20,000 mw of power coming in next 4 years with World Bank’s $486m

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* As Head of Service says Discos are a drawback due to inadequate investment

With $486m facility recently signed by the World Bank for Nigeria’s power sector, the country is sure to grow its national grid to 20,000 megawatts before the next four years. This is as the Head of Service of the Federation (HSF), Winifred Ekanem Oyo-Ita, said in Calabar Monday, April 23, 2018, that the Discos constitute a huge drawback to the power sector.

She said: “The implementation of the Transmission, Rehabilitation and Expansion Program (TREP) is on course. She added that support from international donor agencies would stabilize power supply and expand national grid to 20,000MW in the next three to four years and that the $486 million support from the World Bank was approved in February.

Oyo-Ita blamed Power Distribution Companies (Discos) for epileptic power supply in parts of the country, saying; “The distribution companies should now invest more in the distribution network because that is where the problem lies. There is a lot of power that is being generated by generating plants and transmitted by transmission plants but the Discos do not have the capacity to transfer this power to the end users.”

Oyo-Ita spoke with journalists in Calabar Monday while commissioning the new 60MVA and 132/33kV power transformer at the Calabar Transmission Substation, Essien Town. They were installed by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).

She said: “Some of the distribution companies are not investing such that they could transfer this power to the end users. Nigerians will never appreciate the large amount of money being invested in power generation. So, we are appealing to the distribution companies to go back to the drawing board.

“If they know they don’t have the financial or the technical wherewithal, let them come out and be sincere and stop frustrating Nigerians and painting government in a bad light. And so my appeal to the distribution companies is that with all these large investments we are seeing all over the nation, they should take power distribution more seriously.”

The HSF said the transformer station that was just commissioned that morning was a long awaited prayer of the people of Cross River State. “It is going to generate a large quantity of power for Port Harcourt Distribution Company and it is going to improve the socio-economic growth and development of Cross River State.”

She said the installation of the distribution power transformers was a milestone, adding that power supply would now improve significantly in Calabar Municipality, Calabar South, Odukpani, Bakassi, Ogoja, Ikom, Yakurr, Itigidi, Ugep, Obudu and environs.

Oyo-Ita said “the implementation of the Transmission, Rehabilitation and Expansion Program (TREP) is on course,” adding that support from international donor agencies would stabilize power supply and expand national grid to 20,000MW in the next three to four years and that the $486 million support from the World Bank was approved in February.

She appealed to the state government to assist TCN demolish illegal structures under the right of way of power transmission, adding “this is necessary not only to enable TCN maintain and expand the lines but to ensure the safety of life of our people.”