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Power Minister Blames Low Power Supply On Sabotage

Channels Television  
Updated March 26, 2014

Chinedu-Nebo-Prof-Power-Minister-NigeriaThe Nigerian Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo, on Wednesday blamed the low power supply being experienced across the country on sabotage.

In an update on the state of power supply, Professor Nebo explained that the damage of gas pipelines at several locations in the country had led to shutdown of over 2,000 megawatts of electricity.

He said that the loss of transmission lines and low availability of water at the dams had also affected power supply adversely.

Low Water Level

“The recent dip in power supply is mainly due to inadequate supply of gas to the thermal gas power plant arising from the current act of vandalism on gas pipelines. Trans Forcados pipeline is currently out and this is another 200 million scuffs of gas resulting to loss of 800 megawatts of power supply.

“There have been an attack on the trans-Niger line with a loss of 120 million standard cubic feet of gas and a loss of about 500 megawatts from the Akpan-six IPP, which is supposed to be delivering about 600 megawatts.

“The dams are low in water level. We have issues with Kanji, Jebba and Shiroro dams, which will be redressed as water level improves. We need rain,” Professor Nebo said.

The Nigerian President, Goodluck Jonathan on Sunday said that the government had earmarked one billion dollars for the implementation of a comprehensive programme to check crude oil theft, the vandalism of oil and gas infrastructure and the apprehension and prosecution of crude oil thieves

At separate meetings with the Prime Minister of the Netherlands, Mr Mark Rutte and the Chief Executive Officer of Shell International, Mr Ben Van Beurden, President Jonathan said that a technical committee had already been set up to look into all aspects of the implementation of the programme.

The fund is expected to help end pipeline vandalism in Nigeria, as the government pursue complete privatisation of the power sector.

Teething Problems

The Nigerian government handed over ownership of the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) to private companies on November 1, with Vice President Namadi Sambo, expressing hopes that Nigerians will begin to reap the fruits of the privatisation process.

Some Nigerians have said that power supply had dropped after the privatisation of the power sector.

But the government had earlier described the situation as part of the teething problems that users were bound to face after the unbundling of the PHCN, promising that the situation would improve within six months.

Nigerians are anxiously waiting for stable power supply that the new owners had promised.