Published On: Mon, Feb 7th, 2022

First Time Investor In Warri Laments High Cost Of Power Installation From BEDC

LAGOS FEBRUARY 7TH (URHOBOTODAY)-A first time investor in Warri area of Delta State, Austin Wareyai has lamented the huge cost involved in the installation of public power from the Benin Electricity Distribution Company (BEDC).

Wareyai said he has spent over N40 million, albeit unsuccessfully, to install constant electricity at his multi-purpose facility in Ekpan, near Warri.

He described the development as very unfriendly to investment, and urged the state government to facilitate more friendly policies particularly as it affect power installation to encourage potential investors.

Narrating the genesis of how he started paying for power installation, Wareyai said when the property was being developed, BEDC was approached to provide national electricity, which is one of the “basic needs”, for such a facility to function.

According to him, he was told to apply for 33KVA500 transformer, which he did by providing all necessary logistical requirements for procurement.

However, he was shocked to receive an 11KVA500 transformer instead of the 33KVA that was applied for.

“In our own wisdom, we asked for a way forward and they said we have to increase the transformer. We applied for NEMSA’s approval. They brought another cost of about N18 million to buy a 1MVA transformer, including the construction and every other thing.

“We looked at it and said, if that is what will make us do our business with stable electricity, no problem. We applied for it. After providing for logistics and all that, they brought another memo, again.
In the previous one, they asked us to pay a N1.5 million security deposit which we paid.

“Now after they told us they’ve secured the NEMSA approval, it is now left for BEDC to come do the construction and install the 1MVA transformer.

“But they said before they are going to effect that we have to pay the sum of N8,845,740.24 as additional security deposit. We asked why and they said we have to pay it in case we default in our monthly bill payment.

“I am concerned because this facility has already started, people are already working here. If this place cannot run, the people will fall back into the labour market. We are trying to use this to attract other investors. If someone from Lagos hears that to invest in Warri, you have to spend over N40 million to get electricity from BEDC, I don’t think it will be encouraging to any investor.

“I want to use this medium to appeal to Delta State Government and the management of BEDC to have a rethink of their decision. We are trying to bring investment to Delta state. It’s not just oil and gas. If not for anything, for the interests of the youths that are already engaged here and the state revenue.

“We are using the money we are to pay to them (BEDC) and to pay workers just to buy diesel. This is not business friendly and it will not encourage other investors to come to our state. I also appeal to Governor of Delta state, Ifeanyi Okowa to please help, for this place to be sustained because we cannot run it without electricity,” Wareyai stressed.

He revealed that over N11 million has been spent so far, and apart from the separate N18 million requested for the new transformer they are required to also pay about N4 million for an industrial meter.

The Sun

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