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Kwara Assembly Summons IBEDC over Power Management

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By Tunde Oyekola
The Kwara State House of Assembly has summoned the Management of Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company to appear before its Committee on Energy, Works and Transport to explain measures aimed at curbing alleged sharp practices in the power sector.

This followed a motion on arbitrary billing system and sharp practices by the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company in the State raised by a member representing Owode/Onire Constituency Hon. AbdulRasheed Taiwo Abdullahi.

Reading the resolution of the House, the Speaker Dr. Ali Ahmed said the appearance of the Management of Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company became imperative to give the Distribution Company fair hearing before the House  takes a definite position on the allegation.

The Speaker explained that members of the public would be expecting the Management of the Distribution Company to explain reasons for over billing consumers, delay in providing prepaid metres to consumers, procuring prepaid metres out of the country when it was being produced locally, its inability to provide transformers to consumers and slow response to complaints by energy consumers in the State.

Hon. Taiwo Abdullahi had while moving the motion said he was concerned that the company had refused to distribute prepaid metres despite having paid for it thereby exploiting the consumers through crazy electricity bills and its refusal over the years to provide transformers nor refund those that procured it.

Other members who spoke on the motion  observed among other things poor power supply, slow response to consumers’ complaints and called  on the House to wade into the problems with a view to rescuing  the people of the State from the undue exploitation of the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company.

The House equally in its sitting directed the State Ministry of Commerce and Cooperative, Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs to work with the 16 Local Government Councils to develop workable Market Development and Management plans for Councils in the State with a view to making markets in the State a platform for making councils in the State less dependent on the federation account.

This followed a motion raised by a member representing Ilorin Central Constituency Hajia Segilola Abdulkadir on poor condition of most  Markets in Kwara State.
The Speaker while reading the resolution of the House directed the affected Ministries to submit the Market Development and Management Plan to the House’s Joint Committee on Commerce, Cooperatives and Local Government and Chieftaincy Affairs and report to the House within the next three months.

Dr Ahmad explained that the move became imperative to make councils in the State improve on the wellbeing of their people through execution of projects.

This, he said, could be achieved when markets in their areas were properly reorganised, developed to meet socio-economic emancipation of the people and improve the Internally Generated Revenue of the Councils in the State.

Hajia Segilola Abdulkadir had while moving the motion decried the decay of infrastructure where provided, poor sanitary condition, lack of access roads, parking space and structures as well as neglect by Councils whom she observed derived revenue from it.

Members had while contributing on the motion noted with displeasure that Councils in the State were not proactive enough in exploring the potentials of the markets to make them self sustaining and enjoined the current leadership of Councils in the state to be alive to their responsibilities to further make democracy more meaningful to the people at the grassroots.

Meanwhile the Speaker has promised to ensure that indiscriminate deduction of councils fund for the Universal Basic Education is addressed to enable councils in the State meet the yearnings and aspirations of their people.

Dr. Ahmad gave the assurance in Ilorin while addressing council Chairmen at the House of Assembly’s investigation of the councils recruitment of staff without adherence to due process.

He assured that the ongoing oversight of the number of teachers across the State was quite revealing and assured that whoever was behind the scam would not escape the wrath of the law and urged Council Chairmen to assist the House in its investigation to permanently address the problem at the third tier of government.

The Speaker equally urged the councils Chairmen in the State to be proactive in the performance of their statutory duties.

The leader of the House Hon. Hassan Oyeleke in his remark, had said that SUBEB deduction accounted for most of the councils fund from the federation account and enjoined council Chairmen to have accurate number of teachers in their councils to assist the legislature in its investigation.

Responding on behalf of the Council Chairman, the Chairmen of Isin Local Government Council Barrister Maroof Thanni praised the House of Assembly for its intervention, stressing that the intervention of the House had restored their hope in the ability of the first arm of government in making councils responsive to the needs of their people.

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