The study is to assess the The Effects Of PHCN Over Billing On The Technology System In Nigeria using Bauchi metropolis in other to determine the preference of consumer towards the billing methods, to examine the relationship between the prepaid system and consumption behavior of the users and also to assess the impact of the prepaid method on electricity management by consumers. The data for the study was collected through administration of questionnaire in the study area and interview was also conducted. A total of 166 respondents were selected using a purposive sampling method. Descriptive method was used for the analysis. Federal Polytechnic Bauchi Staff quarters, Federal Low-cost Housing Estate and Dawaki Wards all in Bauchi metropolis were used as the study locations. According to the findings made, Majority of the respondents prefer the pre-paid meter because it gives the exact amount of KWh worth of electricity consumed, while the few that prefers the conventional meter was because the pre-paid is expensive, difficult to get and can lead to increase in payment on the energy consumed. It was also observed that the introduction of prepaid billing system has significantly influenced the way and manner electricity was utilized and managed by consumers. It has reasonably reduced energy wastage by users thereby enhancing efficiency in the utilization of electricity by consumers. Some the recommendations made are; there should be proper sensitization and public enlightenment; this will help to clear doubts and reservations some consumers still have about the new technology. Adequate supply of the prepaid meters should be ensured and let it be easily accessible to consumers. The cost of the meter should be made meaningfully affordably so that all users can adopt it.
Background to the Study
Electricity supply and consumption is one of the strong indices used for measuring the standard of living and level of development in a country (Oluyemisi et al, 2013). Kraishnan, (2006) affirms that, as he states that almost all aspects of modern living such as education, healthcare delivery, ICT, industries etc, all depend on electricity for their functioning. He further added that electricity demand has been experiencing growth at a very rapid rate since the early days of power generation in Nigeria, with both population and economic growth; the gap between demand and supply of electricity has been increasing significantly.
Energy efficiency has become one of the drivers of sustainable development world wide (UNDP, 2000). According to Etiosa, (2008) the goals of energy efficiency include reduction in the amount of energy used to produce a service or a unit of economic output and indirectly reduce emissions, helping to minimize the building of new power stations, reducing electricity bills, leaving more energy available to extend to other segments of the population for domestic and other uses. That increases the resilience of the economy and reducing the negative environmental and human health impacts from energy production and use.
Nigeria, with a population of over 160 million people, is endowed with sufficient energy resources to meet its present and future development requirements. Despite its endowment, about 60-70 percent of Nigerians do not have access to electricity, modern energy services and those connected to the national grid experience power outages that last for several hours daily (Oluyemisi et al, 2013). Etiosa, (2008) observed that, the small percentage of Nigerians that have access to public power utility are wasting it without considering the implications. He further added that, rather than giving more attention to the way energy is used, the government has focused almost entirely on power generation and distribution.
Statement of Problem
Nigeria is experiencing an energy loss of close to 40 percent. The energy wastage is mainly due to the use of inefficient technologies, awful human behavior and poor infrastructural development (Aidan, 2003). As a corrective measure Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) adopted a technological solution to provide new ways of achieving and sustaining energy efficiency through the introduction of prepayment metering, also known as Pay-As-You-Go system. PHCN started with a pilot project in Lagos in 1997 using CONLOG of South Africa in collaboration with ESKOM (Nexant, 2003). Before the introduction of the prepaid meter, there was a conventional method which makes the user to pay after the consumption of electricity. On the strength of the above, the following questions were raised to guide the study;
- i) What is the preference of the consumers towards the billing methods?
- ii) What is the relationship between the prepaid method and consumption behavior?
iii) What is the impact of the prepaid system on electricity management by the users?
Aims and Objectives of the Study
The aim of the study is to assess the impact of billing methods on electricity consumption and management by users in Bauchi metropolis. Other objectives are:
- i) To determine the preference of consumer towards the billing methods.
- ii) To examine the relationship between the prepaid system and consumption behavior of the users.
iii) To assess the impact of the prepaid method on electricity management by consumers.