4th October, 2022
By Femi Ogunshola
The House of Representatives has mandated its Committee on Power to investigate the causes of the reoccurring national grid collapses in the country.
This followed the adoption of a motion of urgent public importance by Rep. Sani Bala (APC-Kano) at plenary on Tuesday in Abuja.
Presenting the motion, Bala said that the national grid has witnessed recurring collapses lately, especially when there were system disturbances along the transmission lines connecting a number of generating stations.
He said since 2013 when the power sector was privatised, the country had witnessed over 100 national grid collapses.
According to him, in 2022 the national grid had collapsed seven times more than the three times recorded in 2021 causing national power outages with enormous socio-economic implications.
He also expressed concern that the latest in the series of power failures had been adjudged among the worst in the country.
This, he said, indicated that there was no framework or spinning reserve meant to forestall such occurrences.
The lawmaker said it was incomprehensible that all the key power plants in the country, including Egbin, Utorogu, Chevron Oredo, Oben gas-fired power plants, Ughelli, and Chevron Escravos power plants, could all shut down at once.
He said the issue of system collapse might not be unconnected with the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN)’s lack of wheeling capacity, inadequate transmission lines and spinning reserves.
He said others, including the refusal to fast-track construction of digital control centres instead of the company’s current analogue system.
Bala said available statistics from the research showed that if the power generation was adequately wheeled and transmitted for distribution to consumers, there would be a 30 percent reduction in the cost of generating power.
He said that this would lead to a corresponding reduction in the prices of utilities in the electricity supply industry.
The House, therefore, urged its Committee on Power to investigate the TCN’s capacity to address the ugly trend.
The House said that this was to forestall future occurrences and protect the country’s already fragile socio-economic environment.