How We Plan To Tackle Power Sector Bottlenecks -Minister

Minister of Power, Aliyu Abubakar.

The Minister of Power, Engr. Abubakar Aliyu, has unveiled his reform agenda for the power sector after his 50 days in office.

In his statement made available to newsmen in Abuja, the Engr. Aliyu said, he would among other things create liquidity, and Promote sector Competition, which he believes were fundamental issues in the sector.

TheFact Nigeria reports that he listed quality of service and sector liquidity as two over-arching problems of the Sector, therefore, pledged to tackle them headlong.

“My immediate focus is how to achieve the following through effective policy and regulation and cooperative engagement with private and public sector operators:

“Create liquidity in the electricity market; Improve services in terms of hours of supply, billing transparency and accuracy, and wider access to electricity; Bring consumer, operator and investor confidence back to the sector to attract foreign and local investment into the sector; Create jobs; Promote competition and bring in more participants in the Nigerian Electricity Market (NEM)”, he said.

The Minister noted that the aim of the administration was to Provide stable, good quality, reliable and affordable electricity for the people of Nigeria for domestic and industrial usage.

According to him, the Electric Power Sector Reform Act of March 2005 was quite revolutionary, therefore, would work towards its full implementation to match up with the huge sums invested by the administration.

He said, the key policies and initiatives of the Ministry to achieve the target are: -Accelerate progress and completion of key projects of the Ministry and its partners, especially:

a. Kashimbilla 40MW power station has already started generating power into the National Grid.
b. Gurara phase 2 being developed in partnership with Ministry of Water Resources will soon be ready to deliver 30MW to the grid.
c. Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project is progressing towards completion next year to deliver another 700MW of renewable power.
d. Katsina Wind farm is with a full capacity of 10MW is already generating part of its full capacity on the grid.
e. Dadin Kowa 40MW power station started generating power into the National Grid under a concession with the private investor. The remaining regulatory and power purchase agreement issues are being resolved.
f. Mambilla Hydroelectric Power Project was contracted in 2017. Discussions are being intensified so that all encumbrances preventing full take off of the project are resolved soon.

He said, reforms take time and require patience to implement, especially in a highly regulated sector like the power sector.

“I am confident that these reforms, when fully implemented, will bring about the transformational change that we all desire to see in the sector.

“We are very mindful of the various challenges and bottlenecks. I plan to face the challenges with a dogged determination and resolve.

“It is my belief that with the right focus, determination and teamwork, the power sector will experience a new lease of life”, he added.

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