•Says obsolete equipment, vandalism’ll permit only 800mw

From Isaac Anumihe, Abuja

Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has said that it has capacity to transmit only 8,100 megawatts (MW) of about 13,000 megawatts (MW) generated electricity.

Speaking to newsmen, at the weekend, TCN’s general manager for the Port Harcourt region, said that the country is supposed to transmit about 15,000MW, but “we are unable to meet this capacity due to weak and ageing infrastructure”.

Inugonum bemoaned the incessant attacks on TCN’s facilities, urging the media to raise public awareness of the dangers of the act.

“In some of our stations, vandals have cut earth-conductors of big transformers that cost about N800 million resulting in the ‘floating’ of the facility.

“There are projects that have been on-going for almost 20 years in Okigwe and Mbano in Imo, and in other places that could not be completed partly because of vandalism.

“We do not understand why people vandalise our facilities considering the importance of power supply to economic activities.

“If transmission power lines are vandalised, and in the process, it falls on top of about 100 houses, no occupant of those houses would survive.” he said

According to Inugonum, daily attacks on TCN facilities in Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Imo, and Rivers impact negatively on efforts to supply uninterrupted electricity.

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“In just two months, we have lost several of our transmission lines in Odukpani (Cross River) and in Elelenwo in Rivers.

“A 60mva cost about N1.2 billion, while a span of 132kv of our transmission line costs about $330,000 dollars, making our losses unquantifiable and humongous when vandalised.

“It is unfortunate that people vandalise facilities worth billions of naira only to melt the metals to construct gates, pots, and cups. It is just wickedness” he regretted.

Inugonum said 23 power projects were at several stages of completion in the six states of Abia, Akwa Ibom, Bayelsa, Cross River, Imo, and Rivers.

He said the projects, executed under the National Integrated Power Project (NIPP) initiative of the federal government, are partly funded by the TCN, the Niger Delta Power Holding Company, and the World Bank.

Apart from the 23 projects ongoing in the six states, Inugonum said there are 15 other completed projects, while three are at proposition stages in the states.

Earlier, TCN’s Assistant General Manager, Port Harcourt sub-region, ,Benneth Ezemobi, said plans were in top gear to supply an extra 100MW of electricity to Rivers.

Currently, he said, the TCN has slightly less than 400MW, “but by 2025, we would have been able to meet our 500MW target for Rivers”.

ENDS


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