NAPTIN moves to boost technical efficiency in power sector

13 October 2015, Abuja – The National Power Training Institute of Nigeria (NAPTIN) has said  it plans to initiate a new model for training of technical personnel in Nigeria’s electricity service industry, using Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs), whose equipment are mostly used in the sector.

Director General of the National Power Training Institute of Nigeria, NAPTIN, Reuben Okeke.

Mr. Reuben Okeke, DG, NAPTIN

NAPTIN said in Abuja that its decision to engage OEMs in the training of technical persons in the country’s electricity sector was based on the need to cut short extant technical losses recorded in the sector, as well as improve on the overall efficiency of the electricity network.

As a starter, NAPTIN has entered into a strategic partnership with Swiss firm, TE Connectivity (TE) whose product Raychem has been used in connecting electricity installation in Nigeria’s network since 1979.
NAPTIN explained that the partnership will provide critical trainings on standard network connections to technical workers in the sector.

The agency further noted that with such standard trainings, instances of unsuitable and substandard connection of electricity installations in the country would be minimised and efficiency of the systems improved.
The training, according to NAPTIN will be provided by experts from TE to select persons from the electricity distribution companies (Discos) and other relevant operators in the value chain free of charge at its regional training centre in Kainji, New Bussa Niger State.

The Director General of NAPTIN, Reuben Okeke stated at a briefing on the training that the knowledge to be gleaned from the training will go a long way to reduce the technical losses currently experienced in the sector.

“This is the first time we will be partnering with an OEM to train people in the power sector and we have started with a household name in the old NEPA/PHCN since 1979. This training is expected to specifically impact trainees with high technical installation skills. During the four days training, which will hold in Kainji next week, over 20 installers and cable jointers drawn from across the distribution companies, would be provided technical training on equipment installation. With the involvement of an OEM in training of personnel in the sector, we hope to build on capacity, skills and talent that exist in the sector,” Okeke said

“All joints that not properly made introduce technical losses in the system but after the training, joints will be done in a way that will minimise technical losses in the system.

“The training is apt as it will help to ensure that joints are done 100 per cent according to the Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) specifications,” Okeke added.

He stated further that the training is not a one-off arrangement, adding that TE would be invited from time to time to train workers in the Nigerian power sector on new technologies.

In his response, TE’s head of sales Europe, Middle East, Africa (EMEA) and Emerging Markets, Ronnie Fotheringham said that his company’s decision to facilitate the training was informed by the need to support the Nigerian government’s huge investment in upgrading and expanding the power network with the required skilled workforce.

Fotheringham who listed the impact of unforecasted network failures to include reduction in the income and performance of distribution companies and unhappy customers, maintained that by working together, the sector can attain some level of precision in power output target by adopting highest installation standards.

“The partnership with NAPTIN furthers the mission by bringing the proven solutions, technical know-how and broad application experience to NAPTIN and those being trained. The creation of NAPTIN is a demonstration of the commitment to building and reinforcing the Nigerian power network for overall economic growth. Connecting and protecting that network requires diligence and a high degree of technical skills.

“Today, we take the next step in our partnership to help address the challenges facing Nigeria’s power sector through the training, development and enablement of local talent,” Fotheringham explained.

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