By Anayo Okoli
UMUAHIA—IN an effort to boost power at the Ariaria International Market, Aba, Abia State, the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, has granted power generating licence to Ariaria Market Independent Power Plant Limited to generate 9.5 Megawatts for the market.
NERC also granted licence to Ariaria Independent Energy Distribution Network Limited to distribute the energy generated by the company within Ariaria Market.
This, according to traders and artisans in the market and its environs, would help boost their business, especially the small and medium businesses in the state which is being championed by Governor Okezie Ikpeazu.
Disclosing this, NERC through its Head, Media Unit, Mrs. Vivian Mbonu, said that the licence was granted “after careful consideration of the application in public interest to promote access to common goods and to promote commercialization and industrialisation”.
According to Mbonu: “The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, in pursuit of overriding public interest has granted a 9.5megawatts embedded electricity generation licence to Ariaria Market Independent Power Plant Limited and an Independent Electricity Distribution Licence to distribute same within Ariaria Market to Ariaria Independent Energy Distribution Network Limited.
“The licences, issued in line with Section 71(6) of the Electric Power Sector Reform (EPSR) Act 2005, were granted after careful consideration of the applications in public interest to promote access to common goods and to promote commercialization and industrialization for which Ariaria, a leading commercial hub in the country is reputed for.
“Both licences granted to Ariaria were affirmation of the Commission’s commitment and response to the long-time yearnings of the market for a stable, reliable and sustainable electricity supply to
improve quality of goods and services by Nigerian enterprises and entrepreneurs”.
Traders at the Ariaria market have expressed happiness over the gesture by NERC and commended Governor Ikpeazu for his relentless effort to realize it.
According to the chairman of traders’ associations in the state, ASMATA, Chief Emeka Enechebe, “we are happy that the Federal Government has favorably considered our request to end our sufferings in the hands of Enugu Electricity Distribution Company, EEDC, that has been exploiting us for years without giving us power to carry out our business.
“We also thank Governor Okezie Ikpeazu who has been at the forefront of fighting for us to have steady power supply to enable us do more business and support the industrialization, Trade and Commerce agenda of his administration.”