NGN; Long Hours of Blackout as Power Generation Drops by 1,100MW

In Lagos State and other parts of the country, households and businesses are experiencing long hours of blackout as power supply has gone very bad recently.

The special adviser to the Minister of Power on Power System, Mr. Jonathan Ogbonna, confirmed the drop in electricity supply is attributed to the shutdown of the Utorogu and Ughelli East gas plants.

According to him, the shutdown of the gas plants has caused the drop in power supply from over 4,000megawatts to as low as 2,900MW.

He said, ‘’Three weeks ago, the two gas plants were shut down. This has affected power generation, which went down to as low as 2,900MW. The 2,900MW was distributed in the format we have always done.

‘’From the National Electricity Regulation Commission, there is a ratio for distribution. His has been followed.’’

The Special Adviser added, ‘From the last report I got this morning, they are now re-commissioning the plants.

‘’When you demobilize after working on the system, re-commissioning will then be done. The re-commission is in stages; this is to ensure that everything is in order before we re-commission.’’

The Managing Director, Ikeja Electricity Distribution Company, Mr. Abiodun Ajifowobaje who responded to the complaints by the consumers said, ‘’Generation has been bad in the last three days. The system is still very bad. We are receiving just 250MW to service our maximum demand of 1,250MW.’’

On June 2, the Federal Government had announced the shutdown of Utorogu and Ughelli East gas plant.

The Minister of Power, Prof. Chinedu Nebo, had assured that the closure of the plants was to ensure their proper maintenance.

He added that the closure of the gas plants would affect the output of power generation stations relying on them for gas supplies.

‘’I am publicizing the planned closure for maintenance by the Nigerian Petroleum Development Corporation of its Utorogu and Ughelli East gas plants.

‘’This will no doubt have an impact on the output of the power stations fed by these gas plants, which include Egbin and Omotosho. The plants to be shut for short periods of time on different dates will inevitably result in the temporary loss of generated power.

‘’This is regretted but I assure you all that it will not last longer than the short period needed for the maintenance and re-commissioning work and our experts will be at work to ensure that available power is distributed in a manner to minimize inconveniences to consumers’’ said the Minister.