with agency reports
21 February 2015, Sweetcrude, Abuja – Even though power generation has barely improved beyond 4000 megawatts over the past six years, President Goodluck Jonathan yesterday insisted he had delivered on his campaign pledge to make the power sector a priority for his administration.
To this end, he said the Federal Government had invested about $8.26 billion in the power sector through the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) over the years.
President Jonathan, who was speaking during the inauguration of a 750 megawatts Olorunsogo II Power Station in Olorunsogo, Ogun State, said the soon the challenges posed by epileptic power supply would become a thing of the past.
“I have lived up to my campaign pledge to make the power sector a priority,” Jonathan told the gathering that included members of the Federal Executive Council, Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) chieftains and traditional rulers from the state.
Jonathan said although it was capital intensive to make a difference in the power sector, his administration had been tackling it headlong.
He said the short interface between public ownership of power sector to private sector would soon be over. With that session over, the President said Nigerians would begin to take power for granted in the next two years.
He said, “The interface between 100 per cent ownership of the power sector by government and 100 percent ownership by private sector will soon be over.
“In the next two years, Nigerians can take power sector for granted like it is obtainable in other countries.”
He said he was confident that Nigeria is moving in the right direction under his watch. According to the president, his administration will not relent in its determination to drive away darkness from Nigeria.
“I am happy that I have consistently delivered on my campaign promises to transform Nigeria and my administration would leave no stone unturned to achieve its goals,” he said.
He described the power plant as the second largest NIPP power station in the country.
The President urged Nigerians to support the Federal Government in its desire to improve electricity, even as he pledged that the interface between the government and the private sector on the privatisation of the power sector would be completely sealed by 2017, if voted into power.
The President explained that the power plants in Kogi and Ondo states had already been privatised while that of the Olorunsogo is in the process of being privatised.
Commending the board and management of NDPHC for the successful completion of the Olorunsogo and other NIPPs, the President added that, “We are planning two major dams in the North. This is in addition to the plan for massive generation from coal in the South-East.”
The President explained that a total of $650 million of the amount was committed to the Olorunsogo power plant, said there were 10 of such power projects ongoing across the nation, noting that he had inaugurated two in Kogi and Ondo States in 2014.
According to the President, the Olorunsogo II plant would add 750 Mega Watts to the national grid and this, together with other NIPPs, would go a long way to boost the power generation and supply across the country.
Earlier, the Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, said Nigeria lost 400 Mega Watts (MW) due to gas shortage caused by incessant attacks on gas pipelines.
He said, “The vandals have caused the current decline in power. And it is shocking that anytime we are about to hit 4,500 MW these vandals go and cut the gas pipelines.”
Managing Director of the NDPHC, Mr. Abiodun Olotu, said the feat achieved by the agency was due to the support and leadership of the President.