FG To Sanction Erring Operator In The Power Sector For Safety
by Joy Ekeke
The Chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Dr Sam Amadi, said on Monday that appropriate sanctions would be meted to any operator in the power sector found wanting on safety.
Amadi spoke at the public presentation of Health and Safety Code for the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) in Abuja.
He said that the Federal Government was worried by rising incidents of electrocution in the country and disclosed that NERC had been empowered to impose fine on any erring operator.
He said that the commission was striving to attain zero-report of fatality and injury in the industry, adding that carelessness which resulted to such incidents would no longer be tolerated.
“With the Health and Safety Code in place, it is expected that industry operators will step up health and safety activities in their respective companies otherwise they will be faced with stringent penalties.
“From now, electrocution cases will no longer be treated lightly,” he said.
Amadi assured that the commission would endeavour to ensure cost-effective tariffs to improve funding and revenue of the utilities to enable them to provide world-class services to the customers.
He therefore charged operators of the facilities to pay greater attention to the improvement of efficiency and safety of the networks.
He explained that the development of the code was to revolutionalise NESI by ensuring that practices were guided in a way that they would entrench the culture of safety in the power industry.
Amadi said that the code was assembled by experts and shareholders, adding that the health and safety manual was an embodiment of standards rule and strict penalties for the compliance of all licensed electricity operators.
“The critical thing is that framework for punishment is now in place.
“The enforcement regulation has now empowered us to impose financial fine.
“More often than not, it will be financial fine except otherwise where there are issues of recklessness or some criminal behavior,” he said.
He said that NERC would ensure that standard materials were used for any installation and further ensure that such materials were properly inspected before being connected to the grid.
“We are going to have inspectors that will ensure that before any installation is connected to the grid, it is done in accordance with the required standards.
“This regulation is going to be enforced very soon and all penalties and the enforcement in it will be implemented to the letter,” he stated.