.Electricity, TCN, power sector

By Johnbosco Agbakwuru, Abuja

The federal government on Wednesday blamed the epileptic power supply in the country on the lack of attention paid to the development of the sector.

The Minister of Power Engr. Abubakar Aliyu, stated this while briefing State House correspondents at the end of the virtual extraordinary Federal Executive Council, FEC, meeting, presided over by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo at the Council Chambers, Presidential Villa, Abuja.

The minister, who said he presented 16 memos from his ministry that were all approved by the council, said the present administration has done more than any other to ensure that Nigerians enjoy an improved supply of electricity.

He said it was obvious that the government was doing a lot to remedy the situation with more investments in the sector which he said had manifested in the less system collapse being witnessed in the country.

While assuring that Nigerians will soon see the outcome of the ongoing investments, he said the federal government has placed an order for power equipment.

Aliyu said the present power generation in the country is about 5,000mw as he decried what he termed the weak transmission grid.

According to him, “Today, I presented to council 16 memos, which I seek for council’s approval and the council graciously approved all of them. At this point, let me say what these approvals will do to the nation’s electricity supply.

“As we’re all aware, the major problem we’re having in the Electricity Supply Industry is to be able to evacuate sufficient electricity and distribute them.  That is to say, we have a very weak transmission grid and distribution segment of the value chain.

“We may not be having many problems with generation. So, unless we’re able to strengthen the electricity grid, which is nationwide, and to expand, and to be able to evacuate, what the grid can take to consumers, we will have a lot of problems ahead of us.

“So, what we’re doing currently through various and several interventions is to be able to repair the grid by constructing new transmission lines, bringing in new equipment to replace the old ones at our substations. So, that will release more capacity to the distribution and lead to the customers.

“So, the operational capacity, as you all know now is hovering around 5,000 megawatts and the transmission and distribution.

“So, these projects that we brought to council today and got approvals are all geared towards strengthening the willing capacity of the transmission and towards distribution, even though as you all know, the distribution segment of the NESI (Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry) is been privatized, but we cannot fold our arms and allow them to continue not to do much in order to evacuate what the transmission can bring.

“But as it is now, even the transmission is not that strong. So, we need to put more investment into the transmission so that we can improve the willing capacity of the TCN to be able to take up enough electricity from the generation.

“So, these memos.  Although 16 of them but they’re all geared towards achieving what I’ve just explained.”

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