The only power distribution company that is owned and currently being run by the Federal Government is planning to distribute electricity to customers in Niger Republic.
It was learnt that the Yola Electricity Distribution Company, the only Disco being managed by the Federal Ministry of Power, Works and Housing, is working with the power utility company in Niger Republic to distribute electricity from Damasak in Nigeria to customers in the neighbouring country.
The Managing Director/Chief Executive Officer, YEDC, Baba Mustapha, disclosed this to operators in the power sector at the 27th monthly meeting of the industry stakeholders in Adamawa State, according to the minutes of meeting, which were obtained by our correspondent in Abuja on Friday.
The meeting was chaired by the Minister of Power, Works and Housing, Babatunde Fashola.
Mustapha told stakeholders at the meeting that the YEDC was currently receiving 3.5 per cent of the total energy sent to the national grid by power generation companies, adding that the firm had never rejected load in spite of some constraints in the distribution network.
He stated that from 2015 to date, the company added 114.5MVA and 98.1MVA capacity to its network following the installation of 20 power transformers and 435 distribution transformers of various capacities.
He added that the company had invested and added 408.5km, 105.1km and 298.1km routes length of 33kV, 11kV and 0.415kV distribution lines, respectively to boost power supply within its franchise during the period under review.
On the distribution of power to Niger Republic, Mustapha, according to the minutes, “stated that the YEDC was awaiting certification of the network in Niger Republic by Societe Nigerienne D’ Electricite, the electricity utility company of Niger Republic, to possibly connect some of NIGELEC’s customers who normally get supply from Damasak in Nigeria.”
He informed the meeting that the YEDC had completed the rehabilitation of the Maiduguri-Damasak 33kV line and the 2.5MVA, 33/11kV power transformer to restore power supply to Mobbar, Magumeri and Gubio Local Government Areas, whose distribution networks were previously ravaged by insurgents.
In his remarks, Fashola stated that contrary to the opinion expressed in 2015 that the Yola Disco was not viable, the Federal Government had proven that the firm was viable following reports emanating from the ranking of all Discos at each monthly meeting vis-à-vis the performance of the YEDC.
The minister said the story of Yola Disco epitomised change and the incremental power initiatives of the Federal Government, adding that 80 per cent of damaged 33kV lines had been restored in Damboa, Madagali, Maiduguri, Damasak, Gombi, Mubi, Wukari etc.
Following difficulty in running the Yola Disco due to activities of the terrorist group, Boko Haram, the first core investor in the firm, Integrated Energy and Distribution Marketing Company, had asked the government to buy back its 51 per cent stake in the firm.