By Energy Worth
The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC), on Wednesday, advised customers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) to imbibe safety measures to avoid electrical accidents and eventual loss of life.
AEDC’s General Manager in Charge of FCT North, Mr. Abdulrahman Isah, gave the advice at a forum organised to sensitise electricity customers on safety measures.
The AEDC team which visited Gwarimpa, and Kubwa in the FCT to sensitise the public, urged consumers to avoid patronising quacks to avoid electrical accidents.
Isah said the sensitisation of customers was in line with the company’s safety measures policy, adding that the company regards the safety of its customers as a major priority.
Speaking also at the forum, the General Manager, Risk, and Compliance, Mr. Godwin Akago, said the forum became necessary given AEDC’s concerns for the welfare of its customers.
He said the company was keen on supplying regular electricity, adding that more importantly providing the electricity in a safe and secure manner.
“As our customer, we are interested in your well-being, we want you alive and not just to supply electricity.
“We are interested in giving you power, but we want to do it in a safe manner because we owe you a responsibility to ensure safety as we don’t want to say sorry.
“We don’t want to record any death or any accident that is why we are educating people on safety’’.
Akago, identified the use of non-certified electricians as one of the major cause that could cause electrical accidents, adding that efforts should be made to discourage the use of non-certified electricians to temper with installations.
“It is advisable to call those who know about electricity to come and do the connection to ensure the safety of the people and avoid fire incident caused by activities of quacks’’.
He also identified vandalism of electrical installations as an act that exposes consumers to electricity danger.
The AEDC official cautioned against people trading under electricity lines, adding that it was against the safety measures of electricity.
He urged members of the community to report any incident that is capable of causing an electrical accident to any AEDC office or personnel in their area.
Responding on behalf of the communities, the Secretary of the Electricity Committee in Gwarimpa, Mr Alex Ogbu, thanked AEDC for sensitising the communities on electricity safety measures.
He, however, noted that the major issue resulting in the use of quacks by some customers was because of the inability of AEDC staff to respond swiftly to complaints when contacted by the customers.
Akago also said the bypassing of meters by some customers was also a challenge that could trigger electricity accident, adding that it was important for AEDC to address meter bypassing.
This, he said would help improve electricity safety.
Speaking also, representatives of Galadima Community, Chief Habakkuk Gozhe commended AEDC for improved power supply to the community.
He, however, said there was an urgent need to phase out the broken wooden poles supplying power to the communities, as they posed danger to the safety of electricity usage in the communities within the FCT north.
Gozhe also said that most of the transformers supplying electricity to the communities were in bad shape, hence the need to provide new transformers to consolidate electricity supply to the communities.
He called for the provision of meters for areas yet to be metered in the communities.
Complaints on issues revolving on prepaid meters, estimated billings, and overloaded transformers bypassing among others featured presentations made by various representatives of the communities from Kubwa
Responding to the complaints, Isah said a team of AEDC staff would be sent to examine the state of falling poles adding that the poles would be replaced to further boost electricity supply.
He said AEDC was installing an average of 25 transformers every month, adding that the issue of transformers in the region would be treated expeditiously.
On bypassing of meters, he said that the company had made several arrests on customers involved in bypassing, adding that more efforts were been put in place to track meters by-passed in the region.
The sensitisation forum was first conducted in the palace of the Gwarimpa district head and subsequently in Kubwa.
The high point of the forum was a road show in commercial areas of Kubwa and its environs as well as presentations on electricity safety tips.
Some of the safety tips include; “Do not spread clothes on electric wire to avoid shock’’, “do not touch or unplug household appliances during over voltage surge to avoid shock’’.