Minister of Power says Olorunsogo, Omotosho Power Plants are Underutilised

Minister for Power, Adebayo Adelabu has said the Olorunsogo and Omotosho power plants are underutilized. He stated this during a visit to the power plants in Ogun and Ondo states respectively.

Olorunsogo and Omotosho power plants are power generating companies under Niger Delta Power Holding Company which is owned by the government of the federation.

The Olorunsogo power plant generates 750 megwatts (Mw) while the Omotosho power plant generates 500Mw, the minister identified that the combined capacity utilization of both plants is below 25 percent describing it as underutilized.

These are big power plants with over 450 Mw installed capacity, he noted.

“I am amazed at the level of underutilization of these power installations. Each of them operates below 25per cent capacity when we are still complaining that power generation is low in this country,” the minister said.

Adelabu however identified gas availability, energy invoice settlement, TCN evacuation corridor, multiple-taxation and forex to source spare part as factors affecting the generating plants.

“The under capacity utilization is due to a variety of reasons. The major part of it is the shortage in gas supply to these installations. This is why I needed to see these plants myself. To look at what can we do to improve the operational capacity of these plants.

“What we can do to repair those turbines that are down, what we can do to support these power plants to operate at impressive capacity so that power supply will improve nationwide,” he said.

The minister, who expressed delight at the size and technology of the power plants, added that their operational history is also impressive.

Adelabu said the visit is part of the nationwide visit to power installations of the Federal Government to fiscally inspect and monitor the physical state and the operational state of these power plants.

“And I have seen for myself when we get to the office, we will discuss with the management of these companies to see how we can collaborate and cooperate to ensure that the federal government comes into their assistance to support them to improve the operational capacity and consequently improve the level of power supply to the distribution companies.

“I believe that these companies are currently undervalued and before they can be disposed. I think a number of things need to be carried out by the federal government. To ensure that they are brought to a higher capacity and their valuation improves.

“If they are sold as they are currently in state. I believe the country will be losing. We have invested so much in these power installations.

“I mean they are just about 12 years old. But if you look at the running hours of all the plants that we have they are almost close to being new plants, almost all of them are below 30,000 running hours since inception.

“So with a little overhaul here and there, I believe we can get a higher generation from the combined capacity of these two plants.

“We are not stopping at Olorunsogo and Omotosho power plants alone. We are only starting from here; we will still get to other plants,” the minister said.

Chief Executive Officer, Niger Delta Power Holding Company Limited, Chiedu Ugbo, said the plants have great technical availability as well as strategic national assets adding that Nigerians need electricity and therefore no need keeping them non-functional.

Ugbo said the company has commenced a program tagged “Light Up Nigeria “ which was aimed at attracting industrial cluster who are not on the grid by providing them electricity at cost reflective tariff through distribution companies.

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