The Niger Delta Power Holding Company (NDPHC) has surged its power distribution system target in 2018 to 7, 000 Mega Watt (MW).
Managing Director, NDPHC, Engr Chiedu Ugbo, who declared this in a document,stated that the agency was working in collaboration with other stakeholders in the power sector to ensure that the Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) has a distribution system capable of taking all the over 7, 000 mega watts of electricity currently being generated to consumers by 2018.
The greatest challenge of the industry at present, the NDPHC boss said, is how to ensure that the distribution sub-sector becomes infrastructurally upgraded and capable of clearing virtually all that is generated, thus colloborating the minister’s earlier remark that the major problem now is the capacity to locate and deliver all gen erated power to consumers in need.
Geregu power plant, according to Engr Ugbo, is made up of three units with an installed generation capacity of 450 mega watts, of which two are currently running as permitted due to gas and distribution constraints.
“You can’t fire the units at full capacity if they are not picking load. You have to either ramp down or shut down some units to ensure equilibrium. So the problem is not with TCN or GenCos; it is the under-demand for what is generated for distribution.
“The quantity of gas one gets determines how much you can fire. So we now do between 170 to 200mw depending on whether it is peak or off-peak period,” he said.
The NDPHC boss added; “And that is the focus of the meeting here today. NDPHC as an intervention agency of the government, and the other stakeholders are focusing on the DisCos’ ability to take the load. As I speak, we have seven distribution projects in Kogi State here which we hope will be completed and commissioned latest by the end of the first quarter of next year. This is aimed at helping the DisCos to get the generated power to consumers, and that is what is important.”
In a communique issued at the end of the 22nd meeting of the power sector stakeholders hosted by Geregu Power Plant in Kogi State, Ugbor said that the meeting identified projects, which Kogi State is directly benefitting from to improve distribution infrastructure in Okene, Idah, Confluence Beach, Ankpa, Felele, Ohunene, and Ayingba areas of the state.
The communiqué also reiterated the minister’s statement in his opening remark that efforts were on to add a total of 1, 129mw of power to the grid in 2018 from the following plants: Azura (450MW), Katsina Wind Farm (10MW), Gbarain (115MW), Gurara (30 mw), Dadin-Kowa (29MW), Kaduna (215MW), and Kashimbilla (40MW), which will require significant upgrades in distribution to reach customers, excluding the mini-grids and solar home systems, all off-grid, that will come onstream.
In that communique, NDPHC noted that construction on Okija and Omotosho community connection project was complete and awaiting energisation by December 31, 2017.
Speaking further, Engr Ugbo said; “In 2018 we are looking at a Nigerian Electricity Supply Industry (NESI) that can deliver to Nigerians the over 7, 000mw being generated currently.
“So we are looking at helping to bridge the 2, 000mw gap and course expand, and If possible, we should clear demand for the installed capacity of over 13, 000mw. So we very ambitious and working with the DisCos to ensure that distribution no longer constitute a bane to efficient and improved supply of electricity in the coming year.”
TCIP Customs explains cargo clearance delays at port
The Tin Can Island Command of the Nigeria Customs Service has said the recent in cargo clearance being witnessed by importers and Customs Brokers at the Apapa and Tin Can Island Ports in Lagos is because the NCS Internet Server was down thus impeding cargo documents processing.
This was disclosed by the Tin Can Island Customs Public Relations Officer, CSP Tony Ejesieme during a chat with the Sunday Telegraph on Wednesday at the port city of Apapa.
Ejesieme noted that the internet network breakdown as experienced by the Service could cause delay at anytime and was not the fault of the NCS but that of a bad weather.
The PRO, who admitted that there was delay in cargo release, said the command had not captured any importers for cargo release but was optimistic that the network would surge back and cargo clearance processing would commence immediately.
“We have not been able to work since morning as no importers have been captured. This is another delay; issuing debit note has become a problem. But the network will certainly come back and we will commence work immediately,’’ said he.
According to him, the major reasons for delay were non-compliance with import guidelines, wrong classification and declaration by importers, and lack of working scanners.
He, however, absolved the Service of any complicity and maintained that the NCS works based on procedure. ‘’Whatever we are doing is based on procedure and in accordance with the import laws. It is true that there is delay; if there are issues of infraction, there will be delay,’’ he said.
Ejesieme also caused by lack of scanners, saying that all scanners in all the ports in Lagos have broken down completely except only one in Apapa which could not handle all cargo in the port and that is why many cargos are routed to physical examination.
‘’Scanners are not working; only one is working in Apapa, no one in Tin Can. The issue of scanners has to be settled and we have engaged government on it.’’
Advising importers and customs agents to adhere to the import guidelines, he said that the security of nation as the nation approaches the general elections in 2019 would not be compromised as the Service is working with other government agencies to protect the territorial boundaries of the nation.
UBA Foundation reading through regions in Africa
As part of its mission to improve the lives of communities in which the United Bank for Africa operates, UBA Foundation said it has continued to encourage African youths to adopt the culture of reading through its ‘Read Africa’ initiative.
Read Africa aims to rekindle the reading culture amongst young Africans. Designed and introduced in 2011 by the UBA Foundation, the initiative has donated hundreds of thousands of books to African schools since its inception.
This past week, The Foundation took its initiative to the francophone city of Libreville to the students of the George MABIGNATH high school in Gabon.
The launch of Read Africa in Gabon saw in attendance, the author of the selected book Sidonie, written by famous Gabonese writer Chantal Magalie MBAZOO.
It was a colorful ceremony that witnessed the CEO of the Foundation, Bola Atta reading to and interacting with the students in high energy in the presence of their Principal, Mrs. Boudounghou Biboutou Isabelle and other staff members.
Bola Atta summarized the Foundation’s initiative saying, “At the UBA Foundation, we are committed to improving the lives of the youths on the continent and one of the ways we can achieve this is to help you read more. I am here to talk to you a little about the importance of reading and how it can radically change your life. Reading encourages you to dream, it expands your knowledge, your vocabulary. It is a path to achieving your ambitions”.
Chioma Mang, the CEO of UBA Gabon also reiterated the mission of UBA and emphasized the bank’s commitment to the Gabonese community. “ I love children and I am happy to be here with you all today. I’d like to encourage you to read very well so that you can reach great heights in your life like me. UBA is going to be there for you all the way. You can count on us”, she said.
The Read Africa initiative then moved on to Zambia to the Horizon Secondary School in Lusaka where the Director in the ministry of higher education in charge of Vocation, Education and Training, Mr. Alex Simumba, thanked UBA and the Foundation for the good work that is being done across Africa. He said, “To UBA Foundation, we thank you for your support to the institution today. We welcome this and many more collaboration in the field of literacy and other higher education programmes. We also further encourage other private sector organisations to take a keen interest in such programmes because the youths who are receiving these literary materials will be benefitting greatly from them,” he said.
Shell has disbursed N1.88bn to GMoU clusters in Delta State
The General Manager, External Relations, SPDC, Mr. Igo Weli has said that Shell Petroleum Development Company, (SPDC) is still active in Delta State noting that the oil giant has executed a lot of projects in the state.
According to him, the oil giant has disbursed a total sum of N1.88 billion to Global Memorandum of Understanding (GMoU) in clusters.
Igo Weli, who disclosed this when he spoke with newsmen in Warri on Thursday, revealed that the GMoU funding covers the three clusters currently active in Delta State since the inception of the concept in 2006, adding that Cluster Development Boards (CDBs) like their counterparts in other parts of the Niger Delta, are implementing health and educational projects among others.
During the media presentation of the 2018 Shell Nigeria Briefing Notes to Journalists, he also disclosed that Shell has established a Professorial Chair at the Federal University of Petroleum Resources, Effurun (FUPRE,) as it continues to operate in the state and contribute to its development.
Weli explained that the Professorial Chair in Light Weight Automobile Engine Development was activated at FUPRE in December last year and is the latest of six established by SPDC JV, noting that the Chair at Effurun is expected to contribute to the growth of local content in Nigeria’s automobile industry.
He added that in a bid to boost employment especially among youths, more than 700 young men and women have benefited from Shell’s LiveWIRE initiative between 2003 and 2017.
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