• Friday, December 01, 2023
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Power: FG delivers 500,000 meters to Discos, installs 280,000

Power: FG delivers 500,000 meters to Discos, installs 280,000

The Federal Government has through the National Mass Metering Programme (NMMP) delivered more than 500,000 meters to power Distribution Companies (Discos) and installed more than 280,000 meters as at May, 2021.

The NMMP was launched in August 2020, in line with a presidential directive to ensure that all Nigerians receiving electricity from the national grid are metered.

The All Progressives Congress (APC) Legacy Awareness and Campaign, a voluntary think-tank group of the governing party said the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) had been tasked with providing the N60 billion for the first phase of the NMMP, with a target of 1 million meter installations

APC Legacy Awareness and Campaign in a statement signed by Ismail Ahmed, acting National Youth Leader of the Party; Lanre Issa-Onilu, former APC national publicity secretary; Tolu Ogunlesi, special assistant to the President on Digital/New Media and Salihu Lukman, director general progressives Governors Forum, said the NMMP was ongoing.

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The group said President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration fully acknowledged the vital role of electrification in the development of Nigeria and has focused on completing inherited projects, many of which had been abandoned or facing funding challenges.

According to the statement, the administration has also been resolving the liquidity issues faced by players in the sector; promoting off-grid/renewable initiatives, especially targeting underserved communities and vulnerable populations and ensuring robust consumer protection for on-grid electricity consumers.

“In line with this, the Buhari Administration has embarked on the following programmes and initiatives:

Completion of inherited and abandoned power projects. Abandoned projects inherited include the 40MW Kashimbila Dam and Hydropower Plant; the 10MW Katsina Wind Farm; and the 30MW Gurara Hydroelectric Power Plant, which has been completed and concessioned to the private sector in 2020. The 700MW Zungeru Hydropower Plant is scheduled for completion at the end of 2021 – it will be one of the biggest power plants in the country.

“New Projects; new projects started by the APC-led President Buhari administration are the private-sector-led Azura Power Plant in Edo State (460MW), for which the financial close was facilitated in 2015/2016, and which was completed in the first quarter of 2018, several months ahead of schedule.

“The Buhari Administration also built the Afam Three Fast Power Plant, with a capacity to generate 240MW of electricity. Following a competitive bidding process, that new plant has been sold, alongside the neighbouring Afam Power Plc (966MW installed capacity), to Transcorp Plc, in demonstration of the administration’s belief in the managerial capacity of the private sector.

“The Energizing Education Programme; this was designed to supply clean and reliable energy (Solar and Gas) to Federal Universities and Federal Teaching Hospitals across the country. So far, four Universities have had their power plants completed and commissioned: BUK (Kano), FUNAI (Ebonyi), ATBU (Bauchi) and FUPRE (Delta); while others are ongoing in the first phase of the programme”, the statement read in parts.

APC Legacy Awareness and Campaign further said the government of the day has initiated the energising economies programme, targeted at markets and economic clusters across the country; solar power Naija to deliver 5 million off-grid solar connections to Nigerian households and the Presidential Power Initiative (PPI).

“The PPI is a partnership between the Governments of Nigeria and Germany, and a multinational firm, Siemens AG of Germany, to upgrade and modernize Nigeria’s electricity grid, in three phases, over the next few years. President Buhari has since approved the payment of Nigeria’s counterpart funding for the pre-engineering segment of the PPI, and the relevant contract was signed earlier in 2021.

“The Nigeria Electrification Project (NEP) is providing grants to support the deployment of 200,000 Solar Home Systems, as well as a nationwide rollout of mini-grids, positively impacting the quality of life for millions of Nigerians.

“Introduction and Implementation of a landmark ‘Eligible Customer’ Regulation, which provides for a ‘Willing Buyer, Willing Seller’ scenario in which certain classes of electricity customers are permitted to buy power directly from available Generation Companies (GenCos); and are permitted to freely select and change suppliers while also being empowered to negotiate with these suppliers on the most beneficial terms of supply.

“Financial Interventions from the Federal Government, by way of electricity pricing reform, as well as the introduction of a multi-billion dollar Payment Assurance Programme – all designed to resolve the liquidity challenges in the Power Sector by increasing the revenues available to Discos, Gencos and Gas Suppliers.

“The Buhari Administration is investing significantly in the construction and completion of several large-scale gas pipeline projects across the country. The 342KM Escravos—Lagos Pipeline System Phase 2 (ELPS 2) has been completed, as has the Second Lot of the 130KM Obiafu-Obrikom-Oben (OB3) Gas Pipeline. Construction is ongoing on the 614KM Ajaokuta-Kaduna-Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline Project”, the group added.