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Adelabu: Power sector crisis has defied all solutions

Adelabu: Power sector crisis has defied all solutions
April 23
09:22 2024

Adebayo Adelabu, minister of power, has described the power sector crisis as “historical”, stressing it has defied all solutions.

Adelabu spoke in Abuja on April 22 during a visit from the senate committee on power.

The national electricity grid has suffered a total system collapse thrice in 2024, with the first being on February 4.

The country suffered another nationwide blackout on March 28, while the third collapse was experienced on April 15.

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Adelabu blamed issues in the industry on uncompleted projects, urging the committee to approve funds for the completion of over 120 projects that litter across the country.

To boost electricity, he said there are plans to increase power generation from 4000 megawatts (MW) to 6000MW by the end of 2024.

The minister said the federal government plans to achieve this milestone using the hydro and solar plants to increase the supply of electricity to households and businesses.

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“The infrastructure are lying there, without adequate maintenance, the turbines are getting rust,” Adelabu said.

”With proper investment put in place, we can generate 6000 megawatts before the end of 2024.”

NIGERIA’S POWER SECTOR NEEDS GAS’

Adelabu said gas suppliers have refused to supply more gas because of the debt the federal government owes.

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He told the committee the federal government owes the generation companies over N1.3 trillion and also owes the gas suppliers $1.3 billion.

The minister urged the committee to address the debt matter.

In her presentation, Nafisat Ali, executive director of Independent System Operator (ISO), said gas has become a major constraint in the industry, adding that DisCos were still rejecting load despite the power shortage in the country.

“Today there is no gas. We need gas,” Ali said.

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“The DisCos don’t abide by allocation. That is the challenge.”

Addressing the debt issue, Eyinaya Abaribe, the committee chairman, said the panel would interface with the federal government to settle the gas debt.

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“Every option for us is on the table. If the option is for us to interface with the federal government to do their part, because it is a debt, so they have to pay their debt, we will do so,” Abaribe said.

He also said the committee will focus its oversight on the ministry and the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) concerning the implementation of the World Bank project.

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Furthermore, Abaribe said the committee has invited NERC and other stakeholders to answer some questions concerning the recently reviewed tariff on April 29.

Abaribe said the committee would review the penalties for power assets vandalisation.

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