The Electricity Bill 2022, which permits states and private individuals to produce and distribute electricity, was approved by the Nigerian Senate on Wednesday. Is this a welcomed development? Definitely, notwithstanding though, it is less than a year before the current administration exits the scene.
However, it could just be yet another paper policy that creates more woes rather than solution to a sector bedevilled with decades of failure.
As the Power Bill moves to the House of Representatives for passage, experts are of the opinion that there's a need for constructive input and recommendations to guide the lawmakers.
Felix Olufemi Oduyemi, Chairman, Lamurudu Ventures and the Executive President, FG Energy Global, with over 40 years work experience at Edison, United States, offers his expert recommendations to the House, stating that the country must get it right.
"For a start," he noted, "I recommend the following:"
- States should be allowed to develop and operate regional transmission grids. Currently, electricity generation is on the concurrent list, which has proven to be a heavy burden and rendered the sector ineffective.
The transmission network of individual states must be inter-operable with the other transmission networks of other states. This will permit States/Discos to procure or dump excess power as needed to stabilize the grid.
- Discos or community aggregators must be permitted to recover in the rates charged to their customers enough to cover.
d. revenue cycle services
e. contingency/energency/excess generation and other needed delivery systems.
f. reasonable return on investment
g. book depreciation of all physical assets for generation, transmission, distribution, and revenue cycle services as income over 7- 30 years life cycle.
Driving FDI Into The Country
Oduyemi, who is also Executive Vice President, Caleb-Inland Energy, the developer of the proposed 2000 MegaWatt Lekki Energy Center is of the view that competitive tariffs with the rest of the world will unleash foreign direct investment in the power sector.
"There are many electricity customers in Nigeria who are willing to pay more to get rid of diesel/petrol powered generators." Nigerians are already submerged in the unpleasant realities of paying electricity bills and still source for diesel/petrol.
- Direct Nigeria Gas Company and NNPC to set favorable rates for natural gas used to generate electricity.
- Mandate the delivery of smart prepaid meters to all customers on record.
- Establish regional electricity regulatory agencies empowered to set rates, rules, regulations, and guidelines for electricity generation, transmission, distribution, customer services, and public charge.
Before the House seats on the Power Bill, Felix Oduyemi calls for a conserted effort from stakeholders, NIDCOM and the Diaspora community to present a blueprint that could help the country permanently solve its current and continuous electricity woes before the House seats on it and presents it to the President for ascent.©Standard Gazette, 2021. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s publisher is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Standard Gazette with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.