26 August 2012, Sweetcrude, ASABA – NIGERIA’s minister of state for power, Darius Ishaku, says the government was proceeding with the implementation of the privatisation plan for the Power Holding Company of Nigeria, PHCN.
Ishaku said, while declaring open a two-day retreat organised in Asaba by his ministry for stakeholders in the power sector, that the government committed to adhering to the privatisation timetable.
The minister said: “Privatisation is on-going and there is no going back. It will continue and that is the only way forward to get us out of the power problem.
“We will continue to do our best to make the power sector stronger and build confidence in the people.”
Maintaining that the reform in the power sector will not lead to job losses, he stated that it is not possible to be talking about increase in power output without the input of the workers as it will rather lead to increase in their bargaining power for salary increase.
“I do not see how it is possible for us to be talking about targeting 12,000 megawatts to 20,000 megawatts when the industry staff will be reduced to half’ it is not possible,” he said.
He added: “If you are targeting increase in output, the staff strength should also increase because I do not see us importing staff from China, Canada or India, the staff must be those staff that are working here, that must be trained.
“I see a situation where your salary should move from one step, to two steps or three steps to what you are earning now. It will lead to salary increase, more than what you are earning now. At the end of the tunnel, we will see a bright light, just that there is a parallel shift, the change is for good”.