The Federal Government through the Ministry of Power says it is committed to implementing its key power projects to give Nigerians more access to electricity.
This was disclosed by Nigeria’s Minister of Power, Mr Abubakar Aliyu in a statement in Abuja, on Wednesday, marking his 50 days in office as the minister of Power, according to NAN.
He disclosed that the projects the FG is committed to completing are the Kashimbilla 40 MW Power Station in Taraba State which had already begun generating power for the National grid and also Gurara phase 2 project being developed in partnership with the Ministry of Water Resources which is soon to deliver 30MW to the grid.
What the Minister of Power is saying
Aliyu said, ”The Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project, is progressing towards completion next year, to deliver another 700MW of renewable power.
”Katsina wind farm, with a full capacity of 10MW, is already generating part of its full capacity for the grid.”
The minister also cited the Dadin Kowa 40MW power station that had also started generating power for the National grid, under a concession with a private investor.
On the Mambilla hydroelectric power project, the minister said that discussions were being intensified so that all issues preventing the full take off of the project are resolved soon.
He added that in a bid to accomplish additional 7000MW, the Federal Government through the Presidential Power Initiative (PPI), commenced the expansion and upgrade of the nation’s transmission and distribution critical infrastructure.
“The first phase of the PPI is the upgrading and expansion of the vital infrastructure of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and the Distribution Companies (Discos) with the goal of achieving the 7,000MW.
“This first phase, had started in earnest this year with the ongoing pre-engineering phase,” he said, adding that the selected contractors would soon be contacted officially so that work on the project can commence.
On challenges the sector faces, the Minister stated that the FG is aware that the Nigerian Power sector is confronted by many challenges which have not enabled the sector to grow as desired. These challenges are reflected in the two over-arching problems of the sector.
“Service quality: Too many people are still not satisfied with the quality of service in terms of hours of supply, voltage, disputed/estimated bills, or have no access to electricity.
“Sector illiquidity: The payments the DisCos are able to collect from consumers does not cover the full investment and costs of the GenCos who produce and sell the power, and Transmission Company of Nigeria which wheels the power to the DisCos.
“Federal Government financial support is required to cover the shortfall. The resulting huge burden on Government is unsustainable,” Aliyu said.
He added that the Nigerian Electrification Roadmap (NER) was a partnership that will expand Nigeria’s electricity capacity from the current average output of 4,500 MWh/h to 25,000MW, expressing optimism that the NER will succeed because of its partners including Siemens.