light bill issued. A resident who spoke with Irukkanews said;
For some reasons we have been receiving crazy estimated light bills, and it has been on for quite a long time now, we were here two years back and demanded for Prepaid meters and for some reason best known to them, they gave neighboring streets prepaid meters but ignored Apena street and have since been giving us estimated bills. This month alone a shop on the street was billed N17,000 another shop got billed N20,000, I myself, I was billed N13,000 for the month and nobody stays in my house on week days, we all go to work and come back late at night. Most of the time even now, they usual give us half current and still bill us.
What we are saying is, we are not paying the bills they brought for this month till we are given prepaid meters. How can a small shop on the street be billed N20,000 for a month, what is the person using light for that would amount to that.
Give me prepaid meter so I can regulate what I use and be able to account for it. we will never pay light bills again until we are given prepaid meters
When asked if the approach they have taken is the right way, he said;
We are not fighting, this is the only thing we can do and If Fashola can hear this, he will do something. How much am I making in a month that I will be billed 20k plus for light alone and it not like we even get constant light. the light is very poor.
Another resident who spoke with Irukkanews has this to say:
We are here from Apena street, we are here because we all received a very crazy and exorbitant bill, almost 700% increase from last month and we didn’t even get the light. Even one gets 24 hours daily which is not possible, it still doesn’t justify the increase because they have been no increase in tariff, So why that. This has been going on for two years now. We have written to NERC, relevant authorities also written the light company, and had series of meetings with them. we have piles of our letters, we have been writing and they have been shifting ground. All the surrounding streets have Prepaid meter, and they have refused to give us prepaid meters. They have provoked us by issuing us with more than 700% bill, we are not paying. We want prepaid meters
An official of the IKEDC tried to calm them down with promises but the residents insisted of an assurance that they will get their prepaid meters and promised to be back within two weeks should they fail to provide them with prepaid meters.