The governor of the Federal District, Ibaneis Rocha (MDB), hammered out the privatization of Companhia Energética de Brasília (CEB) on December 4, 2020. From the announcement to the auction for the sale of the distributor, the governor argued that the energy distribution service would be better handled by the private sector. The population’s reaction points to the opposite.
Between March and July of this year, 1,378 complaints were registered at the National Electric Energy Agency (Aneel) in relation to the services provided by Neoenergia Brasília. The number represents an increase of 58% compared to the same period last year, when the registration was 872 and the provision of the service was under the management of CEB Distribuição. At the top of the complaints against the company is the lack of energy.
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According to the director of the Union of Urban Workers in the DF (STIU-DF), João Carlos Dias, when the governor, “betraying the promise of an electoral campaign, announced the privatization of CEB Distribuição, it was already possible to foresee the damage to the population of the DF, especially regarding the quality of service and electricity supply in the country’s capital”, he highlights.
He points out that one of the arguments used at the time by the Union, which organized the fight against the privatization of the distributor, was the experience of the states that went through the same process, such as Goiás, “where consumers invariably began to suffer with the lack of energy, poor service and more expensive electricity bills”.
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In the 2018 election campaign, still a candidate, Ibaneis Rocha signed a letter of commitment, registered at the notary’s office, guaranteeing that he would not privatize CEB Distribuição.
“After five months, what you see is the confirmation of the rule. Consumer complaints have increased and, although the new concessionaire has simply tripled its profits in the first half of this year, with a result of BRL 59 million, what is the question, what is the benefit of this result for the population of the DF?” asks the unionist.
Neoenergia Brasília alleges that in the total amount of complaints registered, 182 refer to the lack of energy, the majority coming from fortuitous cases such as tropical storms, theft of cables and drilling carried out by third parties in the underground network.
The concessionaire also informs that the regulatory agency also measures the frequency of complaints from energy concessionaires in the country through the indicator called FER (frequency of complaints), and that in 2021, Neoenergia Brasília would have improved by 21% in the indicator, compared to 2020.
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André Dória, a resident of the Federal District, exposed on a social network a comparison between two energy bills and shows that there was an increase in the amount charged, although the “consumption habits remain the same”. The first bill, measured by CEB in September 2020, has a monthly consumption of 345 KWh and a cost of R$ 251.26, the other, issued in September this year by Neoenergia, indicates a consumption of 347 KWh and a cost of R$ 312, 26.
He denounces that today he pays “R$312.00 for 2 kWh more” and asks if “are these the benefits of privatization?”.
Controlled by the Spanish company Iberdrola, Neonergia Brasília presented Aneel with a proposal for a periodic tariff review with an impact of 10.70% on the electricity bill of residential consumers.
In a public hearing to discuss the matter, the National Agency indicated that the number is preliminary. “The definitive amounts will be approved after analyzing the contributions received before they take effect, on October 22 this year,” he wrote in a note.
Source: Federal District BdF
Edition: Flávia Quirino