135,000mw required to power Nigeria’s economy – Nnaji

08 May 2012, Sweetcrude, ABUJA – The Nigerian government says the nation requires about 135,000 megawatts (MW) of electricity to power the economy, adding that to achieve this, the country needs about 15 times the volume of what is being generated.

Minister of Power, Prof. Barth Nnaji, disclosed this at a one-day Presidential Workshop with the theme: “Dismantling barriers to achieving our power sector vision”, held at the Banquet Hall of Presidential Villa. The workshop was chaired by President Goodluck Jonathan.

The workshop was aimed at ensuring the alignment between Ministries of Power and Petroleum Resources and is about fleshing out issues that are impeding progress in the power sector and aligning them and also getting stakeholders so that Nigerians will see changes in the power sector.

Nnaji said the country would exploit methods of fuel for power generation, gas, hydro, coal, wind and solar to achieve the target, adding that the baseline of power generation was 3,600 MW out of the 5,700 MW available capacity.

The Power Minister listed non-availability of gas, lack of proper maintenance, water management issues and transmission constraints as factors responsible for their inability achieve maximum capacity.

He assured that there would be improvement in the power generation and distribution in the short time, the medium term and in the long term, disclosing that the Federal Government had signed $1.5 billion Agreement with the US Export and Import Bank on power sector financing.

He also disclosed that two power giants, General Electric and Siemens, had signed memorandum of understanding with his Ministry to build 10,000 MW power plant in the country.

Minister of Petroleum Resources, Mrs. Diezani Allison-Madueke, said the challenges in the power sector was as a result of “gross misalignment’’ in terms of gas supply to power plants.

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  • Babatunde Ogungbamila

    It is unfortunate that the Minister is seeking to solve the power problem in Nigeria the Obasanjo way. He is thinking of exploiting other methods of fuel for power generation such as coal, wind and solar to achieve the target. He also considers the building of 10,000 MW power plant by General Electric and Siemens as a pointer to a calculated effort at achieving stable power supply.
    Nothing could be more delusional. The cost of using coal, wind and solar will be astronomical should we go that route to solve our power problem.
    We have gas in abundance and what we need now is to concentrate on building the necessary Infrastructure to harness and bring it to the power plants already built under the NIPP arrangement. We also need to address the issue of payment for consumed electricity.
    It is highly unfortunate that we are treating and handling electricity issue like the telecoms. These are two different utilities. We were able to solve the telecoms problem because of the GSM technology such technology is not available in the electricity sector.
    Nigeria will remain in darkness if we continue with this insincerity of the present administration.