Journalism of Courage

N11trn electricity fund down the drain: SERAP urges probe by Buhari

SERAP said President Muhammadu Buhari should investigate the humongous funds allegedly squandered by the federal government since 1999 when the country retuned to democracy.

With a staggering N11 trillion gone down the drain to provide electricity supply in the country since 1999 without an improvement, the Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has again risen to the occasion by demanding a probe into the sector.

SERAP said President Muhammadu Buhari should investigate the humongous funds allegedly squandered by the federal government since 1999 when the country retuned to democracy.

Requesting the president’s probe of the sector in a letter signed by its Deputy Director, Mr Kolawole Oluwadare, on Sunday, SERAP said the collapse of the national grid, which has plunged the country into total darkness.

The letter, read in part, “The situation will not improve unless you fulfil your campaign promises to probe corruption in the electricity sector, prosecute perpetrators, and recover any missing public funds.

“Corruption in the electricity sector and the lack of transparency and accountability in the use of public funds to support the operations of DISCOS have resulted in regular blackouts, electricity grid collapse, and unlawful hike in electricity tariffs.

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“Corruption in the electricity sector has also continued to disproportionately affect the most disadvantaged and vulnerable sectors of the population who cannot readily afford expensive generators in order to have a reliable power supply.

“Your government has constitutional and international obligations to ensure regular and uninterrupted supply of electricity, even in times of resource constraints.

“SERAP urges you to urgently implement documented reports of cases of corruption in the electricity sector, and ensure full accountability and restitution.

“We would be grateful if the recommended measures are taken within 7 days of the receipt and/or publication of this letter. If we have not heard from you by then, SERAP shall consider appropriate legal actions to compel your government to comply with our request in the public interest.

“The failure of successive governments and high-ranking government officials to prevent corruption in the electricity sector and to bring suspected perpetrators to justice is the primary cause of the persistent crisis in the electricity sector, including the exploitation of electricity consumers, and collapse of the electricity grid.”

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