Coping With The Erratic Power Situation
We have had a long experience with erratic power supply as a result of which every Nigerian has devised methods of meeting his power needs.
The state of public power supply in most cities is still erratic or non-existent in fringe areas. Many Nigerians have been thrown in perpetual darkness. Sadly, there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel.
Some maintain that they now hardly use electricity continuously for 4 hours. When asked how they cope with the development, they say generators are used to meet their electricity needs. Some fuel their 2.5KVA generator with an average of N700 per day.
In some areas, the only period of the day that it is almost sure that there would be power supply is the early hours of the day between 12am and 5am. To use electricity for ironing and do other minor things, they have to wake up early and if not he uses his stove iron.
This unfortunate situation is affecting many homes and businesses. The present situation is affecting productivity and reducing sensible man-hours, as most of the day was being spent idling, instead of engaging in other meaningful activities.
Asides the wasted man-hours, the available fuel is expensive, forcing her to pass on the extra cost to customers.
Lack of regular electricity and inability to constantly fuel their generators most of the time to run their business was wiping off their profit margin and leaving them frustrated saying the situation was crippling several businesses.
Frozen Foods sellers have little or no goods in their freezers, but they just come to the shop because they could not just sit at home. They gave away a lot of her goods when they were on the verge of total rot due to lack of electricity. Some shops were shut as their owners were no longer showing up until electricity was restored.
Some areas of our cities seem relatively better than other areas. This is, however, not unconnected with the large presence of printing and publishing houses and other allied companies in the area. It is believed that the printing association has a way of getting the distribution company to give stable electricity to the area. It is also gathered that though the transformer in the area at times blow off; the response of distribution company workers in resolving the issue has always been swift and quick.
When questioned on what could be the cause of the erratic state of power supply in the areas, residents claim that the capacity of the transformer in the area are lower compare to the present load requirement.
Most Nigerians are not too optimistic that the state of power supply can improve in the foreseeable future claiming the only time their distribution company remember them is towards the end of the month. They claimed that they only enjoy light as from on the 25th of every month to on the 7th of the following month so as to enable the distribution company to collect their bills. Immediately bills were paid, then off the light goes until towards the end of another month.
However, Nigerians have fully accepted the reality of the power situation as it is right now and are doing everything possible to meet their electricity needs. Some have had to devise ways to making sure that they are always ready to make use of grid power whenever it was available in doing those things that cannot be done with power from alternative sources like generators and inverters.
Many small-scale enterprises (SMEs), which constitute about 60 per cent of the productive sector, are now at the verge of collapse. Businesses are folding up by the day due to exorbitant overhead costs and the failing economy, with inflation on the rise and purchasing power declining every day.
Keep on keeping on! »
Jackie Appiah »