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House of Reps empty as 18 lawmakers pass bill making estimated bill criminal offense

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…Senate fall to form quorum

From Jonas Ezekiel, Abuja

The House of Representatives on Tuesday passed a bill criminalizing estimated billing by distribution companies in the power sector who supply electricity to individuals and companies at outrageous costs.

The bill was entitled: ‘A bill for an Act to Amend the Electric Power Sector Reform Act 2005 to Prohibit and Criminalize Estimated Billing by Electricity Distribution Companies and Provide for Compulsory Installation of Pre-paid meters to all Power Consumers in Nigeria, and for Related Matters’.

When assented to by the President, the bill will make the issuance of estimated bills by power distribution companies a criminal offence in Nigeria.

It has become a recurring practice in Nigeria for power sector players particularly the distribution companies to give their customers estimated bills for power used at residential buildings and factories.

But the bill recently passed by the House sponsored by Hon.Femi Gbajabiamila has elaborate provisions of penalties for such unwarranted estimated bills by these distribution companies operating in the power sector.

Meanwhile, the House sat almost empty as only eighteen lawmakers were seen seated at the resumption of plenary on Tuesday due to the ongoing electioneering campaign by various political parties contesting the 2019 general elections.

The plenary session which was presided by the Deputy Speaker Hon.Yusuf Lasun had started at about 11.35 am.

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