Fashola Attributes Drop In Electricity Supply To Attacks On Gas Pipelines

Babatunde Fashola, Power, Oil installationsThe Minister of Power, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) has attributed the drop in electricity supply from 5000 MW to 2000MW since February 2016, to incessant attacks on gas pipelines by vandals.

He said this while delivering a key note address he delivered at the second edition of the National Council on Power (NCP) Stakeholders meeting in Kaduna State.

Speaking on how to address the current poor electricity supply across the country, Mr Fashola advocated alternative power sources such as solar, wind energy, coal to complement existing hydro and gas.

On his part, the host governor, Mr Nasir El-Rufai asked the Federal government to retain the transmission sector and privatise the DISCOs and GENCOs.

The governor also advocated the restructuring of the National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in order to make it more proactive and effective.

In doing this, he stated that competent and experienced experts should be engaged to man the regulatory agency.

He specifically urged the Ministry of Power and other stakeholders to consider solar energy since it is cheaper and efficient, adding that Nigeria is blessed with abundant sun which could transformed into solar energy.

The 2nd edition of the National Council on Power stakeholders meeting had the theme “Achieving Incremental, Then Uninterrupted Power” was organized by the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing.

The NCP stakeholders meeting provides a platform for the ministry to interact with all stakeholders in the power sector in order to provide a road map to address the challenges in the sector.

House Summons Fashola Over Epileptic Power Supply

Babatunde-Fashola-Minister-of-Power-works-housingThe House of Representatives has summoned the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN), and other agencies in the power sector to a public hearing over the country’s epileptic power supply.

Following a motion considered during plenary, the House noted the state of electricity supply in the country despite the years of privatization in the country.

Law makers added that the non-availability of electricity in the country has further increased the hardship of Nigerians and depleted its economic base.

The public hearing is supposed to proffer solutions that will aid a sustainable electricity regime in the country.

Despite the lack of increase in the supply of power, the federal government maintains that the increase in electricity tariff will not be reversed.

The Minister insisted that the increase in electricity tariff is unavoidable if the country must enjoy steady power supply.

Mr Fashola  made this known during a public hearing at the Senate, where he also maintained that the National Assembly has already empowered the National Electrical Regulatory Commission (NERC) to fix tariff in the country.

 

No Going Back On Electricity Tariff Hike – FG

Fashola
Nigeria’s Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN)

The Federal Government has restated its position that there is no going back on the increase in electricity tariff in the country.

The Minister of Works, Power and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola (SAN) at a public hearing at the Senate explained that the National Assembly has already empowered the National Electrical Regulatory Commission (NERC) to fix tariff in the country.

Officials from the labour unions in the electricity sector, who also attended the hearing, voiced their displeasure at the increase and noted that they were not consulted before the decision to increase tariff was made.

The Minister, however, insisted that the increase in electricity tariff is unavoidable if the country must enjoy steady power supply.

On its part, the Senate insisted that the Federal Government needs to urgently address some critical problems in the power sector.

On February 16 this year, the Senate at plenary asked the Minister, NERC as well as electricity distribution companies to immediately suspend the new electricity tariff that have seen charges raised by over 40 per cent.

The Senate also directed its Committee to hold a public hearing to get the views of stakeholders on the electricity tariff hike and how to move the sector forward.

Channels Television’s Linda Akhigbe reports although government is insisting that it is not insensitive to the plight of Nigerians, the hike in electricity tariff without a reciprocal increase in electricity supply in many areas in the country is a bitter pill for many Nigerians to swallow.

Fashola Visits, Commiserates With Victims Of Balogun Market Fire Disaster

DSC_0650Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola SAN, on Tuesday visited and commiserated with victims of the Balogun Market fire disaster in Central Lagos, urging them to embrace the practice of insuring their investments and properties against such unforeseen incidents.

Addressing traders after inspecting the ruins of goods and houses caused by the inferno which ravaged the Market on Monday, Governor Fashola, who stressed the value of insurance in business and daily life, said apart from taking simple safety measures like not storing inflammable materials in business premises and in homes, it was also important that citizens embraced the practice of insuring their goods and properties against unforeseen disasters.

The Governor recalled that he had on some occasions appealed to the leadership of the various traders’ unions to meet and educate their membership on the value of insurance, pointing out that since the premium of such insurance are often not a lot of money the traders could find it handy when emergencies like fire disasters happen.

Pledging to work with the unions to help create such insurance, if necessary, in partnership with some of the insurance companies, Governor Fashola said some of the companies offer special packages that address the levels of people who do not have big businesses, but need nonetheless to secure their investments without necessarily dipping, in any significant way, into their profits.

The Governor recalled that in the past, Insurance companies used to be much more dynamic and responsive in getting people to market policies at market places where ordinary people are and educate them about the value of policies adding, “I think it is good also for that sub-sector of the finance industry to revitalize the insurance business if there is this kind of demand, it will also create employment in that sector of the economy other than banking”.

He described as a sad reflection of Federal Government’s failure to supply a basic need to the citizens the complaints of power surge which often result in fire disasters adding, however, that power distribution is a risk which, according to him, “is accentuated by either an unauthorized connection or multiple generators”.

The Governor said although people have to generate their own Power as a result of the failure of the Federal Government in this direction, people should be very careful in the way they managed their generator explosions adding, “We have lost too many lives to generator explosions, we have lost too many lives to carbon monoxide poison and all of that and people should remember to switch off all their appliances at the end of the business day, disconnect them before they shut down their premises”.

Commending the capacity of the State Fire Service to contain the fire, Governor Fashola expressed gratitude to God that the incident did not result to loss of life adding, “There used to be a Federal Fire Service in this place, it is gone and what you have now is a full complement of Lagos State Fire Service with equipment that we received late last year”.

“Yesterday, they responded to about 18 fires, so you should just imagine what conditions, what situation would it have been today without these fire engines. That is the power of our Government to respond and to use taxpayers’ money to provide this kind of fire fighting, lifesaving equipment”, he said adding, “And as I have always said, security of lives and properties is my top job and it is my most important job”.

Earlier in his remarks at the Market, General Manager of State’s Emergency Management Agency, (LASEMA), Mr. Femi Osanyintolu noted that the major causes of the fire outbreaks at the market was that the people were not safety conscious adding that they kept lots inflammable materials including generators inside their shops.

He commended the State Fire Service saying with the equipment available to them, they were able to curtail the fire. He said they had to do controlled demolition in order to control the spread of the fire adding that his agency had invited the State’s Building Control Agency and Solid material Testing Agency to look at all the affected buildings to attest to their structural stability.

In his own remarks, Director Lagos State Fire Service, Mr. Razak Fadipe, said the information gathered was that workers of Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) came on the day of the incident to work on the transformer in front of one of the buildings in the market and when light was restored in the area later, there was an explosion which resulted in the fire.

He, however, noted that the Service was on top of the situation as it fought the fire gallantly adding, “We are not going to leave here until we ensure that there is no smoke coming out of the building anymore”

Among those present at the scene were Commissioner for Special Duties, Dr. Wale Ahmed and his Works and Infrastructure and Sports and Youth Development counterparts, Dr. Obafemi, Hamzat and Mr. Waheed Oshodi, rescue teams, shop owners and market leaders among other

Fashola Signs Lagos 2015 Appropriation Bill Into Law

DSC_0488The Lagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, on Sunday signed into law the 2015 Appropriation Bill with a pledge that his administration would continue to render service to Lagosians until the end of his tenure.

The 2015 Appropriation Bill, with the size of 489.69 billion Naira, was presented to the State House of Assembly on Monday, November 24, 2014 with Capital to Recurrent ratio put at 51:49 for Year 2015, which is the same as Year 2014 budget.

In his remarks before signing the Budget at the Lagos House, Marina, Governor Fashola said: “As an article of faith, the way any government treats its budget defines how determined, how focused and how serious that government is in terms of service delivery to its citizens”.

The Governor, who noted that there were talks in some circles that budgets would be delayed as a result of the fact that elections were in the air, declared: “I don’t think that there is any legitimate excuse for it for a government that has been able to plan and implement its plan”.

On why the event was held on a Sunday, Governor Fashola explained that the APC had called for a National Meeting in Abuja on Monday, January 12, adding that “the flexibility and adaptability” of his administration has made it easy to call the event forward instead of pushing it backwards.

He told reporters shortly after the event that although there were financing challenges when he presented the budget in 2014, but because the State’s revenue has been based largely on the common contributions of Lagosians, the economy had remained sustainable.

Also addressing reporters, the Commissioner for Budget and Economic Planning, Mr Ben Akabueze, said with the signing of the budget into law, the pace of implementation would be intensified as government agencies could now access the full estimates provided for them in the budget.

The Commissioner explained that agencies of the government were allowed by law to access only the provisional estimates of 25 per cent before the signing of the budget, explaining that the signing of the budget would enable the government agencies “fire at all fronts from tomorrow” (Monday).

Reiterating that the present administration would continue to render service to Lagosians till the very last day, Akabueze hinted that the administration would soon announce the performance of the 2014 Budget. He said the State was not immune to the economic challenges facing the nation.

He, however, expressed joy that 70 per cent of the State Government’s budget would be financed through its own internally generated revenues. “Although the budget size is 489 billion Naira, that amount will be generated by the government throughout the year over the next 12 months.

“The budget is an estimate of revenues and expenditures that will accrue to this State; the revenue that will accrue over the next 12 months as well as expenditures that we will need to incur”, the Commissioner explained, adding that “the overall budget size remains at 489.69 billion Naira just a little short of 490 Billion Naira, of which 248 billion Naira approximately will be spent on Capital Expenditures and 241 billion Naira as Recurrent Expenditure”.

Fashola Commissions Lagos Energy Academy, Inducts First Batch Of Students

Governor-FasholaLagos State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola  (SAN) on Tuesday formally commissioned the Lagos Energy Academy and inducted the first batch of its Students.

The Governor who inspected the facilities at the Academy located at the State Electricity Board, Works Yard Road, GRA, Ikeja, after the unveiling, said this first key step will herald the training of many batches of power engineers and artisans who will provide the necessary human capital for lighting Lagos and Nigeria.

According to him, the Lagos Energy Academy will provide training for young people to become technicians and electrical engineers and provide training in generation, transmission and distribution.

Fashola explained that inside the Academy, there are modules on the sub-station that people see outside which has been simulated as well as transformers and all sorts of learning equipments and tools.

“We believe that over the years, there is a possibility to produce as many as 200,000 graduates who would have Siemens certification to be able to work anywhere. We are also partnering with a meter manufacturing company who is training them on how to diagnose faults with meters, the old analogue meters, the digital meters, the card meters, so that they are able to render service in terms of power generation transmission and distribution and all of the challenges,” he said.

The Governor said the initiative is significant because it connects the curriculum of the Academy with the needs of the society.

“This really now is connecting our curriculum to the needs of our society, the biggest needs of this society today is power and as the DISCOs are taking position, they are going to need men and women, boys and girls who will provide the manpower, the knowledge and this is where we have decided to invest, to connect these young people to jobs that are waiting to be taken so that they do not continue to complain about unemployment.

“So, we have taken them from all levels, from vocational centres, technical colleges and through our schools systems to give them a chance to start out a new career in power sector in Lagos”, he explained.

Speaking on the Mainland Independent Power Project, the Governor said it is the sixth IPP that the State is completing and now going through the pre-commissioning testing, adding that when it is commissioned, hopefully before the end of this month, it would now power LASUTH, the High Court, the Lagos State Police Command and all of the public institutions around Ikeja.

He explained that what is behind the IPP is the sample of the solar installations that are going to be installed in all the public schools in Lagos State, adding that government already has contracts for 172 of them in partnership with DFID for which it has to provided counterpart funding .

“Very soon you would see this installed in all our schools in Lagos, so we are taking the schools off regular generators, carbon energy. All public schools and you would see the solar panels on top of them, that is where the energy is going to come from and it would also have charging points for students who need to charge their IPADS. So this is a foundation for moving our schools finally to electronic and e-learning because there would be regular and uninterrupted power,” he added.

Speaking on opportunities available for people from other states, the Governor said there is always room to take on people from other states subject to them complying with the prequalification tests.

Water Supply: Lagos Looking To Meet Water Needs By 2020

Waterwork_in_Lagos

The Lagos State government says it is looking to meet resident’s water needs by 2020, as work has continued in the on-going 70 million gallons per day Adiyan Waterworks, Phase Two project in Oke-Aro.

The State Governor, Mr Babatunde Fashola, on Tuesday, inspected the works and told reporters that his administration had moved from the short term plan, which involved building micro- waterworks to resuscitating some old ones, to the medium term execution.

“The plan is that, hopefully, by 2020 we should be able to meet the water needs of Lagosians”.

Describing the Adiyan Waterworks project as the third major waterworks intervention in Lagos, the Governor pointed out that his administration started with the micro- waterworks to resuscitate some of those built by past governors of the State, to get them to full optimisation and to add more as a short plan in the first term.

“This is the medium-term plan in the second term.

“The long term plan is to have more of these now being built with partnership with the Private Sector to deliver more of this. And so this is direct funding; but the long term plan is that we will make at least two or three more of this type to be able to meet the water demand of Lagosians,” he said.

The first major waterworks intervention in Lagos was the Iju Waterworks which was built in 1910 and after that, there was no other major intervention until 1991 when the Adiyan Waterworks was first built.

“That was a long time of almost a century, and the population continues to grow,” Governor Fashola said.

The Governor, who had earlier handed over a total of 31 classrooms in two government schools in Ifako-Ijaiye and Iju-Ishaga, expressed satisfaction with the progress of water at the site, saying it was an indication of readiness by the contractors to work even at night.

“You can see the progress that is being made. We have just been shown the treatment plant, the filtration and the sedimentation and also the work going on in the main reservoir tanks where the concrete walls and foundations are being laid. So it is work in progress,” he said.

According to the Governor, “Apart from the micro-waterworks and mini-waterworks that we have had, this is the third major intervention.

Governor Fashola, however, said provision of water alone is never the answer, pointing out that there is also the need to conserve the water.

“Like all utilities, you can never over-supply water. So there must be adequacy of supply, minimisation of waste, conservation and the right economics to be able to ensure that the project and the utility pays for itself and delivers on expectation,” he said.

 

Fashola Inspects Traffic Gridlock Points In Mile 2 And Apapa

IMG_9094Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN), on Sunday July 6, inspected the traffic congestion points at the Mile 2 under bridge of the Lagos–Badagry Expressway and Creek Road in Apapa.

For weeks, residents of the areas have complained to the Government over the pains of obstruction and traffic congestion on the roads, which have been caused by the combination of continuous trading on the road, dumping of refuse in the drainage and fuel tankers who are seeking to load fuel from the tank farms in the area.

In his reply to questions from newsmen after the inspection of Creek Road, which has been taken over by the fuel tankers, Fashola said that Government was prepared to wait for a week, as promised by the operators, to organize the parking of their tankers in a way that traffic could move on the road.

Fashola also said that owners of the oil companies that have tank farms in Apapa would visit the area in the course of the week as a group “to see for themselves how they make profit and the cost of that profit on ordinary citizens”.

At the Mile 2 stopover, the Governor identified the main cause of the Mile 2 problem to be the undergoing expansion of the road which contractors have to work on while people use the road.

He noted that it would have been easier for Government to shut down the road for 2 months while work was going on, but this was not possible. “So this is part of what causes the inconvenience, we have to build while citizens use the roads”, he explained.

He, however, appealed to the citizens and residents not to contribute to the problem by trading on the road but to restrain themselves by doing things the proper way and to also bear with the Government over the inconveniences they suffer.

He assured the people that some of the tanker operators have promised to leave one lane free on Creek Road to allow traffic to move within the area.

Also present at the inspections was the Commissioner for Works and Infrastructure, Dr. Obafemi Hamzat and his Environment counterpart, Mr. Tunji Bello; the Special Adviser on Works and Infrastructure, Ganiyu Johnson; the Group Chief Executive Officer of Oando PLC, Mr. Wale Tinubu; and the Publisher of Business Day, Mr. Frank Aigbogun.

Members of NUPENG, some residents of Apapa and a representative of the tank farm operators also met the team at Apapa.

Mimiko, Kashim Shettima, Others Pay Fashola Condolence Visit

The Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko and his Borno state counterpart, Alhaji Kassim Shettima, were among scores of dignitaries and organisations who visited Lagos House, Marina, Sunday to condole with Lagos State Governor, Mr. Babatunde Fashola (SAN) whose father, Alhaji Ibrahim Fashola, passed on penultimate Monday in Lagos.

In his remarks, Ondo State Governor, Dr. Olusegun Mimiko, described the passing of the Pa Fashola as a sad occurrence, adding however, that although the death would naturally provoke moments of grief, survivors of the deceased should derive joy from the fact that he lived a good life and left a worthy legacy in the Lagos state governor.

Dr. Mimiko, alongside some members of his Cabinet, told Governor Fashola, “We have come to commiserate with you over the death of your dear father. We have also come to rejoice with you because Papa lived a good life and he left behind a worthy legacy in the Governor of Lagos State”.

Praying the Almighty Allah to grant sweet repose to the soul of the deceased and to grant his family the fortitude to bear the loss, the Governor also thanked God and “the circumstances that produced a personality like Mr. Babatunde Fashola”.

Also in his remarks, the Borno State Governor, Alhaji Kashim Shettima, said the father of Governor Fashola lived a good and fruitful life adding that he trained his children well and impacted positively on ordinary citizens, especially the poor and needy in the society.

The Governor noted that the elder Fashola wanted the best for his family and that was why he trained all his children well adding that the deceased lived a very exemplary life of giving to others in need. He prayed for the repose of the soul of the Octogenarian and also that the Almighty Allah would support the Family of the deceased.

Responding, Governor Fashola expressed gratitude to the Governors for their visit and honour done to the memory of his father noting that for the Governors to leave the ever tasking challenges of governance in their various States to come to down Lagos to commiserate with him and the family was, indeed, a demonstration of how deep their honour was.

The Governor told Alhaji Shettima, “There is a lot of history between us and the people of Borno State and I believe that this day’s honour reaffirms the common bond that our ancestors have shared’.

“They are bonds which we must rededicate ourselves to fastening, to tightening and to remolding so that in the fullness of time we may also hand it over to our children. They are bonds that I belief if pursued rigorously, will ultimately bring peace to our nation”, the Governor said.

According to him, “They are bonds of humanity; they are bonds of brotherhoods, they are bonds of love and compassion. Those are the most needed ingredients now, in my humble view, to pursue in order to reach out to the promise of our nation which I see within touching distance”.

Thanking his Borno State counterpart for the visit, Governor Fashola encouraged him, “As you continue to soldier on in the pursuit of love, peace and brotherhood across barriers, I pray that Allah grants you all of the wisdom and strength to discharge the mandate which was so graciously bestowed on you in respect of the people of Borno and, by extension, Nigeria”.

Responding on behalf of Fashola to the condolences of Governor Mimiko, one of his uncles and former Federal Commissioner for Works and Housing, Alhaji Femi Okunnu, expressed gratitude to the Governor of Ondo State for the courtesy and honour of the visit, saying it was a great honour to their Brother and the entire Fashola Family.

Others who paid visit Sunday included a former military administrator of Lagos State, Commodore Ndubuisi Kanu and National Secretary of the National Democratic Coalition (NADECO) Ayo Opadokun, the Comptroller-General of the Nigerian Immigration Service, Mr. David Paradang, and Executive members of the Igbo Communities in Lagos, among other prominent members of the society from all walks of life.