Yemisi Izuora/Agency Report
The African Development Bank (AfDB), has identified some failures in the ongoing energy reforms in Nigeria and observed that despite huge capital injection, the Power Sector development is still moving at snail pace.
President of the Bank, Akinwumi Adesina, while speaking at the ongoing Africa Investment Forum (AIF) in Cape Town, South Africa, was unimpressed by the huge volume of both government and private investments including its $200m into the Nigerian power sector without results.
Adesina, said that it is unacceptable for Nigeria to be delivering 4,500 megawatts of electricity to a population of over 190 million people after over three years of huge investments both by government and AfDB.
“My own perspective in everything that I do is that my philosophy of development is simple; if I am not ashamed of something I don’t change it. But if I am ashamed of something, I’d change it,” he told CNBC Africa.
“I don’t think it’s acceptable that Nigeria is hovering in 4,500 megawatts space. No. Nigeria ought to be in 40,000 megawatts space. That is what we should be talking about.” He said the African Development Bank has invested over $200million in driving power generation and transmission in Nigeria.
“I think that we as a bank are strongly supportive, we’ve been investing in Nigeria for quite some time, we have been working with the minister of power right now,” Adesina said.
“We are working with them on the Transmission Company of Nigeria, in which we have invested over $200 million to help to improve the transmission line.
Adesina recalled that “We’ve supported Nigeria Bulk Electricity Trading company because they had issues in terms of liquidity and we provided $200 million to help them unblock some of those things
“We are also going to be investing in solar. With the minister of power, we are looking at something in the Jigawa area, which would be about 1,000 megawatts.
“We are also investing in other types of renewable energy, on the small scale”.
Business Hilights recalls that the Minister of Power, Works and Housing and former Governor of Lagos State, Barr Babatunde Fashola had during the 2015 campaign, said it will take six months to fix Nigeria’s power situation, unfortunately, more than three years down the line, nothing has changed.
Even when the government finally took off in September, 2015, six months after inauguration, federal government pledged it would be generating 9,000 megawatts of electricity by December 2018.
Barely one month to the end of the year, production had been hovering between 3,450 and 4,500MW with momentary collapse of national grid while Gencos kept on decrying huge debts and none payment for delivered powered to the tune of N1trn.
Besides, Discos are complaining of vandalism, meter bypass and power theft as key challenges as consumers decry monthly robbery by way of estimated billing and crazy bills for epileptic supplies.