10 September 2012, Sweetcrude, PORT HARCOURT— NIGERIA’S new Presidential Task Force on Power inaugurated last week by President Goodluck Jonathan has been pronounced dead on arrival.
General Secretary of the Nigerian Union of Electricity Employees, NUEE, Mr. Joe Ajero, who made the claim in a chat with Sweetcrude in Port Harcourt, maintained that the setbacks and weaknesses in the power sector cannot be wished away with impulsive committees or task forces.
Ajero said the diversion of funds meant for reinvigorating the power sector was at the heart of the problem frustrating efforts aimed at improving the system, adding that task forces often lacked the political will to go after those stealing the money and have rather become part of the problem.
“In all, it’s self-destructive. The Elumelu House of Representatives Committee in its power sector probe report indicted persons, not faceless, for misappropriating over N16 billion and nobody has cared to hold those fingered accountable. Renaming task forces will not solve the problem. They are just looking for jobs for the boys.”
He said it was also erroneous to credit recent improvement in the power sector to serving ministers or task forces whereas the field workers in the industry, particularly Power Holding Company of Nigeria staffers, who work under deprivations and poor welfare, are the ones who make things happen.