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FG Restates Commitment To Intervene In Power Sector

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The Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Mr Babatunde Fashola, has reaffirmed the Federal Government’s commitment to continually intervene in the power sector.
Fashola gave the assurance last Saturday in Lagos during a visit to 700 kilowatts mini-grid electricity supply under Energising Economies Initiative (EEI) at Iponri Market.
He said such interventions would include solar energy and renewable energy to ensure ease of doing business in the country.
According to Fashola, the Micro, Small and Medium Enterprise (MSME) operators are the engine of growth in any economy.
“They are one of the best in the economy I have seen. They are hardworking people and our ease of doing business targets them specifically.
“First, we understand that energy is an important component of their businesses. They pay between N2,000 and N5,000 just for supply of energy.
“Now, the solution we have brought for them has reduced that cost,” Fashola said.
He also said that the initiative was part of the Federal government’s resolve in ensuring an inclusive government.
Fashola said: “The president’s programme of ease of doing business has already hit the buzzer. It has reduced the cost of running and that is the ease of doing businesses.
“The other thing is that we are now implementing also the policy that no government before us was committed to developing energy through mini grid.
“So, Iponri, for example is now being powered by solar, it is also renewable. For those who asked, where is renewable policy? Come and see it in Iponri.
“It is in Sabon-geri and it is still also coming up in many other markets.
“You would have heard that from the shop owners that they now have the right and privilege to choose between the solar and the grid because they have both.
“There are traces of where the grids and generators were and you have heard from some of them saying that they have left their generators behind because they are too noisy and were too unhealthy because there are carbon emissions”, he said
Chief Executive Officer of Resource Energy, owners of the Iponri Market Energy Solution Ltd., Mr Ademola Adesina, said the company currently operates in six out of the 16 markets where the energising economies projects were.
Adesina said that the company planned to be in 12 markets out of the 300 major markets identified for the project.
He also said that the company could bid for and build more mini-grids and extend its service beyond major markets to some industrial clusters in future.
Also, the Managing Director of Rural Electrification Agency (REA), Mrs Damilola Ogunbiyi, said the mini-grid currently served 450 shops out of 1700 shops at Iponri.
Ogunbiyi said that the shops were in different tiers depending on their level of consumption on the solar hybrid power system which has 700kw capacity.

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FG, Working Out Equitable Electricity Tariffs – Minister

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The Minister of Power, Engr. Sale Mamman says the ministry and stakeholders of the electricity market are working towards the establishment of a predictable and equitable regulatory regime from the perspective of rate payers and investors.
The minister, who had earlier raised the alarm over the widening liquidity gap in the Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI), said there was need to reinforce market structures and enhance transparency.
Speaking at the International Conference on Energy, Power Systems Operations and Planning (ICEPSOP 2020) in Abuja, Engr Mmman, said the ministry was already working hard to address the challenges by improving metering.
The theme of the conference was: “Empowering Micro Grif with Smart Grid Attributes Development in United States and Africa.”
He said the ministry of power, in collaboration with the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN), Federal Ministry of Finance, and other relevant stakeholders, would consolidate a portfolio of activities deemed critical to the success of the electricity market.
He said: “The widening liquidity gap in the sector makes urgent, the need to reinforce market structures and enhance transparency. To address this challenge we are working hard to improve metering in general and in particular the use of smart meters as well as smart grids.
“In addition, the ministry is coordinating with the regulator, Ministry of Finance, the CBN, and other stakeholders to consolidate a portfolio of activities deemed critical to success.
These include refinement of commercial, technical, and regulatory components of transaction agreements; promotion of discipline; enforcement of contract effectiveness a day; establishing a predictable and equitable regulatory regime from the perspective of rate payers and investors.”
The minister said the ministry is focusing on electricity access for the teeming population through the use of mini-grid and micro-grid, noting that energy access has been a perennial issue particularly in sub-Saharan Africa.
Citing industry data, he said out of the 1.2 billion people without access to electricity, about half of them reside in the region.
He added that electrification rate in Nigeria stands at 55 per cent in urban and 36 per cent in rural communities, but assured that there are already measures in place to promote rural electrification.
Also speaking at the event, the chairman, Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), Prof. James Momoh, said the conference was to provide the required environment to explore innovative regulatory approaches in promoting efficient and competitive service delivery involving deployment of smart and micro -grid technologies.
The chairman, House Committee on Power, Hon. Magaji Aliyu said as the country battles to generate, transmit and distribute electric power, the country has serious challenges reaching most of the rural areas.
He insisted that the issue of mini-grid development has become crucial in addressing the issue of power supply to remote areas of the country.

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PIB:Ogoni Youths Hail Minister Over Comment

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The Ogoni Youth Federation, (OYF) has hailed the Minister of State for Petroleum Resources, Chief Timipre Sylva, for demanding for the passage of the Petroleum Industry Bill (PIB) into law in mid 2020.
A press statement by the Ogoni apex youth body commanded the minister’s move describing it as a show of complete good faith.
According to the group, the future of the petroleum industry and, indeed, the country depends on it.
“We believe in the PIB bill because it will help in solving the developmental issues in the Niger Delta and ensure lasting peace. The passage of the bill would also help to sanitise the petroleum industry and enhance the development of the oil bearing communities,” the group stated.
The Ogoni youth noted that the performance of Chief Sylva in the Ministry of Petroleum Resources had been impressive, saying he has raised the bar of performance through strategic efforts in addressing rated issues.
The body, however, urged the minister to address the stalemate between the Ogonis and the federal government over decades of alleged social, economic and environmental injustice committed against the Ogonis by the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC).
The statement, which was signed by the National Coordinator and President of the body, declared that; “Whist we commend the Honourable Minister for resolving the two year protracted disputes between SPDC and host communities of OML 25 facilities in Kula Kingdom of Asari-Toru Local Government of Rivers State amicably, we urge him to use his good office to address the decades of stalemate between the Ogoni people and the Federal Government of Nigeria over social, economic and environmental injustice, which till date have generated a lot of international concerns, leading to the shutdown of oil and gas operations in Ogoniland for upwards of 26 years since the Shell Petroleum Development Company of Nigeria Limited (SPDC) was declared persona non grata in 1993.”
It added that: “the resolution of this debacle (OML 11 Ogoni Fields issues) is crucial as it would pave way for a smooth re-entry into Ogoniland for the purpose of resumption of oil and gas production and avail the youth and other critical stakeholders of Ogoni, the opportunity to benefit from their God given resources.”

 

Taneh Beemene

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Oil & Energy

Development Blueprint For Rivers Energy Underway -Commissioner

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The Rivers State Ministry of Energy and Natural Resources, has disclosed plans to fashion out a blueprint and policies to develop the natural resources and energy potentials of the state.
The State Commissioner for Energy and Natural Resources, Dr Peter Medee, gave the hints while speaking with The Tide in an exclusive interview in his office last Monday.
The commissioner said modalities would be mapped out to meet up the mandate of the ministry, which is to address the energy needs of the state and maximize the participation of Rivers people in the upstream and downstream sectors.
As part of measures to meet up the statutory responsibilities of the ministry, the commissioner disclosed that short, medium and long term development plans would be worked out, while the ministry would synergize with relevant stakeholders to meet up set goals.
He charged the staff of various departments in the ministry to work hard to achieve the objectives and mandate of the ministry.
Dr Medee also urged Rivers people to key into the vision of the state governor, Chief Nyesom Wike in the area of mobilising and harnessing the natural resources of the state for economic growth.
He said: “His Excellency the Governor of Rivers State, Chief (Barr) Nyesom Ezenwo Wike is desirous to promote economic development in all sectors of the Rivers economy. That is why the governor has inaugurated the Ease of Doing Business (EDB) committee with a charge to create the enabling environment for investment to thrive in the state”.
Dr Medee assured that the ministry would continue to protect the interest of Rivers people from arbitrary N50 point of service (POS) charge by filling station owners, insisting that the fee is a merchant charge for the operators of the filling stations and not for customers.

 

Taneh Beemene

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