A Lagos-based lawyer and energy adviser, Mr. Iseoluwa O. Abiodun-Johnson, has commended the Federal Government what he called the rancour-free manner in which the bidders for the generation companies unbundled from the Power Holding Company of Nigeria (PHCN) emerged.
Speaking with THISDAY at the weekend on the outcome of the financial bids, Abiodun-Johnson, who also served as investment adviser to one of the investors that submitted bids for the acquisition of one of the PHCN assets, said he was also happy that the privatisation of the power sector was being concluded.
“Even though, my client lost out on the Ughelli bid to another company, it is gladdening to the heart that these generation companies will no longer be state-owned with its inefficiencies and wastages. I think the Presidency and by extension, the leadership of the BPE ought to be commended for the transparent and rancour-free manner in which the bidders have emerged so far,” he said.
He commended the BPE for the fresh call for bids from all pre-qualified bidders on the Afam Power plant, adding that it was an indication of a determination to give a level playing field to all the bidders.
According to him, it also showed the direction in which the distribution companies’ bids would also go.
On the personalities behind the bidders, the expert expressed the opinion that the new ownership was irrelevant at the moment.
“Where were the critics when these bidders were taking the risk? The main issue is whether these bidders were not qualified to win the bid. If they are qualified, the ownership is immaterial. What we need to do is to forward to the prospect of improved power supply in Nigeria,” he said.
He noted that improved power supply would help to create more millionaires among the country’s teeming youth as the enabling environment would that their ideas come to life and create a prosperous nation.
Abiodun-Johnson also noted that with the slight improvement in power, consumption of diesel and petrol in the country for the purposes of self-generation of power had reduced.
“It should be limited to just about one to five per cent in the next 2 - 3 years as the NIPP projects initiated by the Obasanjo administration and being completed by the current administration comes on stream,” he added.
The Federal Government is expected to generate $ 1,001,654,534 from last Tuesday’s sale of the five Gencos unbundled from the PHCN and these monies must be paid by the various successful bidders before the assets are handed over to the new core investors.