By Michael Eboh
Lagos—The Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, yesterday, said it will invest $8 billion, about N1.28 trillion in the upgrade of its facilities across the country to boost power supply to about 20,000 mega watts in the next couple of months.
Mr. Mohammed Shaike, Executive Director, TCN, disclosed this while receiving members of the Senate Committee on Privatization, led by its Chairman, Senator Olugbenga Obadara, who visited the company’s regional office in Oshogbo in continuation of their oversight visit to privatized enterprises in Osun State.
Shaike disclosed that TCN intends to work jointly with the Infrastructure Concession Regulatory Commission (ICRC) to achieve the target.
He informed the senators that in its determination to develop the technical manpower of the company, TCN’s Management Contractors-Manitoba International had trained some of the technical staff abroad to acquire technical and strategic skills.
Also speaking, TCN’s General Manager, Mr. M.J. Lawal said the company’s power lines currently accommodate a maximum voltage of 330kv and that its transmission coverage extends to Benin and Niger Republics.
He said that despite the low power generation from the generation companies, plans were on to upgrade the transmission lines to accommodate more voltage to distribute to the distribution companies.
Lawal listed the challenges faced by the company to include poor office accommodation, lack of safety facilities and lack of training for the technical staff.
Responding, Chairman of the Senate Committee on Privatization, Senator Olugbenga Obadara decried the low level of investment in power generation resulting in unstable and unreliable power supply in the country.
At the Nigeria Machine Tools (NMT) Limited, its Managing Director, Mr. Norbert Chukumah, noted that since privatization in 2007, the company had embarked on massive rehabilitation and upgrade of its facilities to bring it to modern standards.
Obadara, however, urged the company to take the company to the capital market to raise more funds for its operations.