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Ilorin residents lament 3-week black out

 

By Matthew Denis

Residents of Ilorin, Kwara State capital have expressed sadness over prolonged power outage by Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) in most parts of the metropolis.

There has been blackout in parts of the town for about 23 days, Pilot Business can report.

The affected areas are Ganmo, Olunlade, Offa Garage, Asa Dam industrial area, Coca Cola road, Pakata, Gaa Odota, Gbagba, Airport, Ibrahim Taiwo road and Eiyenkorin among others.

Many residents operating various businesses who spoke to this medium, at the weekend said the power situation had negatively affected economic activities in the state capital.

The Chief Executive Officer of Awesco StarTime and Computer Centre Airport area, Mr. Awe Mansuru described the blackout as unfortunate

“It is unfortunate that we are experiencing this blackout. I spend about N2,000 daily to buy fuel for my generator to keep my business running, “ he lamented.

He stated that the power outage has also affected cable TV subscription by customers in the state capital in recent time.

“Before now about 15 customers come to subscribe on daily basis but now I hardly get three customers. It is unfortunate that the state government has not taken up the issue with IBEDC.

A frozen food trader in Olunlade area, Mrs. Titilayo Gbenga complained that her fish and turkey got spoilt as a result of the power outage.

She said, “I have stopped selling for almost a week now because I cannot afford the cost of fueling the generator everyday. I spent about N30,000 to fuel the generator in a week.

“Sadly, we do not get value for the money we pay as electricity bill. In fact, we pay for electricity not supplied. It is very unfortunate that the privatisation of the power sector by the government has not improved power supply.

“Government should do something urgently to ensure power supply is restored if not we will protest and take legal action against IBEDC,” she threatened.

Similarly, the operator of Attans football viewing centre, Eiyenkorin who said he has been running the business at a cost going by the huge cost of fueling alternative power supply, called on government to intervene urgently to save the sector from collapse.

The operator of Vina Bar, Ibrahim Taiwo Road, Mr. Obinna Emeka said that epileptic power supply in recent time has adversely affected his business.

Mr. Okhifo Andrew, a printer in Odota area lamented that he has been out of business for about three weeks.

“We haven’t been able to do anything; customers are taking their jobs elsewhere. We operate with heavy machines which are very expensive to power by generators.

A tailor in Asa Dam area, Oluwatoyin Aborinde, who decried the power situation, complained over exorbitant electricity bill.

“We are being given estimated bill to pay inspite of the fact that we don’t enjoy commensurate power supply.

A civil servant, Mr Aremu Yusuf complained that all his refrigerated foods have spoilt as a result of the worsening power supply.

“The situation is so bad that you cannot buy food items in bulk and store in the freezer to save cost despite the harsh economy.”

He then called for the revoke of IBEDC contract by the Federal Government, saying that the power distribution company has not lived up to expectation of consumers.

In his reaction to the development, the Head, Corporate Communications Unit, IBEDC, Ilorin Regional District, Mr. Kola Asaju told Pilot Business that the power outage in parts of the state capital was as a result of faulty injection Transformer in Asa Dam area.

He said the nationwide industrial action by workers affected works on the faulty electrical installation, assuring that electricity would be restored to the affected areas soon.

Several attempts to reach the IBEDC Headquarters in Ibadan through its contact number 08060528422 proved abortive as the line was switched off at the time of this report.

Meanwhile, power supply was restored to Asa Dam Industrial area on Sunday night. This could be as a result of the suspension of nationwide strike by the Nigeria Labour Congress (NLC) and Trade Union Congress (TUC).

It would be recalled that Asaju had said the fixing of the faulty electrical installation by their engineers was stalled by the industrial action.

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