By Daniel Idonor
ABUJAâ€”ACTING President Goodluck Jonathan has set a daily target of one billion quantity of gas production and supply for the Ministry of Petroleum Resources, headed by Dr Rilwanu Lukman or be made to face the wrath of government.
A Presidency source told Vanguard, weekend, that the move is in a bid to sustain the drive toward achieving the governmentâ€™s 6,000Mw of electricity target, which is being threatened by inadequate gas supply to power the many National Integrated Power Projects, NIPP, independent power plants across the country.
Speaking on the condition of anonymity, the source said, due to the unconcerned attitude of the minister and the respective gas producers, now under the watch of Jonathan directly, the country only gets about 250 million gas supply with a short fall of 750 million.
Tasked gas producers
Jonathan, it was told, had last Thursday tasked Lukman to ensure that the management of the Nigeria National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, the Nigerian Gas Company, NGC, Shell, Chevron and other major gas producers in the country are compelled to provide the required quantity of dry gas or they would be seen as sabotaging governmentâ€™s efforts toward achieving the power target.
Vanguard learnt that â€œthe ruptured pipeline facilities are not the main problem but the unexplainable production shortfall, as we are made to believe. Let nobody deceive us, we can meet the gas supply target if we do what is right. If we sit up and the respective companies do what they are expected to do, we can get steady supply of dry gasâ€.
â€œThe Acting President is very unhappy with Lukman for his failure to ensure that concerted efforts are made towards generating the needed gas to power the governmentâ€™s 6,000Mw of electricity. He has directed that all the gas producers in the country must be prepared to provide the one billion daily gas targets to power the power plants,â€ the source said.
Vanguard gathered that Jonathanâ€™s fury was made known at the Presidential Steering Council on National Integrated Power Project, NIPP, last Thursday when he directed Lukman to summon all the gas producers in the country to a meeting to iron out the grey areas in the one billion-gas daily supply arrangement.
His approval for the appointment of an executive director to coordinate the operations of NIPP is also another indication that he was very dissatisfied with the progress so far made in the power sector.