The Federal Government has assured electricity consumers that the upcoming electricity meter upgrade, to be executed by power distribution companies, will not affect the credit balance on their meters. This statement was released by the Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) on Sunday, addressing concerns about the impending meter upgrade.
In a press release issued in Abuja, NEMSA underscored its commitment to ensuring that all electricity meters and instruments used in the sector adhere to the highest standards. Managing Director of NEMSA, Aliyu Tahir, clarified that consumers need not be apprehensive about the meter upgrade process.
Mr. Tahir stated, “Let me assure all electricity customers that they have nothing to fear as the meter upgrade process will not affect the credit unit balance on their meters. The credit balance will remain intact after the upgrade. They are also to note that meter upgrade is a one-time process. Subsequent energy token purchases will continue as usual after the upgrade has been completed.”
This announcement comes in response to the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission’s earlier advice for prepaid meter users to upgrade their meters by November next year to avoid potential meter loss.
Tahir explained that to address the Token Identifier (TID) rollover issue, all meters will require key change tokens with the rollover bit set, which will be provided by the distribution companies (Discos).
He further elaborated, “When the key change tokens are input, the process will force the meters to reset the TID stack memory to zero and change the meter key at the same time. This process will not affect the speed of energy meters, and there is no need for panic. The TID rollover will not alter or change the metrological properties of electricity meters that have been certified by NEMSA to accurately measure and record electrical energy consumed.”
Manufacturers of meters will be required to adapt their production processes to accommodate the new manufacturing hardware secure modules and key load files, specified by their customers when updating their vending systems. Additionally, distribution companies will provide prepaid meter customers with Key Change Tokens alongside their regular energy tokens when purchasing electricity.
The NEMSA Director emphasized that prepaid meter end-users will play a crucial role in the final phase of the process, involving the TID rollover key change process. This step will entail the input of a special pair of tokens known as a key change token to complete the prepaid meter software update.
Electricity consumers can thus rest assured that their credit balances will remain intact throughout this meter upgrade process, which aims to enhance the efficiency and reliability of electricity meters across the nation.