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Monday, 8 February 2016

Fashola Responds to Ongoing Protests Against Hike in Electricity Tariff....Read What He Said

Babatunde Fashola has reacted to the rampant protests by the Labour congress and trade union over the hike in electricity tariffs across the country.

Babatunde Fashola

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola, has described the increased electricity tariffs as “a painful pill,” appealing to consumers to “swallow” it, Punch reports.

Fashola stated this on the sidelines of the second monthly sectoral meeting with stakeholders in the power sector in Lagos, where he also inspected some projects at the Alagbon Transmission and Distribution Complex on Monday.

He said, “Importantly, I understand that people who have been disappointed over a long time will feel a sense of concern that again tariffs have gone up. But the truth is that these tariffs ought to have been there from day one. I don’t know why the government of yesterday was not courageous enough to tell us this was the price.

“It is a painful pill that I must appeal that we swallow. It is like quinine and malaria. It’s painful; it’s not sweet, I know that, but I do it because we are not left with many choices. This is the first major decision in power that this administration has taken. There are other problems.

“I can only appeal for some understanding and some trust that we do this in the best interest of our country. It is a hard decision, but I think down the line, we will have cause to look…”

Fashola’s comments comes amid the ongoing nationwide protest by workers under the aegis of the Nigerian Labour Congress and Trade Union Congress, which has grounded commercial activities in several cities in the country.

The minister, who faulted the way the privatisation of the power sector was carried out, said the sector was being plagued by several problems including gas supply shortfall and transmission issue.

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