By Emma Amaize
WARRI â€” FOLLOWING the latest electrocution accident in Port-Harcourt, Rivers State, the Initiative for Better Power Supply, IBPS, a non-governmental organisation, is to propose a bill to the National Assembly making it an offence punishable with a five-year jail term for anybody building under power lines.
National Coordinator of the group, Mr. Don Emma Onosen, who disclosed this to Vanguard, said the IBPS, which has a working alliance with the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN, would meet with Chairmen of the Senate and House of Representatives Committees on Power shortly on the matter.
â€œWe are saddened by the manner people go about selling lands and building houses under power lines. We appeal to Nigerians to desist from buying land and building houses under power lines. Those who refuse should be ready to face obvious attendant statutory consequences,â€ he said.
IBPS also called on the Acting President, Dr. Goodluck Jonathan, to give up his position as Minister of Power and inject a new blood into the system.
The group said, â€œThe Acting President should not emulate former President Olusegun Obasanjo who appointed himself as Minister of Petroleum in the last dispensation and left the petroleum industry in a shamble and backward state.
â€œWe know that the power sector is important to this country but the Acting President is too busy with many things for now and election is around the corner.â€
That position should be left for experts or professionals to handle.
â€œOur former President Obasanjo took over petroleum industry in last government but at the end, the petrol industry became worse. We are tired of promises that are never fulfilled. The time is too short for the Acting President to promise regular electricity.
â€œHe should release funds for ongoing projects and lay foundations for new projects that can improve the power situation in the country.
â€œThe Acting President should do away with the former Ministers of State that he has re-appointed, instead he should inject new blood into the system. We condemn the reappointment of Minister of State for Power. If the Minister of State doesnâ€™t change his retrogressive steps, we will mobilise PHCN workers against him.
â€œHe should serve this country humanly, selflessly promoting honour among the PHCN workers. The country is tired of unfulfilled promises to the people of this country; the whole brouhaha that power supply will be regular in few months should be stop.â€