Business Owners And Residents Lament Over Electricity Blackout In Calabar
Residents of Calabar Municipal and Odukpani Local Government Areas in the southern part of Calabar, Cross River State, have cried out as a result of over two months unavailability of electricity in the area.
The residents have lamented how the blackout has crippled both economic and social activities as they also added that it has also led to the increase of crime rate in the area.
Sources disclosed that cultists, armed robbers and kidnappers are now using the blackout as an opportunity to carry out their illicit activities as they have also used parts of the area as their hideout.
Residents who lamented on the blackout also disclosed that the Port Harcourt Electricity Distribution Company, PHED, is yet to give a reason for its inability to supply electricity in the area.
The increase in criminal activities has now led shop owners to close very early as they are now being frequently attacked by robbers who disposes them of their valuables.
Mrs Ekpeyong a restaurant owner at Goldie Street, narrated what she has been going through ever since the blackout begins. She said: “I have two generators that I use in this place, I run the big one from 2.00 pm till 6.00 pm to make sure that my drinks are chilled, while from 6.00 pm down, I use the small one till 11 pm or 12 midnight.”
She lamented that “…things have changed because of a lack of power from PHED, now I have to make sure that the drinks are chilled because people do not want to know whether you have light or not.”
“It got worse two months ago, I have to buy fuel of N1,500 daily, both for the big and small generators, then N2000 at weekends because we stay longer in the shop”.
“However, coupled with the fact that things are changing because of robberies although we thank Ayade’s Homeland security, but power outage is a contributory factor, PHED should help the ordinary people because all our profit has gone into purchasing fuel. We spent N45, 000 for fuel at N1, 500 every month“.
When contacted on the matter, Mr John Onyi, Corporate Communications Manager, PHED, disclosed that the company is aware of the situation and its making tireless effort to restore light in the area.
In his words, “We are re-conducting some of our feeders and carrying out general maintenance on some of our installations, the people should bear with us because we want to give them quality service delivery, we apologize for any inconvenience, some areas are already enjoying our services it will soon be spread across the metropolis.”