The Executive Director of ANED, Mr. Sunday Odutan was a guest on the TVC Breakfast Show on 8th June 2018 where he spoke on “Inefficient Grid and Power Supply”.
“Looking at where we were before and where we are now, power supply has improved in the country.” The spokesman for the distribution companies started out while on air.
The proper estimate is to generate 1000MW per 1 million populace. So at a population of about 180 Million Nigerians, the country would need 180000MW to power the nation 24/7, but this is a dream that would never come through.
Following the survey that says that there are 32 Million households in the country, with some on the grid and others off grid; the likes of Dangote Group, Redeemed Church, Winners Church and so on. It these organizations stay off grid and don’t come on the grid, at a generation of 20000MW, at least 80% of those on the grid should be getting 24 Hours power supply.
Mr. Sunday Odutan was asked to speak on different issues by the presenters which he addressed one after the other.
On the law of prosecution, Sunday Odutan stated that few days ago at the National assembly, they implored the house to pass a law that would seriously criminalize energy theft. Mobile courts should be put in place where cases of energy theft can be dealt with and addressed accordingly.
On the efficiency of the issue of the grid system where a unitary system is been run in the power sector where the generating companies generate power somewhere else and throws it into the grid system somewhere else, the spokesman of the Discos had this to say: “The power sector has been neglected for over 60 years and you can’t fix the rot of over 60 years in one night. I give kudo to the Federal Government on the way they are tackling the power issue. They own the TCN 100%. And despite all the bottlenecks, they are trying to fix them all one at time.
On the issue of Discos refuting the order of NERC Okaying more firms to procure and install meters, Mr. Odutan defended the claim as untrue and malicious. He stated that it is the interest of the discos that all their customers be metered and that was why they embraced the (Meter Asset Providers) MAP Policy that was introduced to help increase the metering gap.
We have more than 4 million metering gaps and they need 299 Billion naira to procure those meters, and what is their liable capital expenditure in 5 years? 305 Billion. And when I say capital expenditure, I mean expenditure meant not just for meters but transformers, poles, cables and other things put into one, and if one item has taken about 98% of the expenditure, that tells you that the carpet is not enough, and when you increase the carpet, you increase the time, because those things are built inside the times.
Mr. Sunday Odutan also stated that he believes and hope that the current NERC would keep up the good work. He spoke on the need of foreign investors in the power sector and also noted that of all the 11 discos, only one disco has foreign direct investment. All other 10 were acquired by Nigerians with loans from Nigeria banks and the fall of the power sector would mean a fall of the banking sector as well.
Lastly, the issue of what is generated and what is distributed was brought to the table, the spokesman, Mr. Odutan revealed that sometime in 2015, the TCN carried out a stress test to know the Generation Capacity or Ability, Transmission Capacity or Ability, Distribution Capacity or Ability. In the case of the distribution companies, it was found that the Nigerian Electric Distribution companies can distribute 6288MW, so the day you hear that we are actually putting 7000MW into the grid, I would tell you that the discos cannot distribute it.
However, since 1960 till date, 7000MW has never been put into the national grid and that is because the current TCN cannot take 6000MW. This is not blaming the other party but saying there is a mismatch and need for alignment, as we work to increase generation, need for increment in the transmission capacity and distribution capacity is also necessary.