BY Wasilat Azeez
Abubakar Aliyu, minister of power, says the Siemens AG power project will commence in the first quarter of 2022.
In 2019, President Muhammadu Buhari had signed a power project deal with Siemens AG, a Germany-based firm, to deliver 7,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity to the national grid by 2021.
A year later, the federal government approved the payment of €15.21 million and N1.708 billion as counterpart funding for the project.
But the project is behind schedule as TheCable understands that it is still in the pre-engineering phase.
Speaking at a workshop organised by the Power Correspondents Association of Nigeria (PCAN) in Abuja on Thursday, Aliyu said that all is set for the takeoff.
The minister noted that the project would expand Nigeria’s electricity from the current 4,500MW to 25,000MW.
“The Presidential Power Initiative (PPI) which began in 2021 is in three phases and is estimated to be completed in 2025,” Aliyu said.
“The phases cover the upgrading and expanding the transmission networks (TN) and Distribution Companies (DisCos) networks; improvement of access to affordable, efficient and reliable electricity and, providing support of industrial and economic growth in the country.
“This first phase which began in 2021 will go on for a period of 10 months with the end goal of pushing to 7,000MW. So far, there has been no hitch as the team is currently in the pre-engineering phase.
“The second phase will raise the availability to 1,000MW, and the third phase will raise the availability to 25,000MW.
“Given Siemens AG’s accomplishment of a similar plan in Egypt and also its reputation as an international giant in the power sector related engagements, it is strongly believed that the Nigeria Electricity Roadmap (NER) is possible and achievable.”
The minister explained that the government was currently evaluating the procurement process and was confident that a positive outcome would emerge.
“This project has reached an advanced stage of activities in line with the Siemens project implementation plan,” the power minister said.
“Sustainable growth in the power sector can only be achieved by adding renewable sources to the energy mix. Today, for example, 80 percent of our energy comes from gas-fired plants.
“Government is driving the change to increase the quantum of renewable energy sources using solar, wind, and hydros across the nation.
“We are encouraging investments in renewable sources in areas with comparative advantages. We are working tirelessly to increase the hydro and solar opportunities in the country.”