BEDC Wins Africa Quality Achievement, 9ja Safety Awards | Independent Newspapers Limited
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BEDC Wins Africa Quality Achievement, 9ja Safety Awards

Posted: Sep 12, 2016 at 5:02 am   /   by   /   comments (0)

Benin Electricity Distribution Plc (BEDC) has again bagged two awards, African Quality Achievement Award as the Most Innovative Power Distribution Company in Africa in 2016 and the 9ja Safe Merit award respectively, in recognition of its commitment to quality improvement in electricity supply across the network and for promoting health, safety and environment as cornerstone of business performance.

THE African Quality Achievement Award (AQAA), according to a statement from the DISCO, is an annual event initiated at celebrating leadership innovation and creativity in quality management in Africa.

The quality award is aimed at identifying, recognizing and rewarding companies, personalities and products that apply quality culture and quality management best practices to the analysis, planning and implementation and control of policies designed to achieve corporate objectives in both profit and non-profit making organizations in Africa.

It was organized and supported by African Quality Institute (AQI), Chartered institute of Quality Management of Nigeria (CIQM) and African Quality Organization (AQO). The award advisory board members include Prof. Pat Utomi of the Lagos Business School (LBS), and Dr John Ndanusa Akanya, former Director General, Standards Organization of Nigeria (SON), among other eminent technocrats in corporate Africa.

The 9jaSafe Award is the most prestigious and respected award for safety professionals/practitioners across Nigeria. Its objective is to recognize outstanding performances and laudable initiatives of companies and individuals, to foster and promote health, safety, and environment (HSE) best practices in the workplace and in the nation.

According to the organizers of the African Quality award, the criteria used in selecting nominees included compliance, reliability, quality awareness drive, ethical standard and policies, service delivery, resilience, value and operational excellence

The two awards which were bestowed on BEDC in Lagos over the weekend respectively, reflected series of efforts put in place by BEDC to boost access to electricity and improved services to customers in its franchise, in addition to pushing safety both at the workplace and on the network including occupational health, safety and environment initiatives. The company’s initiatives in this regard include procurement of personal protective wears, distribution substations fencing, and safety jingles.

As part of the process to improve quality of power supply, the company has commenced the installation and activation of approximately 2000 transformers across its network.

In addition, some  BEDC network lines which were initially mainly on Low Voltage Distribution Systems (LVDS) have been upgraded to the High Voltage Distribution System (HVDS) due to low customer satisfaction arising from the adoption of the latter, with a view to improve  the quality of power and significantly reduce technical and commercial losses.

The major advantages of the new initiative are; elimination of power theft, and voltage drop/fluctuations and provision of more reliable supply. BEDC has also earmarked the distribution of 100,000 meters to customers across the coverage states of Edo, Delta, Ondo and Ekiti for the remainder of this year to bridge metering gaps among its customers.

In terms of enumeration for instance, a door to door enumeration of existing customers and potential customers including state of the network has begun. In addition, improved and varied payment channels had been provided with options and convenience for customers in paying their bills. BEDC operates a multi-channel payment system for settlement of electricity bills by customers including Point of Sales (POS), and web-based payment apart from bank payment platforms, Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) and scratch card payment cards. The company has also started the electronic payment scheme for customers to enjoy online vending of meter tokens for prepaid meters, and also get payment alerts on every electricity payments made.

BEDC has also put in place an Enforcement and Monitoring Unit to ensure that connection to the network are in line with safety standards; that only paying customers are on the network and that bypass or illegal connections to its network is not allowed to operate.

BEDC had earlier in the year became the first electricity distribution company to emerge a winner in the maiden edition of the Electronic Payments Incentives Scheme (EPIS) Efficiency Award as it came tops as the best Cashless Driver-Corporate category. The award was initiated by the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) and the Nigerian Interbank Settlement Scheme (NIBSS) Plc.

The award was presented to BEDC for the company’s outstanding contributions to the growth of electronic payment industry and for pushing deeper, the adoption of e-payment platforms in the electricity distribution industry, in line with CBN’s Cashless policy anchored on electronic payment system as contained in Vision PSV 2020.

The Cashless Driver Corporate category which had two corporate nominees, was a platform to recognize, appreciate and reward stakeholders, notably in the payment industry, such as banks, payment processors, card issuers, payment terminal service providers, mobile money operators as well as government and private sector companies that have contributed to the success of the cashless initiative across the value chain.

BEDC, is the 4th largest Disco in terms of distribution capacity and 3rd largest in terms of household. It is a joint venture between Vigeo Power Limited and the Federal Government of Nigeria represented by the Bureau of Public Enterprises (BPE) and the Ministry of Finance, with Vigeo Power operating as the core investor.