Senate Assesses Nigeria’s Power Sector Challenges

Senate, Presidency, Intervention Funds.The Nigerian Senate has continued its tour of power utility locations and offices in different parts of the country, with a visit to Lagos State.

It was a visit meant to identify the challenges of the sector first hand from the perspective of the practitioners.

In Lagos, the Senate Committee on Privatisation visited Africa’s biggest thermal plant, Egbin, which upon takeover, could only generate 300 megawatts against the installed capacity of 1320MW, consisting of six Units of 220MW each

However, despite recovering all the stranded capacity, the plant is still challenged and several reasons have been attributed.

As at September 2016, Egbin Power said it was being owed 90 billion Naira for energy produced and supplied but not paid for.

Ekodisco also had their time with the committee members.

They blamed most of the industry woes on the faulty template which serves as the operational guideline, arguing that the components of the MYTO for instance were not set with realistic variables.

From a growing myriad of indication so far within the circle of power sector players and their regulators, it is unlikely that the process that gave birth to a paradigm shift from public ownership of power utilities to private owners will be upturned.

The government, however, will do well to protect the sanctity of the agreement reached when the arrangement is consummated.

It is becoming increasingly clear that the government cannot stick to its role as just a regulator, it has to show more capacity in helping to secure guarantees for liquidity and perhaps tweak provisions to suit current day realities.

Minister Of Power Hints Of Higher Tariff

PowerElectricity consumers in Nigeria may have to gear up to pay higher tariffs to enjoy constant power supply.

This was made known by the Minister for Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola after a guided tour of the Egbin power plant in Lagos.

The guided tour of the Egbin power plant evolved into a meeting with the management of the power plant, where the chairman of the plant said that an additional 200 megawatts of electricity has been dedicated to Lagos with a current generation of 1100 megawatts to the national grid.

He also spoke about the challenges being faced by the management.

The Minister showed in his speech that he was not oblivious of the issues facing the plant but said that there is a national plan to tackle the problem and ensure all homes enjoy power supply 24 hours but this might cost more.

Mr Fashola said that the additional 220 megawatts of electricity produced by the Egbin power plant, should be distributed to consumers, both in industrial and residential areas.

The Minister added that the federal government would only pay legally verifiable debts owed the power generating companies.

Egbin Power Station: 220MW To Be Added In 90 Days

The federal government through the Ministry of Power has ordered for the repairs of a damaged unit at the Egbin power plant following the release of 1.5 billion naira from the Multi-Year Tariff Order (MYTO)

The Chief Executive Officer of the station Mr. Mike Uzoigwe says most of the damaged parts have been sourced while repairs will be completed in 90 days.

NIPOST Stripped Of Regulatory Function

The National Council on Privatisation has approved a reform bill that will strip Nigeria Postal Service (NIPOST) of all its regulatory function.

Briefing state house correspondents after the council meeting presided over by Vice President Namadi Sambo, the Minister of Communications Technology, Omotola Johnson said that the key factor in the bill is that NIPOST should concentrate on its operational functions in the transformation agenda and help to contribute to the gross domestic product.

Also the national council on privatisation also declared that all the power plants in the country now have core investors.

The latest sale is the Egbin Power Plant which has been sold to a Korean company called Capeco at the cost of $407.3 million.

Electricity: FG targets 6,873mw by 2013

The Federal Government on Friday said mechanisms have been put in place to boost the country’s electricity generation to almost 7,000 megawatts by the end of 2013.

The Minister of State for Power, Zainab Kuchi and management staff of agencies in the sector at a meeting on performance in Abuja gave a rundown of achievements in the sector so far and how the new projections will be achieved.

Mrs Kuchi said the power ministry is in strong partnership with the private and public sectors to improve the value chain in power delivery especially the improvement of gas delivery for power.

Giving a breakdown of power generation in the country, the Chief Executive Officer of Egbin power plant, Mike Uzoigwe, said the current capacity of all Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) successor generation companies (GENCO) for the fourth quarter of 2012 is 2,829megawatts adding that 3,879megawatts has been projected for 2013.

He explained that with an additional 2,500megawatts expected to be generated from the Independent Power Plants (IPPS) and the National Integrated Power Plants (NIPPS), the total available power to the national grid by 2013 will be 6,873mw.