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The Federal High Court in Kano Halts Implementation of New Electricity Tariff Increase

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The Federal High Court in Kano has temporarily halted the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) and the Kano Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO) from enforcing a recent electricity tariff hike for Band A consumers within the DisCo’s franchise area.

NERC had directed electricity distribution companies to impose higher tariffs on Band A consumers to ensure a more stable power supply for those with the financial means. However, this decision faced widespread criticism from Nigerians, especially as many areas continued to experience inconsistent electricity supply.

Justice A.M. Liman of the Federal High Court in Kano granted the interim order following an ex-parte motion filed by A.B. Mahmoud, SAN, representing Super Sack Company Limited, BBY Sacks Limited, Mama Sannu Industries Limited, Dala Foods Nigeria Limited, Tofa Textile Limited, and the Manufacturers Association of Nigeria Limited (MAN).

The court ruling temporarily prevents NERC and KEDCO from implementing the tariff increase, which was slated to take effect this month, until a hearing and determination of the motion on notice.

Furthermore, the court order prohibits the defendants from coercing or threatening to disconnect the electricity supply of the applicants for their refusal to accept the new tariff.

In a related development, the House of Representatives has urged NERC to suspend the nationwide implementation of the proposed new electricity tariff.

During Tuesday’s plenary session, Kama Nkemkanma, representing Ivo/Ohaozara/Onicha Federal Constituency of Ebonyi State, raised concerns about the sudden surge in electricity prices in Nigeria and stressed the importance of addressing these issues.

In response, the House directed NERC to suspend the implementation of the new tariff and established a special committee, comprising its Committees on Power, Commerce, Delegated Legislation, and National Planning, to conduct a thorough hearing on the regulation of the National Electricity Supply Industry (NESI).

The hearing will involve key stakeholders such as the Minister of Power, NERC Chairman and Commissioners, CEOs of all electricity utilities in Nigeria, the President of the National Industrial Court, Trade Union Congress, and leaders of Nigerian chambers of commerce.

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