Nigerian govt may stop supplying electricity to Togo, Niger, Benin republic

The Federal Government has called on international customers who
receive electricity from Nigeria to either pay their bills or be
disconnected.

DAILY POST reports that Nigeria sells power to the Republics of Togo,
Niger and Benin, and classifies the West African countries as
international customers.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, who
confirmed this to newsmen in Abuja on Tuesday noted that the
international customers, who pay for the power they receive from
Nigeria in dollars, owed the country.

He however revealed that President Muhammadu Buhari was working hard
to ensure that the electricity debts by the country's neighbours were
cleared.

Fashola stated that he had also directed the Nigerian Bulk Electricity
Trading Company (NBET) to go ahead and collect its money from the
international customers.

He noted that the government had issued letters to the countries
involved, adding that Nigeria would disconnect those who fail to
comply as endorsed by Buhari.

The minister said, "We issued disconnection notices and that is why
I'm asking the NBET to go and collect your money because we have
duties, obligations and international agreements with them as brother
and sister nations. But that does not mean they will not pay us if
they are defaulting. So, we have issued letters to them to pay their
bills, and from time to time, they pay.

"There was a time one head of state came to visit President Buhari and
little did I know that the real reason he came was to come and tell
him that the (power) sector had issued a notice of disconnection to
his country. And you may be interested to know that President Buhari
simply told him to go and pay, otherwise we will disconnect you
because we are also paying at home."

Fashola also stated that he recently received the minister of power
from Niger and both of them discussed issues bordering on the payment
of electricity bills to Nigeria.

He said, "International customers, yes we have delays in payment and I
think that's a fair thing to say. Our international customers are
government agencies and governments of Niger, Togo and the Republic of
Benin. So, it takes some time and even on our own side, we know what
it takes to get approvals, to process things and so on.

"You may be aware that the minister of power for Niger Republic was
here to see me on Thursday or Friday, and these were some of the
issues we had to discuss. And we also discussed the need for them to
transfer the rights under their old agreement, which they made with
the PHCN to NBET. So from time to time, we get the monies from
international customers and we pay the power generation companies."

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