Power Distribution: Incessant Power Outages Destructive, Nigerians Lament

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*Say repeated grid collapses counter productive

* Businesses folding

* Call on Gov’t to review privatisation 

* As no hope in sight

With the constant power outages caused by frequent grid collapses as well as an array of other issues, Nigerians are calling on the government to review the privatisation contracts, DAUDA ISAMAIL writes.

On Wednesday while Nigerians were marking the annual Workers’ Day, the Transmission Company of Nigeria,.TCN, disclosed that Nigeria recorded 105 cases of grid collapse from 2015 untill date.

The TCN General Manager Public Affairs, Ndidi Mbah, disclosed this in a statement posted on the company’s X handle. This immediately triggered responses from Nigerians who expressed utter displeasure over the ever worsening power situation in the country.

Recall that in recent times, the TCN has reported cases of national grid system collapses, resulting in reduced electricity allocation to electricity distribution companies in the country.

On April 15, Nigeria’s electricity grid collapsed, throwing several cities into darkness, as generation dropped to 64.70 megawatts, officials said.

Yet the TCN albeit boasted that the number of grid disturbances/system collapses has gradually reduced, contrary to popular opinion.

“In recent years, the number of grid disturbances/system collapses has gradually reduced, contrary to popular opinion.

“Clearly, between 2020 to date (five years), we recorded fourteen total and six partial grid disturbances totalling twenty (20), which represents a 76.47 per cent reduction in grid disturbance, when compared to the previous five years, (2015 to 2019) where we had sixty-four total and twenty-one partial grid disturbances, totalling eighty-five (85) times,” Ms Mbah said.

Though she attributed the ‘improvement’ to the continuous effort by the management to strategically expand the grid while harnessing in-house capacities to find solutions to grid stability, pending the deployment of SCADA/EMS, a cross section of respondents who spoke to AljazirahNigeria say contrary to an improvement, they see a worsening situation.

“How on earth can the TCN claim their efforts are yielding positive results? Rather what we see is a worsening unavailability of power. When even big businesses are feeling the pain, what about the many budding businesses started by jobless graduates that have either folded or are at the verge of closing shop?

“The situation is clearly getting out of hand and is negatively affecting businesses across the length and breath of Nigeria,” Adanne Imeh, a 2012 graduate of microbiology from the Kogi State University, and who is operating a hairdressing saloon lamented.

For Alhaji Abdulazeez Garba, a dealer in grains such as guinea corn, maize, millet and rice at the popular Paiko market in Minna, Niger State, “the power situation in Nigeria is nothing to write home about. For us in Niger State, it wasn’t anything close to this in the 70s, 80s and even in the 90s. You know with the Kainji, Shiroro and Jeba hydroelectric power dams, people here enjoyed powe so much that generators were almost non existent. 

“But the reverse is now the case. Yu see small medium and micro business shutting down on a daily basis, yet these are supposed to be the drivers of every successful economy. So how on earth can Nigeria have a stable economy with this disgraceful power situation?”

Meanwhile, earlier on Monday the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company, AEDC, attributed the power outage currently being experienced in parts of Abuja to technical faults on some of its feeders

The company’s management, in a statement listed the feeders affected as L36, H23, H33 and 8.

“This is to inform residents in parts of Abuja that the power outage currently being experienced is due to technical fault on feeders L36, H23, H33 and 8, respectively.

“Locations affected: are feeder L36-Entire Idu industrial, CITEC Estate, Efab Global, Babaginda Estate, Nizamaye Hospital and its environs.

“FH 23-Airport, River Park, Shoprite, NIPCO, Dunamis Church, NIGCOMSAT and its environs,’’ it said.

The company said that Feeder FH33 was also affected, and this comprises Apo Mechanic Village, Waru Village and its environs.

The company also said that Feeder 8, which has Jabi, Parts of Utako, Life Camp, Kado, Efab, Zango Daura, and Mbora Estates and its environs, was also affected.

According to AEDC, its technical team is working tirelessly to rectify the fault and restore the power supply quickly and regrets any inconvenience caused.

But reacting a businessman who gave his name as Chinedu Mosco said all that AEDC and other distribution companies as well as the TCN has been known for is just talk without any corresponding action to ensure the availability of power supply.

“We are just tired of this all talk and no corresponding action. Is it the TCN that can’t transmit all that is generated by the Generation Companies, GenCos, or is it the DISCOs that have no capacity to store excess power they get from the whittled down power they get from TCN which cannot even transmit every generated power that we should listen to?

“Speaking the mind of every Nigerian from the everyday Lamentations, we are tired have lost hope completely so we call on the federal government to review these contracts as the only way to solve this nonavailability of electric power.

But for Ndidi Mbah of the TCN, “No doubt there is room for improvement, and TCN will continue to work hard to further reduce the number of grid disturbances to the barest minimum,” she said.

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