Days after Take-Over of Power Assets, Vigeo Seeks Criminalisation of Electricity Theft

Days after the new owners of various electricity firms took full control, Vigeo Power Limited, the new owner of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company Plc has advocated for the criminalisation of electricity theft and application of appropriate penalties for recovering lost revenue arising from theft.
Speaking in Benin, Edo State when he was handed over the Benin Disco at the weekend, the Chairman of Vigeo Power Limited, Victor Gbolade Osibodu also called on the Federal Government to ensure prompt release of the subsidy contained in the Multi Year Tariff Order (MYTO) model for each of the 11 Discos.
Osibodu harped on the need for adequate funding of the Transition Company of Nigeria (TCN) to ensure that the agency could adequately evacuate power produced for delivery to Discos.
He said approving a framework for Private – Public Partnership options to fund some TCN projects would also be a viable option.
Osibodu stated that in order to achieve a smooth transition and attain the desired successes of privatisation, the government should create regulatory certainty with a well defined and predictable tariff methodology.
He added that the conclusion of payment of workers severance benefits and pension would guarantee a stable working environment.
He noted that the physical handover of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company to Vigeo Power Ltd, as the 60per cent core investors, was an epic occasion and commended President Goodluck Ebele Jonathan for the political will and commitment he demonstrated in the privatisation exercise.
“Indeed, worldwide, the massive privatisation of the power sector in one programme has been commendable. On our part we are committed to our promise to turnaround the asset in line with our business plan and performance agreement and whilst instituting a strong sense of customer service and professionalism in all that we will do going forward,” he said.
“To all our retained staff, we want to assure you all that we will ensure that a conducive and healthy working environment is put in place. There will be a strong emphasis on training, capacity building and career development for all staff. To our valued customers and most important stakeholder, this change in control should be seen as the commencement of a strong commitment to partnering with you to improving electricity availability to all of us. Though there will be many challenges at the initial stage, as partners, we appeal for your patience and cooperation as we work assiduously toward your expectations of improved power supply,” he explained.
He commended the various stakeholders for their cooperation and support- shareholders, Edo, Delta, Ondo and Ekiti government; various consultants and lawyers and bankers.

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