• Saturday, June 22, 2024
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FG to partner states to address power sector woes

Governors resist Senate, FG power grab of electricity sector

The Federal Government has disclosed plans to partner with more state governments in addressing power shortfalls across the country.

Kashim Shettima, vice president of Nigeria stated this at the power sector stakeholders interactive dialogue/workshop organised by the House Committee on Power, held in Abuja on Tuesday.

According to Shettima, who was represented by Sadiq Wanka, his special adviser on power, the new structure in the power sector will prioritise the creation of an enabling environment in the states as well as at wholesale market levels, while paving ways for the private sector to lead across the value chain.

He said “The Electricity Act 2023 that was passed by the National Assembly and signed into law by President Bola Ahmed Tinubu seeks to overhaul the structure of the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry.

“It proposes a structure that promotes more competition and greater scope for tailoring power solutions to local needs while transitioning to a market structure that would attract much-needed investments and promote environmental sustainability.

“The wholesale structural shift that the Electricity Act 2023 (as amended) and the associated constitutional amendment usher in, means we need to double down on ensuring an orderly transition to the new national electricity market framework.”

In his remarks, Adebayo Adelabu, the minister of power, announced plans to establish 3 gigawatts of solar energy sources across the 25 states in the north and southwest parts of the country.

According to the minister, these projects are aimed at addressing the power supply woes in the country as well as an encouragement to state governments to invest in power generation in their states.

…to establish 3 GW solar power projects in 25 states

He noted the major challenges of the power sector to include: inadequate generation capacity, supply constraints, inadequate transmission infrastructure, regulatory and policy constraints, inadequate financing and low investment due to lack of liquidity.

“These have resulted in energy deficits that have stifled growth, it has hindered industrialisation and diminished the quality of lives of millions of Nigerians compared to their counterparts in the West World. The present administration of His Excellency, President Bola Tinubu in his renewed Hope Agenda is determined to address issues in the power sector and enhance the quality of life for all Nigerians.

“In his wisdom, he assented to the Electricity Act of 2023 which has regularised Nigerian electricity generation, transmission and distribution.

“We have investment proposals for establishment of 3gigawatts solar energy sources across 25 states in the north and south-west. We are also encouraging state governments to invest in power generation in their states,” he added.

The minister, speaking further, alleged the activities of cartels, whose activities he said were hindering the development of the sector.

In his remarks, Abbas Tajudeen, speaker of the House of Representatives disclosed plans to propose a law that would make it mandatory for the relevant Federal Government bodies to consult the National Assembly and other stakeholders before fixing the Electricity tariff.

“Accordingly, I will sponsor a bill to provide administrative procedures that entrench proper consultation and legislative review of the process for tariff setting in Nigeria’s electricity and other public services.

“Having this consultation now appears to be an afterthought and goes contrary to the Electricity Act, 2024, which mandates consultation with all relevant stakeholders in determining just and fair tariffs,” he stated.