The Nigeria Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA), has commenced testing of smart prepaid meters in Jos, one month after the agency ordered Jos Electricity Distribution (JED), Company to halt further distribution of its meters in Plateau, Bauchi, Gombe and the Benue States on the grounds that they were yet to pass through the routine test.
NEMSA’S inspection had followed petitions by some customers and the Plateau State Ministry of Water Resources that the meters were allegedly not properly calibrated, therefore leading to “outrageous billings.”
Jos disco had a day later presented documents proving that the meters had earlier been tested and certified by NEMSA. However, the company agreed to abide by the agency’s instruction until the meters were re-tested.
NEMSA officers arrived Jos on May 3, 2017, and visited a resident in Kwang and later Rayfield in Jos south local government area of the State where they took readings from the meters which were said to have been randomly selected.
Edward Agbo, Head Engineer at the Meter Test Station, Kaduna said that more locations will be visited to take readings of the smart meters which would then be taken back to Kaduna for analysis. Agbo explained that it would take a week for the results to be made available.
However, JED’s Executive Director Marketing, Verr Jirbo said the introduction of the smart meter is to serve as an impartial judge between the customer and the distribution company, adding that, “what we have tried to do is bring a meter that is prepaid therefore putting energy management in the hands of the customer, therefore the customer can determine how much quantum of energy he or she would purchase for a period of time.”