The Federal Government has concluded plans to give loan of N72 billion financial facilities as part of its plan for the 11 electricity distribution companies (Discos) in Nigeria to upgrade and expand their networks.
Sources said the facility would be a shareholder loan which the Discos must be willing to match or it would be converted to equity.
According to the Discos’ privatisation terms, the government has 40 per cent shareholding in them while the core investors of the Discos maintain 60 per cent shareholding.
Also, the government indicated that the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) would be the source of the facility as well as its manager.
Penultimate Sunday, the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr. Babatunde Fashola, disclosed the government’s plan to invest the sum in the Discos.
Fashola noted in Yola, capital of Adamawa State, that the financial facility would help the Discos expand their networks to be able to take stranded electricity from the generation companies (Gencos) to consumers in the country.
However, the Managing Director of TCN, Mr. Usman Mohammed, had while commissioning a 60MVA high voltage transformer at TCN’s Bauchi transmission substation recently disclosed deeper details of the investment plan.
Mohammed had said that TCN approached the government to allow it assist the Discos upgrade their networks and its proposal was approved, hence the investment plan.
According to him, the new transmission facility will improve the capacity of the substation from 70MVA to 130MVA, and improve electricity supply to Bauchi and other areas which include Ningi, Naborodo, and Das communities.
“We expect that Jos Discos will expand their network to ensure that they pick the load. To assist Discos in this regard, we approached the federal government and they agreed that TCN is going to invest in distribution on behalf of Ministry of Power, Works and Housing and we already have N72 billion which has been approved by the Federal Executive Council for this purpose.
“Where we discover that we have load and that load cannot be taken by the Discos, we apply this fund to assist in expanding that network so that it can take the load. The fund is like shareholder loan to distribution companies which they must match or it will be converted to equity,” said Mohammed.
He noted that TCN has continued to expand the transmission network, adding that it has in the 11 months, installed more than 18 power transformers using its in-house engineers.
“We are working very hard to see how we can further stabilise the grid. On Sunday, the 15th, we commissioned two transmission projects. One is a 40MVA transmission substation in Mayo-Belwa in Adamawa State commissioned by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing and on the same day the Minister of State Power, Works and Housing, Suleiman Hassan, commissioned a 30MVA power transformer in Gombe transmission station.
“When we came in power, the capacity of transmission was 5,500 megawatts (MW), as at December 2017, when we last simulated, the capacity of the grid was 7,154MW,” he explained.
According to him, “From June to date, TCN engineers have installed more than 18 power transformers including the 60MVA 132/33kV power transformer here in Bauchi transmission substation.
“The new power transformer was installed 100 per cent by TCN engineers. We are working very hard to create the Transmission Rehabilitation and Expansion Programme (TREP) stage two and that will involve building a line from Calabar to Kano and this has gone very far because we have gotten an organisation that will provide us with a grant to do the study and that meeting will take placetomorrow. We would continue to do all we can to ensure that the grid continues to grow into a very robust transmission network.”
In his remarks at the commissioning, the Governor of Bauchi, Mr. Mohammed Abdullahi, stated that the new transmission facility will improve the quality of power supply to Bauchi.
Abdullahi said: “I am very happy to be the one commissioning this 60MVA power transformer in Bauchi. To so many people the meaning of this may be lost to them, but for me and the people of Bauchi State this is a very great development.
“Overtime the quality of power that has been supplied to Bauchi State has always been an issue, the simple reason is that the quality is not able to drive most of the major economic activities in Bauchi. The up-grading of this substation here in Bauchi is a very good development to the very good people of Bauchi State.”
Solar Firm Targets 30m Nigerians By 2030
Greenlight Planet, a global leader in solar home energy products, has delivered clean energy access to more than two million individuals in Nigeria.
On a mission to power, the lives of the underserved, Greenlight Planet began distributing its Sun King solar home energy products in the country in 2011. The company has focused on rapid innovation of its product offerings and distribution strategy ever since.
Speaking on Greenlight Planet in Nigeria, Global Business Leader, Sun King EasyBuy, Mr DhavalRadia, said, “Over the last 7 years, we have sold more than 500,000 life-changing Sun King solar solutions in Nigeria through strategic distribution partnerships and our own pay-as-you-go distribution channel.
Customers have been quick to recognise that an investment in Sun King products pays for itself over time, with several customers experiencing dramatic improvements in household savings, increased productivity for their small businesses and additional study–time for their children.”
He added that the quality and reliability of Sun King solar home systems has helped the organisation build a loyal customer base over time. “While we are humbled by the warm acceptance of our products so far, for us this is just the beginning to reaching the 101 million individuals still living without basic access to electricity in Nigeria. To ensure that our products are affordable for even the most cash-constrained households, we launched our ‘EasyBuy’ pay-as-you-go distribution channel in early 20173 .
According to him, Sun King products enabled with EasyBuy (PAYG technology) now allow potential users with limited access to financing to pay for their Sun King products in small instalments over time. “With twenty-four flagship Sun King stores across 23 active states, and a large network of nearly 1,200 local sales agents (“Sun King Energy Officers”), the Sun King EasyBuy door-to-door sales channel is accelerating Greenlight Planet’s growth in Nigeria while also boosting employment opportunities within local communities”, he said.
He said that the organisation’s vision was to establish a world-class distribution and energy financing eco-system for the vast off-grid populations of rural Nigeria. “With our rigorous efforts and continued innovation, our goal is to power 30 million lives by 2030 in Nigeria.
FG To Achieve 40% Switch From Fuel, Other Products
The Federal Government is targeting to achieve a 40 per cent energy switch from the consumption of Premium Motor Spirit (petrol), Dual Purpose Kerosene (kerosene) and Automotive Gas Oil (diesel), to the use of Liquefied Petroleum Gas.
According to the government, efforts are currently intensified to promote the wider use of LPG in households, power generation, auto-gas and industrial applications.
The government disclosed this through the Federal Ministry of Petroleum Resources in a document obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Friday on the achievements of the FMPR between 2016 and 2018.
Providing explanation on its LPG penetration programme, the ministry stated that the Federal Government initiated the LPG Expansion Programme in order to effectively drive the switch to LPG consumption across the country.
It said, “The LPG Penetration Framework is designed to reduce the national energy consumption of PMS, DPK, AGO by achieving a 40 per cent fuel switch to LPG in 10 years.
“The programme will also promote the wider use of LPG in households, power generation, auto-gas and industrial applications towards the attainment of five million metric tonnes domestic utilisation and creation of an estimated 500,000 job opportunities nationwide in five years.”
The FMPR noted that overall, improvements in the standard and quality of living in rural communities were also expected for the programme.
It said the LPG Penetration Programme along with the Nigeria Gas Flare Commercialisation Programme were components of Nigeria’s intended nationally designed contributions under the Paris agreement for reducing annual greenhouse gas emissions by the year 2020.
On the NGFCP, the government stated that the programme was a key component of the Nigerian Gas Policy which had the aim of reducing the environmental and social impact caused by flaring of natural gas, protect the environment, prevent waste of natural resources, and create social and economic benefits from gas flare capture.
“The design of the key programme transaction, commercial framework and documentation have been completed. When fully implemented it will improve gas supply for power generation, industrial use and LPG penetration in the economy,” the FMPR said.
In November, say that the Federal Government was targeting a revenue of $1bn annually and a total of 300,000 direct and indirect jobs from the commercialisation of flared gas.
The government said flared gas could be harnessed to stimulate economic growth, drive investments and provide jobs in oil producing communities and indeed for Nigerians through the utilisation of widely available innovative technologies.
In the NGFCP document obtained by our correspondent in Abuja, the NGFCP Programme Manager at the FMPR, Justice Derefaka, stated that the Federal Executive Council approved the NGFCP as the mechanism for implementing Nigeria’s commitment to eliminate routine gas flaring.
The government stated that the recently gazetted Flare Gas (Prevention of Waste and Pollution) Regulations 2018 was the legal basis for the implementation of the NGFCP and the payment regime (penalties) for gas flaring.
It stated that the regulation adopted the polluter pays principle, similar to a carbon tax, adding that “results of work done to trigger up to 85 projects that will utilise flared gas, generate approximately 300,000 direct and indirect jobs and annual revenue generation/Gross Domestic Product impact estimated at $1bn/annum are also highlighted.”
The NGFCP is developed by the FMPR, Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation, Department of Petroleum Resources and the implementation team of the NGFCP comprising of adviser teams from the World Bank and USAID under the leadership of a ministerial steering committee that reports to the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources.
EEDC To Deal With Buyers Stolen Electrical Installations
The Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC), says it will redouble efforts to deal decisively with buyers of stolen and vandalised electrical installations in 2019.
The company’s Head of Communications, Mr Emeka Ezeh, said yesterday in Enugu that EEDC would step up its efforts in apprehending buyers of vandalised electrical installations.
According to him, it is believed that the buyers are the ones who motivate vandals to continue indulging in such nefarious act.
“If there is no one buying the items, there won’t be that motivation for the vandals to engage in this act,’’ he said.
EEDC spokesman, who recalled that two buyers were jailed in 2017, expressed the hope that after due process of the law, those apprehended in 2018 would also serve their terms in prison.
“We will not relent in this struggle and we hope that this will serve as deterrent to many others that are engaging in such criminal activities of buying stolen or vandalised EEDC property,’’ Ezeh said.
He said that it was worrisome that while EEDC had been striving to improve on its service delivery, some individuals were engaging in illegitimate activities to frustrate both the company and its customers.
“This singular act costs EEDC a lot financially, and ends up subjecting our customers to a lot of inconveniences,’’ he said.
He, however, solicited the cooperation and support of the various vigilante groups and state security agencies to apprehend and prosecute the vandals accordingly.
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