August 31, 2021

Electricity: Power generation falls to 1,500MW as operators bicker

By Obas Esiedesa

Power generation fell by 35.7 per cent to stand at 1,506.9 Mega Watts, MW, as at Monday, from the 4,221.1MW average generation recorded on Sunday.

The fall in generation came as operators continued to bicker over the status of Eligible Customer Regulations, ECR, which allowed power generation companies, GenCos, to supply electricity directly to large consumers.

Latest data from the National System Operator, an autonomous division of the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, showed that as at 4pm on Monday only nine out of 29 power generation plants servicing the country, were operational on the national grid.

Checks showed that the Jebba hydro plant was the highest generator at 406MW, followed by Afam VI with 345MW.

Other generators were Afam IV & V, 80MW; Geregu 160MW; Odukpani 209.60; Omotosho 100.10MW; Rivers IPP 80MW; Sapele NIPP 83.70MW, and Trans-Amadi 42.5MW.

The Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, NERC, had at the weekend denied that it has suspended the ECR which was put in place by the government in 2017 to allow direct supply by GenCos to customers who consume at least two megawatts of electricity per hour in a month.

ALSO READ: How I risked my life to deliver N2.5m ransom to my in-law’s abductors- RCCG worshipper

NERC in a statement on Saturday by its General Manager, Public Affairs Department, Dr. Usman Abba Arabi, stated that the ECR has not been suspended and at no time has the Commission issued a directive for discontinuation of service to any customer.

The Commission explained that what it suspended was the authorized direct supply by GenCos to consumers.

Its position was backed by electricity distribution companies, DisCos which accused GenCos of engaging in illegal transactions in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry, NESI.

Executive Director, Research and Advocacy, Association of the Nigerian Electricity Distributors, ANED, Barr. Sunday Oduntan in a statement on behalf of the DisCos pointed out that the contracts signed and operated by the GenCos and the consumers did not meet the requirements set by NERC.

According to him, “In response to the insinuation that NERC and the DisCos are colluding to frustrate the implementation of the Regulation, we wish to state unequivocally that this is untrue, unfounded, preposterous, and irresponsible of the stakeholders who have failed to meet the requirements of the Regulation and attempting to pass the buck.”

“In fact, to fault NERC (who have been unduly lenient with them) as they have, is undermining the powers of the Commission as the regulator of the Nigerian power sector, vested with the requisite authority to ensure sanity in the Nigerian Electricity Market (NEM) and NESI as provided by the EPSRA.”

Oduntan clarified that NERC has not cancelled the Regulation as claimed, adding that “the directive is simply to stop the illegality that has been perpetrated by these unscrupulous companies and their supplier GenCo who have gone rogue for four years unchecked.”

Vanguard News Nigeria