September 20, 2023

Electricity supply crashes 97% to 88MW as grid collapses again



By Obas Esiedesa, Abuja & Mariam Eko

Homes and businesses were again left without public power supply yesterday as the national power grid dropped by 97.1 percent from 3,152.7MW at 11am to 88MW by 12 noon.

Data from the National System Operator, NSO, showed that as at 5pm, the Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN, was still battling to restore the grid as supply rose to 246MW with Afam VI (1.6MW), Ibom Power (70MW), Olorunsogo Plant (58.6MW), Omotosho Plant (67.9MW), and Trans-Amadi (47.7MW), the plants on the grid.

This is the third collapse of the grid in less than a week after 421 days of stability.

While it was unclear what caused the latest grid collapse, a source at the TCN told Vanguard that the incidences of the past few days need to be thoroughly investigated.

“What is happening to the grid is unusual. It bordering on sabotage and deliberate attempt to discredit the effort by the government to improve power supply”, the source who declined to be named added.

Two days ago, the Managing Director, TCN, Engr. Sule Abdulaziz had revealed that fixing damaged equipment at the Birnin Kebbi Transmission Station would cost about $4 million.

The station was destroyed by a fire incident in the early hours of Friday disrupting power supply to Kebbi and Sokoto states. Two major transformers, 90 MVA and 60MVA as well as the control room were destroyed in the incident.

Speaking shortly after inspecting the havoc caused by the fire outbreak, Engr. Abdulaziz disclosed that TCN engineers were working to identify what caused the fire outbreak.

Speaking to Vanguard, Mr. Adetayo Adegbemle, Executive Director PowerUp Nigeria said there is a need for the country to either have a complete cyclical grid, which will make it possible to isolate such issues without putting down the whole nation, or go with the regional grids that some of us has been pushing for.

“There is also the need for the spinning reserve which no one has been been able to resolve, I would have expected the new Minister of Power to have started engagements with key stakeholders in Generation, Transmission, Distribution and most importantly, Consumers that are paying for the inefficiencies in the power sector, so we can have policies that will work in the interest of the nation”, he added.