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FG Working Hard To Deliver Steady Electricity To Nigerians – Minister

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FG Workin Hard To Deliver Steady Electricity To Nigerians - Minister

The Minister of Power, Mr. Abubakar Aliyu, has said that the Federal Government was making progress in ensuring the speedy completion of key power projects to deliver a steady electricity supply to Nigerians.

Aliyu said this in a statement in Abuja, on Wednesday, to mark his 50 days in office as the minister of power.

The minister listed some of the projects to include: The Kashimbilla 40 MW Power Station in Taraba State which had already begun generating power for the National Grid.

READ ALSO: First Bank: Otedola Is Not Our Largest Shareholder

He also noted that the Gurara phase 2 being developed in partnership with the Ministry of Water Resources would soon deliver 30MW to the grid.

” The Zungeru Hydroelectric Power Project is progressing towards completion next year, to deliver another 700MW of renewable power.

Katsina wind farm, with a full capacity of 10MW, is already generating part of its full capacity for the grid,” he said.

The minister also cited the Dadin Kowa 40MW power station that had also started generating power for the National Grid, under a concession with a private investor.

Aliyu revealed that the outstanding regulatory and power purchase agreement issues were also being resolved.

Speaking on the Mambilla hydroelectric power project, which was contracted in 2017, the minister said that discussions were being intensified so that all issues preventing the full take-off of the project are resolved soon.

According to him, in its bid to accomplish an additional 7,000mw, the Federal Government has, through its Presidential Power Initiative (PPI), commenced the expansion and upgrade of the nation’s transmission and distribution critical infrastructure.

“The first phase of the PPI is the upgrading and expansion of the vital infrastructure of the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) and the Distribution Companies (Discos) with the goal of achieving the 7,000MW.

“This first phase, had started in earnest this year with the ongoing pre-engineering phase,”, he said, adding that the selected contractors would soon be contacted officially so that work on the project can commence”, he said.

The minister also revealed that the Nigerian Electrification Roadmap (NER) was a partnership that will expand Nigeria’s electricity capacity from the current average output of 4,500 MWh/h to 25,000MW.

Aliyu said that the government was confident that the NER will succeed because of the pedigree of Siemens and its footprint in the global power industry.

He said that the government was also reinvigorating important policies and regulations, especially the Eligible Customer and related regulations, that will move the electricity industry from the present interim commercial structure to a full commercial structure.

” In compliance with Clauses 25 and 26 of the Eligible Customer Act, whereby consumers contact willing GenCos directly for better services and service providers that are ready to make new investments to deliver better service,” he said.

Similarly, he explained that the Meter Asset Provider program (MAP) meant to attract investors into metering, had been activated.

He also said that the mini-grid policy and regulation allows underserved consumers to partner with investors and contractors for better services.

According to him, the Ministry of Works and Housing, for example, had started a solar pilot of 1.5MW.

“Government is optimizing the available generation capacity and putting them to good use.

“This means that we shall ensure that the unutilized capacity is used in line with the Ministry’s incremental power focus and the Eligible Customer policy.

” Strengthening the regulator to ensure that all players and stakeholders work according to the rules and guidelines especially in dealing with customers”, he said.

The minister, however, bemoaned the challenges that had impeded the growth of the sector.

“We are aware that the Nigerian Power sector is confronted by many challenges which have not enabled the sector to grow as desired. These challenges are reflected in the two over-arching problems of the sector.

“Service quality: Too many people are still not satisfied with the quality of service in terms of hours of supply, voltage, disputed/estimated bills, or have no access to electricity.

“Sector illiquidity: The payments the DisCos are able to collect from consumers do not cover the full investment and costs of the GenCos who produce and sell the power, and Transmission Company of Nigeria which wheels the power to the DisCos.

“Federal Government financial support is required to cover the shortfall. The resulting huge burden on Government is unsustainable”, Aliyu said.

The minister said that reforms take time and require patience to implement, especially in a highly regulated sector like the power sector.

”I am confident that these reforms, when fully implemented, will bring about the transformational change that we all desire to see in the sector,” he said. 

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EEDC Connect: DisCo launches New App For Customers

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EEDC Connect: DisCo launches New App For Customers

The Enugu Electricity Distribution Company (EEDC), says it has newly launched its “EEDC Connect’ app for enhanced electricity customers interface, meant to ensure timely and superior service delivery.

EEDC’s Head of Communications, Mr. Emeka Ezeh, said in a statement on Saturday in Enugu that the multi-functional application (mobile App) is designed to allow customers to have access to the company’s services with ease.

Ezeh noted that some of the services the ‘EEDC Connect’ App would offer included: payment of bills, prompt request for support, viewing of payment history, registering complaints, and viewing your logged complaint to ascertain its current status.

READ ALSO: Shehu Shagari University of Education: New Varsity To Kick Off By 2022

According to him, the company has embraced information technology as a tool to make its operations efficient and transparent, both for the company and its customers.

He said: “To get started, customers are expected to download “EEDC Connect” on their mobile phones from “Google Play Store”, register, and obtain a One-Time Password (OTP) which should be keyed in, to complete the process.

“The launch of “EEDC Connect” is coming barely two weeks after the company introduced its “Online Bill Download Portal”, a service that allows its customers conveniently view/download their energy bills right from the EEDC website and make payment without necessarily waiting to receive the physical copy of their bills”.

Ezeh reiterated that the introduction of these initiatives is part of the company’s ongoing automation processes aimed at achieving efficiency and improving customer experience.

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Osinbajo Task Nigerians On Unity

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Osinbajo Task Nigerians On Unity

Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, says Nigeria needs not just achievers, but men and women who are bridge-builders and unifiers.

The vice president said the nation needs people who will see its ethnic diversity as a source of strength, and not as a point of difference.

Osinbajo’s spokesman, Laolu Akande, in a statement on Saturday in Abuja, said the vice president spoke at the turbaning ceremony of some prominent persons in Bida Emirate, Niger State.

READ ALSO: Sanusi’s Banishment From Kano Declared Illegal

In Bida, the Etsu Nupe and Chairman, Niger State Council of Traditional Rulers, Alhaji  Yahaya Abubakar, in a show of goodwill and appreciation, conferred on the vice president the

“Garkuwan Yamma Nupe”, which means – the Defender of Nupe Kingdom.“I am short of words to express our gratitude to the vice president.

It shows the concern you have for all Nigerians irrespective of who they are and where they come from,” Abubakar said.

The traditional ruler turbaned four prominent public officials including  Musa Abdullahi, a member of the House of Representatives, who was made the Gwarzon Nupe, and another member of the lower chamber, Bako  Kasimu, who became the Zarman Nupe.

Others were Engr. Muhammed Haruna, who was turbaned as the Dan Turakin Nupe – he is a member of the Niger State House of Assembly, and Dr Suleiman Sheshi, the Chairman of the Bida Local Government Council, who was given the title, Maina Nupe.

Osinbajo expressed his appreciation of the traditional ruler’s goodwill and congratulated all who were honoured at the event.

The Etsu Nupe has wisely chosen today to celebrate excellence and selfless service.

“They have all brought competence, commitment and character to the positions of responsibility entrusted to them.

And this is evident from all we know and what has been said about them.”

In his remarks afterwards, Osinbajo said that the conferment of the titles was a fresh call to service to the Bida community and the nation.

He restated the Federal Government’s commitment to enhancing security nationwide.“Our country needs men and women who understand that all men and women, regardless of race and faith, deserve to be treated equally, fairly and justly.

“We will continue to work with key stakeholders and the people to effectively tackle the current insecurity challenges in order to achieve a peaceful and prosperous society.

“This we promise to do to the glory of the Almighty and for the benefit of the people who elected us into office.

“Many sons and daughters of Nupe land have risen to prominence in Nigeria in both the pre-and post-independence era, making significant contributions to national development.”

The vice president said that that President Muhammadu Buhari’s administration recognised the strategic importance of Nupe-land in national development.

According to him, a few weeks ago, the Federal Executive Council approved the reconstruction of key roads in Niger State.

He said the administration understood that in order to sustainably improve the standard of living of the people, it must address the persistent socio-economic inequalities by ensuring that people are gainfully engaged in legitimate economic activity.

The vice president celebrated the culture of the Nupe people and their contributions to national development over the course of the nation’s history.

“That is why we have and will continue to prioritise agricultural growth and development. Between July and September 2021, agriculture contributed almost 30 per cent of Nigeria’s total GDP. 

Nupe-land, with its vast farmlands and extensive farming activities, is key in delivering this figure.

Nupe kingdom is a land that is steeped in the splendour of tradition.

“Indeed, this occasion provides us with a platform to appreciate the rich cultural heritage of the Nupe people, a proud and distinguished people with a unique history and looking around Wadata Palace here, we can see some of the vestiges of the battles, symbols of Nupe bravery and heroism.

“We are very fortunate to have one of its great sons, who had an illustrious career in the Nigerian military and rose to the rank of a General before he answered the call of service to his people, to take the seat of his forefathers as the 13th Etsu Nupe.

“His Royal Highness, Abubakar, our host today; is easily one of the most respected traditional leaders in Nigeria today,” he said.

Osinbajo was welcomed to Bida by  Gov. Abubakar Bello and was also accompanied on the trip by Sen. Sani Musa (APC-Niger East).

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PDP National Secretary Visits Orji Kalu, Begs Him To Return To Party

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PDP National Secretary Visits Orji Kalu, Begs Him To Return To Party

Ahead of the 2023 general elections, the Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) on Thursday, appealed to the Senate Chief Whip, Sen. Orji Kalu to return to the party.

The National Secretary of the Party, Sen. Samuel Anyanwu, made the appeal when he led a delegation of members of the PDP to visit Kalu in his Abuja residence.

The appeal is coming barely two weeks that the National Leader of the ruling All Progressives Congress (APC), Sen. Bola Tinubu visited the former governor of Abia in Abuja. Anyanwu, shortly after a one-hour closed-door meeting with Kalu, said that their meeting centred on what would be profitable to the country.

READ ALSO: PDP Leaders Hold Closed-door Meeting With Orji Kalu

According to him, we came to visit a friend, a leader in the South-East and one of our own and to acquaint him with the developments in our party.

“And to let him know the reason why he should move over to our party. We had a good discussion and this is just the beginning,’’ he said.

Anyanwu noted that the visit was part of efforts by the PDP to bring their members back and reposition the party.

“We are talking about bringing people back to the party because the more the merrier.

“This is a place he started, so you have to leave where you are and go back to where you started,’’ Anyanwu stressed. Kalu, an ardent supporter of President Muhammadu Buhari and a reliable member of the APC left the PDP in November 2016.

Though he has not openly declared interest in the 2023 presidential election, his presidential posters flooded major cities in the country recently. 

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