The Abuja Electricity Distribution Company has disconnected electricity supply to the National Headquarters of the All Progressives Congress over its inability to settle a N1.2m debt.
The secretariat is on Blantyre Street, Wuse 11 Abuja..
It was learnt in Abuja, on Monday, that the AEDC is seeking a balance of N1.2m after the party paid N.5m out of the outstanding N1.7m debt accumulated over time. A copy of the receipt of payment of the N.5m pasted at the entrance of the party secretariat indicated that the payment was made on October 24, 2016 via a Zenith Bank cheque, with deposit slip number: 316088.
The document also has PHCN receipt number: 0024102016000 and payment reference number: ZIB/PHCN/24-10-2016 with the (original) customer name written as the Nigeria Export Promotion Council clearly written out.
A member of staff of the AEDC, however, confided in our correspondent that the disconnection was actually carried out close to two weeks ago “when the management felt the party has not shown sufficient commitment towards meeting its obligations.”
The source said, “I understand they have made a part payment of N500, 000 out of the debt. I cannot say if this gesture is sufficient to enable us to restore power to the building.”
None of the party officials was willing to speak on the record about the issue because “it is too embarrassing.”
However, a high ranking party member who spoke in confidence said, “You know the country is in recession. We are not immune to the funding challenges facing other sectors of the Nigerian economy.
“In fact, I think Nigerians will now know that this is a departure from the immediate past because we are the governing party it does not mean we can dip our hands into the national treasury to meet our obligations.”
The source was however silent on what happened to funds generated from the sales of expression of interest and nomination forms for the Edo and Ondo states governorship elections estimated to be in excess of N100m.
Attempts to get an official reaction to this development failed.
Calls to the mobile telephone number of the party’s National Chairman, Chief John Odigie-Oyegun, were neither picked nor returned, a text message sent to him had yet to be replied as of the time of filing this report.
Similar calls to the party’s National Secretary, Mai Mala Buni, indicated that it was switched off. A response to a text message sent to him was also being expected as of the time of filing this report.
Most of the power distribution companies have described unpaid bills and vandalism as some of their biggest challenges.