By Kunle KALEJAYE
The recent worsened power supply in the country, has been attributed to the inability of successive federal administrations to upgrade generation and transmission infrastructure in the power sector in line with geometric growth in the country’s population.
In addition to the country’s increasing population, increased economic activities as a result of civilisation and urbanisation are key variables that have long been neglected by successive administrations.
This was the submission of the Managing Director of Meter manufacturing company, Paktim Nigeria Limited, Mr. Ilofulunwa Charles Ejikeme.He however said the current administration has done a lot in the power sector, but admitted that more still needs to be done.
“You may need to know that basically, what we are seeing today as a failure in the power sector is as a result of inability of the successive federal administration to keep upgrading the generation and transmission infrastructure in line with the geometric growth in Nigeria’s population and increase in economic activities as a result of civilisation and urbanization. So the inability to build the capacity on these two variables remains the major setback.
“However the current regime has done a lot even though a lot still need to be done in the area of transmission capacity to evacuate what has been generated especially from Agip power plant in Kwale,Delta State and Afam Power Plant in Oyigbo, Port Harcourt etc to the national grid,” he said.
In tackling vandalisation of gas pipeline, Ejikeme suggested that the latest technology that helps in surveillance and monitoring, dictating the exact spot with precision where the vandalisation was and time needs to be deployed.
“The drop in 300mw as they said, has to do with gas pipeline vandalism. In that case, what needs to be done is to deploy the latest technology that helps in surveillance and monitoring, dictating the exact spot with precision where the vandalization was done and time, for quick intervention and remediation with precision and put in place adequate security measure to forestall future occurrence.
“Secondly, when we were in the secondary school, we were told that in siting your industry, the first thing you consider is proximity to raw-materials. So I expect that before siting a power plant that will depend on gas supply, proximity to gas source must be paramount in consideration rather than political consideration, to reduce the incidence of vandalism as a result of long stretch of gas pipeline that will be laid to connect to the plant.
“In addition, various alternative renewable energy sources should be deployed in cluster areas to enhance power supply, especially in the rural areas. E.g. Solar Photovoltaic, solar thermal system, wind turbines, waste power plants, Biofuels/Blomass heating system and air source heat pumps.
Commenting on some factors hindering development in the power sector, Mr. Ejikeme said new investors need to deploy latest technology into the power plants to replace obsolete ones.
“I believe the new investors will need up to a year to fully understand practically the quantum of decay in power infrastructure, the exact locations and latest cutting edge technology that is needed must be deployed to replace them and increase their performance by up to 98% installed capacity. Not until they are done, you may only be witnessing marginal increase in performance capacity.