Fashola Tasks Hydro-power Stations on Stable Power Supply

Power-equipment-maintenanceThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has asked Hydro-power stations in Nigeria to ensure stable power supply.

Mr Fashola made the request on Monday at a meeting held in Shiroro, Niger State, with the owners of the hydro-power stations across Nigeria.

At the 5th monthly meeting attended by participants across all the hydro-power stations and distributions in Nigeria, the owners of the facilities were asked to make concrete decisions in their various stations to sustain the capacity of their stations and boost distribution.

After the meeting the Minister assured Nigerians that the objective of achieving stable power would be achieved.

He advised the hydro-power stations and distribution companies to form clusters and stop waiting for the government to resolve their issues of interest.

Mr Fashola further stressed the need for them to hold meetings constantly and take leadership into their hands in decision making.

The Minister applauded the Niger State government for its proactive support and understanding on community issues that were slowing down works at the Zungeru dam project.

The Executive Director of Research and Advocacy with Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors,  Mr Sunday Oduntan, told the meeting that the company inherited over five million deficit non-metred customers from 6.159 million estimated metre customers in the entire country.

Mr Oduntan told the Minister that the company presently had a deficit of 2.876 million having installed 3.283 million since the company took over the distribution of power in Nigeria.

He said that 40 per cent of customers had so far been metered.

According to the last meeting 10.4 billion Naira revenue was generated by 15 DISCO and other off-takers in Nigeria, just as the three hydro-dams in Niger State generated over one billion Naira revenue.

Consequently, Kainji mainstream has over 404 million Naira, Jebba mainstream 405 million Naira and Shiroro (north-south power) generated 396 million Naira monthly.

Nigeria’s power situation had further depreciated in the last few months, with the government blaming the development on gas pipeline vandalism and sabotage.

Other power plants in  Nigeria depend on gas supply to generate electricity. The vandalism had cut off supplies to the plants, reducing the current capacity to below 4,000 megawatts for a population of over 160 million.

Some communities barely see few hours of electricity per day while most do not get supply at all.

Flood Alert: NEMA orders immediate evacuation of communities along River Niger

The National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on Monday ordered an immediate evacuation of citizens living along the River Niger plains.

In a press statement issued by the agency’s Head of Relations, Yushau Shuaib, NEMA said the order “comes because the dams have attained their highest water levels in 29 years which is unprecedented in the history of Jebba and Kainji hydroelectric power dams.”

Mr Shuaib said the threat has created a high risk of imminent flooding in the downstream of the river.

NEMA asked the residents of the communities along the river plain to move to higher grounds for safety.

The states at risk of the flood are Niger, Kogi, Kwara, Kebbi, Anambra and Delta.

The statement reads: “Already the agency has notified the affected states to take the necessary precautionary measures by relocating people from the flood prone areas and activated the National Contingency Plan as well as alerted all stakeholders to take necessary actions in line with their various mandates.

“The states are to ensure compliance with the threat in order to avert imminent loss of lives and properties that would certainly arise in the event of flooding.

“Furthermore, information available indicates that the gauge for monitoring the flow of water in the river has already exceeded the maximum height by over one meter.

“A rapid assessment team comprising officers of NEMA and the stakeholders has left for Jebba and Kainji to further inspect the situation.”