* Faulty plants frustrate power generation
* 38 turbines out of operation
* N17.9bn spent annually on generators

By Clara Nwachukwu

LAGOS — No fewer than 38 electricity generating turbines are grounded in various power plants in the country, Vanguard investigations can reveal.

These technically faulty gas turbines, as a result, are unable to generate their required power output, thus compounding Nigeria’s already poor electricity supply situation.

Excuses and more excuses

For a while now, Nigerians have been given all manner of excuses for the recent drop in electricity supply despite assurances of improvement, but investigations have shown that it will take even a while longer before the country can experience some reprieve. This is because virtually all the generation plants are bugged down with one technical problem or the other.

The reality is such that even if the Federal Government fulfils its pledge to revamp these faulty plants, Nigerians will still not have enough power to meet their industrial and domestic energy needs.

This is because not only are the plants allegedly being starved of gas notably from its major suppliers, the international oil companies, IOCs, the transmission and distribution networks are still too weak to carry and supply even the little that is generated.


For instance Lagos, Nigeria’s commercial nerve centre, which is estimated to require between 10,000 and 12,000 mega watts, MWs, is only able to get a paltry 928MWs, out of the 3,714MWs generated, while Abuja receives a mere 44.2MW, as shown in the data below.

 Daily Report

Peak demand forecast 10200MW at 21:00 Hrs:      Actual generation capability 4370MW at                                                                             21:45Hrs

Peak generation 3714.8MW at 21:45 Hrs:              Lowest generation 3118MW at 15:00 Hrs
Energy generated 83,411.40MWH                        Energy sent out 81,790.05MWH;

Peak generation to date 4321.3MW                 Max. energy generation capability to date                                                                            96,768.53MWH;

Max power despatched to Lagos 928.00MW @ 09:00Hrs;     Max. power despatched  to Abuja                                                                                                   44.20MW @ 22.00Hrs.

The effect of these supply inadequacies is that Nigeria has become a dumping ground for all manner of sub-standard generating sets, apart from being one of the highest importers of generating sets in the world.

NNPC promises improved gas supply

The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, NNPC, the senior partner in the joint venture, JV, oil and gas operation, promised that the power supply situation would improve as system overhaul on the Escravos Lagos Gas Pipeline, would have been completed last weekend and gas supply restored to Egbin power plants

Executive Director, Gas and Power, NNPC, Dr. David Ige, in a telephone conversation with Vanguard, revealed: “Chevron will soon be ramping up production. The Escravos Lagos Pipeline has been undergoing routine maintenance in the last three weeks. It will take another three to four days to ramp up production.”

He noted that with Chevron being the major gas supplier, it was expected that “there will be some rationing. But by the weekend, the situation would have significantly improved.”

The NNPC, through its subsidiary, Nigerian Gas Company, NGC, operates the following gas supply systems in the country:

1. The Aladja Gas Pipeline System which supplies the Delta Steel Company, Aladja.

2. The Oben-Ajaokuta-Geregu Gas Pipeline System, which will form the back-bone of the proposed Northern Pipeline System, supplies Gas to Ajaokuta Steel Company, Dangote’s Obajana Cement Company and PHCN Geregu Power Plant.

3. The Sapele Gas Supply Systems which supplies gas to PHCN Power Station at Ogorode, Sapele.

4. The Imo River-Aba System for gas supply to the International Glass Industry Limited PZ, Aba Textile Mills and Aba Equitable Industry.

5. The Obigbo North-Afam system caters for PHCN Power Station at Afam.

6. The Alakiri to Onne Gas pipeline system supplies gas to the National Fertiliser Company (NAFCON) now Notore Chemicals for fertilizer production;

7. The Alakiri-Obigbo North -lkot Abasi system for gas supply to the former Aluminium Smelting Company of Nigeria (ALSCON) plant now Rusal Industries in Ikot Abasi.

8. The Escravos-Lagos Pipeline (ELP) supplies gas to NEPA’s Egbin Power Plant near Lagos. Subsequent spur lines from the ELP supply the West African Portland Cement (WAPCO) Plants at Shagamu and Ewekoro, PZ Industries at Ikorodu, City Gate in lkeja Lagos, PHCN Delta IV at Ughelli, and Warri Refining and Petrochemical Company at Warri.

9. Ibafo-Ikeja Gas Supply Pipeline System supplies gas to Ikeja City Gate from where Gaslink distributes to the Lagos Industrial Area (LIA).

10. Ikeja-Ilupeju-Apapa Gas Pipeline System currently operated by Gaslink for Gas Supplies to Greater Lagos Industrial Area.

11. Ajaokuta-Geregu Gas Pipeline System which supplies gas to the Geregu PHCN Power Plant.

12. Ajaokuta-Obajana Gas Pipeline System which supplies gas to Dangote’s Obajana Cement Plant (OCP).

“All these facilities comprise over 1,250 kilometres of pipelines ranging from 4” to 36″ in diameter with an over all design capacity of more than 2.5 billion standard cubic feet of gas per day (bscf/d), 16 compressor stations and 18 metering stations. The facilities represent a current asset base of more than N21 billion,” NGC explained on its website.

Some of the major gas suppliers, Shell and Chevron when contacted could not respond appropriately. A spokesman for Shell, Mr. Tony Okonedo, when asked specifically about the situation in Afam VI, operated by Shell, he merely said, “Nothing was amiss.”
General Manager, Government Policy and Public Affairs, Chevron, Mr. Deji Haastrup, also did not respond to Vanguard enquiries after five days of sending detailed enquiries on his request.

Poor electricity supply situation has turned almost every Nigerian into a self styled generator with about N17.9 billion spent annually on imported generators to make up for electricity shortfall from the power suppliers.


Electricity targets

Ironically, under the Power Sector Roadmap, launched by President Goodluck Jonathan in August 2010, Nigeria’s generation capacity should have peaked at 40,000MW by Year 2020, and above 7,000MW by April of 2011.

More than two years into the implementation of the roadmap, none of the set targets, in terms of generation, transmission, distribution, has been met, including the reform timeline that should have ended in the privatisation of the electricity sector.

On generation, government planned to increase capacity by about 52 per cent from 4,612MW currently to 7,033MW by April 2011, and increase capacity further to 14,218MW by December 2013. About a year on, the country is nowhere near generating half of the set target.

Weak transmission and distribution networks

It is estimated that about 35 per cent of generation is lost to technical faults on account of weak networks. As shown in the data below, most of the lines are either weak or unavailable for a number of reasons, and for some of them have remained in the current state for years:


1) Papalanto/Otta 132kV line breaker – Not available – jumpered.

2) Akangba T.S. 132kV Bus Coupler CB – Serious Air leakage since 1994.

3)Akangba T/S 132kV Itire line 1 isolator: Faulty.

4)Egbin T/S : Unit ST4 tie CB 52-14:out on CB failure relay.

5) Egbin T/S: Unit ST6 tie CB 52-20: Out on CB failure relay.

6)Egbin T/S: Unit ST6 south bus CB 50-21: Out on CB failure relay.

1) Benin 330kV bus coupler 1 breaker – CB not available due to CTs explosion.

2)Sapele/Benin 330kV line 2 (cct S4B) bus 2 isolator Q21at Sapele end: Faulty.

3)Aladja T/S G1W/S4W CB at Aladja – locked out in open position and bypassed.

1)132kV Owerri/Alaoji lines I & II tie breaker – faulty and bypassed – Oct. 2009

2)132kV Owerri Ahoada line I breaker – faulty and bypassed – Jan. 2009


Biu TS: 30/40MVA 132/33kV T2: Out on REF.  A replacement    is on plinth awaiting funds for installation.

Ajaokuta T/S 224T3 162MVA 330/132/33kV transformer – awaiting 1No. Secondary lightning arrester.

Effurun T/S 30MVA 132/33KV T2A: Out on differential, REF & SBEF.

Ayede T/S 150MVA 330/132/33kV transformer T1B – Replacement on plinth and installation in progress.

Apapa Road T/S 45MVA  132/33kV TR1 – Out on differential.


Benin, Kaduna, Osogbo, Onitsha, Ikeja West, Alaoji,  Ayede, Akangba & Aja.

Lagos region
Ikeja West/Omotosho line (M5W) and Egbin line 3 (M6W) – 21 spans.

Ikeja West/Olorunsogo line (cct. R1W)  – 80 spans.

330kV Ikeja West/Osogbo line. – 95 spans.

Ikeja West/Alimosho/Ogba 132kV lines 1 & 2 – 15 spans.

Ikeja West/Akangba 330kV line 2. – 1 span.

Ikeja West 132kV Ilupeju lines 1 & 2. – 8 spans.

Akangba/Itire 132kV lines 1 & 2. – 1 span.

Ikeja West/Agbara 132kV lines 1 & 2. – 61 spans.

Ikeja West/Otta 132kV lines 1 & 2. – 17 spans.

Ogba/Otta 132kV line. – 17 spans.


Afam/Alaoji 132kV line 1:Vandalized.

Omoku -P/Harcourt main 132kV line, collapsed tower

Lagos region:
132kV Akangba/Itire  line 1- Faulty line isolator at Akangba T/S.

132kV Ikeja west – Ilupeju lines 1 & 2 – Out on fault.

Agbara/Ojo 132kV line 1 & 2 – Out on fault.


Osogbo Region

Akure 132kV T/S: Akure/Osogbo 132kV line ground switch not in service since 03/12/2008 – Bad Yellow Phase female contact.

Omotosho 330kV T/S: 4th series ground switch 3342-1 not in service since 25/10/2011 – The Red Phase is misaligned.

Benin Region
Irrua T/S: Irrua/Benin 132kV line Earth Switch: faulty

330kV ccts G3B/S5B  –  19 spans vandalized between Sapele and Benin end.

P/H Region
Afam/Alaoji 132kV line 1  – vandalized (40 spans).

Shiroro Region
Jebba T/S: 330kV Osogbo lines 1 & 2 and Ganmo line – vandalized 9 spans.

Minna T/S: 132kV Bida line –  32 spans vandalized.

Apo T/S:132kV Keffi line  – 36 spans vandlized.

Apo T/S: 132kV Suleja line  – 38 spans vandlized.

330kV Shiroro T/S:  330kV Jebba line 2:- 28 spans vandalized.

Apparently, while government was busy setting out ambitious generation targets, it did not plan for the closure of identified gaps and a reduction in distribution losses over the target period.

Although it recently announced approval for the construction of a new 700kv super grid estimated at $3.5 billion to augment the existing 330kv and 132kv transmission lines, it failed to say how the project would be financed.

The project which is expected to be completed within four years, will be owned by the Federal Government, since transmission is left in government hands, no provisions have been made for it in the budget and makes one wonder how government intends to achieve its power for all project by 2020.

No reprieve yet

Even the industry regulator, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, could not offer any explanations or reprieve, as its Chair, Dr. Sam Amadi, could not respond to Vanguard enquiries even after five days.

The industry regulator is currently fine-tuning how to implement yet another tariff increase on account of new exchange rate in the new year, while consumers continued to groan under current crazy billing system.

Chief Executive, Eko Distribution Company of the PHCN, Mr. A. Amoda, in a telephone conversation maintained that government’s efforts were deliberately being sabotaged by industry contractors and those benefitting from the rot in the system from within.

As a result, he said: “The time lines given by the President for various power projects are no longer feasible because some people are trying to sabotage the effort.”

He said the pre-paid meter was no longer available because “it was expected to be given to consumers for free and some people will no longer be getting the extra money for estimated billing, if the meters are installed.”

It is apparent that a lot still needed to be done, if government is to achieve set targets. But first, it must deal with the issue of internal corruption for successful implementation of programmes.
Current status of some of the plants ( *Source: Nigeria System Operator, NSO.)
ST06 – Out on high turbine rotor vibration.
ST1- Out for furnace inspection
ST3 – Out due to cold sheared hanger bearing problem.

GT11 – Out on maintenance

AFAM 1V & V  
GT2 – Out on generator differential.
GT3 – Out on high vibration.
GT4 – Tripped on generator differential.
GT5 – Out due to burnt generator breaker.
GT6 –  Major Inspection/Repairs in progress.
GT17 – Out on D.C failure.

DELTA P/S     
GT2 – Overdue for major overhaul.
GT3 & 5 – Generator winding faulty.
GT6 – Out on high vibration.
GT7 – Shut down on emergency due to oil leakage at generator collector end.
GT10 – Out due to high vibration.
GT11 – Out due to unit transformer that is undergoing maintenance.
GT13 – High vibration awaiting check and repair.
GT14 – Out on maintenance.
GT15 – Turbine blade failure.
GT16 – Out on generator differential lock out.
GT17 – Out due to fire outbreak on the accessory compartment.
GT18 – Out due to bearing No. 4 & 5 problem.

GT1 – Out for combustion check.

GT4 – Defective generator transformer since (06/04/90), awaiting rehabilitation.

GT11 – Out on type ‘A’ inspection.

2G6 – Burnt generator winding and AVR.  Awaiting rehabilitation.
411G2-Out on excitation problem.

207 – Tripped on inlet guide vane problem
208 – Tripped on loss of flame
209 – Shut down on maintenance.

GT2 & 4  – Out on generator differential.
GT3 & 5 – Out on suspected excitation.
GT6 – Out on vibration problem.
GT8 – Tripped on protective signal trip.

GT1 & 3 – Out on fault.

GT1 – Out on inlet guide vane.

GT1 – undergoing routine check.
GT2 – Out due to combustion problem.

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