•Vandals plunge Abuja into darkness
Emmanuel Addeh in Abuja and John Shiklam in Kaduna
The national power grid collapsed again yesterday, plunging most parts of the country into a blackout, a development the Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) attributed to multiple tripping of the system.
But the TCN, which is wholly controlled by the federal government, stated that it was investigating the blackout while as of yesterday evening, power had been restored to some parts of the country.
This is coming as the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) has said that the activities of some vandals had thrown parts of its franchise areas in Abuja and environs into a total darkness.
Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company (KEDCO) and their counterpart in Lagos, Eko Electricity Distribution Company (EKEDC), which first announced the national grid collapse, also apologised to customers for the inconvenience.
The national grid has continued to suffer system failures over the years, which the sector players say could be solved by the acquisition of a spinning reserve, a generation capacity that is online and can compensate for generation or transmission during collapses.
However, as of 5pm yesterday, a statement by the General Manager, Public Affairs of the TCN, Mrs. Ndidi Mbah, noted that power had been restored to many parts of the country, except parts of Cross River, Benue, Plateau, Borno among others.
“The Transmission Company of Nigeria (TCN) regrets to inform electricity consumers nationwide that at 11:25am today, the nation’s electricity grid experienced multiple tripping, which led to the collapse of the system.
“TCN has since commenced grid restoration; power has been successfully restored to every part of the country, except Calabar, Ugwuaji, Makurdi, Jos, Gombe, Yola and Maidugiri axis. Effort is, however, ongoing to ensure full restoration nationwide.
“We regret the inconvenience this has caused electricity consumers. Investigations would be conducted to establish the immediate and remote cause(s) of the multiple tripping as soon as the grid is fully restored – considering that the grid had been relatively stable in the last couple of months,” TCN said.
Four states in the north-west zone have lost electricity supply following the collapse of the national grid.
The Kaduna Electricity Distribution Company, in a statement yesterday by its spokesman, Mr. Abdulazeez Abdullahi, listed the states as Kaduna, Kebbi, Sokoto and Zamfara, which are within its franchise.
It added that consumers in the area won’t have power supply until the grid is backed up.
Also, the Abuja Electricity Distribution Company (AEDC) said vandals had thrown parts of its franchise areas in Abuja and environs into darkness.
A statement by the company’s spokesman, Mr. Oyebode Fadipe, noted that over 15 districts and communities were affected by the damage done to the transmission line.
“Customers living in the underlisted locations are hereby informed that as a result of the activities of vandals on the 330/132kV Gwagwalada/Kukwaba line that transports power to the 2 x 60MVA Kukwaba injection substation, power supply to the areas has been disrupted.
“The affected areas are: Kaura District, Galadimawa, Lokogoma, Suncity, Maccido Housing Estate, Games Village, Eyes Centre Hospital, National Stadium, Feeds Milipat Filling Station, part of Indoor Stadium, Kuchingoro, Karamajigi, King Park Estate, Royal Anchor Estate, DSS Quarters, Wilbahi Estate, Wuye, Utako and environs.
“While the live-line maintenance crew of the TCN is already working on the vandalised section of the 330kV/132kV line, efforts are also on to back-feed our customers from Apo,” the Disco said.