Prepare to pay more for electricity – FG

ACTING Director-General, Bureau of Public
Enterprises (BPE), Mr Benjamin Ezra Dikki, has advised electricity consumers in Nigeria to be prepared for increased electricity tariff.

This is just as the Managing Director of CMEC, one of the preferred bidders in the privatisation exercise of unbundled Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) successor companies, Mrs Heather Onoh, said it would take the company six months to rehabilitate parts of the Sapele power plant.

Dikki, speaking at the signing of Transaction
and Industry Agreements (TIA) for the PHCN
successor companies, held at the Banquet Hall of the State House, Abuja, on Thursday,
admonished Nigerians to be willing to accept increased electricity tariff, as the privatisation exercise in the power sector was nearing completion.

The acting BPE boss, however, said the
increase in the electricity tariff would only be in the short run, as tariffs were bound to fall in the long run as a result of massive investment in the sector.
He reminded Nigerians of the crash in the price of SIM cards in the telecoms sector, as a result of competition and investments in the industry, adding that the same development would unfold in the power sector.

The acting BPE DG described the signing
ceremony as the beginning of a voyage,
stressing that there was still the need for route charting, navigation and steering in the right direction.

Mrs Onoh, speaking on the occasion, disclosed that some of the facilities at Sapele power plant were badly managed, adding that it would take the company about 12 months to rehabilitate the power plant CMEC won for $201 million.

Meanwhile, following the full privatisation of the PHCN, the Federal Government and the
successful bidders for 10 generating companies (GENCOs) and five distribution
companies (DISCOs), on Thursday, signed sale and purchase agreements on their handover.
Speaking at the occasion, Vice-President Namadi Sambo described the event as
“important landmark,” saying it marked
important milestones in the ongoing reform of the Nigeria electricity supply industry.

The vice-president, who was represented by
the Minister of Power, Professor Chinedu Nebo, thanked the World Bank for “its support towards making these agreements bankable, through the provision of Partial Risk Guarantee credit support instrument.”