President Bola Tinubu has reiterated his commitment to the provision of reliable and affordable electricity supply to Nigerians.
Tinubu stated this during the Foundation Laying Ceremony for the 350 Megawatts Gwagwalada Independent Power Project (GIPP) on Friday in Abuja.
He noted that his administration was poised to deliver uninterrupted power to all Nigerians, ultimately, boost the national economy and accelerate industrial growth.
He, therefore directed the Ministry of Power and other relevant Agencies including the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading PLC (NBET), and Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) to collaborate with Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPCL) in that regard.
Nigeria has the potential to generate 12,522 MW of electric power from existing plants, but only able to dispatch around 4,000 MW at the moment which is insufficient for a country with a population of over 200 million.
The challenges ranging from insufficient generation capacity, transmission system constraints, policy enforcement and regulatory uncertainty, and gas supply shortage to outdated infrastructure have resulted in frequent collapses of Nigeria’s national electricity grid, leading to widespread blackouts and significant economic and social costs.
He, however, assures that his government would use all the available energy sources to increase power generation beyond the current installed capacity of 12,000 megawatts.
He also promised to strengthen the integrity of the country’s transmission infrastructure and ensure that all distribution bottlenecks are removed.
The President said, “in addition, Nigeria will continue to vigorously pursue the implementation of other low-Carbon energy solutions, such as Solar, Hydro, Wind, thermal, and biofuels (for both on-grid and off-grid power systems).
“We will focus on rural electrification to improve the standard of living of people in rural communities and re-energize their socio-economic opportunities”, he said.
The visibly elated Tinubu was certain that the investment of NNPC Ltd alongside its Partners in the installation of an additional 350MW would surely increase the energy supply level to Nigerian homes and businesses; catalyze economic empowerment and, ultimately, renew the hope of the nation’s energetic and creative citizens.
He reassures Nigerians of the Federal Government’s resolve to continue to implement programs, that would deepen domestic gas utilization, expand national power generation capacity, revitalize industries, and create multiple jobs for economic growth.
Earlier, the Group Chief Executive Officer, NNPC Limited, Mallam Mele Kyari said, the 350MW project was the first phase of the planned capacity of the 1,350MW Gwagwalada Independent Power Plant (GIPP).
Mallam Kyari said the project was a giant step towards achieving NNPC’s Gas & Power mandate to add 5GW into the National Power generation by 2024.
He said, currently, NNPC and partners are delivering about 800MW to the national grid from Afam VI and Okpai Phase 1 thermal power plants with a combined installed capacity of 1,100MW.
The NNPCL boss noted that they have also completed the Okpai Phase 2 project that would add up to 320MW of power to the national grid and progressing with other power plant projects across the country including those along the AKK pipeline route.
Kyari said, “the Gwagwalada IPP is among the NNPC flagship power projects along the AKK corridor. This is part of the 3,600MW cumulative power capacity which includes Kaduna IPP (900MW) and Kano IPP (1,350MW).
“The project will be delivered in collaboration with General Electric (CE) as the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) and China Machinery and Engineering Corporation (CMEC) as the Engineering, Procurement, and Construction (EPC) Contractor.
“Just as we have recently commissioned the 50MW Maiduguri Emergency Power plant (MEPP), NNPC will continue to replicate similar viable business opportunities across the Nation to ensure energy affordability”, he added.
He thanked the Ministry of Power, NERC, TCN, NBET, AEDC, and the Gwagwalada host community for their collaboration and support, noting that expanding access to energy would create a better investment climate and promote balanced economic growth, a win-win situation for the Nation and NNPC as a commercial energy company.
Gas supply to the Plant shall be through the AjaokutaKaduna-Kano (AKK) Gas Pipeline which is currently in its advanced stages of construction. The GIPP’s fuel requirements will be satisfied under a long-term Gas Sales, Purchase, and Aggregation Agreement with Shell Petroleum Development Company Joint Venture (SPDC JV).
The GIPP project consists of three power train blocks of 450MW each. Each block will include two General Electric (GE) GT13E2 gas turbine generators, two heat recovery steam generators (HRSG), one steam turbine electric generator, one direct air-cooling condenser, balance of plant equipment, and a black start diesel generator.
On completion, the GIPP Project will generate an average of 10.3 million Megawatts hours (MWh) of electricity per year for sale to the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Pic (NBET).
The sales of the generated power will be through Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) with the NBET to distribution companies (Discos) under long-term agreements, and direct sale to major off-takers.