………. Power would soon be restored to Maiduguri Area, says PS
The Permanent Secretary, (Power), Dr. Godknows Igali today held a crucial meeting with Chairmen of Distribution Companies (Discos) across the country, it was designed as a review platform on the activities of the Distribution value – chain of electricity.
The meeting which began on an interesting note, as the participants commended themselves for the gradual increase and stability experienced in the power sector in recent times.
Ambassador Igali stated that the current electricity supply stands at 4,545MW, this is a marginal increase over 4,517MW recorded on 12th June, 2015, as it stands there has been stable supply of electricity, adding that no system collapse has been recorded.
The Permanent Secretary said that this feat has been made possible because, security agencies have been able to reduce the menace of vandalism of pipe lines carrying gas to the various thermal plants.
Amb. Igali appealed to the owners to support President Muhammadu Buhari’s pledge to improve power supply nation-wide by massive investment on upgrade of their systems and networks.
Speaking on behalf the owners, Ernest Orji of EKO Disco pledged their support for the new Government stressing that Government should assist them in closing gaps that were not envisaged when they were acquiring these assets, so as to reduce the bashing on the Discos from the public.
He said Discos are at the receiving end in the value chain, “we are the ones that have direct interaction with the public hence everyone heaps blame on us”.
He identified some gaps to include non cost reflective tariff, losses at take-over, less power produced which has been envisaged to be in excess of 7,000MW, stressing that the expected lower energy cost cannot be achieved as we are still struggling with a little above 4,000MW.
Orji said that large investment in Distribution network is still a mirage as the goal-post keeps moving, it is scary, as many of us cannot meet payment obligations to market operators.
The PS used the occasion to announce that power has been restored to Maiduguri, following the unfortunate incident of buried mines left behind by the fleeing Boko Haram militants in which 4 soldiers and 4 staff of Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) lost their lives, while in the line of duty in the past 2 weeks.
He prayed for the repose of their souls while commiserating with their families for this unfortunate incidence.