The management of the Obafemi Awolowo University (OAU), Ile-Ife and the Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company (IBEDC) on Saturday disagree on N43M electricity bill, following disconnection of electricity supply to the university campus since January 5.
The university is said to allegedly owed N43m in accumulated electricity bills while IBEDC management said it informed the university of the take-off of the Service Reflective Tariff, which raised the varsity’s electricity bill, the OAU management said it was unaware of the increment until electricity supply to the campus was disconnected.
IBEDC claimed it duly informed OAU management about the Service Reflective Tariff which commenced in October, 2020.
But in an interview with our correspondent, the spokesperson for the university, Mr Abiodun Olanrewaju, insisted that IBEDC gave no prior notice before the increment.
Olanrewaju said OAU was not a money-making organisation, thus it could not be put in the same category with companies generating incomes.
He said, “OAU is not a profit-oriented organisation. We don’t charge fees. Because we are a university, they want to take us for granted. We normally pay our electricity bills. Without our students around, we pay nothing less than N45m monthly.
“We are a corporate organisation, but we are non-profit making. We told IBEDC they can’t put us in the category of profit-making organisations. We don’t charge fees at all.”
But IBEDC’s Regional Communication Officer, Miss Kikelomo Owoeye, maintained that letters were written to the university to inform the management of the increase.
Owoeye explained that the university was given N44,243,136 bill in October 2020, but a sum of N25,059,406.70 was paid, leaving the balance of N19,183,729.32.
“In December, the bill was N56,350,743.20 but N32,016,114.40 was paid, leaving a balance of N24,334,628.80.
The total unpaid bills for October and December 2020, based on the new Service Reflective Tariff, is N43,518,358.12.
OAU is on Band A with the rate N56.78 being in the class of Maximum Demand 2.
Our management has held several meetings with them and several letters were written, informing all our MD customers on the Service Reflective Tariff and OAU was not left out. We are open to dialogue on this issue.”
Is the disconnection part of the reasons the university is yet to resume?