ERA Explains What Latest AfDB Award As Best Regulator In Africa Means To Power Consumers

ERA CEO Eng. Ziria Tibalwa Waako

For the 5th year running, Uganda’s electricity regulator- ERA has been selected the best regulator on the African continent.
44 countries were assessed and Uganda became number one, a position the country has kept since 2018 when the survey started.

This Electricity Regulatory Index (ERI) done by the African Development Bank is an empirical assessment of the regulatory environment and performance of the electricity regulators in Africa. It measures the performance of national regulatory systems against international best practices and provides tailored recommendations on three dimensions, Regulatory, Governance, Regulatory Substance and Regulatory Outcome.

The latest report of 2022 has been released showing Uganda as the best again making it the champion for now the fifth year uninterrupted.
This authority is politically supervised by the minister for energy, headed by board chairperson and run by the Chief Executive Officer Eng. Ziria Tibalwa Waako. This News site caught up with Ms Diana Nambi, ERA’s Public Relations Manager to tell us what this latest achievement means to the Ugandan power consumer.

Qn. This is the 5th time now Uganda is beating the rest of the African countries in the electricity sector regulatory regime. What does this award mean to the electricity consumer in Uganda?

DN: Uganda’s recognition as having the Best Electricity Regulatory Framework for the Fifth consecutive time on the African Continent is affirmation that the current Regulatory framework has created a conducive environment for the Electricity sub-Sector in Uganda to thrive. As such, the stakeholders can expect to get maximum support in realising their different interests, most especially the Electricity Consumers through heightened Quality of Service arising from the Strong Regulatory Outcomes.

Women in charge: ERA board chairperson Dr. Sarah Wasagali Kanaabi, Energy Minister Dr. Ruth Nankabirwa and CEO Eng Ziria Tibalwa Waako recently

Qn: Comparing our performance in 2021 with that of 2022 in terms of score percentage, does it show a downward or upward trend and what explains this performance?

DN: For the year 2022, Uganda overall scored 0.846 (84.6%) compared to 0.823 (82.3%) that was scored in the year 2021. This shows improvement in Uganda’s performance based on the three dimensions measured by the Index – Regulatory Governance, Regulatory Substance, and Regulatory Outcome.

According to the Index Report, “the Electricity regulatory frameworks in the 5 top countries” (of which Uganda is ranked Number One) “are relatively well-developed and their utilities respond positively to regulatory instructions and guidelines, whilst their regulators are forwardlooking and capable of exerting the necessary regulatory authority over the regulated entities. This has been reflected in the outcomes.”

Qn. Looking at the scores of 2022, it is clear that Egypt is our closest rival in this survey with 78.5% against our 84.6%. What is in stalk for ERA to ensure that Uganda remains on top even in this year’s assessment?

DN: ERA will ensure that the conducive regulatory environment that has seen the Electricity sub-Sector grow over the years is maintained. The Authority will also ensure that it continues to execute its mandate using various operational Regulations that support the implementation of the Primary Law in the specialized areas necessary for effective Regulation of Electricity service; including: Licensing, Tariffs and Customer Service.

Qn: What are those critical initiatives that ERA has undertaken in the past 3 years that have helped Uganda remain on top todate?
DN: Uganda’s Electricity Sub-Sector has various operational Regulations that support the implementation of the Primary Law in the specialized areas necessary for effective Regulation of Electricity service; including: Licensing, Tariffs and Customer Service.

The enabling Regulations include: the Safety Code Regulations (2020), the Electricity (Code of Quality Service) Regulations (2020), the Electricity (Installation Permits) Regulations (2018), the Electricity (Tariff Code) Regulations, 2003, and the Electricity (Approval and Verification of Investments) Regulations (2020).

Qn: It is clear that Uganda is number one in Africa when it comes to electricity supply governance. Is ERA considering taking part in similar ratings at global level?

DN: ERA believes in continuous performance assessment and improvement. We are eager to learn from other institutions that could be performing excellently. Thus, if we have the opportunity to participate in global rankings for which we are eligible, we will be willing to take part.

Qn: Does the AfDB award come with a monetary incentive or any form of assistance which electricity consumers should look forward to be added into the ESI?

DN: This Ranking does NOT have a direct monetary reward. However, because of our top performance, ERA benefits from Capacity Building support and feedback from the assessors in this index, which when implemented benefit the consumer in terms of a better Electricity Access and Consumption experience.

Tags : Eng. Ziria Tibalwa WaakoERA


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