The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) said on Tuesday that the increase in electricity tariff violated two United Nations (UN) special rapporteurs rulings delivered in November 2013.
SERAP backed Monday’s nationwide protest by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC) against the increase in electricity tariff and demanded an immediate reversal of the hike.
It advised the Minister of Power, Mr. Babatunde Fashola to ensure that regulatory authorities are not allowed to get away with 45 percent increase in electricity tariff by promoting compliance with the 2013 UN rulings.
SERAP, in a statement signed by its executive director, Adetokunbo Mumuni said, “Nigeria being is an important member of the UN and had voluntarily accepted its Charter and treaties. Therefore, any effort to increase electricity tariff should be guided by the recommendations by the UN and dialogue with organised labour and other stakeholders.”
The organisation recalled that the UN published a joint letter of concern sent to former President Goodluck Jonathan in which they expressed concerns that access to electricity (and regularity of supply) is a problem in Nigeria and had then raised eight questions for the government to answer within 60 days.
The letter, reference No NGA 5/2013, dated November 26, 2013, and signed by two special rapporteurs expressed concerns that “at the end of 2012, Nigeria with a population of about 160 million people only generated about 4,000 megawatts of electricity, which is 10 times less than some other countries in the region with less population.”
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