By Prince Okafor
NIGERIA electricity sector recorded zero power supply across the country, yesterday evening at 6.0 pm, due to total system collapse, with average power generation crashing to 1, 618 megawatts hour (MWh), down from 2, 904 MWh generated just before the system collapsed dropping generation to zero megawatts.
Details of the collapse are yet to be gotten as at the time of this report. Daily briefing on the Nigerian Power Report obtained by Vanguard from the National Control Centre at Osogbo showed that the system collapsed at about 1800 hours yesterday.
However, the daily operational report from the Nigeria Electricity System Operator, an arm of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), showed that nine electricity generation companies, GENCOs, sent out zero electricity to the grid.
Undersized transmission lines
The nine GENCOs are Gbarain, Rivers Independent Power Project, IPP, Trans Amadi, ASCO, and A.E.S. Others are Olorunsogo IPP, Ibom, Gerugu NIPP and Afam IV- V. In 2016, a similar incidence of total systems collapse happened 16 times.
Meanwhile, Ibadan Electricity Distribution Company, IBEDC, has said that the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN’s, undersized transmission lines, overloaded transmission power transformers and aged indoor 33 (Kilovolt) KV breakers were responsible for its poor distribution along with low collection of bills across its network.
According to the company’s Deputy Managing Director, John Ayodele, “TCN which is the middle-man of the value chain does not always wheel power supply when and to where it is needed.”
He said that, the company has always clamoured for adequate and reliable power supply to economically viable areas with higher concentration of maximum demand customers, such as Sagamu, Ota, Papalanto, Abeokuta, Ibadan North and Iseyin but TCN has been unable to deliver due to undersized transmission lines, overloaded transmission power transformers and aged/obsolete indoor 33KV breakers.
“IBEDC has requested to take more power to areas where load demand exceeds supply but a lot of those requests are still pending. Also, the frequency of interruptions, sometimes more than ten times in twenty-four hours has made a number of our premium customers to resort to self-generation, leaving the national grid completely.” Ayodele said.
He noted that, “the IBEDC ought not to reject power, however, this happens due to the existence of areas where the customers do not have the purchasing power reciprocal to the amount of power they receive due to economic reasons and a general apathy to bill payment.”