The chairman of Momas Electricity Meter Manufacturing Company (MEMMCOL) in Nigeria, Kola Balogun, has called for the national grid system to be decentralised.
Speaking at a press briefing, Balogun advised the new Minister of Power that the single national grid system was no longer efficient or sustainable.
To chart a new roadmap to address the generation, distribution and transmission challenges in the power sector Balogun called on the minister to engage in consultation with stakeholders and come up with a comprehensive roadmap that will transform the sector.
He said that there was a need for a roadmap that would clearly define the goals of the power sector after seven years of privatisation without achieving the desired results.
Balogun said: “Why do we continue to have a single grid that binds all of us together? We need to separate it in such a way that any state or local government can go into power generation and distribution to people within its area.
“If the power being generated is not enough, they can even buy from the national grid. So, power generation and distribution should be removed from the exclusive list and moved to the concurrent list.
“That is why we are advocating for franchising, so that Nigerians will enjoy more supply. The entire process should be done in a way that investors are able to get back their funds while their customers will get fair bills in line with global best practices.”
Balogun noted that more investment was needed in the sector to upgrade feeders, transformers and substations across the country, stressing that investors needed to recoup their investment and make profits.
While pointing out that the power sector required long-term investments and loans, he suggested that the Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) needed to enlighten the commercial banks on what was required in the power sector and why they should key in and become part of the process.
Balogun also called for effective regulation of the sector, stressing that the Nigerian Electricity Regulatory Commission (NERC) needed to be strengthened to carry out its statutory responsibilities.
“NERC must be given the power to sack and appoint heads of power generation, transmission and distribution companies if the need arises just the way CBN is doing in the banking sector. There is an element of discipline that is required for the sector to move forward and this is currently missing,” Balogun added.
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