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Senate Probes Delay In Power Distribution To Delta Communities


In an effort to address the delay in the delivery of 100 megawatts of energy to towns in the Delta North Senatorial District, the Senate on Thursday directed its Committee on Power to conduct an investigation and take appropriate measures.

Bahd street vibes reports that the Red Chamber encouraged Nigeria’s Federal Ministry of Power and Transmission Company to step down the amount of power generated by the Okpai Independent Power Plant so that it serves Delta North communities.

The Senate’s resolutions came after it considered and adopted a motion moved by Senator Ned Nwoko (PDP, Delta North) captioned “Need to address the unexplained delay in electricity step-down of Okpai Independent Power Plant”.

During the primary discussion, Nwoko stated that the Senate had observed that Nigeria possesses 23 Power Generating Plants, which are also called Independent Power Plants, and are linked to the national grid.

He said, “These plants have a combined capacity to generate 11,165.4 megawatts of electricity. One of these facilities is the Okpai Independent Power Plant, situated in the Ndokwa East Local Government Area of the Delta North Senatorial District in Delta State.

“This power plant operates a functional 930-megawatt gas-fired power generation facility that contributes to Nigeria’s power supply grid. These Independent Power Plants are managed by Independent Power Providers and the Niger Delta Holding Company. Okpai Independent Power Plant, on the other hand, is operated and managed by the Nigeria Agip Oil Company.

“In April 2005, former President, Chief Olusegun Obasanjo, commissioned the Okpai Independent Power Plant and ordered the immediate implementation of the Environmental Impact Assessment Report for the plant.

“This included the provision of 50 megawatts of electricity to benefit the host communities within a 50-kilometer radius from the plant. The time of the plant’s commissioning in 2005, it generated only 480 megawatts of electricity. Nevertheless, it played a crucial role in the national power distribution system in Nigeria by supplying electricity to nine distant states in the country, including Anambra, Enugu, and the Federal Capital Territory, Abuja, among others.

“Also aware that Okpai Independent Power Plant has been upgraded to provide a functional 930 megawatts of electricity with another order and understanding to increase the power supply to host communities from 50 megawatts to 100 megawatts. This extension will include host community beneficiaries from the entire Delta North Senatorial District of Delta State.”

“To enhance its electricity supply, the Transmission Company of Nigeria awarded a contract worth approximately N4.2bn in 2021 for the construction of a 132KV Double Circuit Transmission Line. However, to date, there have been unexplained delays in executing the contract project.

“Despite the presidential pronouncement in 2005 and the upgrade of the Okpai Plant to 930 megawatts, the people of Ndokwa nation and the entire Delta North Senatorial District continue to lag seriously behind in the supply of electricity.

 “This is the case even though the Okpai Plant hosts several oil companies in its vicinity, including Nigeria Agip Oil Company, Sterling Exploration and Energy Production Company, Energia Limited, Midwestern Oil and Gas Limited, Pillar Oil Limited, Chorus Energy Limited, and more.

“Recall that Section 14(2)(b) of the 1999 Constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria (with alterations) stipulates that the welfare of the people shall be the primary purpose of government.”

Senators approved the proposal and voted to adopt its prayers when Senate President Godswill Akpabio called for a voice vote.

Akpabio then forwarded the proposal to the committee on power for additional legislative action, with a report back to plenary in one month.

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