Power Sector News And Other Related Stories For Monday 27th June 2022.
SERAP Sues Buhari, Malami Over ‘Missing N11tr Electricity Fund’
Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) has sued President Muhammadu Buhari and Attorney General of the Federation (AGF) and Minister of Justice, Abubakar Malami (SAN), at the Federal High Court in Lagos over failure to probe allegations that over N11 trillion meant to provide regular electricity supply since 1999 may have been stolen, mismanaged or diverted into private pockets.
It stated that Nigerian cities have repeatedly been plunged into darkness, as the electricity grid had reportedly collapsed at least three times in five months, and 130 times in seven years.
“According to the World Bank, epileptic power supply costs businesses in Nigeria about $29 billion yearly,” SERAP said. In the suit, numbered FHC/L/CS/1119/2022 and filed on its behalf at the weekend by its lawyers, Kolawole Oluwadare and Adelanke Aremo, SERAP is seeking an order of mandamus to direct and compel Buhari to investigate how the fund was allegedly squandered by successive administrations.
The group also wants an order of mandamus to compel the President to ensure prosecution of anyone suspected to be responsible for the missing electricity fund, as appropriate, and to ensure the tracing and full recovery of any missing public funds.
President Buhari Dragged to Court Over N11trn Electricity Fund
President Muhammadu Buhari has been dragged to court “over his failure to probe allegations that over N11 trillion meant to provide regular electricity supply since 1999 may have been stolen, mismanaged or diverted into private pockets.”
The Socio-Economic Rights and Accountability Project (SERAP) filed the lawsuit against the president.
Nigerian cities have repeatedly been plunged into darkness as the electricity grid has reportedly collapsed at least three times in 5 months, and 130 times in 7 years.
According to the World Bank, epileptic power supply costs businesses in Nigeria about $29 billion yearly.
In the suit number FHC/L/CS/1119/2022 filed last week at the Federal High Court, Lagos, SERAP is seeking “an order of mandamus to direct and compel President Buhari to investigate how over N11 trillion meant to provide regular electricity supply has been allegedly squandered by governments since 1999.”
SERAP is also seeking “an order of mandamus to compel President Buhari to ensure the prosecution of anyone suspected to be responsible for the missing electricity fund, as appropriate, and to ensure the tracing and full recovery of any missing public funds.”
SERAP is arguing that “It is in the public interest to ensure justice and accountability for alleged corruption and mismanagement in the electricity sector, which has resulted in the failure of governments to solve Nigeria’s perennial power problem.”
Trouble Looms in Power Sector Over Activation of PPA
Concerns emerged, yesterday, as the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) moves to enforce Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) between Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Company Plc (NBET) and players in the power sector. The power generation companies have also insisted that raising electricity generation to 5,000 megawatts as ordered by NERC may remain a mirage.
A copy of the letter obtained by The Guardian, yesterday, which was sent to one of the Generation Companies (GenCos) by NERC’s Secretary, Ada Ozoemena, showed that the PPA would be signed tomorrow (Tuesday).
The PPA creates a long-term contract with conditions for the purchase of electricity. NERC, in the invitation letter, wrote: “Please find attached Activation Agreement to be executed between thermal GenCos and NBET for the activation of contracts in Nigeria Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) and note that an Activation Agreement Execution Event at which the MDs personal presence is required shall hold as follows: Date: 28 June 2022 at 9:00a.m. prompt.”
With power supply through the national grid showing no sign of improving, the Federal Government’s plan to ditch the ‘best endeavour’ approach for a contract-based Nigerian Electricity Supply Market may not yield the 5,000MW target, the power generation companies have said, adding that for the 5,000MW supply to happen, the government has to guarantee gas supply to the power plants and also pay up debts owed to them to facilitate the repairs of units in the power plants.
Amid Poor Power Supply, Consumers Lament Outrageous Electricity Bill
Residents of Orege Community and environs in Ajegunle under the Ajeromi Ifelodun Local Government of Lagos state are lamenting the perilous power infrastructure, outrageous bills and irregular power supply given to them by Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC).
The unmetered residents of the Orege Community and environs under EKEDC complained that recent exorbitant bills given them are not commensurate with power supply.
This was even as they called on government’s intervention regarding the provision of prepaid meters to put an end to the outrageous bills given to them by officials of EKEDC.
The community members lamented that despite engaging the officials of EKEDC in charge of the community regarding the outrageous bills, it has, however yielded no result, adding that the estimated bill given to them have continued to increase despite the drop in power supply.
The community while calling for supply of prepaid meters said they have overtime engaged the officials of EKDC in charge of the community but said the engagement yielded no result, alleging that the EKDC officials are ripping them off through the estimated bills given to them.
Ikeja Electric Boss Tasks Engineers on Power Challenges in Nigeria
Chairman, Board of Directors, Ikeja Electric PLC, Mr. Kola Adesina, yesterday, called on engineers in the country to activate their intellect to produce the change in the power sector that Nigerians desire to see.
Adesina who made this call at the inauguration of Nigerian Institute of Electrical and Electronic Engineers (NIEEE) Egbin- Ikorodu chapter and investiture ceremony in Lagos, said it could be through innovation and scientific method.
He expressed concern that the country is not generating enough gas regularly and that our plants are not working at fullest capacity, adding that Nigeria is also making so much money in the area of oil and gas, but not in power generating.
According to him, “why are we not generating gas regularly? Why are our plants not generating at fullest capacity? Why are the distribution companies not receiving enough power? We are making so much money in oil and gas, but actually not in power. We have committed over a billion dollars into this.”
He said since humanity appreciates the contribution of engineers and scientists, they should activate their value to solve the power problem confronting the nation rather than point accusing fingers at the government and individuals.
Maiduguri Gas Plant Gets November Completion Date
The Nigerian National Petroleum Corporation (NNPC) independent gas-powered plant in Maiduguri, Borno State, will be completed by November 2022.
Group Managing Director (GMD) of NNPC, Mele Kyari, disclosed in Maiduguri, yesterday, that machineries for the gas engines are already on site with the technical team to fix the equipment.
The 50MW power project was sited along Baga road, following the destruction of three power tower lines near Jakana village on January 17, 2020.
According to the GMD, the turbines to be installed are the best in the world with latest technology to produce electricity from gas.
On sustenance of electricity, he said: “The Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) would be supplied to Maiduguri from Port Harcourt (Rivers State) by 22 trucks daily covering a distance of 1,700 kilometres,” adding that 57 trucks of gas will be adequate to power the plant for 10 years.
Kebbi Allocates Land for 5,600mw Solar Power Project
Kebbi government has allocated 200 hectares of land to a private investor to set up a 5,600 megawatts solar power plant in the state.
Alhaji Suleiman Muhammad-Argungu, former Chief of Staff to Gov. Atiku Bagudu, told newsmen in Birnin Kebbi that the company would soon begin work on the project.
A team of 30 Canadian technicians are due in the state soon to begin work on the project.
“The project will be located at Fakon Sarki in Argungu and has been designed to improve and stabilise electricity supply to all communities in the state, as well as to create jobs,’’ he said.
He added that the state had already secured the consent of the Transmission Company of Nigeria to set up a transmission station to be sited between Argungu and Fakon Sarki.
Muhammad-Argungu is the National Organising Secretary of the All Progressives Congress (APC).
He said that Kebbi had also facilitated private sector investment in air transportation with the opening of an aviation college in the state.
He said that the aviation college sited at Ahmadu Bello International Airport, Birnin Kebbi, would train pilots and aeronautics engineers.
“This will pave way for daily commercial flights from the state to other parts of Nigeria and to African countries.
Okpoko Community Battles EDDC Over Crazy Bills, Extortion
Landlords and residents of Okpoko, Ogbaru Local Government Area, Anambra State have called on the Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) to address the challenges of ‘crazy’ and overestimated energy bills to consumers in their area or withdraw its services henceforth.
The residents who bemoaned their plight during a gathering yesterday in Onitsha decried what they described as “oppressive, outrageous and over-estimated” bills, ranging from N20, 000 to N40, 000 per house every month.
They also accused the EEDC of extortion and fraudulently sending as much as four bills to a flat on a monthly basis.
The Chairman of the Concerned Landlords Association, Electricity Committee, Chief Christian Achionye, who spoke on their investigations about the alleged dubious activities and extortion of EEDC in Ogbaru and adjoining communities, warned EEDC staff to stop entering into people’s houses at odd hours in the name of carrying out any services that are not in conformity with NERC regulations.
He said the EEDC was planning to use security operatives to force the people to pay the outrageous bills or disconnect their electricity supply.
EEDC, MOJEC Partner to Extend Mobile MAP Metering in Enugu
The Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC) and MOJEC International Ltd. have partnered to close the metering gap in Enugu with the implementation of the Mobile Meter Asset Provider ( MAP) programme.
The mobile MAP metering programme ensures prepaid meters are installed same day once a reimbursable payment is made after customer’s provision of means of identification and electricity bill.
Flagging off the programme on Sunday in Jubilee Estate, Enugu, the Managing Director of EEDC, Mr Praveen Chorghade, said that MAP was a metering intervention initiative introduced by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC).
Chorghade said that the MAP metering allows meter manufacturers and meter vendors to meter customers while they pay for the meters.
According to him, it is however designed in a way that customers will be reimbursed with the cost of the meter through energy credit, over a 36-installment period.
“The need to close the existing metering gap in our network has necessitated our partnering MOJEC International Ltd. in our quest to ramp up our metering efforts and move away from the estimated billing and direct connection.
South Africa’s Eskom Says Stage 4 Power Cuts Continue Amid Labour Action
South Africa’s Eskom will continue with “Stage 4” power cuts until Wednesday as unlawful labour action at various plants impact maintenance work, the state-owned power utility said on Sunday.
Suffering some of its worst electricity generation problems in a decade of forced power cuts, known locally as load shedding, Eskom’s struggles have recently taken a turn for the worse due to a salary dispute with workers.
“Eskom regrets to inform the public that Stage 4 loadshedding is anticipated to continue from 05:00 on Monday morning until midnight at least until Wednesday,” the utility said in a statement.
“This is due to unlawful and unprotected labour action at a number of power stations, which has caused delays in carrying out planned maintenance and repairs”.
On Friday the firm was forced to widen electricity cuts over the weekend as labour protests linked to deadlocked wage talks disrupt operations.
AFDB Working Towards Ensuring Improved Energy Supply in West Africa – DG
The African Development Bank Group (AfDB), says it is working with ECOWAS through the West African Power Pool (WAPP) to develop the energy market.
According to the bank, the aim is to ensure improved quality and quantity of energy supplied to West Africa.
Ms Marie-Laure Akin-Olugbade, the Director-General, West Africa Regional Development and Business Delivery Office of the Bank, said this in a telephone interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) Sunday.
The WAPP is a specialised agency of ECOWAS.
It covers 14 of the 15 countries of the regional economic community (Benin, Côte d’Ivoire, Burkina Faso, Ghana, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea Bissau, Liberia, Mali, Niger, Nigeria, Senegal, Sierra Leone and Togo.
Akin-Olugbade said the Bank was proud of the investment it had made, saying it had financed a lot of transmission lines for the transmission of electricity.
”We have financed a lot of transmission lines and this will be for the transmission of electricity.
Abu Dhabi’s W Solar to Invest in Libya’s Renewable Energy Sector
The Alpha Dhabi subsidiary will build solar photovoltaic power generation plants in Libya and sell the net delivered energy to the Libyan government.
UAE-based W Solar Investment, a subsidiary of Alpha Dhabi Holding, which invests, develops, owns, operates and transfers renewable energy power plants through its subsidiaries, has signed an memorandum of understanding with the General Electricity Company of Libya (GECOL) to develop a strategic long-term partnership and collaboration in the renewable energy sector in Libya.
As part of this agreement, W Solar will invest in the green energy sector in Libya; it will build solar photovoltaic power generation plants and sell the net delivered energy from the plants to the Libyan government.
The agreement marks an important step in the collaboration between the public and the private sector in the green energy area.
Weam Elabdelie, chairman of the board of directors, General Electricity Company of Libya, said: “There’s no doubt that the MoU is important to the economic reform for the renewable energy sector in Libya. The Libyan government has been showing a serious intention to develop renewable energy. As we get on with unleashing investments in the renewable energy sector, having a partner like W Solar will definitely help accelerate the national green energy agenda.”