Mr. Abubakar Aliyu, Minister of Power
The Minister of Power, Abubakar Aliyu made it known that Nigeria could not reach its earlier proposed power generation target of 5,000 Megawatts due to gas shortage.
The Minister revealed this after the Federal Executive Council (FEC) meeting presided over by the President, Muhammadu Buhari, in Abuja.
However, Chairman of the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission, Garba Sanusi, explained why the commission’s 5,000MW target is realistic saying that the feasibility of delivering such a level of supply to consumers is high.
Sanusi had lamented that 80 per cent of the country’s power generation comes from gas, and the sustainability of gas to generate plants has been constrained largely due to breakdown, vandalism, maintenance work, or disruption of supply to the power plants.
With the current supply below the target and fluctuating, the power minister once again blamed gas supply saying his ministry does not have exclusive control to the vital resource.
According to him, whereas the government had entered into a firm contract with the Nigerian Bulk Electricity Trading Plc, power generation had remained around 4,000 megawatts because of the problem of gas.
He said FG has firm contracts with only 5 of the 28 Power Generating Companies but will extend it to more GenCos to stabilise supply at 5000MW.
The Minister was optimistic to Nigerians that the government has “all the ingredients” to solve the supply challenge soon.
Commenting on the ongoing strike by Members of the National Union of Electricity Employees, the Minister claimed that protesting workers do not have issues with his ministry but the Head of Service.
The Minister of Power also opined that FEC approved N2,740,000,000 as revised estimates for the updated rates of building structures of compensation and resettlement of the communities affected by the construction of the 700 megawatts Zungeru Hydroelectric power project.