São Paulo Mayor Ricardo Nunes is asking Brazil's electricity regulator to revoke Enel's concession contract, citing repeated power outages affecting the city, including recent storm-induced blackouts.
07/11/2023.- Members of the homeless workers movement protest, at the reception of the energy company ENEL, due to the delay in electricity supply to homes, in Sao Paulo (Brazil). EFE/ Isaac Fontana
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Discontent in São Paulo: The Mayor's Office requests the cancellation of the contract with Enel
The Mayor's Office of São Paulo asked this Thursday the Brazilian electricity regulatory body to cancel the concession contract that the largest city in the country has with the subsidiary of the Italian multinational Enel.
"What I have asked the National Electricity Agency (Aneel) is to terminate the contract with Enel," the mayor of São Paulo, Ricardo Nunes, told reporters after visiting one of the areas that was closed on Wednesday. Without electricity.
The heavy rains that occurred on Wednesday affected 290,000 people and left 80,000 people in the metropolitan region of São Paulo without power, who were waiting for service to be restored this Thursday.
Parliamentary investigation: The president of Enel Brasil is summoned
The president of the electricity supplier Enel in Brazil, Nicolas Cotugno, was summoned this Thursday by a Parliamentary Commission in the Legislative Assembly of São Paulo that is investigating the power outages that took up to four days to resolve.
On November 3, a similar storm caused power outages that took four days to be restored in some areas of the state with 2.5 million residents without power and six people died due to accidents such as falling trees on their vehicles.
"It is serious, it is a problem that the city council has been discussing for a long time. They have to improve a lot. And what did we do? We then went to court," said Nunes, despite the Enel president's promise to restore the service.
Nunes cited that five neighborhood health centers and a popular housing complex are ready to be inaugurated, but the lack of electricity has prevented the units from starting to operate and the residences from being occupied.
In a statement, the Mayor's Office confirmed that Nunes is "in permanent contact" with Aneel "to demand improvements in the electrical service."
Concern about new challenges: Storms and wind forecast in São Paulo
"The situation is worrying, since the summer rainy season has not yet arrived, and the agency has been asked to cancel the contract with Enel," said a statement from the City Council.
Read also: Brazil's Largest City Still Ravaged by Storm
The situation could worsen after a week in which record temperatures have been reached and the regional Civil Defense has warned about the possibility of new storms and wind gusts that could reach 100 kilometers per hour this weekend.