Ex-chairman of NERC flays low electricity penetration
The National Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) said that it has remitted a total of N1.8 billion to Rural Electrification Agency (REA) in 2021 to ensure the agency remains afloat.
This is as the former chairman of NERC, Dr Sam Amadi, also regretted that the penetration of electricity supply in Nigeria has remained at 40 per cent since 2010 in a country of over 200 million population.
Speaking at the Annual General Meeting (AGM) and one-day workshop of the Association of Rural Electrification Contractors of Nigeria (ARECON), in Abuja, the current chairman of NERC, Sanusi Garba, stated the need for REA to be adequately funded.
To this effect, the chairman, stated that NERC remits any excess funds to REA to keep it afloat and to this effect, NERC has remitted a total of N1.8 billion.
The chairman who spoke through a representative, Alhaji Mohammed Bello, reiterated the need for local content practice in the industry which the former chairman, Sam Amadi established before he left office.
According to him, NERC has encouraged and pushed for mini grid and renewable energy in the industry.
However, Amadi, in his remarks, thumped down on slow penetration of electricity, which he said, has remained at 40 per cent since 2010.
He said thàt by now, generation would have reached 14,000 megawatts. He advised the government to adequately invest in electricity infrastructure, saying that the government should change its budget size towards electricity infrastructure.
‘The reason our country is not getting the required result is that we talk too much,’ he said.
Amadi also noted that the reason the nation has not progressed electricity-wise is that tariff is not right adding that if tariff is not right consumers would reject it.
Earlier, the Chairman of ARECON, Chief Akubuobi Innocent Uche, identified the factors militating against the Federal Government’s developmental goals and visions in providing uninterrupted electricity supply. These include, weak transmission grid and frequent system collapse; distribution companies’ lack of capacity to take load from transmission stations, vandalism of electricity infrastructure and poor funding by private investors after the takeover of acquired assets.
‘However notable improvements have been recorded in specific areas of the operations of the electricity value chain, especially in metering and the adoption of alternative source of energy, such as solar power mini grid,’ he noted.