11 November 2014, Abuja – Sixteen hydropower dams that will add 135.15 megawatts of electricity to the power grid have been completed, the Federal Government has said.
Nigeria currently generates less than 5,000MW of power for a population of over 160 million people.
Data obtained from the website of the Federal Ministry of Power on Monday showed that the country’s energy generation as of November 6, 2014 was 4,025.53MW, while the energy sent out was 3,936.31MW.
Speaking on measures adopted by the government to address the epileptic power situation, the Minister of Water Resources, Mrs. Sarah Ochekpe, said 37 large dams had been constructed across the country.
Ochekpe, according to a statement from the Federal Ministry of Water Resources, says the construction of 149 other dams is ongoing all over the country.
According to her, the ministry engaged in the construction, operation and maintenance of dams nationwide to impound raw water for potable water supply, hydropower, irrigation, fishery development, flood control, tourism and recreation.
She said “The ministry, in the last four years, completed 37 large dams of various sizes, rehabilitated 10 dams, while construction works on 149 dams of various capacities are ongoing across the country.
“Out of the 37 completed dams, 16 are with hydropower potential capable of generating 135.15MW of electricity.”
Last week, the Minister of State for Power, Mr. Mohammed Wakil, announced that the country was generating 4,600MW of electricity, a figure that had yet to be uploaded to the ministry’s website.
Ochekpe said the government was working tirelessly to improve the power situation, hence its renewed commitment to ensuring that the dams were functioning adequately.
She said when the construction of all the dams was completed, the water impoundment would be increased by 3.6 billion cubic metres.
The minister noted that some existing dams, including the breached Goronyo Dam emergency spillway in Sokoto; Alau Dam in Borno; Tiga and Chalawa Gorge dams in Kano; Hadejia Barrage in Hadejia as well as other dams in many states had been rehabilitated for more optimal operation.
On the Kashimbila Multipurpose Dam, Ochekpe said it was intended to control flooding from the the Lake Nyos upstream in Cameroon and it had recorded 87 per cent completion status.
She stated that the procurement process for the proposed Datsin Hausa Dam to address the issue of flooding as a result of uncontrolled release of water from the Lagdo Dam in Cameroon was currently under review.
– The Punch