Nigerian households enjoyed less power supply in the three months ending June compared to the first three months of 2019.
This is according to a new Power Poll released by NOIPolls for the second quarter (Q2) of 2019, which showed a marginal decline from 37 percent obtained in Q1, 2019 to 31 percent in Q2.
This decline has been attributed to the continuous breakdown of the national grid and other daunting challenges experienced at both levels of generation and transmission of electricity in the country within this period.
Although there has been a steady increase in power supply from the month of April to June 2019, the steady increase observed in Q2, 2019 could be ascribed to the raining season as the water level in the hydroelectric power generation is within expected capacity.
Quarterly analysis of results showed that a larger proportion of Nigerians (37 percent) reported that they experienced better power supply to their respective households in Q1, 2019 than in Q2, 2019 (31 percent). This signifies a 6 percent decline when Q1 is compared to the Q2, the NOIPolls stated on its Twitter handle.
More findings over the period in view showed that the average hours of cumulative power supply to Nigerian households nationwide was also highest in Q1, 2019 at an average of 9.6 hours daily.
But it is important to note that there has, however, been a steady decline in power supply from an average of 9.7hrs/day in Q4, 2018 to an average of 9.2hrs/day in Q2, 2019.
Dating as far back as 2013, a trend can be observed which shows that despite about N5 trillion pumped into the power sector in the last 20years, not much has really improved.
Nigeria is the largest economy in sub-Saharan Africa, but limitations in the power sector constrain growth. The country is endowed with large oil, gas, hydro and solar resource, and it already has the potential to generate 12,522 megawatts (MW) of electric power from existing plants, but most days is only able to generate around 4,000 MW, which is insufficient.
To fix the broken power sector, a BusinessDay report of July 3 suggested the Distribution companies need to be restructured. The Discos reported a combined loss of N446.85 billion in 2017, which was 64 percent higher than the previous year. Their total combined operating cost of N655.16 billion in the same period outstripped cumulative sales of N563.10 billion. Discos’ interest expense surged by 129.51 percent to N155.64 billion, indicating a balance sheet that is unsustainable.