DETERMINED to improve the power supply in its area of operation, the management of the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC) has successfully reconnected 42 communities within its franchise states of Delta, Edo, Ondo and Ekiti states which were hitherto without power supply to the national grid.
A statement by the Head, Corporate Affairs, Mr Tayo Adekunle said that the reconnection was achieved at the end of November last year.
Adekunle insisted that the notion that BEDC has not been responsive to community-related issues was incorrect.
He stressed that the electricity company will continue to partner with communities that lack electricity supply in addressing their challenges provided they follow the necessary steps for engagement.
He added that out of the figure, Delta State has 25 communities reconnected which included; Onicha Uku under Asaba business unit, Ovwodokpoko in Isoko, Ephiephphor in Otor Udu, Idama estate, Phase11 in Asaba and Ogbe-Ohu in Agbor. Others are; Ukpiovmu, Ughevnughe Oghior, Okirika and Otujeremi also under Otor Udu business unit.
In Asaba, Federal Housing Estate was reconnected, while Ewohimi was reconnected in Agbor also in Delta. Also reconnected were; Ugomson and Igbogiri both in Agbor area of Delta state.
In Edo state, 12 communities in Ikpoba Hill business, including ;(Ikhueniro 1&2), Idunowina, Idokpai also in Ikpoba hill, Ikomi in Uromi business unit, Ugbogui in Okada, Miracle Centre 2 under GRA, Benin and Evboligun in Sokponba area of Benin were also reconnected during the review period.
The image maker noted that Ekiti State had two communities- Hausa Community in Shasha market area of Ado-Ekiti and Surulere staff school community also in Ado-Ekiti.
He disclosed that the reconnected communities had a customer population of about 20,000 with the highest coming from Ubulu-Uku in Asaba, Delta state which had a customer population of 4,907, followed by Ibusa 2 phase in Koka business unit, with a population of 4,704, while Issele-Uku also in Delta, came third with a customer figure of 3,248. Famoyegun community in Owo, Ondo state had the least customer population of 9 customers hooked to a transformer.
Adekunle said that contrary to the insinuations in some quarters that it has not given out a single transformer to communities but collect money or leave customers to provide transformers on their own, BEDC has installed transformers in communities ranging from 50KVA to 2.5MVA since inception across the franchise states.
“We do not encourage self-help in arranging for transformers. We advise that customers should only pay their bills and it is BEDC’s responsibility to make power available. Any party purporting to be acting for BEDC to extort money from the public should be reported.”