In line with his New Year Message to the good people of Ondo South, distinguished Senator Nicholas Tofowomo, representing Ondo South Senatorial District at the Senate,,on Tuesday, met with the management of Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC ) and stakeholders from Ondo South Senatorial District on two issues bothering on electricity supply to the affected communities.
in a statement signed by the Special Assistant to the Senator on Media, and Publicity ,Akinrinlola Olumide, the meeting was centered on the metering challenges which hindered supply of power to Ode-Aye Community under Okitipupa Local Government and Igbokoda Community under Ilaje Local Government of Ondo State despite having electricity on their transformers.
The issues of affected communities that were yet to be energized in Okitipupa, Ilaje, Ese-odo and Irele Local governments respectively were also raised and discussed extensively.
The Senator, and other Stakeholders from Ondo South with the representatives of BEDC were able to resolve the following:
– BEDC to meet with License Electrical Contractor of Nigeria (LECAN) for certification of meter installation to avoid electrical hazards, loss of properties and life. Timeline: January 15, 2020.
– BEDC to begin awareness/sensitization for Ode-Aye and Igbokoda Community ahead of metering services. Timeline: January 20, 2020.
– BEDC and Meter Access Provider (MAP) to open their offices in Ode-Aye and give feedback to communities in readiness to meter all electricity consumers. Timeline: January 21, 2020.
– Community Town Hall Meeting should be held by BEDC to educate electricity consumers, starting from Ode-Aye. Timeline: January 22, 2020.
– Meter Access Provider (MAP) to begin and fast track documentation for expected meter customers. Timeline: January 25, 2020.
– Installation of meters to electricity consumers to those that have paid. Timeline: January 29, 2020.
– Immediate release of power supply for metered customers who buy token.
– BEDC to immediately move to Igbokoda to do the needful after the metering in Ode-Aye is achieved.
*Darkness in other communities of Ondo South*
BEDC complained that they will only be left with 20 megawatts which could only be released for just 20 transformers because of over-dependent on the 30mva transformer in Ondo town which does not have the capacity to power the overall communities in Ondo South because of its depreciating condition.
It was resolved that the 20 megawatts should be released on repaired transformers in Okitipupa township for onward distribution to consumers in area where repairs of electrical cables have been concluded.
However, BEDC requested the distinguished senator to follow up with the timely completion and installation of Erinje step down which will be relied upon to reconnect all other communities for power supply in Ondo South.
Responding, the senator confirmed that the contractor handling the NDDC step down project had been mobilized back to site by NDDC. He said he was part of the stakeholders who lobbied for the release of funds for the contractors being a member of Senate committee on NDDC and for the urgency required to resolve the blackouts in all the communities of Ondo South.
He also said he has facilitated a meeting through the Chairman, Senate Committee on NDDC, to visit the project site in company of top management staff of NDDC, the moment he resumes work so that the project would hasten up and be completed in earnest for the benefits of the entire Ondo South.
Conclusively, BEDC called on the federal government who has helped them so far in the repairs of high-voltage transmission cables to conclude repairs so that they could start work on their network in other affected areas of Ondo South.
Senator Tofowomo however said he would be meeting with BEDC officials regularly as part of his follow up and collaboration to end the darkness in Ondo South quickly .
At the meeting were representatives of Ode-Aye community led by High Chief Eddy Adebusoye, the Petu of Aye Kingdom; representatives of BEDC led by the State Chief Head for Ondo/Ekiti, Mrs. Olabiyi Kunbi; representatives of Bring Back Our Light (BBOL) led by Mr. Dare Omopariola; representatives of Ilaje Advancement Forum (IAF) led by Enikuomehin Lucky.
Also at the meeting were Hon. Solomon Bitire, Ayodeji Allen, Oyawale Isaiah, and Elder S.T. Aderehinwo, an expert in metering and electricity billing.