26 December 2013, Abuja – Finally, after initial hiccups, the Bureau of Public Enterprises, BPE, has signed the Share Purchase Agreement, SPA, with the preferred bidders for both Afam generation company, Genco, and Kaduna distribution company, Disco, namely Televeras Group and North-West Power Limited respectively.
The National Council on Privatisation, NCP, had suspended bids for both firms, after it was revealed in the case of Afam that the former Power Minister, Prof. Bart Nnaji, had links with one of the consortia, which had submitted bids for the plant.
On the other hand, the privatisation of Kaduna Disco was adjudged inconclusive, as none of the prior bidders met the technical qualification criteria.
Consequently, the NCP ordered a restart of the privatisation process. In August, however, prospective investors for the Afam and Kaduna Disco finally had their commercial/financial bid proposals opened with Taleveras Group emerging the preferred bidder for the former, offering to pay $260.05 million (N41.6 billion) for the power asset.
Similarly, North-West Power Limited emerged winner for Kaduna Disco with an aggregate technical, commercial and collection loss reduction (ATC&C) proposal of 29.26 per cent, beating LEDA Consortium, which offered an ATC&C of 26.71 per cent to the second place as the reserve bidder.
Speaking at the signing ceremony in Abuja, the Director General of BPE, Mr. Benjamin Dikki, said the exercise represented the concluding leg for the privatisation of the successor companies of the defunct Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN).
He said once the power sector was completely liberalised, government would continue to be a player “until we reach a situation where we have sufficient power to drive the economy.” The representative for Afam, Mr. Oghens Sanomi, who signed on behalf of the company, promised to provide power in excess of 1,000 megawatts when it assumes control of the asset. He said: “We are very happy and committed to the directives and issues in the SPA. We are excited and glad that this process has come to a conclusion. When we take over, we will be a catalyst for the energy sector.”
Similarly, Chairman, North-west Power, Yusuf Abubakar expressed delight at the progress so far recorded and pledged the firms commitment to transform the sector. He said: “We know the enormity of the task, we are committed to transforming the company into a world class one that will serve our people. It is our hope that we will also help in transforming the economy of the area so that the peoples’ well-being is assured. We thank BPE for a very transparent process.”
The exercise, when completed would effectively put paid to the bid process for the 17 PHCN successor companies that were advertised for sale in December 2010 by the NCP and BPE.
*James Emejo, Thisday