The Minister of Power, Mr Adebayo Adelabu, has reassured Nigerians of his ministry’s commitment to prioritize electricity supply in the country in 2024.
He said that this was in line with President Bola Tinubu’s electricity turnaround agenda in his New year message.
Mr Bolaji Tunji, Special Adviser, Communication and Strategy to the Minister of Power, said this in a statement in Abuja on Monday.
Tunji quoted the minister as saying that the ministry, agencies and Electricity Distribution Company (DisCos) worked tirelessly during the yuletide to enhance power supply, adding that it was a positive improvement.
”In recognising the critical role of electricity in economic growth, the initial three months of my assumption of office I focused on diagnosis, stakeholders’ consultation, and strategy formulation.
”With a well-documented implementation plan, it is now time to take decisive action.
“Our primary focus is enhancing distribution and transmission infrastructure to minimise technical and commercial losses,” he said.
The minister said that the lack of liquidity continues to be a significant challenge in the electricity market.
According to him, the ministry is currently reviewing the implementation process of a cost reflective tariff, while government will continue to subsidise power supply to those that are vulnerable in our society so as boost electricity supply in 2024.
”Closing the meter gap is imperative, and ongoing initiatives, including World Bank programmes and the Presidential Metering Initiatives, will gain momentum.
”The ministry will intervene in distribution infrastructure, supplying transformers to communities without burdening citizens financially,” he said.
Adelabu also said that rural electrification would remain a priority, with plans for solar-powered mini and micro grids and street lights while collaborating closely with DisCos and State Electricity Boards,
He said “our efforts will align with local needs.
Adelabu said that in order to improve the transmission infrastructure the Federal Government have reactivated the Presidential Power Initiative Siemens Project which would strengthen the national grid, and minimise technical losses.
”We will also be implementing the Eastern and Western super grid projects to strengthen the grid and increase electricity supply to demand centres in the country.
”The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) will be reconstituted in the short term, separating transmission services from system and market operations in the first quarter of 2024.
”In the medium- to long-term the transmission grid will be separated into regional grids for effective management,” he said.
According to him, generating at installed capacity is a goal for government-owned plants, while private companies are encouraged to invest further.
He said that off-grid and distributed generation, utilising renewables, would be a focal point, adding that solar Photovoltaic (PV) plants, small hydro plants, and wind farms will be strategically deployed.
Speaking on power theft, the minister said that tackling the issue and vandalism is paramount.
He said that this was a national responsibility and requires joint efforts to protect the assets.
Adelabu said that the ministry had already informed the National Security Adviser (NSA) of recorded cases, adding that collective action was essential to eliminate these setbacks.