By Fidelia Ben-Udi
Delta State Governor, Sen. (Dr) Ifeanyi Okowa, has urged members of the Nigeria Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (NIEEE), Asaba Chapter, to push for consumer protection in the Nigerian deregulated electricity sector, especially in Delta State.
The governor stated this at the biennial meeting of the NIEEE, held at the Hotel Benezia in Asaba.
He said that the theme, ‘’Understanding the power challenges and consumer rights in Delta State”, was timely and appropriate as it drew attention to the challenges facing consumers in the matters of asserting their rights.
Governor Okowa, who was represented by the Commissioner for Culture and Tourism, Engr. Lawrence Ejiofor, stressed that the consumer, being the last link in the line of the production chain, had vested legal rights from producers of goods and services offered in the market.
He listed some of the challenges the consumers face in the power sector to include poor power supply, high electricity tariff, poor metering system, lack of proper maintenance of transformers and cables, power fluctuations and high voltage.
Senator Okowa called for more awareness campaigns by the Consumer Protection Council on consumer rights and existing laws, which could help victims to obtain compensations when necessary to mitigate their suffering as the cost of litigation was high.
He commended the initiative of the engineers and wished them fruitful deliberations.
The event which also featured a dinner award ceremony played host to several engineers and other dignitaries.