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EKEDC assures customers of improved power supply

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Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC) has reiterated its commitment toward improving power supply within its network operations.

The Chief Executive Officer, EKEDC, Dr Tinuade Sanda, gave the assurance during a customer consultative engagement forum in the Festac axis of Lagos State on Thursday.

Customers at the forum were drawn from Festac Town, Agboju, Satellite Town, Ijegun Imore and Snake Island.

Sanda, who was represented by the Chief Finance Officer, Mr Joseph Esenwa, explained that the ongoing low supply of electricity was due to inability to get sufficient energy from distribution companies.

She said that the quantum of energy made available to EKEDC by Gencos contributed to low supply within its network operations.

According to her, the company now gets 350 megawatts as against about 513 megawatts in the past.

“Water level is also a big challenge during dry season for hydro plants, this will be addressed once the disco gets sufficient supply.”

Sanda explained that the essence of the forum was to interact with customers within the company’s network on better ways to improve service delivery.

“Our mission in Eko DisCo is to improve the quality of lives of all customers by utilising cutting-edge technology to safely, sustainably and reliably supply electricity.

“That is what we stand for, and we will continue to promote this,” Sanda said.

She expressed confidence that Eko Disco was committed to economic and infrastructure development.

She said that the company was also committed to delivering safe, reliable and steady power supply to its customers.

She  revealed that the EKEDC collection rate stood at an average of 84 per cent, indicating a positive trend in revenue generation.

She, therefore, urged customers to promptly settle their bills to ensure the company’s financial stability and encourage the company’s investment in infrastructure and service improvements.

She added that support from customers plays a significant role in influencing the performance of the DisCo and ensuring frequent power supply in the area.

Sanda also emphasised that while EKEDC had phased out most wooden poles, there were still areas difficult for officials to access due to the nature of the terrain and how some of the buildings are mapped.

She assured that underground cables within the Festac axis would be addressed once faults were detected.

On extortion and vandalism, Sanda appealed to customers to assist in the ongoing extortion crackdown, saying customers should only pay their bills.

She warned customers not to give bribes to any EKEDC worker, while urging them to report any form of extortion to the company.

She urged customers to take responsibility and report incidents of energy theft and vandalism in their communities to the Police and other relevant security operatives.

While expressing frustration over the capital expenditure that had gone into the replacement of distribution transformers and power infrastructure vandalised within a year under the network, Sanda charged customers to speak up and assist the company in reducing the cost.

She said, “When you see things happening in your environment, especially where people are stealing energy or transformers are being vandalised, endeavour to take responsibility.

“As a matter of fact, EKEDC recorded more than a hundred transformers that have been vandalised within our network, this year alone.

“The average cost of replacement for each is a million Naira or it can also be more depending on the size of the facility that was vandalised.

“We have, therefore, used the customer engagement forum to reecho the theme of our 2024 edition of Fraud Awareness Week which is, ‘If You See Something, Say Something,’  because we believe that even these criminals are domiciled within the communities.

“So, with proper surveillance and theft awareness, the leadership of the Community Development Committee, traditional leaders and other concerned customers can help us to reduce the activities of these criminals within their environment and reduce energy and equipment theft to lowest.”

Dr Akinrolabu Olukayode, Chairman of the Customer Consultative Forum of Festac/Satellite Town, commended the company on effective service delivery.

Olukayode urged the government to improve generating capacity through more investments in the power sector.

“We need to expand the generating infrastructure to meet expectations and demands.

“We can not be battling within 3, 500 megawatts to 5,000 megawatts in a population of over 200 million.

“The best way is for the government to bring in investors and experts into the energy sector and see how the threshold of power capacity can be improved.

“Government can now polarise the sector through vendors and those who can effectively distribute meters and allow investors,” he advised.

He also tasked customers to keep security of EKEDC equipment within their communities.

He also advised them to keep watch on those who bypass meters and engage in energy theft.

“It is the duty of the customers to work in partnership with the Disco to ensure that vandalisation, energy theft are reduced

“If the customers fail to do that, it will continue to affect the operations of Discos,” he added.

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Energy

Kyari emphasises role of gas in driving economic growth, industrial development

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The Group Chief Executive Officer (GCEO) of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company Limited (NNPC Ltd.) Mr. Mele Kyari, has reiterated the crucial role of natural gas in fueling economic growth and industrial development in Nigeria.

Kyari spoke at the public presentation of the book “The Rise of Gas: From Gaslink to the Decade of Gas” authored by Engr. Charles A. Osezua, which highlighted gas’ global acceptance as a crucial energy source that sustains economic growth and drives industrial activities.

Represented by NNPC Ltd.’s Head of Relationship and Stakeholder Management, Mrs. Oluwakemi Olumuyiwa, the GCEO also emphasised the importance of documenting Nigeria’s gas sector.

The GCEO underscored the significance of prioritising natural gas production and supply, particularly in the context of geopolitical dynamics and energy security in the global economy.

With Nigeria boasting substantial gas reserves exceeding 200 trillion cubic feet (Tcf) and the potential to reach 600 Tcf, the GCEO said it is pertinent that Nigeria leverages the gas resource for sustainable development, energy security, and job creation.

He noted that the book aligns with the Federal Government’s “Decade of Gas” initiative, aimed at optimising Nigeria’s abundant gas reserves for both domestic consumption and international export.

Kyari added that, as a key stakeholder, NNPC Ltd. has played a leading role in advancing the “Decade of Gas” agenda through strategic investments in critical gas infrastructure such as pipelines and processing facilities.

In his remarks, the author, Engr. Charles Osezua, who described the unveiling of “The Rise of Gas” as his contribution to Nigeria’s energy literature, expressed gratitude to the NNPC Ltd. for its support towards the book launch.

Osezua said NNPC Ltd.’s participation at the occasion underscores the company’s commitment to fostering knowledge sharing and innovation within the gas industry.

Also speaking, Chairman of the Impact Investors Foundation and former Group Executive Director of NNPC, Engr. Afolabi Oladele, lauded the book for its comprehensive insights into the gas value chain, saying it will be relevant to policymakers amid the global energy transition.

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Energy

Low crude production responsible for revenue loss —PETAN

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The Petroleum Technology Association of Nigeria has claimed that the country is losing a lot of revenue daily due to its inability to ramp up crude oil production.

The Chairman of PETAN, Wole Ogunsanya, stated this in Lagos recently when the representatives of the Association of Energy Correspondents of Nigeria, led by its Chairman, Ugo Amadi, paid a courtesy visit to PETAN.

He reiterated the association’s resolve to support the efforts of the President Bola Tinubu-led administration toward increasing Nigeria’s oil and gas production for maximum value.

He said the vision of PETAN was to support the authorities to ensure that all the values existing in the oil industry stay in Nigeria.

According to Ogunsanya, if Nigeria could retain between 60 and 70 percent of the oil and gas value chain in the country, it stands a better chance of being among the top 20 economies in the world.

He expressed concerns that Nigeria was losing a lot due to its inability to produce up to its oil production capacity.

He pointed out that the country was underproducing to the tune of at least 500,000 barrels per day, which he said was a huge loss to the country.

The PETAN leader maintained that such losses would not have been possible if there had been full in-country retention of values and beneficiation across all the chains of the industry.

He explained, “Essentially, if Nigerian organisations are involved in taking that oil out, taking it to a refinery owned by Nigerians and refining it, if we have petrochemicals refining the gas and the product, we are taking that gas; processing it in power plants; and running pipelines to connect all those power plants. This country will be among the top 20 economies in the world.

“And we believe very strongly that there is no better prescription for Nigeria’s economic solution than that.”

Reiterating PETAN’s commitment to support the retention of those values, he acknowledged the Presidency’s high interest in increasing production.

He pointed out that the Presidency had given the directives and formulated a lot of gazettes, stating that PETAN aligned with those initiatives.

Ogunsanya further said, “Our intention is to support this government, and this country to increase the production of oil and gas. I presented this vision to the whole house of PETAN exactly a week ago and the vision is very clear. PETAN wants to support Nigeria through innovative means to increase the production of oil and gas in this country.”

He acknowledged the challenges facing the industry in Nigeria, including funding, logistics and others.

He noted that his association cannot make progress with some of its plans without collaborating with energy correspondents.

“We cannot do without you. Our message cannot resonate and cannot get across without your partnership with us.

“Essentially, we both need each other. PETAN needs you to tell that story, to sell what our vision is to help the situation we find ourselves in. We are going to support you as PETAN, as we have done in the past. I give you that assurance, we will work with you immediately,” he told the NAEC representatives.

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Energy

High tariff will lead to electricity theft — FCT residents tell FG

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Some electricity consumers in the Federal Capital Territory (FCT) have appealed to the Federal Government to review the new tariff  downwards to avoid electricity theft.

Some of the consumers who are mainly business owners  told journalists on Wednesday that if the cost of electricity remained high some of them consumers might bye-passing their meters.

Recall the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) had announced an increase in electricity tariff paid by Band A customers from N68/KWh to N225/KWh.

Band A customers are those who enjoy electricity supply for at least 20 hours per day.

The consumers, mainly printers, who do operate mainly at UTC and Murg Plaza in Area 10, FCT said that they use heavy equipment in doing their jobs hence their electricity consumption is high.

According to them, if they have to pay N225/KWh this will greatly affect their jobs making it difficult for them to cope with the present economic situation in the country.

Mr Amos Okolo, a printer, said that it was good that the government plans to give them 20 hours of electricity in the new tariff but the cost is too high for any business person.

Okolo said that by the time he purchases electricity with the huge money, nothing would be left in his business to cater for his family.

“I am appealing to the government to review the tariff downward as such increase can lead to some consumers bye-passing their meters and this is not good for Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC),”he said.

On his part, Mr Samuel Kolawole, also a printer, said that the cost indicated in the new tariff was so high that it could negatively impact businesses.

He said that the government should try and reduce the tariff so that it can benefit the rich and the poor people.

According to him, 20 hours of electricity is good for business owners as this will reduce the cost of buying fuel or diesel for generators but the pricing should be business friendly.

“We are appealing to the government to reduce the tariff to what we can afford so as to benefit everyone,” he said.

Also speaking on the issue, Mr Abel Ajibola, also a graphic designer at Murg Plaza said that the government means well for the people but the new tariff is outrageous, especially for small business owners.

Ajibola said that he would be glad if the government could review the tariff so that electricity consumers would not be tempted to start stealing electricity.

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