More than four million electricity customers in Nigeria are still without prepaid meters. According to NERC’s Q2 2018 report, out of 7,973,867 registered active electricity customers in the country, only 3,547,129 have been metered as of June 2018. The 4,426,738 electricity users who have not been issued meters are subjected to estimated billing, which contributes to customer apathy towards payment for electricity. The report added that that only four electricity distribution companies; Abuja, Benin, Eko and Port-Harcourt, had metered not less than 50 percent of their registered customers as at the end of the second quarter of 2018.
After an NBS report on the internally generated revenue of states which showed a high debt to revenue ratio for H1 2018, the minister of finance, Zainab Ahmed, has said that the revenue of the states will be further strained in the coming months owing to their rising debt portfolio and cost of servicing those debts. The NBS’ report showed that total states’ IGR grew by 27.7 percent year-on-year to ₦579.40 billion from ₦453.83 billion in H1’17. 28 out of the 36 states grew their IGRs, while states such as Ebonyi, Anambra, Benue, Abia and Kebbi recorded declines in IGR by 21.79 percent to ₦2.46 billion, 21.62 percent to ₦7.07 billion, 18.86 percent to ₦6.06 billion, 12.29 percent to ₦6.98 billion and 10.85 percent to ₦2.03 trillion respectively in H1 2018.
The Federal Executive Council approved the proposed 2019 budget estimates on Friday. Minister of Budget and Planning, Udoma Udoma said that the approval was done at a special session of the council chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari. The budget, according to Udoma, will soon be forwarded to the National Assembly for passage as they are already working with the executive arm to get a date for its presentation. Udoma had in November announced that the FG was considering a 2019 budget of ₦8.6 trillion, which is leaner than the ₦9.1 trillion approved by lawmakers for 2018.
A section of the Ijora/7Up Bridge was reopened on Friday five months after it was closed for repairs. According to the Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer of Hallekem, the project contractor, Haim Halle, the repair of the 325-metre stretch of the bridge was supposed to be completed in 12 months, the contract period. The Ijora Bridge was closed for repairs and fortification following the partial completion of work on the two-kilometre stretch of the road leading to Apapa. Tanker traffic into Apapa has caused long delays for business in Nigeria’s busiest city.