Mr Babatunde Raji Fashola (SAN), the Minister of Power, Works and Housing has appealed for consumer’s understanding with the new electricity tariff. He described the increased electricity tariffs as “a painful pill” while appealing to consumers to “swallow” it.
He said, “Importantly, I understand that people who have been disappointed over a long time will feel a sense of concern that again tariffs have gone up. But the truth is that these tariffs ought to have been there from day one. I don’t know why the government of yesterday was not courageous enough to tell us this was the price.
“It is a painful pill that I must appeal that we swallow. It is like quinine and malaria. It’s painful; it’s not sweet, I know that, but I do it because we are not left with many choices. This is the first major decision in power that this administration has taken. There are other problems.
“I can only appeal for some understanding and some trust that we do this in the best interest of our country. It is a hard decision, but I think down the line, we will have cause to look…”
Fashola’s comments comes amid the ongoing nationwide protest by workers under the aegis of the Nigerian Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress, which has grounded commercial activities in several cities in the country.
The minister, who faulted the way the privatisation of the power sector was carried out, said the sector was being plagued by several problems including gas supply shortfall and transmission issue.