Senate will ensure Nigerians benefit from power sector – Lawan
Written by MaryGift Sunday on June 16, 2020
Senate President Ahmad Lawan, on Monday said the National Assembly would ensure that Nigerians benefited maximally from the nation’s power sector for improved supply.
He said this when he declared open an investigative hearing on Federal Government interventions in the power sector organised by Senate Committee on Power.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the investigative hearing, Title: Power Sector Recovery Plan and COVID-19 Pandemic was designed to investigate the viability of N1.8 trillion Federal Government interventions in the sector since privatisation.
Ahmad Lawan, who said that the nation was yet to get it right in power, noted that Nigerians could not be competitive in international trade and make significant progress without electricity.
He said the National Assembly was concerned hence it mandated its committee to investigate the sector, adding that the senate would soon consider the report of the committee on resumption at plenary.
The senate leader said there was need for Bureau of Public Enterprise (BPE) to look at the share purchased agreement undertaken with the stakeholders at privatisation to make the sector better.
According to him, there is need to review the Power Purchase Agreement (PPA) as Nigerian was losing billions of naira monthly without supply of electricity because of the PPA.
“We must remedy to the situation, it is either we ask the DisCos to look for more partners, or government divest its 40 per cent share to other investors to manage. “We must revisit the PPAs also.
The Minister of Finance Zainab Ahmed in her presentation said the Federal Government had initiated various projects with multilateral agencies to revamp the sector.
She listed the projects to include the 486 million dollars World Bank approved Nigeria Electricity Transmission and Access Project, 350 million dollars World Bank Nigeria Electrification Project and African Development Bank 200 million dollars that was undergoing approval process.
Other projects, according to the minister, are the 26 million dollars World Bank North Core Dorsale Nord Inter Connector project under approval process.
Also, 170 million dollars, AFD Abuja Power Feeding Scheme that is also undergoing approval process,750 million dollars Power Sector Recovery Program and the 700 mega watts hydro power project already approved by the China Exim Bank.
She said it was expected that services in the power sector would improve as the aforementioned projects moves into various stages of implementations.
Earlier, the Chairman of the Senate Committee on Power, Sen.Gabriel Suswam (PDP Benue) said the various interventions of government for the sector did not result into success as was expected after privatisation.
He said this was occasioned the investigation by the Senate.
Some of the agencies of government expected to make presentation at the two-day public hearing include the Ministry of Power, its agencies, the Electricity Generation Companies (GenCos) and Distribution Companies (DisCos) among others.