- Disco Owed N1.15 trillion in Power Supply Tariff Shortfall –NERC
The Nigerian Electricity Regulation Commission (NERC) has revealed that 11 power distribution companies across the country are owed a total of N1.15 trillion by electricity consumers in the space of four years; 2015 to 2018.
NERC revealed this in a document published on its website titled, ‘2016-2018 Minor Review of Multi-Year Tariff Order 2015 and Minimum Remittance Order for Year 2019 for the Discos’.
The commission also urged the Discos to disconnect electricity supply to any Ministry Department and Agency (MDA) of government that refuses to pay for power consumed, adding that it is mandatory for Discos to assign them meters of their choice.
It said “All discos reserve the right to disconnect any MDAs defaulting in the payment for electricity in line with the Regulation on Connection and Disconnection Procedures for Electricity Services”.
The commission, however, acknowledged that the rise in debt with the period under review was as a result of its failure to review and approve the right tariffs for the Discos; a decision it made based on orders by the Federal Government. It explained that the reviews, meant to be done periodically, are in two phrases; minor and major phrases. At both stages, economic determinants necessary for power generation and supply such as such price of gas and exchange rates, are reviewed and that a disregard of the reviews would affect the Discos as they would supply power on terms that were not workable.
According to the commission, Port Harcourt Disco suffered a loss of N104.31 billion in shortfall while Abuja Disco recorded N102.22 billion.
Also, Kano Disco recorded a shortfall of N97.82billion, Enugu recorded, N95.64billion and Jos, N88.36billion.
The largest shortfalls were recorded by Ibadan Disco with a shortfall of N161.88 billion, followed by Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company with N124.17 billion, Benin Disco at N155.35 billion and Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company at N144.54 billion.
The lowest shortfall was recorded by Yola Distribution Company with a shortfall of N51.63 billion. The Yola Disco was taken over by the Federal Government in July 2015 after the exit of key investors following insecurity challenges in the North-East Region.
According to NERC, in accordance with the Power Sector Recovery Plan (PSRP) approved by the Federal Government, all accrued liabilities in Discos’ financial records arising from tariff shortfalls would be transferred off the balance sheet and fully settled under the financing plan of the PSRP initiative.
“All Discos with excess of tariff shortfalls over market shortfalls shall be compensated accordingly for the differences. All interest payable by Discos on unpaid invoices issued by the NBET and the MO and attributable to tariff shortfalls shall be transferred off the balance sheet of the utilities, ” It said.
Airtel Africa Appoints Ms. Kelly Bayer Rosmarin as a Non-Executive Director
Airtel Africa has appointed Ms. Kelly Bayer Rosmarin as a non-executive director, effective from 27 October 2020.
In a statement released on the Nigerian Stock Exchange’s website, the telecommunication giant said Ms. Bayer Rosmarin’s “appointment is by nomination of the controlling shareholder pursuant to the terms of relationship agreement dated 17 June 2019 between the Company, Bharti Airtel, Airtel Africa Mauritius Limited, the majority shareholder and an indirect subsidiary of Bharti Airtel, and Bharti Telecom. Ms. Bayer Rosmarin will replace Arthur Lang who will step down as a non-executive director on the same date.
“Ms. Bayer Rosmarin is currently CEO of Singtel Optus and Consumer Australia. She was previously with Commonwealth Bank of Australia, where she held several senior positions and varied portfolios, before being appointed as Group Executive of Institutional Banking and Markets. Ms Bayer Rosmarin is recognised for leveraging technology, data and analytics to develop leading customer services and experience. Ms. Bayer Rosmarin was named in the Top 10 Businesswomen in Australia and the Top 25 Women in Asia Pacific Finance and holds a variety of Board and advisory responsibilities.
“Ms. Bayer Rosmarin has, since February 2019, served as an Independent non-executive director on the Board of OpenPay, listed on the ASX. She will continue in that role. Openpay is a payments technology company based in Australia.”
Speaking on the change in the company’s director, Sunil Bharti Mittal, Chairman, Airtel, said: “On behalf of the Board, I would like to thank Arthur, who joined the Board in October 2018 and supported the company through its IPO, for his significant contribution to the success of our strategy to build Airtel Africa into a market leading mobile service provider and wish him well for the future.”
He further stated: “I am delighted that Kelly has agreed to join the Airtel Africa Board and we very much look forward to working closely with her”.
Five World’s Wealthiest Families Control a Fortune of Over $620 Billion
Top Five Wealthiest Families Control Over $620 Billion in Fortune
Data presented by Buy Shares indicates that the world’s wealthiest families cumulatively control a fortune of $621 billion. The wealth is as of October 2020.
Concerns Over Wealth Inequalities
The data shows that the Walton family that runs the Walmart retail chains controls a fortune of $215 billion, followed by the Mars family with wealth amounting to $120 billion. The Koch family running the Koch industries owns a fortune worth $109.7 billion.
Al Saud family, known for vast wealth reserves, controls wealth worth $95 billion. India’s Ambani family owns the fifth-highest fortune at $81.3 billion.
The Buy Shares research also overviewed the wealth of the five wealthiest individuals globally. Amazon founder Jeff Bezos is the wealthiest person with a fortune of $188.7 billion, followed by Bernard Arnault at $119.2 billion. Microsoft founder Bill Gates is the thyroid richest person with a net worth of $115.2 billion.
There is Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg at $101.8 billion in the third spot, while Tesla CEO Elon Musk is the fifth richest person at $93 billion.
The research highlights the inequalities that exist with the global wealthiest individuals and families. According to the report: “The spotlight on the world’s wealthiest comes amid the growing economic inequality in the US and other leading global economies. According to critics, inequality exists due to regimes that allow market dominance and low tax rates imposed on capital, especially in the United States. To some critics, the vast wealth is evidence that capitalism needs fixing. In some jurisdictions, inequality has become an explosive political issue.”
#EndSARS: National Broadcasting Commission Fines Arise TV, AIT, Channels TV N9 Million
National Broadcasting Commission Goes After Arise TV, AIT, Channels TV for Using Unverified Online Footages
The National Broadcasting Commission (NBC) on Monday fined Arise Tv, African Independent Television (AIT) and Channels Television about N3 million each for violating the commission broadcasting codes during the #EndSARS protest that rocked the nation in this past week.
The commission accused the television stations of using unverified online video footages on their respective platforms.
The Acting Director-General of the commission, Mr Armstrong Idachaba, said the fines were the initial warning before a heavier santion will be imposed on the stations for gross defiance of the commission broadcasting codes.
The three stations were fined for their alleged roles in escalating the violence that rocked the nation last week by airing various unverified online images of shootings of peaceful protesters at Lekki Toll Gate by securitity operatives in army uniforms.
Idachaba alleged that “Channels Television, Arise TV and AIT especially continued to transmit footages obtained from unverified and unauthenticated social media sources, adding that the pictures stimulated anger and heightened the violence that was witnessed during the crisis.”
He stated: “We believe the whole country has now seen why the spurious and recklessness on the social media must not be patronised by the mainstream traditional media. We are at the stage of our nation’s history when our broadcasters have a crucial responsibility for responsive and professional broadcasting. By picking unverified, unsubstantiated social media sources and repeating the narratives, our broadcasters have shown crass lack of professionalism and a disposition to be escalators of conflict and, more seriously, a threat to Nigeria. Look at the level of damage, killings that have happened on account of unverifiable reports”.
He described the situation as disagrceful were traditional broadcast stations turned themeselves to social media pundits, using a video footage from a DJ as news source.
“Where is the authenticity, where is the credibility,” he queried.
He, therefore, said “It is beginning to look as if it is a deliberate ploy, so the option available is to shut down the industry but that is not the position of the government. Left for me, I would have considered some of that portion We decided to categorise the offence as Category B offence but it is easily escalated to A and A will be a shutdown. But we still pin it down to B, which is a heavy fine between N500,000 to N5 million and none of them will pay less than N2 million but any further breach will lead to the withdrawal of the licence,” he warned.
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