According to the Minister of power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, some areas in the country are now getting up to sixteen (16) hours of power supply daily. The dream of all Nigerians to have uninterrupted power supply will soon be attained, the Federal Government assures.
Nebo delivered the speech yesterday at the ministerial platform; also speaking, minister of state for power, Zainab Kuchi, said, “We can’t exactly say when we will deliver power 24/7, but we would like to assure you that it will soon happen.”
Prof. Nebo strongly condemned the continued vandalization of electricity installation across the country, calling on members of the public to join the government in tackling the menace. He said the copper wires the vandals seek are of much less worth than that of equipment destroyed. “In one of the discos, vandals removed copper worth N10, 000 from a transformer. It cost about N27 million to fix it and a million people were knocked out of power,” he lamented. SEE MORE AFTER CUT>>>>>>
Furthermore, the minister has once again shifted the date for the payment of severance packages to electricity workers which remain a contentious issue hanging over the privatization programme.
It would be recalled that Nebo had on April 22 said at the banquet hall of the State House, Abuja, that before the end of June 2013, government would have completed the payment of PHCN severance benefits.
The ministry had promised to commence payment on June 17.
He stressed that though the payments would have commenced last week, it would not take off as envisaged.
Nebo said, however, “Resolution of labour issues is also completed. The severance pay to Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) workers will commence this week.” He later changed ‘this week’ to ‘soon’.
The Minister said work was almost concluded on the establishment of National Council on Power, stressing that the Council would harmonize the activities of the federal, state and local governments and other players for effective coordination of efforts in the Power Sector.
He said: “The Ministry will leverage on the abundant Renewable Energy sources in the country which are environmentally friendly to increase power generation and guarantee security of supply.”
He however assured that the nation would soon witness a rebirth in electricity supply as it happened in the telecoms sector when private investors take over ownership of the sector.
The minister told a bewildered audience that President Goodluck Jonathan administration has done well so far, and that his team would consolidate the gains in previous year’s performance and improve availability of power supply between 16-24 hours per day for Nigerians.
To achieve most of its targets, he said government had commenced a major restructuring of the Ministry of Power and its agencies to cope with the evolving role in a privatized environment.