Angered by the 100 per cent increase in electricity tariff, consumers in Yenagoa, Bayelsa State, yesterday protested against the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company (PHED).
They threatened to shut down their business activities in the state if the arbitrary hike in the tariff was not reversed.
Led by the Bayelsa State Association of Bulk-Bill Electricity Consumers (ABEC), the consumers ventilated their anger by taking to the streets, giving a 24-hour ultimatum for company to reverse to the old tariff.
Placards carrying members of the association said the sudden increment, which took them by surprise, was imposed on them by a sub-contracting firm to PHED, Agidi Energy and Tools limited without pre-information to residents.
Some of the placards had inscription such as ‘Bayelsans reject hundred per cent increase’, ‘we say no to Agidi backyard business’, ‘Agidi is defrauding Bayelsans’, and ‘we are peace loving people, we don’t want crisis,’ among others.
Chairman of the Association, Ebi Ozegbe told The Guardian that before now, each transformer was paying between N100, 000 and N200, 000 depending on the population of the area but were now being forced to pay 400,000 per transformer.
Effort to reach the Business Manager of the PHED whose name was simply given as Engineer Moses was not successful as he neither responded to his calls nor replied an SMS to his cell phone.