Allege that PHCN officials are ripping them off

The residents of Umuahia, Abia State, on Sunday called on the state Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) to mount pre-paid meters in their houses.

The electricity consumers lamented that Umuahia was the only state capital in the South East zone without pre-paid meters.

One of the residents, a hairdresser, Mary Umebali, claimed that the delay in mounting pre-paid meters for residents was deliberate, adding that PHCN officials usually manipulate consumer’s bills because there are no pre-paid meters.

“PHCN officials in Umuahia are in the habit of circulating over bloated bills irrespective of the epileptic power supply witnessed in the area before now,” she said.

“They know that if the pre-paid meters are provided to customers, the fraudulent means of ripping off their customers would be a thing of the past.”

The residents complained that PHCN officials no longer read meters but rather send bill on estimation.

“Bills shared by PHCN, especially at World Bank and Amuzukwu areas, are on estimations. The officials only come to drop bills without reading the metres, even when the metres are functional.”

A resident, Eke Kalu, urged the state Governor, Theodore Orji, to intervene and stop fraudulent electricity workers from exploiting the people.

“It is important for the authorities in Abia to find out why some electricity consumers in other parts of the country are using the pre-paid meters, while none is available in the state,” he said.

Kalu said if government refuses to stop sharp practices by PHCN officials, the state would not get value for government’s effort to enhance power supply.

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