Too many Nigerians very unsatisfied with electricity situation – Minister of Power

“We are aware that the Nigerian power sector is confronted by many challenges which have not enabled the sector to grow as desired. These challenges are reflected in the two overarching problems of the sector,”

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There are too many Nigerians unsatisfied with the quality of service, hours of electricity supply, voltage, disputed and estimated bills, says the Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu.

“We are aware that the Nigerian power sector is confronted by many challenges which have not enabled the sector to grow as desired. These challenges are reflected in the two overarching problems of the sector,” noted the minister. “Too many people are still not satisfied with the quality of service in terms of hours of supply, voltage, disputed/estimated bills, or have no access to electricity.”

However, the minister explained that the federal government was making progress in ensuring the speedy completion of key power projects to deliver a steady electricity supply to Nigerians.

Mr Aliyu disclosed this in a statement in Abuja on Wednesday to mark his 50 days as the minister of power.

Some of the projects include the Kashimbilla 40 MW power station in Taraba, which had already begun generating power for the national grid; the Gurara phase 2 (will deliver 30MW to the grid); the Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project (expected to deliver 700MW of renewable power); the Katsina wind farm, with a full capacity of 10MW, among others.

The minister also cited the Dadin Kowa 40MW power station generating power to the grid under a concession with a private investor.

Mr Aliyu revealed that the outstanding regulatory and power purchase agreement issues were also being resolved.

Speaking on the Mambilla hydroelectric power project, which was contracted in 2017, the minister noted that discussions were being intensified so that all issues preventing the full take-off of the project are resolved soon.

According to him, in its bid to accomplish an additional 7,000mw, the Federal Government has, through its Presidential Power Initiative (PPI), commenced the expansion and upgrade of the nation’s transmission and distribution of critical infrastructure through its Presidential Power Initiative (PPI).

“The first phase of the PPI is the upgrading and expansion of the vital infrastructure of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and the Distribution Companies (Discos) with the goal of achieving the 7,000MW.

“This first phase had started in earnest this year with the ongoing pre-engineering phase,” he said, adding that the selected contractors would soon be contacted officially so that work on the project can commence,” he said.

The minister also revealed that the Nigerian Electrification Roadmap (NER) was a partnership that will expand Nigeria’s electricity capacity from the current average output of 4,500 MWh/h to 25,000MW.

Mr Aliyu stated that the government was confident that the NER would succeed because of the pedigree of Siemens and its footprint in the global power industry.

He further mentioned that the government was reinvigorating important policies and regulations, especially the Eligible Customer and related regulations, that will move the electricity industry from the present interim commercial structure to a full commercial structure.

“In compliance with Clauses 25 and 26 of the Eligible Customer Act, whereby consumers contact willing GenCos directly for better services and service providers that are ready to make new investments to deliver better service,” he said.

 

(NAN)

 

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