FG To Distribute 20,000 Solar Energy Units In 2017

Yemi Osinbajo, Beyond The Grid, Solar Energy UnitsNigeria’s Vice President, Professor Yemi Osinbajo, says 20,000 new solar energy household units will be dispersed across rural areas in the first phase of the Federal Government’s ‘beyond the grid’ project in 2017.

Professor Osinbajo said that while the government’s commitment to developing traditional means of power generation and transmission remained unshakeable, off the grid energy supply would receive heightened attention, moving forward.

He made the disclosure while commissioning the ‘beyond the grid’ solar power project which was launched by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) in Wuna community of Gwagwalada in Abuja.

The Vice President emphasised that while past rural power projects lacked vision and longevity, the solar energy initiative would strategically power industrious communities that provide goods and services to surrounding territories for broader economic development.

Overseeing the project, the Managing Director of the NDPHC, Chiedu Ugbo, noted that project maintenance was central in project conceptualisation.

The traditional ruler of Wuna community, Mr Yusuf Isa, who commended the initiative, said that the usage of kerosene lamps has become a memory.

He, however, highlighted some of the challenges the residents of the community faced before the launch of the project.

A farmer in the community, Solomon Jaka, also thanked the government for the project, saying the solar energy initiative has changed his life and that of his family.

Nigeria, World Bank Sign Gas Supply Guarantee Deal

oil_pipelinesThe Nigerian government and the World Bank have signed a Partial Risk Guarantee agreement for the supply of gas to the Calabar Gas Plant to boost energy supply by 500 megawatts.

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, who supervised the signing of the agreement at the Presidential Villa on Thursday, said the event was very significant for the country, as it would encourage investment in gas infrastructure.

He pointed out that going by the current power situation, the investment was worth celebrating.

The agreement for a Partial Risk Guarantee (PRG) between Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) and the World Bank was signed to secure the supply of about 130 million cubic feet per day of gas to NIPP Calabar Plant by Seven Energy, an integrated gas company in Nigeria.

The company is investing about $500 million in the construction of gas processing facility at the Uquo Field in Akwa Ibom State.

“It will encourage investment in the gas infrastructure and we are certainly looking forward to the multiplier effects that will come from this.

“This is a very significant event for us and as we all know this is the first PRG for gas that we are signing

“Given the current power situation, we expect that this gas that will go into the Calabar plant will provide about 500 megawatts of power which is very significant given our current situation.

“The gas pipeline itself is a feat of some sort. I am told that it traverses five rivers. So, that by itself is worth celebrating. Even if all we get from social media this evening is an engineering feat, we will be quite pleased with that,” Professor Osinbajo stated.

The Vice President then commended the World Bank and other partners for the confidence in the present administration, especially in guaranteeing investment worth about $500 million.

The Minister of Finance, Mrs Kemi Adeosun, signed the agreement for the Nigerian government while the World Bank was represented by its Country Director, Rachid Benmessaoud.

The Managing Director of the NDPHC, Mr Chiedu Ugbo, told reporters that the development was significant in the development of Nigeria’s gas to power programme.

He expressed optimism that the guarantee would go a long way in addressing liquidity challenges experienced by the gas supplier for the Calabar Power Plant.

“We have had gas supply issues in the Calabar plant. But now the gas supplier is supplying the gas molecules there and they just concluded a pipeline from their field in Akwa Ibom State to the Calabar power plant,” he stated.

Explaining the role of the World Bank in the agreement, Mr Ugbo said, the Bank would back NDPHC up to make the payment “in the event that we are unable to pay and as we have time, we pay back.”

Also commenting, the Chief Executive Officer of Seven Energy, Mr Philip Iheanacho, stated that the signing of the agreement was very significant because “it is the first gas to power guarantee that the World Bank has provided for, encouraging investment in the gas sector in Nigeria”.

Okoracha Displeased With State Of Egbema Power Station Project

Okoracha Displeased With State Of Egbema Power Station ProjectImo State Governor, Rochas Okorocha, has expressed displeasure with the slow pace of work at the Egbema Power Station Project site.

Governor Okorocha made the appeal on Wednesday during an inspection of the project in Mmahu, Ohaji Egbema Local Government Area of Imo State, Southeast Nigeria.

He charged contractors handling the project to hasten up work at the site to ensure completion.

In response, the contractor said the project was 80 per cent completed, but his declaration was countered by the indigenes who were also not pleased with the pace of work.

However, executives of companies in charge of monitoring and timely completion of the project, the Executive Director (networks) of Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), Albert Okorogu and General Manager of the National Integrated Power Plant (NIPP) for Southeast zone, Nkechi Mba, gave reasons for the delay.

The Egbema Power Project was awarded by the former President Olusegun Obasanjo’s administration in 2006 with an installed capacity of 338 megawatts but up till now, the job was less than 60 per cent completed.

FG Agrees To Privatise 10 Independent Power Plants

The three tiers of government have reached an agreement on the sale of ten National Independent Power Plants (NIPP) to be privatised by the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC).

Speaking after a joint meeting of the National Council on Privatisation and the governing board of NDPHC, the Director General of the Bureau for Public Enterprises, Mr. Benjamin Dikki explained that the agreement will further give boost to the privatisation process, which is nearing its conclusion.

53 per cent of the NDPHC plants is owned by states and the local governments, while the federal government owns the remaining 47 per cent.

The ten gas-fired power plants have a combined design capacity in excess of 5,453 megawatts.

The power plants include: Omotoso, Sapele, Alaoji and Ihovbor. They all have 450 megawatts capacity each.

The others are Geregu with 434 megawatts; Olorunsogo with 750 megawatts; Gbarain with 225 megawatts; Calabar with 561 megawatts; Egbema with 338 megawatts and Omoku with 225 megawatts.

President of Nigeria Society of Engineers Optimistic About Power Reforms

The President, Nigeria Society of Engineers, Otis Anyaeji has said that with the increasing activities of the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP), the erratic power supply in the country will soon be a thing of the past.

The President, Nigeria Society of Engineers, Otis Anyaeji

Speaking as a guest on Channels Television’s breakfast programme, Sunrise Daily, Mr Anyaeji said the government had already entered into an agreement that will ensure that gas, a major ingredient in power generation, is on constant supply to power plants.

He said the reason for his optimism over the reforms is the change in the behaviour of both the government and contractors handling power projects.

“There has been steadfastness in all the stakeholders including the government, that’s what gives me the confidence to say that not only will this NIPP be carried through but even beyond NIPP. I think the behaviour has changed now, even in the government level and the contractor level,” he said.

The most significant measures taken by the government to re-jig the nation’s ailing power sector came in August 2005 when the National Council of State (NCS) and the National Assembly approved an initial funding of US$2.5 billion for the NIPP from the “Excess Crude Oil Account.

The Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited (NDPHC) was thereafter incorporated as a limited liability company to serve as the legal vehicle to hold the NIPP assets. The mandate of the NDPHC included construction and expansion of the country’s power infrastructure to boost electricity generation and supply across the country.

In 2008, the National Economic Council (NEC) voted US$5.375 billion from the excess crude account as Power Emergency Fund (PEF) to complete NIPP. NEC also inaugurated the NIPP Steering Council in January 2009, chaired by President Goodluck Jonathan, then the country’s vice president with six state governors and four ministers as members.

The NIPP Steering Council, which has transformed as the board of directors of NDPHC is headed by Vice President Namadi Sambo. In February 2009, the council approved phase I budget of US$2.213 billion from the PEF of US$5.375 billion to complete the first phase of the NIPP projects. It also approved US$423.639 million to PHCN as special intervention fund.

In June 2010, the council approved US$123.110 million to augment the phase 1 budget and N1.750 billion to buy NDPHC corporate headquarters in Abuja.

With these funds, the NDPHC built several gas turbine plants, distribution and transmission equipment and lines in the country.

Mr Anyaeji said he is hopeful that these investments and the commitment of other stakeholders will ensure that Nigerians will soon start enjoying uninterrupted power supply.

Power Holding Company’s Boss Explains Reasons For Poor Electricity Supply

The Managing Director of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, James Olotu has said that there is a disparity between electricity power generated in Nigeria and that transmitted to the consumers.

Mr Olotu, who was a guest on Channels Television’s programme, Sunrise Daily, said under normal circumstance, the power transmitted should be 100 percent of what was generated.

He attributed the disparities between power generated and that transmitted to lack of transmission infrastructure; a problem, he said is already being addressed.

He said, “Transmission should be 100 percent of power generated but we have a little bit less than what it should be.”

Mr Olotu said the absence of adequate transmission equipment results in ‘stranded generation power.”

He described stranded generation power as when electricity power is available “but because our infrastructural development have not reached that level where you have dotted those redundancy, you may not be able to fully 100 percent evacuate them.”

He said to curb this problem the government has started building transmission lines and substations in different parts of Nigeria.

Ambitious 14,000MW By 2013

President Goodluck Jonathan had last year presented a power reform roadmap where it was predicted that by December 2013 Nigeria will be generating 14,000MW of electricity.

This goal seems to be an overestimation because according to Mr Olotu, based on the current statistics, the total power generation by the end of this year will not exceed 9,000MW.

He said, “I think we will get close to 9, 000MW by December this year.”

He said four of the 10 power plants under construction including, Olorunsogo, Sapele, Geregu, and Ihovbor power plants are ready for commissioning and that they will together add about 2000MW to the existing power generation capacity.

NIPP Stations Will be Ready By June 2013- FG

The federal government says the 10 power plants under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) will be ready this year.

Governor of Ekiti state, Dr Kayode Fayemi disclosed this while briefing State House Correspondents after the 25th meeting of the board of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company chaired by Vice President Namadi Sambo in the Presidential Villa.

The board confirmed the June 2013 deadline for distribution companies to finish their work while transmission companies will terminate their contracts by December 2013.

The board also noted that there was substantial gas available though still not enough, adding that the NNPC and Shell have given assurance about the supply of the product.

The board said it has budgeted N5.3 billion for its operations this year promising that issues of insecurity and settlement of administrative bottlenecks are now a thing of the past.

The NIPP was planned in 2004 as a fast track project with 10 power stations to address the issues of low electricity generation in the country.

Since its inception the project has been fraught with delays from insecurity to embezzlement of fund.

Sambo directs speedy transmission of generated power

Vice President, Architect Namadi Sambo has directed the Federal Ministry of Power to ensure speedy evacuation of power generated to ensure constant power supply.

The Vice President gave this directive, when he chaired the 24th Board meeting of the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) overseeing the National Integrated Power Projects (NIPP), at the State House, Abuja.

The Vice President expressed delight with the current generation capacity of over 4,200 megawatts of electricity, he however lamented the lack of integrity and associated problems of the transmission and distribution lines to evacuate the generated power.

Mr Sambo, noted that with the quantity being added to the national grid, Nigerians were experiencing improvement in power supply, and therefore directed the Ministry of Power and the NDPHC to ensure speedy completion of the transmission lines, and the injection substation for the delivery of constant and stable electricity to Nigerians.

He also directed that a meeting be convened to tackle the problem of gas supply to the power plants, which according to him was also militating against power supply.

In line with President Jonathan’s Performance Contract policy, the VP directed that the National Planning Commission to draw up a Performance Contract that will be signed between him and the Board of NDPHC.

He also directed the NDPHC to ensure that such Performance Contract trickles down and that all of its consultants sign the performance bond, which according to him would enhance service delivery.

4,200 megawatts

Earlier the Minister of State for Power, Arc. Darius Ishaku, disclosed that the country is currently generating more than 4,200 megawatts of electricity, saying that the transmission and distribution network has integrity issues, which is affecting the adequate evacuation of the generated power.

He assured the meeting that the Ministry was doing everything possible to arrest the issue.

The Managing Director of NDPHC, who was represented by the Executive Director Technical Services; Mr. Louis Edozien, disclosed that the NIPP projects in Sapele, Alaoji, Olorunsogo and Omotosho were currently generating 1,350mw.

He however, noted that they would have achieved more but for gas supply as he also gave the assurance that progress was being made to ensure early delivery of all NIPP projects in the country.

The board under the chairmanship of the Vice President approved the purchase of replacement parts for Gas Turbines for Calabar, Egbema and Gabarin power plants from General Electric, the original manufacturers.

The board also approved the engagement of fire-fighting management providers for Olorunsogo, Sapele, Alaoji, Omotosho and Ihovbor power plants and the provision of gas pipe line to Geregu Phase II, NIPP power plant were also approved.

While the extension of project consultancy work for construction of Omotosho Phase II power plant was as well approved by the board.