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Ministry to address metering system- Fashola

The Honourable Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Raji Fashola, who chaired the twenty-third monthly meeting of operators in the electricity industry in Lafia, Nassarawa State capital, has said that his ministry will address the problematic metering system in the country.

The meeting was hosted by the state government at Mararaba-Akunza 33/11 Injection Substation in Lafia, on Monday, January 8th.

The meeting focused on identifying, discussing, and finding practical solutions to critical issues facing the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry.

According to a communiqué issued at the end of the meeting, “The operators were fully represented at the highest executive management levels, including Commissioners of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Managing Directors and CEOs of Generating Companies (GenCos), Distribution Companies (DisCos), and the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN), Gas Companies (GasCos) and other government agencies, such as the Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC), the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET), Nigerian Electricity Liability Management Company (NELMCO) and Nigerian Electricity Management Services Agency (NEMSA) responsible for the regulation and development of the electricity industry, as well as the Nigerian National Petroleum Company (NNPC).

‘The meeting was preceded by a welcome of the Honourable Minister by the Governor of Nasarawa State, a visit to the Lafia 330/132 kV substation due for completion by the end of 2018 and the commissioning of 2×7.5 MVA injection substation serving Obi and environs, serving the State House of Assembly Quarters, Federal University Lafia, Mobile Police Barracks.”

The communiqué noted improvements in functional generation capacity and transmission capacity to over 7000MW and proven distribution capacity to over 5000MW in distribution infrastructure. This impact has been noticed with the Ministry receiving positive feedback from consumers. Consumers, particularly those with prepaid meters had also noted improvements in energy availability to the point that energy conservation has become necessary”.

It also noted sector teamwork was necessary to sustain progress and achieve milestones both on and off grid, and commended NERC’s regulatory diligence by releasing the minigrid regulation, and also noted the successful MiniGrid Conference hosted by the Rural Electrification Agency which had over 600 participants from 40 countries, raising interest in Nigeria as an investment destination for power operators.

“ That 2000 MW available from DisCos and TCN still needs to be distributed, and stated that work is ongoing to improve distribution infrastructure thereby taking power to Nigerians. The operators encouraged manufacturers to inform the Ministry of their locations where they need power so the unutilized 200MW can be delivered to them.”

The communiqué stated the sector’s commitment to reduce estimated billing as NERC concludes work on metering regulations to ensure consumers are metered, adding that,

“The setback caused shutdown of gas supply to six (6) power plants previously supplying more than 1500MW to the national grid. However, as at 7th January 2018 the pipeline repair work is completed, and Egbin and Olorunsogo have started receiving gas and with expectation for full restoration to other plants in the next few days.

“The meeting acknowledged that gas is the fuel that most generation companies use in generating power. Gas pipelines are therefore vital national assets, and all Nigerians are encouraged to have a personal interest in ensuring the security and functionality of these pipeline”.

The communiqué also restated commitment to better customer service and timely communications on any service disruptions by all operators within the industry and with the public. The Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trader (NBET) commended the performance of Benin Electricity Distribution Company and Eko Electricity Distribution Company for timely remittance to the market for electricity generated.”

Ganiyu Obaaro

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