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[Nigeria]Nigerian glossary


Written by kevin

It’s part of life in Nigeria that electricity is either absent, or not where it should be.

I discovered at the weekend that the spare circuit breaker in my house’s fusebox isn’t just spare and not connected. It serves the very useful purpose of electrifying the taps in my bathroom.

This is not the first part of my house that has given me electric shocks, but a bathroom is a particularly bad place given the combination of electricity and water. I’m just lucky that the floor is tiled and a fairly good insulator.

The training of electricians in Nigeria is pitiful. Most of them seem to have briefly attended primary school and then at some later point been given a pair of pliers and a screwdriver that lights up, that’s it. They have no understanding of electricity at all. For example, the electrician at the zonal office in Bauchi last week did a very neat job of wiring up lots of sockets but didn’t see any problem in connecting them all to a single plug (in fact two wires pushed into the socket, he’d run out of plugs).

The same lack of understanding means that almost no electrical equipment here is earthed, one of the fundamentals of electrical safety. Why bother with that fiddly third wire when two will do?

This entry was posted on Monday, June 18th, 2007 at 09:18 and is filed under rant, VSO.

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