4,219MW Cut Back from National Grid Daily in Five Days

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Chineme Okafor in Abuja

Sixteen out of the 27 existing electricity generation companies (Gencos) in Nigeria will cut down their power production capacities over the next 10 days as they deal with reduced gas supply for power production, the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) has disclosed.

Some of the Gencos affected by the gas supply shortage which the TCN said was caused by maintenance works on gas lines by gas suppliers are: 450 megawatts (MW) capacity Azura Edo; 450MW Sapele NIPP, 675MW Olorunsogo NIPP, and 450MW Ihovbor NIPP.

It disclosed in a statement signed by its General Manager, Public Affairs, Mrs. Ndidi Mbah, that this has affected power supply across the country, but that the situation would improve within the next 10 days after the maintenance works.

Following the TCN’s disclosure, statistics from the Advisory Power Team in the Office of the Vice President, Prof. Yemi Osinbajo showed that on Friday, about 4,492MW of electricity could not get to the national grid for reasons such as gas supply shortage.

Osinbajo’s office also indicated that on the same day, a meagre 3,887MW of electricity was distributed across the country, while N2.15 billion was lost as unearned revenue.

In the statement, Mbah said: “The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) wishes to inform the public that the nation’s power sector is experiencing power supply shortage caused by low gas supply which has restrained the ability of many thermal power stations to generate optimally.”

She noted that: “The thermal power plants affected by gas supply constraint include; Sapele NIPP, Olorunsogo NIPP, Ihovbor NIPP and Azura Edo power plants which generated zero megawatts yesterday. Other thermal power plants equally affected but generated at lower capacities include Egbin (Steam), Sapele (Steam), Delta (gas), Geregu (gas), Omotosho(gas), Olorusogo (gas), Geregu NIPP, Alaoji NIPP, Omotosho NIPP, Odukpani NIPP, Okpai (Gas/Steam) and Omoku (gas) power generating plants.

“TCN hereby note that as a result of the prevailing gas constraints, there has been significant reduction in the quantum of power transmitted to the various distribution companies for onward supply to electricity consumers across Nigeria.”

According to her, the TCN had discussed with the management of some of the affected power plants and many of them attributed their challenges to gas pipeline and processing maintenance being carried out by their gas suppliers.

“According to the management of some of the affected power plants, the maintenance of gas facilities are expected to last for ten days. Therefore, it is expected that the gas supply challenges will ease before the end of next week,” she stated.

Meanwhile, Osinabjo’s office also indicated that on Thursday last week, 4,014MW of power could not get to the grid while 3,934MW was distributed with N1.927 billion unearned. On Wednesday, it stated that 3,661MW was distributed while 3,890MW could not be produced and N1.867 billion lost.

On Tuesday, 4,105MW was unable to get to the grid and 3,554MW was distributed, leaving a revenue shortfall of N1.970 billion. The situation on Monday was that 4,595MW was not produced, while 3,706MW was distributed and N2.206 billion unearned.

On the average, Osinbajo’s office showed that 4,219MW was not put on the grid, 3,748MW distributed and N10.126 billion unearned between March 2 and 6.