Has electricity been good in your area this past few weeks? Yes/No. The erratic supply of electricity to homes and business premises in the last two weeks is as a result of the drop in power generation by about 963 megawatts as a result of gas supply constraints.
The electricity generation, which was put at 3,463.40MW as of March 20, dropped to 2,500MW on Monday.
The Board Chairman, Transmission Company of Nigeria, Mr. Ibrahim Waziri, who disclosed this to journalists on Monday on the sidelines of the investors’ conference organised by the firm in Abuja, said the worsening state of power supply in the last two weeks was as a result of the series of incidents that had bedevilled the sector lately.
He said, “Gas supply has dropped significantly in the last two weeks; in fact, it is exactly two weeks. That has resulted in reduced generation to about 2,500MW as of this (Monday) morning; we are back to square one. But we are addressing all these issues. SEE MORE AFTER CUT>>>
“Then, of course, we had accidents along the Benin-Sapele road and a lot of transmission lines collapsed due to fire incidents. These affected a very small area in that locality in terms of giving them power. But like I said earlier, these issues are being addressed.”
At the conference proper, the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, said the Federal Government was in bilateral and multilateral relationships with the governments of other countries for the importation and exportation of electricity.
Nebo, who was represented by the Minister of State for Power, Mr. Mohammed Wakili, told the investors that the country needed about $8bn to boost its power transmission infrastructure in the next five years.
He said the Federal Government had signed a Memorandum of Understating with the Democratic Republic of Congo to supply electricity to Nigeria.
Nebo said, “The government of Nigeria is in bilateral and multilateral relationships at various stages of advancement with other governments for the importation and exportation of power. For example, Nigeria has signed an MoU with the Democratic Republic of Congo for the importation of electricity from the Inga Dam Power Plant for both local consumption and export to other countries.
“The Inga is envisaged to exceed 40,000 megawatts on full exploitation. The TCN network spreads to all parts of the country and across the borders to some neighboring countries to form part of the West African Power Pool.
“With the realisation of Inga and other initiatives, Nigeria will become a regional hub in international electricity trade, exporting large swathes of internally generated as well as imported power to the WAPP countries.”
Nebo said the measures would greatly ramp up the total generation on the TCN grid, necessitating the massive and rapid expansion of the transmission and other infrastructure.
He said, “It is projected that the TCN requires $8bn in the next five years to prosecute its capacity expansion programme. We hereby invite all and sundry to partake in this investment bonanza. Government has established various mechanisms to safeguard and protect your investments in the TCN and elsewhere in the Nigerian electricity supply industry.
“The electricity supply industry has undergone radical changes. Traditionally, the ESI involved itself with the generation, transmission and distribution of electric power, usually by vertically integrated utilities. Today, we have trading in electricity with well-developed spot futures market in some places.”
On the level of investment to be undertaken by the TCN, Waziri said the company had $1.5bn annual target to boost power transmission.
He said, “What we are looking at in our template is $1.5bn per annum for the next five, six years.”
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, TCN, Mr. Mack Kast, said although the company had garnered some funds from the Federal Government and donor agencies, more was still needed to effectively boost transmission.
He said, “What we are asking for over the five-year period is in the neighbourhood of $7.7bn and we believe that we can reach our goal. We already have some funding; we have the Federal Government funding, the secured debt and we have potential proceeds from the sale of the NIPP assets, but that isn’t enough.”