Vandalism caused 13% of power accidents between Q1 and Q3/2023 – NERC
Vandalism caused 13% of power-related accidents between Q1 and Q3 of 2023. This is according to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
Engr. Idris Aminu Idris, the SM in charge of Engineering Performance and Monitoring at NERC said this during the November 8 NERC meeting with Health and Safety Managers within the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI). He said:
“Vandalism was responsible for up to 13% of accidents from Q1 to Q3 of 2023. DisCos need to work with the relevant security agencies in order to mitigate incidents.”
He stated further that all significant accidents such as loss of life to humans or electric shock to animals, and damage to equipment, or apparatus, due to electrical causes must be reported to NERC as stipulated in section 5.3 of the Safety Code.
He emphasized that a failure to report is a great offence, and the reporting obligation has a high penalty.
The 2023 Electricity Act delineates various electricity-related offences, each accompanied by specific penalties. These penalties are implemented to address and deter unlawful actions within the electricity sector.
Penalties: A fine of N300,000 or a minimum prison term of 7 years, or both.
Unauthorized Connection, Reconnection, or Meter Alteration
Penalties: Imprisonment for a maximum of three years or a fine not exceeding N500,000, with an additional fine of N10,000 for each day the offense persists.
Unauthorized Ownership or Engagement in Electricity Business
Penalties: A fine set at ten times the application and license fees for the breached license, imprisonment for a maximum of 5 years, or both. Additionally, a court order for permanent forfeiture of the undertaking to the NERC.
Intentionally Cutting off the Electric Supply Line
Penalties: A fine of no less than N300,000.
Aiding or Abetting an Offense
Penalties: Vary according to the severity of the abetted offense.
Acts of Non-compliance or Contravention
Penalties: Imprisonment for not more than 3 months or a fine of N500,000. There is also an additional daily penalty not exceeding N100,000 for continuous offenses.
Damage to Electricity Supply Material
Penalties: A fine of N300,000 and the restoration of the damaged material or line.
Receipt of Stolen Electrical Property
Penalties: A 14-year prison term or a fine not exceeding three times the value of the stolen property. Alternatively, both a prison term and a fine.
Theft of Electricity (Tapping, Unlawful Connection, Meter Tampering, Bypassing)
Penalties: A 3-year prison term or a fine, or both.
Destruction of Public Streetlights
Penalties: A fine up to N200,000.
Non-compliance with Rules, Orders, Licenses, or Decisions
Penalties: A fine of N500,000 or a 3-month prison term. Furthermore, there is an additional penalty of N100,000 for each day the offense persists.
Penalties: A fine not exceeding N100,000 or a prison term of up to 6 months, or both.
Tampering with Electric Lines or Material
Penalties: A 3 to 5-year prison term or a fine of not less than N500,000, or both.
Note that these penalties aim to reinforce compliance and deter individuals or entities from engaging in illegal or disruptive activities within the electricity sector, safeguarding the integrity and lawful operation of the electrical infrastructure.
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