Damilola Shittu – Abuja
The power Distribution Companies (DisCos) have insisted that there is no 2,000 megawatts (MW) stranded in the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) that can’t be delivered.
But the Generation Companies (GenCos) confirmed the existence and are seeking ways to evacuate and supply more electricity to Nigerians.
The Permanent Secretary (Power), Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, Engineer Louis Edozien, at a workshop on Eligible Customer Regulation organised by the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) in Abuja, yesterday, said the regulation was meant to connect large power users directly to GenCos to utilise the 2,000MW stranded power.
He said: “It is this regulation that will ensure that not just stranded power but delivered power, is delivered to consumers who are contractually bound to pay for it.”
Engineer Edozien urged customers who are not well served under the 11 DisCos to leverage on the regulation to get better supply directly from GenCos which could be evacuated to them by the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN).
“If we do this aggressively, that 2,000MW of so-called stranded generation will quickly evaporate,” he noted.
Reacting to this, the Deputy Managing Director of Ibadan DisCo, Engineer John Ayodele, said there was no stranded 2,000MW on the grid other than the 5,000MW threshold being the highest generation in the sector.
Backing this claim, the DisCos’ group – Association of Nigerian Electricity Distributors (ANED) – had noted that the GenCos actual capacity was 5,000MW with generation averaging below 4,000MW often.
ANED spokesman, Sunday Oduntan had in a clarification said the 2,000MW never existed because the GenCos still battle with gas and transmission constraints to deliver the average 4,000MW in the electricity market.
The Executive Director at Mainstream Energy Solutions Ltd (MESL), concessionaire of Kainji and Jebba hydropower GenCos, Abdullahi Siraj, at the workshop, said the stations have some part of the stranded power due to incessant load rejection by DisCos.
Equally, Dr Joy Ogaji, the Executive Secretary of the Association of Power Generation Companies (APGC) had in a paper said the GenCos have over 7,000MW generation capacity but that the actual capacity the grid could take was 5,000MW.
She said there is over 2,000MW stranded power which the GenCos are made to bear the burden of maintaining and operating the generating machines that work below their capacities.