Lai Mohammed: Past administrations abandoned 800 containers of power equipment


Minister of Information and Culture, Alhaji Lai Mohammed, had disclosed that past administrations abandoned 800 containers of power equipment meant to help boost power generation in the country.
The minister made this known when he featured on a national television on Saturday to discuss on the state of the nation.
He said the containers were abandoned because contractors were not paid.
He, however, noted that the present government, in its determination to boost power supply, was able to retrieve 690 of those containers.
He said the contractors had also been paid and mobilised to site, adding that the effort had yielded positive result.
“How many hours of power did we have? When we came in, all the GENCOs were generating were under 5000 megawatt, which we have been able to raise to 7000.
“Today people who live in parts of Ondo that have not seen power for 10 years will tell you they now have power.
“As a matter of fact, not only do we generate 7000 megawatt of power, by the end of this year, we will generate additional 2000 megawatt,’’ he said.
On challenges of power distribution, the minister said the government had put measures in place to solve the problem.
“If once in a while there is problem in distribution, it is not about generation.
“Yes there is this disconnect between the generation and distribution and this is where the government has come in to help the distribution companies through a programme called the Distribution Expansion Project,’’ he said.
He further reiterated the effort of the present government in working to revive the Mambilla Power Project,
According to him, going by the effort of the present government the Mambilla Plateau will generate additional 3050 megawatt of power in a few years time.
He pointed out that President Muhammadu Buhari was the only one that had summoned the courage and political will to see that the project was revived.
“We have improved on what we inherited because we put together a payment assurance scheme of N701 billion to ease the difficulties of gas suppliers and generating companies who complained that they have the capacity to generate but the discos do not have the capacity to pay them.
“In the area of distribution, we were distributing 2,690 megawatts of power in 2015.
“January 2018, we distributed 5,125 megawatts. So, in every area of power we have stories to tell,’’ he added.
Mohammed explained that beyond power, the Federal Government had touched the lives of Nigerians positively in other areas including education, agriculture, infrastructure and technological development.
“The N100 billion Sukuk bond that was divided into N16.6 billion for each of the geopolitical zones is powering infrastructure of 25 critical roads.
“The present government has invested in bridges, roads and rails and had put aside a 1.3billion dollar under the Presidential Infrastructure Development Fund to ensure that five critical projects did not suffer from funding.
“Some of these projects have been there for about 40 years, such as the Mambilla Power Project, Second Niger Bridge, the East West road, the Lagos-Ibadan Express Way and the Abuja-Kano road.
“There is no area that this government has not touched,’’ he said.


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