Despite owing Nigeria billions of Naira, the Federal Government appears keen on supplying the Republic of Benin more power. Permanent Secretary in charge of power at the Ministry of Power, Works and Housing Louis Edozien appealed to the Republic of Benin to settle the accumulated debts.
The electricity that we have already supplied is not paid for. I use this platform to emphasise to the CEB that the debt that has accumulated needs to be settled quickly. It helps us explain to Nigerians why we should expand the supply by doing this kind of project. A mechanism must be in place to make sure the debt does not balloon again,”
A second transmission line from Ikeja to Sakete in the Republic of Benin is being constructed and will be ready by 2021. Funding for the project has been provided by the New Partnership for African Development (NEPAD) and the African Development Bank (ADB).Edozien also used the occasion to announce that Nigeria’s generation capacity had inceased to 7000MW but the distribution companies IDISCOS) could only distribute about 4600 MW.
Nigeria supplies power to the Republics of Benin, Togo and Nigeras part of a bilateral agreement.Niger and the Republic of Benin, have so far made a part payment of $152 million of the total amount owed. The Republics of Benin and Togo are supplied 200 MW, while Niger Republic gets 100 MW.
Nigeria’s power sector has been plagued by several issues with some of the operators calling for a reversal of the privatization programme. Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola has however stated that was unlikely as the government had spent the proceeds on settling workers liabilities, and would have to pay back the operators twice the amount collected due to a depreciation of the Naira against the dollar.