Paschal Emeka, Abuja
The House of Representatives has concluded arrangement through its oversight powers to Investigate reoccurring national Grid Collapses and incessant power outage in the country.
In a motion of urgent national importance raised yesterday by Hon. Sani Bala representing Tsanyawa/Kunchi constituency of Kano State, the lawmakers unanimously mandated the Committee on Power to immediately commence investigation into the root causes of incessant national grid collapse in the country viz-a-viz Transmission Company of Nigeria, TCN’s capacity to address the ugly trend in order to forestall future occurrences and protect already fragile socio-economic environments.
The House being aware that national grid collapses occur when there are system disturbances along the transmission lines connecting a number of generating stations;
concerned that since 2013 when the privatization exercise took place in the power sector, the country has witnessed over a hundred national grid collapses.
The House lamented that the sector has so many challenges admitting that many experts and operators in the sector have openly explained that such problems would linger for a long time if not addressed now.
The House equally raised concerned that within 2022 alone the national grid has collapsed seven times far more than the three times recorded last in 2021.
The House further disclosed that such repeated collapses are dangerous as it’s causing national power outages with enormous socio-economic implications to the country.
The Hose used the opportunity to raise concern that the latest in the series of power failures has been adjudged among the worst the country has witnessed in recent times, which in turn indicates that there is no framework or spinning reserve meant to forestall such occurrences.
The lawmakers were worried that it is incomprehensible that all the key power plants in the country, including Egbin, Utorogu, Chevron Oredo, Oben gas-fired power plants, Ughelli, and Chevron Escravos power plants could all shut down at once in the country with enormous power generating potentials.
They also expressed concern that the issue of system collapse may not be unconnected with the Transmission Company of Nigerians, TCN, lack of wheeling capacity, inadequate transmission lines and spinning reserves as well as refusal to fast-track construction of digital control centres instead of the Company’s current analogue system.
According to the House, available statistics from research has shown that if the power generated is adequately wheeled and transmitted for distribution to consumers, there will be a 30% reduction in the cost of generating power thus leading to a corresponding reduction in the prices of utilities in the electricity supply industry in Nigeria.