I will lead Nigeria out of darkness – Atiku
Atiku Abubakar, former vice-president of Nigeria and presidential candidate of the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has promised to lead Nigeria out of darkness by allowing states to generate, transmit, and distribute electricity for themselves.
“Over the medium term, I will propose legislation for the removal of the entire electricity value chain from the exclusive list and give states the power to generate, transmit, and distribute electricity for themselves,” Abubakar said during the private sector economic forum on the 2023 Presidential election organised by the Lagos Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) on Tuesday in Lagos.
This year alone, the National Grid has collapsed six times in Africa’s biggest economy.
According to Abubakar, his policy aims at achieving greater coordination of investments in the entire electricity value chain.
“Investments in additional generation capacity are futile without consideration for the complementary transmission and distribution infrastructure to wheel the additional energy,” he said.
The World Bank notes that about 55.4 percent of Nigeria’s population were connected to the energy grid as at 2020, though are typically without power for about 85 percent of the time and almost nonexistent in certain areas.
This has been a threat to investments in Nigeria as businesses rely on power to run their operations.
Abubakar noted that his administration will consider declaring a state of emergency in the power sector to underscore their concerns about the state of affairs in the power sector.
He said, “ As a short-term measure to ensure enhanced supply within the first year of the new administration, I shall initiate and implement an emergency power programme(EPPs) that can deliver additional capacity in key areas.”
According to Abubakar, an industrial dispute with the federal government in Abuja should not affect an industry in Lagos or an average Nigerian who wants to get home to watch news or just sleep under a ceiling fan.