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Energy

Major challenges confronting power supply in Nigeria

Babatunde Fashola

Babatunde Fashola, Minister of works,Housing and Power

 

By Kingsley Okoye

Mr Idris Mohammed, Chief Executive Officer, Delamol International Limited , a power consultancy firm, says inadequate power facilities for generation and transmission are the major challenges bedeviling the nation’s power industry.

Mohammed said this in an interview on Monday in Abuja

He said for Nigeria to record outstanding improvement in power sector, there was need to provide adequate facilities to generate and wheel electricity to the distribution companies.

“The greatest challenge to Nigerian’s power sector is that of generation and transmission infrastructure.

“A lot needed to be done to reposition or to rewrite the map of Nigeria power sector from no light to light, from light to stable light, to facilitate the industrial take off of Nigeria,“ Mohammed said.

He said that a significant improvement in the nation’s power supply would trigger economic prosperity for the country.

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According to Mohammed, adequate power is needed to alleviate the high rate of poverty in the country.

“When that is done, we believe that the economic index of Nigeria will move to a much higher level and the seeming poverty level in Nigeria will be addressed.

“This is because there will be room for full scale employment opportunities for our talents who are in want of job.“

Mohammed said that part of the challenges being encountered by some DISCOs was their inability to understand the workings of the electricity business when they bought over the companies.

He said that some of the new owners of the company were in a hurry to take over the business without making adequate effort to understudy it.

“At the time the new owners took over, they knew nothing about the business they were buying; they are supposed to maintain a succession plan to enable them to meet the demand of the business.

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“They did not bother to study the business and they went further to disengage the workers that knew how to manage the business and that led to the drop in services.”

He also said that a lot of the distribution companies operating in the nation’s power sector did not have the required capacity to take the electricity wheeled to them from the transmission company.

This, he said, was resulting in the rejection of electricity load by some DISCOS.

Mohammed said that the trend of rejecting electricity load because of inadequate facilities was a sad development to the nation’s power sector.

Mohammad, who was also a former Managing Director of the Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDC), said he was able to reduce the challenge of estimated billings based the metering plan adopted during his tenure as CEO of the company.

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“What we did was that we embarked aggressively on metering of our customers; we had our metering plan that we implemented and up to the time I Ieft office, that metering plan was sustained.

“Many of our customers were metered and because they were metered, there had been no fear or issue of estimated billing and they were able to pay their bills on time.

“That changed the fortunes of the company because it was able to hit a record of cash collection of N1.35 billion revenue. That record, till today, has not been achieved in KEDC,“ he said.

Mohammed, however, expressed belief that the nation’s power sector would develop further.

He said the expectation was based on the resolve at the Powering Africa Nigeria Conference by international investors and other stakeholders to invest in the sector.

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