Fashola, Okowa Commission Gas Turbine In Niger Delta

Delta Govt. To Partner With NDDC On ProjectsThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola and the Governor of Delta State, Ifeanyi Okowa, have commissioned a 115mw gas turbine installed by Transcorp Power Limited Ughelli, bringing the installed capacity to 620mw from the 160mw which the company inherited from UPN privatization in 2013.

According to the management of Transcorp Power, the company currently generates only 300mw owing to shortage of gas supply, and promises to invest facilities that would increase gas supply to the power station if the government creates an enabling regulatory framework.

Mr. Fashola commended Governor Okowa for his commitment to peace in the Niger Delta, observing that it has paid off with the successful operation of Transcorp in the area without issues.

He also observed that the increase in power generation was a clear sign that the privatization of the power sector had started yielding benefits for Nigerians.

However, Governor Okowa called for collaborative efforts in the power sector to ensure that generated power translates into electricity in the homes of Nigerians, assuring that the existing peace in the state would be consolidated as a continuous boost to investors confidence.

Power Failure To Be Ameliorated Soon, Fashola Assures Anambra Citizens

power_ministerThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has assured citizens of Anambra State that power failure would soon be a thing of the past as the Federal Government is doing all to improve its supply across the country, as well as all other irregularities being experienced.

This is in response to several protests in some areas in Anambra state over the prolonged power failure as well as the outrageous bills being slammed on citizens by the power operating company, Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC).

Residents of Ngozika Housing Estate, Awka, and the Awka North and South Association of traders dominated the protesting group, claiming that they were adversely affected by the prolonged power failure and outrageous exploitation of citizens through the billing system.

Their grouse with the EEDC, included prolonged power failure in their areas which they claim started since 2013 and the outrageous bills between 7,000 and 8,000 Naira slammed on them monthly by the electricity company despite the blackout.

Furthermore, it was alleged that the management of the EEDC never responded to the complaints and accusations levelled against them.

They appealed to both the State and the Federal Government to intervene in the matter and also enforce the distribution of pre-paid meters as it would help stop the Estimated Bill practice.

Mr Fashola, who was on a working visit to the State Governor, Willie Obiano, however gave a comprehensive detail of the events of the power sector including the three pronged plans of the government and issues of gas sabotage that had dwindled power generation causing a loss of 3000 megawatts.

He stated that activities of the Niger Delta Militants were part of the problems which led to the country losing about 3,000 megawatts on the western axis of the Niger Delta.

“Our strategy is a three pronged approach; short term, medium term and long term.

“In the short term, what we want to achieve is incremental power, the power is not enough.

“Unfortunately as we are gaining power in some places, we are expanding transmission and the transmission grid can now take 7000 megawatts but we are losing the power generation to gas sabotage and vandalism.

“So today, when we can evacuate 7000 MW we don’t have the fuel to fire the turbines because of the conflict in the Niger Delta.

“We are working to resolve those conflicts, you saw the Vice President during his Niger Delta visit, trying to generate peace so that we can resume production.

“More fuel also means more gas, and more gas means more power but if you follow what we have been doing, we are completing transmission lines, awarding new ones over the last seven or eight months, some of the power plants too are going to be finished this year, Gurara will be finished this year, Kaduna will be finished this year, Kashim Bila will be later in the year or early 2019.

“We are working to deliver some solar initiatives also to penetrate communities that have not seen power.

“These are some of our continuing plans for incremental power and also to address the liquidity issues in gas generation and also in distribution.

The former Lagos State Governor, announced an upcoming nationwide power audit to ascertain consumer power consumption rate and crosscheck the corresponding tariff to ensure its suitability so as to ensure that consumers do not pay more or less tariff and as such no one is being cheated.

He gave the assurance that the Federal Government would also address the metering system, having observed the agony people are subjected to with the estimated billing practice.

 

“When the census is being done, stay where you live, don’t move home to the village because that’s where we will know where you need power. If we don’t know how many people that need power, then we will never give enough.

“We are addressing metering issue with the DISCOs too, we know your experience with estimated billing, but it takes time to get to each house, we need to do a power audit and know the kind of consumption you are making, because there are different classes of consumers, there’s the R-one, a very basic consumer, vulnerable people, their own tariff has not changed, it is N4 per kilowatt hour.”

On solar initiatives, the Minister reiterated that in order to penetrate remote communities that had been in darkness all their lives, the idea was in the medium term plan when there would have been an increase in power generation and distribution.

Fashola Highlights Input Hoped To Boost Power Supply In Nigeria

babatunde-fashola-power-works-and-housing-minister-nigeria
The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola

The Nigerian government says it will do all in its powers to overcome the setbacks in the power sector.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, gave the assurance while briefing reporters after the weekly Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo.

One of the strategies that the government has adopted, according to the Minister, is the approval made by the Council for the completion of the Odogunyan Transmission Sub-station in Ikorodu in Lagos at the cost of 3.5 billion Naira.

According to Mr Fashola, the contract was awarded in 2009 and abandoned for lack of payment.

He said the cost was reversed, as a result of the economic reality of the times so that the project could be completed and put into use as an addition to the expansion capacity of the national grid.

 

electricity-generating-plants
Electricity generating sets, a popular sight in places of business in Nigeria’s comercial cities

After 55 years of independence Nigeria still depends on imported generators for electricity.

The cost of running these generators is high, forcing most businesses in the oil-rich nation to close down.

Nigeria with a populations of over 180 million people has electricity that fluctuates between 5,000 megawatts and zero megawatts. Electricity experts said Nigeria needed about 100,000 megawatts of electricity to boast of constant power supply to its population.

Latest report has it that electricity generation in the nation has dropped to less than 2,500 megawatts.

Blame the drop on vandalism of gas pipelines and huge debts to DISCOS and GENCOS, a source of worry to the Minister of Power, Works and Housing.

One step the government is sure will help expand the capacity of power in the country is the completion of the sub-station in Ikorodu which has been lying fallow since 2009.

When completed, the minister said it would add extra capacity to the national grid.

Concerned citizens have continued to ask; can there be a time when Nigeria will generate at least 40,000 megawatts of power, for its citizens like other countries of the world without failure?

Finance Minister Says Nigeria Will Be Out Of Recession By 2017

Kemi Adeosun, Finance Minister, Recession, NigeriaThe Nigerian government has assured citizens that Nigeria would be out of recession and bounce back stronger in 2017.

The government, however, cautioned the people to ensure money is spent prudently and on the right things.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, made the remarks while addressing a gathering of youths at a town hall meeting in Abuja, the Federal Capital Territory.

She noted that several economic palliatives have been provided in the 2017 budget designed to pull Nigeria up through improved partnerships.

Mrs Adeosun asked Nigerians not to lose hope amidst the hardships, stressing that the budget would bring recovery and growth to the nation.

The inter-sectoral meeting, which took place at the Presidential Villa, was the first of its kind where youths were invited to ask questions on the economy and development at the federal level.

Seven ministers including the ministers of information, Mr Lai Mohammed; agriculture, Audu Ogbeh and that of works and housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, among others briefed the younger generation on steps taken by the government to ease the economic hardships.

Mr Ogbeh, who heads the foremost sector in Nigeria’s economic diversification plan, said $22 billion has been earmarked to support Nigerian youths interested in agriculture to make a good living in the coming year.

In his remarks, Mr Fashola noted that sabotage of the economy must stop and stressed that recovery was eminent with better labour relations, better infrastructural development plans, improved electricity supply and improved well-being of Nigerians.

This assurance is coming a day after President Muhammadu Buhari expressed optimism that the economic recession would subside by next year.

President Buhari said: “We are optimistic that the external factors that partly contributed to push our economy into recession will ebb in 2017. Until then, I regret that the resources available to fund our missions abroad will not be as robust as we would like.

“We are working hard to turn around our national economy by effectively reforming our macroeconomic environment through measures, some of which were outlined in my budget speech to the National Assembly last week”.

Fashola Inspects Lagos-Ibadan Expressway Rehabilitation

Fashola Inspects Lagos-Ibadan Expressway RehabilitationMotorists and commuters plying the long bridge section of the Lagos-Ibadan expressway have begun to experience some relief as the first phase of rehabilitation work on both sides of the bridge is complete.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, who visited the area on Monday, commended the contractors for the timely completion of the repair work.

Driving through both sides of the long-bridge portion of the expressway has been a horrible experience for motorists who spent hours in gridlock on the bridge as a result of the partial closure for repair work.

But few days to the deadline, the first phase of the rehabilitation has been completed and this, the Minister visited to ascertain.

Having received a brief of the technical details of the rehabilitation work, he said “as far as the work that has been done by our contractor on this Lagos-Sagamu bound section, so far so good”.

“For about 40 years since this road was opened, no major maintenance of the bridge had taken place and we have subjected it to very severe vehicle tonnage,” he said.

The Minister also commended motorists for their endurance, assuring of the federal government’s commitment to the completion of the expansion project within the stipulated time.

He added, however, that the work was not done yet.

“Its a 4,500 metre bridge on both sides and they still have to install some joints – about 44 on one side and 44 on the other side. So the work is not finished on this section of the bridge.”

 

 

Saraki Promises Timely Passage of 2017 Budget

Saraki promises Timely Passage of 2017 BudgetThe Senate President, Dr Bukola Saraki, says the National Assembly will ensure timely passage of the 2017 budget once they receive the document.

He made the promise in a chat with journalists after a one hour closed-door meeting with President Buhari.

The 2016 budget presented in December 2015 was enmeshed in controversies before it was eventually signed into law by President Buhari five months after.

Initially, there were reports that the document had gone missing and later there were allegations of budget padding levelled against some lawmakers and public officers.

Dr Saraki gave the assurance that the National Assembly was ready to ensure that this delay does not happen again to achieve a speedy passage of the 2017 appropriation bill.

Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, will present the 2017 appropriation bill to the National Assembly in the coming week.

He said the exact date and time for the budget presentation would be determined by the National Assembly.

Carefully Prepared

According to him, the 2017 fiscal document, of which he gave no details, has been well prepared to avoid the pitfalls that characterised the 2016 budget.

“The document that we are presenting to the National assembly is a carefully prepared on,” Senator Udoma said.

The Federal Executive Council meeting presided over by President Buhari lasted over five hours and Channels Television’s correspondent, Omelogo Nnadi, said it was expected to take such time, as the topic under trashing was the 2017 national budget.

Also at the press conference was the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, who announced the council’s approval for the construction of some hydro dams in parts of some states to boost electricity supply which had dropped significantly in recent months.

Buhari To Present 2017 Budget To National Assembly Next Week

Buhari-Osinbajo-Udom
Budget Minister, Senator Udo Udoma, said the budget was carefully prepared

Nigeria’s President, Muhammadu Buhari, will present the 2017 appropriation bill to the National Assembly next week, a government official said on Wednesday.

The Minister of Budget and National Planning, Senator Udo Udoma, announced the plan after the Federal Executive Council meeting.

He said the exact date and time for the budget presentation would be determined by the National Assembly.

Carefully Prepared

According to him, the 2017 fiscal document, of which he gave no details, has been well prepared to avoid the pitfalls that characterised the 2016 budget.

“The document that we are presenting to the National assembly is a carefully prepared on,” Senator Udoma said.

He told reporters that over 800 billion Naira had been released so far in the 2016 budget as capital projects with all recurrent expended.

The Federal Executive Council meeting presided over by President Buhari lasted over five hours and Channels Television’s correspondent, Omelogo Nnadi, said it was expected to take such time, as the topic under trashing was the 2017 national budget.

Also at the press conference was the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola.

While briefing reporters, he announced the council’s approval for the construction of some hydro dams in parts of some states to boost electricity supply which had dropped significantly in recent months.

He said that the projects would further the quest for incremental energy wherever there is legitimate opportunity as well as the quest for renewable energy through clean hydro energy.

Minister Of Power Inaugurates Power Plant In Akwa Ibom

Minister Of Power Inaugurates 330kv Power Plant In Akwa IbomAgainst the backdrop of lack of electricity in some parts of the country, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has promised improved transmission across Nigeria.

He was speaking during the commissioning of a 330kva power transmission station in Akwa Ibom state.

The Minister said that the power plant would boost electricity supply and resolve the challenge of access to electricity in the country.

The 330kva station with 12 inter-connectivity lines to evacuate power from four major plants to the national grid is located in the heart of Essien Udim, Akwa Ibom state.

The Minister, after inspecting the facility, appealed for patience on the part of the host community while assuring them of improved electricity at affordable rates.

The Deputy Governor of Akwa Ibom state, Mr Moses Ekpo, who lauded the project said that the event marked a turning point for industrialization and development in the state.

In the meantime, more private investments worth billions of naira have taken off in the state.

Nigerians are hopeful of better power in the days ahead.

Fashola Explains Input Gurara Hydropower Will Make To Nigeria’s Electricity

electricityNigeria’s electricity will receive a boost at the completion of the Gurara Hydropower Plant in Kaduna early next year, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has said.

While inspecting the plant that will add 30 megawatts of electricity to the over 5,000 megawatts that the nation of over 160 million people ration, Mr Fashola said that the addition was in continuation of the drive by the Federal Government to boost power generation.

Addressing reporters at the plant he explained that the additional power from the Gurara Hydropower Plant would boost efforts to stabilise power supply.

Mr Fashola pointed out that the plant would also serve as a source of transporting energy through to Kaduna and Mando substations to connect the Kaduna Power Plant.

He also hailed the Federal Government efforts to increase power generation, saying with wind power being developed in Katsina and the Gurara, Shiroro and Kashimbila hydropower projects, the nation’s energy mix was slowly coming together.

The Minister was at the plant with his team of experts to inspect the level of work done.

They also inspected the Kashimbila Multipurpose Dam project in Taraba State.

The dam when completed would provide electricity and support agricultural ventures in the surrounding communities.

The minister appealed for peace and cooperation from the host community to ensure that the project, which he pointed out would first serve the community, was completed in record time.

Recently, electricity experts advised the Nigerian government to shift focus away from generating power with gas which has seen a setback amidst increasing attacks on oil installations in the southern region by militants.

Several pipelines have been blown up with a militant group, the Niger Delta Avengers claiming responsibility for most of the attacks.

Prior to the exploration of gas for power supply, the nation had depended largely on dams. Poor maintenance and shift of focus away from the dams have also been identified as reasons the nation’s power supply has stopped improving over the years.

FEC Approves Completion Of Kaduna Power Plants

FEC, Kaduna Power PlantsThe Federal Executive Council has approved the completion of the 215 megawatts power plant in Kaduna State which had been abandoned since 2009.

The government also assented to the completion of the 40 megawatts of power from the Gurara Hydro Electric Plant (Phase One) to connect the Kaduna/ Mando transmission substation also in Kaduna State, northwest Nigeria.

The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, briefed reporters on the development after the meeting chaired by President Muhammadu Buhari.

Mr Fashola said the two approvals revealed the commitment of the present administration to create jobs and expand the transmission of power across Nigeria.

“We are now in a position that we can complete this programme by next year and add 215 megawatts of power to the grid and particularly dedicate some of that power to Gurara in Kaduna to support the industrial complex there,” he told reporters.

The second project was the construction of substation to evacuate power from the Gurara Hydro Electric Power Plant (Phase One).

The government had earlier approved a contract for the completion of the 10 megawatts wind power project abandoned in Katsina State since 2012.

On her part, the Minister of State for National Planning, Mrs Zeinab Ahmed, updated reporters on the social investment programme the All Progressives Congress (APC) government promised Nigerians during the campaigns..

She said 11 states were ready so far for the school feeding programme that is targeted at at least 5.5 million school children.

The Minister added that 500,000 undergraduates expected to benefit from the job creation programme would earn 30,000 Naira monthly.

She further stated that the government was aware of its promise to give 5,000 Naira monthly to the extremely poor for a period of two years.

Metering Gap: Fashola Gives Reasons For Installation Delay

thecrux-brfThe Minister of Power, Works and Housing in Nigeria, Mr Babatunde Fashola, on Tuesday explained the process that had caused delay in the installation of meter in different homes. 

Addressing a forum on Electricity Metering that had heads of distribution companies and meter producing companies in attendance, the Minister said that the ‘installation of meter is a processes that takes times to complete’.

A large number of Nigeria’s electricity users are on estimated billing system that leaves most of them paying higher than what they consume per month.

To end the crazy estimated bills that they receive, the government had established the credit apply initiative – CAPMI – to enable consumers make payment for meters that should, by law, be delivered within 45 days of payment.

Most consumers made payments but meter delivery in most cases exceed 45 days.

Complaints over non-receipt of meters mounted and the government suspended the scheme.

Linking the delay to the process that the thecrux-panelinstallation of meters must go through, Mr Fashola said: “The ideal situation will be to meter everybody, but if we had the metering gap that we have today, if we have the three million estimated meters that we need today to meet the date, it will need man-hours, one after the other, hours upon hours, to actually install all of them.

“We should also understand that metering is also a process.

“Meters are first produced and then they are calibrated for each DISCO (Distribution Company).

thecrux-john-donnachie-ibadan-discos-md“So, the fact that you make a meter does not mean you will go and install it in a DISCO. It is a process and each home will have to be addressed on the basis of its survey, what its needs are and other things”.

He Pointed out that the entire nation could not be metered within few years considering the population and needed manpower.

“We did not meter the whole of Nigeria in 63 years. The transition process is just three years,” he said, insisting, however, that the burden of metering a consumer was that of the DISCOS.

“He must measure so that he can bill and connect.”

The Minister also identified lack of trust in the DISCOS by the consumers, as a major issue that had hampered the distribution of the meters.

On the current efforts that the government is making to improve power in the nation, the Minister told the gathering that efforts were being focused on the regulation of the power industry.

“Our power journey is in transition. Public power started in Nigeria in 1960.

“Every day it becomes clearer that the problems in the power sector are not as technical as they are man- made,” he stressed.

Mr Fashola pointed out that his Ministry had designed an easy journey to increase power supply, with the first phase focusing on incremental power, which would enable it get existing projects to run.

“The transmission system is dynamic. There are projects for transmission that are ongoing.

“We are not at 5,000 megawatts, the capacity is increasing every day,” he said.

Standardisation

The head of MOMAS Electricity Meter Manufacturing Company Ltd, Kola Balogun, told the forum that there were about 3.3 million meters installed in Nigeria.

He said that the issue of financing and foreign exchange had affected the production of meter in Nigeria.

Identifying standardisation as a challenge, He said the sector needed to come out with a clear framework that would ensure that houses were meterable,

Questions have been raised on why consumers cannot buy their meters themselves.

The MD of the Enugu DISCO, Robert thecrux-enugu-disco-mdDickerman, told the forum: “If you let customers buy their own metre they will buy the wrong one. Smart meter is better for us but no customer will buy a smart meter.”

On the estimated billing system, he said that his company had followed a methodology that would ensure that customers do not get crazy bills.

“For customers who do not have a meter and are on interim period until we can meter every one, there is an estimated billing and this is quite controversial for some people.

“No one should be getting something called crazy bills because the estimated methodology is based upon the availability of the supply line which is called the feeder to that area.

“They are not allowed to pay any more than the average that the metered customers pay every month.

“Estimated customers are not supposed to be given above average of what the feeder reads.

“Customer tariffs are defined by their usage and by their maximum demand,” he explained.

Made In Nigeria Meters

thecrux-kano-disco-mdDespite the population of Nigeria that is seen as huge opportunity for companies that produce meter to tap, there is still no company that produces electronic components in a meter.

Giving reasons for this situation, the Managing Director of Kano DISCO, Jamil Gwamna, said: “Lack of uniformity in demand discourages production of electronic components in a meter in Nigeria.

“There are so many customers in our network that we have not been able to capture.”

thecrux-meter-manufacturerFor the Managing Director of MOJEK International Limited, Chantel Oluwabunmi Abdul, the production of the components outside Nigeria and the volatile nature of foreign exchange affect the pricing of meters, making it a bit expensive for consumers to buy them.

She said: “Meter is about 42,000 Naira for a single face while a two-face meter goes for over 60,000 Naira”.

She further said that her company was doing its best to compete effectively with international companies that are coming into Nigeria.

On funding, which most of the companies’ heads identified as a huge impediment on the distribution of meters across Nigeria, she said her organisation had approached the likes of BOI.

She asked the government to provide a special funding for the companies. She says her fear is that the government is broke.

Responding to her demand for funds, Mr Fashola said that $115 million had been set aside for the DISCOS in form of loan to boost their capacity of metering homes.

FEC Approves 3.5bn Naira For Car Purchase To Decongest Prisons

FEC, PrisonsThe Federal Executive Council (FEC) has approved the sum of 3.5 billion Naira to procure 320 made-in-Nigeria vehicles to aid prisons decongestion across the country.

The approval was in response to the request in a memo presented at a FEC meeting on Wednesday by the Minister of Interior, General Abdulrahaman Dambazau (rtd).

General Dambazau noted that the procurement of vehicles was part of requirements needed to strengthen the criminal justice system.

He told State House correspondents after the meeting in Abuja, Nigeria’s capital, that at least 75% of an estimated 65,000 inmates were awaiting trial.

The Interior Minister blamed their continued detention on lack of logistics and availability of vehicles to transport them to at least 5,000 courts from prisons within the country.

On September 24, an official of the Prisons Service in Ilesa Prison in Osun State, said 454 out of 582 inmates are awaiting trial, a situation he said was as a result of huge challenges facing the Prisons Service.

The officer in charge of the Prisons, Deputy Comptroller Ope Fanimikun, said that presenting 454 inmates for trial in 72 courts was a huge challenge for officers.

He said that the Prisons service had just four vehicles, the newest of which was given to the prisons four years ago.

The Deputy Comptroller sought the support of Nigerians in form of vehicles’ donation to ensure that inmates were presented for trials to decongest the prisons.

Enugu-Prison
The state of a prison in Enugu in Nigeria’s south-east

He disclosed that the prison needed at least 20 vehicles, medical facilities and consumables.

To meet this demand the FEC approved monies for procurement of vehicles.

On his part, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, briefed reporters on pending infrastructural projects as well as the state of power generation and transmission in Nigeria.

In the light of increasing dilapidation of Federal Roads, he said no new road contracts had been awarded besides inherited projects.

Mr Fashola further disclosed that the Federal Executive Council approved a memo for the provision of three 150 MVA transformers in three sub-stations in Oshogbo, Shiroro and Ondo.

He said the demand was made by the transmission company of Nigeria, in order to increase electricity transmission in the country.