FG targets 6,000 MW by end of 2024 – Minister

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By Constance Athekame

Minister of Power, Mr Adebayo Adelabu, says the Federal Government plans to increase power generation from 4,000 to 6,000 Megawatts by the end of 2024.

Adelabu said this in Abuja on Monday when the members of the Senate Committee on Power visited the ministry.

He said the federal government plans to achieve the 6,000 MW of power using the hydro and solar plants to increase supply of electricity to households and businesses.

The minister described as unfortunate and sad, a situation where the highest electricity currently being generated stood at only 5,800 MW.

“The infrastructure are lying there, without adequate maintenance, the turbines are rusting away.

”With proper investment put in place, we can generate 6,000 megawatts before the end of 2024,” he said.

The minister also said that the federal government was going to transform the Electricity Distribution Companies, (DisCos), adding that they were the last mile in the power supply industry.

According to him, if they don’t perform, it means the entire power sector is not performing.

“We are putting pressure on the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC), to ensure that the DisCos sit up and if they have to withdraw their licenses for not performing, why not?

“We are unbundling the DisCos along state lines as some of them are too big for efficiency and effectiveness.

“Some of them are serving so many states, so we are rearranging and restricting the DisCos along state lines, so that each state government will know the distribution company responsible for their states,” he said.

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The minister said it was time the federal and state governments started exercising their rights in the management and operations of the power sector.

“We have left it for the private sector for too long and they have messed it up.

“We also plan to franchise the DisCos so that we can have smaller DisCos that are ready to invest,” he said.

Earlier, Sen. Eyinnaya Abaribe, Chairman of the Committee, said they were in the ministry for an oversight function.

Abaribe said the oversight visit became necessary to find out the challenges that had led to poor supply of electricity to Nigerians and also the reasons for the consistent collapses of the national grid.

He said the committee, in pursuant to the rules and regulations of the National Assembly, had already invited the ministry of power and its parastatals for an investigative hearing on the increase in electricity tariff by April 29.

Abaribe said, “this is with regards to payment for power by Nigerians, so, we won’t want to discuss that before the date.”

”’The committee has already invited the minister and his agencies to discuss the issue of increase in tariff extensively with the committee,” he said. (NAN)(www.nannews.ng)

Edited by Remi Koleoso/Bashir Rabe Mani

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